Wednesday, August 21, 2013

I am Providence

 Howard Phillips Lovecraft’s profound influence can be seen in nearly every artistic medium, horror or otherwise. From graphic novels to video games, horror novels and films there have been multiple adaptations of his work. There are also countless pieces which are based on, influenced by, and deal with his many themes and concepts. Progressive ideas such as Cosmicism and Deep Time are now associated with being integral principles of Lovecraft’s work so that now when his contemporaries deal with the same concepts, they are said to be employing “Lovecraftian” ideals. Lovecraftian, in its basic sense, refers to a type of horror fiction that focuses on the unknown instead of gore. Although some of Lovecraft’s stories contain gore, his main focus was dealing with the state of mind of his characters. His stories are written with a first person perspective allowing the reader insight into the character’s state of mind and often the deterioration of the mind. Detachment is also a central theme in Lovecraft’s work. The heroes in his stories are typically advanced thinkers, scholarly types, but also loners in the sense that they seek isolation above socialization. 

All accounts of Lovecraft confirm that he was a sheltered child, attached to his mother. Once his father died of syphilis, his relationship with his mother became more complicated. Perhaps it was her fear of losing the boy as well that led her to viciously attack his self-esteem. She reportedly called him hideous and ugly forcing him to lock himself away in the attic of their house on Angell Street. This is where he began to imagine macabre stories of freakish, monstrous, grotesque creatures, who hide and lurk in the shadows.
He became an “Indifferentist” believing that things much older than mankind, older than Earth, are looking down upon us with indifference. His work was a departure from the traditional gothic horror and dealt more with a maligned world where the creatures don’t really care about humans. He created “gods on earth”, creatures that would haunt and terrorize the humans that Lovecraft despised so much. These characters were his self manifestation, his desires, him. 

Through Astronomy he learned the boundlessness of the universe and the insignificance of man. Cosmicism is a philosophy which asserts that there is no divine being in the universe, no God. Humans are merely insignificant specs existing inconsequentially in a vast, boundless galaxy. The insignificance of the human race can be proven through the theory of Deep Time, the idea that there existed a time before man. Man is self-involved and self-centered, only egotism exists. Therefore, a concept such as deep time may be hard to come to terms with. This can be illustrated by looking at a scene from the 1990’s TV show “Growing Pains.” During the sequence Mike Seaver (Kirk Cameron) pretends to be sick and stays home from school. Everything is going swimmingly until, while watching an episode of Gilligan’s Island, Mike hears the school bus outside. He becomes incensed with the idea that school, or life, has continued without him. A real turning point in the character’s life. The fear that the world doesn't start and stop at your convenience (to quote Walter Sobchak) can be quite demoralizing. But not for Lovecraft. He pointed to Man’s potential inability to exist in the "infinite spaces" that science opens up, the large emptiness of the cosmos to which Man is as insignificant as dust. Lovecraft’s feelings that human beings are not the most important of beings on the planet, what’s called anti-anthropocentrism, is a central theme in all of his work. It is believed that he held an overall disdain and mistrust of people in general. This misanthropy can be seen not only in his creative work but also in many of his personal correspondences with friends and family members.

These themes are worth noting if only for the uncanny parallels to Lovecraft’s life. Like most writers he wrote what he knew, drawing from his own experience to create, and most likely escape to, an imaginary world.  

Truly studied horrorphiles are all students of Lovecraft, whether they know it or not. They are all tiny specs, creating art under his divine guidance. After all, he was Providence. 

Friday, March 29, 2013

Park Chan-wook’s Stoker

Old Boy quickly became one of my favorite films after just the first viewing, accidentally caught on a movie channel a few years ago. I then, as I often do, began research on the filmmaker, thinking I needed to see and would like all of his work. Next was Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance and Lady Vengeance, then I’m a Cyborg, But That’s Ok, and Thirst; each one uniquely strange and beautiful, clever and fascinating.

My interest and excitement when news that Park Chan-wook’s first English speaking film was in production was high. But I’ve run into this issue before. Not everything a filmmaker makes is gold or should I say, just because you liked one or even ten films by someone, doesn’t mean you’ll like them all. There are so many variables to consider. Hitchcock had Family Plot and Topaz, Tim Burton has everything after Ed Wood, the Coen’s made Intolerable Cruelty and Lady Killers. And now Park Chan-wook has Stoker.

It’s not that the film is all bad, I think. It’s just by putting it next to the others, comparing it with them, reveals inferior work.

Bad scripts can make good actors look bad. Good scripts can make bad actors look good. Sometimes bad actors bring down good scripts and sometimes good actors save bad scripts from being bad. Got it?

What we have here is a combination of some of these. A weak script, yet an interesting story. Predictable dialogue mixed with beautiful poetic prose. Some very good actors and some not so good ones. Stoker is full of cliché after cliché. Which begs the question: is this what Park thinks American film is? How Americans act? Where‘s the awkwardness, the quirkiness of the characters? Even Dae-su Oh (Old Boy) had some of this in him, admittedly brought on by years of isolation and sleep deprivation, but it’s still part of what makes the character interesting and sympathetic. Sympathy for Mr. Old Boy! The characters in Stoker are different, but it seems forced, caricatures of offbeat characters working too hard to be different. 

I know, Dermot Mulroney had very few speaking scenes and that’s usually a good thing. Full disclosure: Dirty Steve Stephens was my favorite character in Young Guns and I was sad to see him die, however heroically, at the final shootout. The sequel could of used some of his witty banter and grit; the perfect foil to Lou Diamond Phillips’ Chavez y Chavez.

This film is a no doubt borrowing from Hitchcock’s Shadow of a Doubt.

In Shadow, Joseph Cotton plays the charming old lady killer with subtlety. His ability to go from zero to violent, even towards his beloved niece, is unsettling.
Matthew Goode’s Uncle Charlie in Stoker on the other hand looks punch drunk and lost. The difference, I suppose, is that Cotton’s Charlie was a sociopath with an agenda (see his dinner table rant about how little old ladies are actually like fat pigs that need to be slaughtered.) He knows he’s doing it, hence the wink right to the camera. Goode’s Charlie is meant to be sick, a psychopath with one goal – be with India. He has no self-control.  Admittedly, it may be as hard to play a psychopath, someone who is truly sick, without becoming pastiche, as it is to play someone with special needs or to try to explain to someone a dream you had. So there’s that. But many actors have done this successfully: Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal Lecter, Anthony Perkins as Norman Bates, and Tom Hardy as the title character in Bronson. Just to name three.   

In Shadow, Theresa Wright plays niece Charlie as innocent and naïve, but also with a strong will and sense of right and wrong. She’s a free thinker, not an outcast.
Mia Wasikowska plays niece Charlie, er, I mean, India, as an Emo high schooler. Different than the other kids at school, and oh yeah, she’s got super human senses. She can hear and feel and sense things in a magnified way, a spidey-sense if you will. Maybe the daddy longlegs that crawls up her leg and into her crotch is radioactive! Clearly the spider is Charlie: the mysterious visitor who also tries to crawl up India’s figurative leg and into her actual crotch.

Wentworth Miller (screenplay) admits that Shadow of a Doubt influenced the script, as a “jumping off point...and then we take it in a very, very different direction." It is also apparently influenced by Bram Stoker's Dracula. And although Stoker is not about vampires, there is something very vampire-y about Charlie. Why won’t you eat, man!?

Of course much of the film is very Hitchcockian, using themes, plot devices and motifs in similar ways, but the same can be said for many other filmmaker’s work. Spielberg’s early stuff, M. Night Shyamalan’s plot twisting, and David Fincher’s work are all heavily influenced by the Man.
The staircase shots and the use of trains as a sexual euphemism are homage to Hitch. So too is the use of shadow, in particular when Charlie is cooking dinner and part of his conversation with India is in full shadow. And the swinging light fixture, working as both illumination and creepification (to coin a term), is right from Psycho.

It’s known that after seeing Hitchcock’s Vertigo for the first time, Park decided to try filmmaking, and his first films are beautifully shot and composed dark narratives with a sense of humor and high level of violence. His newest film has all of this. Much of the framing in Stoker is thoughtful and well crafted.  His DP moves his camera gracefully at times willfully taking the place of dialogue to give us story information. The story is dark and at times laced with humor. Though there are times when that humor comes seemingly from an unintentional place. For instance, near the end of the film we see Evelyn (Kidman) confront Uncle Charlie and India. She tells Charlie to meet her in her room. The following profile shot has Charlie manically looking after Evelyn with eyes bugged – looking more like Marty Feldman than the Norman Bates/Uncle Charlie Oakley combo he was probably going for.

Finally, high school sequences can work if they are well placed in a narrative that depends on it – see Rian Johnson’s Brick. In Stoker, however, the sequences are unnecessary and unrealistic; as if this is some version of American high school that Park has heard about, not one based in reality. It’s more Ten Things I Hate About You than Heathers. Why are they there? To get us to meet Whip, the bad boy, motorcycle riding outcast who sticks up for then tries to rape India. There are other ways to do this. Also, we don’t need to see her being bullied by jocks to know she is different. The solitary moments in the beginning, her shoes, voice over, and overall demeanor cue us to this well enough. Whip doesn’t have to gain her trust in order for the scene to work. That’s not why she’s there and in fact, a stranger would have worked just as well. Say, dirt bike riding Johnny Lawrence, or sensitive, brooding Harley owner James Hurley, or even Butch “it’s a Chopper, baby” Coolidge could have fit the bill if all you needed was a two-wheeling bad boy.

Overall, I am about as much disappointed in Stoker as I am in most films I see. I am an esoteric, elitist snob after all. And my hypocrisy truly knows no bounds, as I will watch it again.

Thursday, September 20, 2012


We open with a voiceover narration which usually makes me tune out right away, and I almost did here except it costs $11 and I was eager to see my newest man crush Tom Hardy kick someone in the balls and John Hillcoat's other Neo-Western feature, The Proposition, was excellent. So I stuck with it, even though I subscribe to the "Show Don't Tell" club, which is different than the "Don't Ask Don't Tell" or the "Ask and and Ye Shall" clubs, this one has nothing to do with fear mongering. Voiceover is usually a narrative cop out and this one was especially shitty due to the fact it was performed by Shia LaBeouf - sounding like Lenny from Of Mice and Men mixed with Matthew McConaughey.
But I got past it.
The film is just not gritty enough. Possibly pressure from the studio to make it more accessible? 
I go back to The Proposition, also, as with Lawless, penned by Bad Seed Nick Cave. In particular the scene where Charlie Burns (Guy Pearce) meets bounty hunter, Jellon Lamb (the incomparable John Hurt). You can feel the stench of the bar; feel the flies buzzing around you. The scene makes you want to take a shower after it's done. And not one of those quick, "oh shit I'm late for work" rinses, a real Bruce Willis reentering the future in 12 Monkeys scrubbing.
There are no scenes like this in Lawless.
Even Hillcoat's other recent feature, The Road, has a feeling to it. Though along with grit it has desolation, emptiness. A similar scene to the one in The Proposition has Robert Duvall, nearly unrecognizable as the Old Man, uncomfortably sharing a night fireside with the father and son; everyone sleeping with one eye opened of course.
Compared to these two films and other Neo-Westerns like Deadman, The Assassination of Jesse James, or even Last Man Standing, Lawless is a Disney movie.
The film isn't helped with the miscasting of the Jack character or the fact that Jason Clarke, the actor who plays middle brother Howard, looks like Matthew Perry/Howdy Doody, not a wild, uncontrollably violent drunk.
Seriously, some actor's faces aren't made for makeup.
I will say most of the other casting choices are rock solid, this is what saves the film. The aforementioned Tom Hardy is believable as Forrest. Jessica Chastain plays reformed dancer Maggie with pride and dignity. And Noah Taylor is perfectly slimy as Gummy Walsh, Floyd Banner's (Gary Oldman) right-hand man. The list goes on.
Lawless is a western. It has most of the criteria and conventions we associate with the genre including:
Theme: Civilization vs Wilderness
This is abundantly clear on the surface. The Bondurant boys live out in the mountains of Franklin County, VA (the Wilderness) where everything seems to be going fine with their bootlegging operation until a Special Deputy from Chicago (Civilization) arrives with a mind to cut in in the boys' business. So the dichotomy is there. There sometimes too is a dirty villain-type who runs the town and goes head to head with the hero. Here there seems to be an overall lawlessness of the entire county, they run themselves and are happy doing it. Guy Pearce's Charlie Rakes tries to become that person, but is cut down in his prime as it were. There is also Mason Wardell (Tim Tomlin) the District Attorney who seems to be running things from behind a curtain.
But in this film the traditional conquest of the wilderness by the civilized is thwarted and it's the wilderness, the Bondurant boys, who win out in the end.
Character Types
The Hero is often an anti-hero, a retired gunslinger who rides into to town and, eventually, saves the day.  In the case of Lawless, it's the three brothers with a combination of character traits. Forrest, Howard and Jack, though not retired gunslingers, they are anti-heroes who inhabit major qualities we associate with other Western heroes: quiet stoicism, intense desire for right, or even the wildcard factor.  
Maggie is the whore with heart of gold who wants to go straight.
Drunk brother, Howard, who can add some comic relief. Though the crippled from a batch of rickets and aptly named, Cricket (Dane Dehaan) fills this role as well.
Bad guy - Guy Pearce
The Other - Brothers are part Injun
Bertha (Mia Wasikowska) - the other girl, schoolmarm-type who is attracted to the bad guy.
Story Formulas - good vs evil, uh, yup.
But then again Jaws is a Western as well:
Theme - Civilization (Amity) vs Wilderness (the ocean)
Presentation - extreme long shots of the vast desolate ocean
Story Formulas - good vs evil
Character Types - sheriff? check, rogue killer/bad guy? check, side kick? check, drunk dude? check
The ending of Lawless is slightly reminiscent of another of these "Neo" Westerns, in tone only. In Tombstone after all the violence and the kick ass montage of the Earp boys taking down the cowboys and Doc's showdown with Johnny Ringo (played by Michael Biehn, with way more spitting venom and evil than Pearce's Rakes), we get a coda of Wyatt (Kurt Russell) and what’s-her-face (Dana Delaney) coming out of the theater then dancing in the snow talking about room service or some other shit. This should have been the end of Overboard II or Insert Kurt Russell 80's film here. Instead it puts a superfluous cap on a film that was already hanging on by a thread were it not for Val Kilmer's humorous, dark turn as Doc Holiday.
By the way, I'm not counting the long credit sequence of the Earp boys and Doc, back from the dead, walking towards the camera like some over-the-hill boy band as the music swells.
Maybe I'm off here. Maybe larger populations go for a cutesy, tie-it-up-in-a-bow ending like this. Not me.
They should have made two endings, one for each of us. And wasn't Wyatt's gift to Doc on his deathbed cute enough? "My Friend Doc", aw. End the film right then, right there. With Doc looking at his bare feet, saying, "I'll be damned. This is funny"
In Lawless its Mr. The Beef's voice over again, summing up events that needed no summing. The film spends so much time building up the myth of oldest brother Forrest, though we do see moments of weakness especially when it comes to Maggie. Why do we need to see him dance in the snowy riverbank, then fall in? (Dancing? Snow?) We don't - though it does function to affect the audience into thinking, "how ironic for him to be killed now after all that" then when he climbs out of the frozen river, "Hooray!"
Another Western trait takes form in the Stars associated with the genre. In Tombstone it was Robert Mitchum's voiceover that really gave the film some ruggedness. In Jaws Robert Shaw adds some West experience. In Lawless its Shia LaBeouf's experience in  Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull that gives the film it's "western-ness" because he wore a hat in a few scenes. Seriously, LaBeouf is a whiny bitch. (See my Michael Bay blog for more on him). Was it Even Stevens season 3 episode 7: "Raiders of the Lost Sausage" that prepared him for his role as Mutt Williams in Indiana Jones? Maybe I'm missing something. Why does he keep getting work? Here's a list of young actors that would have been a better choice to play Jack in Lawless:

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

If Michael Bay makes a film and nobody sees it, does it still make a sound?

While I have always gone against the notions of what a filmmaker and educator should put their top 10 (favorite film: RoboCop), I can't help but question certain things. I can usually see films for what they are, be it pure entertainment, gratuitous pulp, rock/rap star-become-actor vehicle, whatever.
But there is nothing good about what Michael Bay does, nothing.
Sometimes I get on rants about particular things...Joel Schumacher for instance. I have long stood on my soap box, screaming to anyone who would listen that Mr. Schumacher might just be the worst filmmaker ever. This is all based on the fact that he single-handedly tried to ruin the Batman franchise forever and thanks only to Christopher Nolan do we get redemption. In hindsight, after looking at his career as a whole, I may have been a bit rash. He has, in fact, made some of my favorite films from youth. But that all may be skewed (see my post: Nostalgia Takes the Place of the Real, 12/2/10). I did re-catch The Incredible Shrinking Woman (1981) a few weeks ago on TV, and besides being a nice attempt at social satire on consumerism and women's role in society, the film is hot garbage. But The Lost Boys, Flatliners, Falling Down...are all great for sure. And who can argue with Marsha Warfield's riveting portrayal of a poor and desperate cab driver trying to save her boss's business, along with the likes of Mr. T, Gary Busey, and Bill Maher,  in 1983's D.C. Cab? Seriously though, Schumacher's career has hit on many different emotional levels from a fun romp (D.C. Cab) to a moving biopic (Veronica Guerin) to an emotional study of a complicated relationship (Flawless). And even though he did attempt to destroy Batman with absurd casting and suits with nipples, it's not all bad.
Michael Bay is a jerk. He's like the star high school quarterback who everyone hates. Cocky, brazen, a real show off. I'd probably like him, he reminds me I'm all for violent battles full of explosions, so fast that if you are sitting too close to the screen you miss half of it. And who doesn't enjoy scantily-clad women who have little to no lines to speak? But to look at someone's career as a whole and not be able to discern any level of depth, passion, or narrative is a great concern, especially to someone who often preaches to his students the importance of a story with a beginning, middle and end, of character development, and taking pride in what you do.  Even Ed Wood, Hollywood's best known hack, had passion for what he did. He believed in his heart of hearts that he was making good cinema. And he tried, you could see it on screen, even through the continuity errors, the strings from the flying saucers, and terrible make-up effects. What he lacked in talent he made up for with unmatched verve.
So let's take a brief look at Mr. Bay's catalog:
I can find humor in some of the witty banter between Will Smith and Martin Lawrence in the Bad Boys series but how much of that is Smith and Lawrence or the four, that's right four, folks it took to script it?
I hate Nicolas "Coppola" Cage too (not Hollywood's biggest example of nepotism, but possibly the worst results. And who isn't waiting, losing sleep over even, the reboot of Thelma & Louise starring Suri Cruise and Rumor Willis?). So it only seems too fitting that he and Bay meet up in the pressure packed The Rock (1996). To hear Cage utter "I love pressure. I eat it for breakfast," has to be a highlight of any $70 million blockbuster. Then there's Armageddon (1998), Pearl Harbor (2001), and The Island (2005). Judge for yourself.
And of course there's The Transformers series. Films that should have starred Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the nerdy, bumbling high-schooler turned action hero, Sam Witwicky, but instead we get Shia LaBeouf whose acting is reminiscent of Doug Kinney #4 in Multiplicity. Come on, can't you picture him turning to Optimus Prime, with that slack-jawed look, motioning towards Megan Fox, "She touched my pepe, Steve!" And speaking of Megan Fox, can it be true that this talentless "actress" has been the only one to call out Bay? Or is the fact that no actors with any actual talent will work with him a sort of silent protest that points directly to his reputation in Hollywood?
I'm not sure. But look for Bad Boys 3 and another Transformers sequel by 2014 and another, and another, and another...

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

click here

Recently reading an article about pedophile and all-around scum bag Jerry Sandusky, I came across something that gave me pause. Something almost as disgusting and egregious as the man himself. At the end of the short article about Sandusky's latest charge, boy's 9 and 10, the website had an ad reading:  
Take to the field, it's bowl time! Sign up for College Bowl Pick 'em.
(With a link to click on the "Pick 'em", of course.)

This is not an ad on the side bar where more ads tracking your web surfing seem to appear daily. Not at the header or footer either. This sat centered at the bottom of the article looking as if it were part of the correspondence, with no separation, no fancy pictures, borders, or font difference.

And below that, maybe more ironic than anything, were ads for lawyers and of course for Penn State gear.

This got me thinking, as much as I can think after a day of listening to stupid questions about things I already covered minutes before and the dramatic complaints of teenagers whose worlds are ending because of broken hearts and no tater tots at lunch. So I went back to Yahoo Sports homepage searching for another article where I might find similar subject matter. I didn't have to look far. The first article in the headline section read : Sex-abuse scandals - Too much time has passed for a DA to file charges vs. Bernie Fine. Perfect. I click over to the article highlighting Mr. Fine, the Syracuse Men's Basketball assistant coach accused of Sandusky-like acts. Deciding to skip the article, I know how this one turns out, I scroll to the bottom and there it is. Centered, italicized, and with a link to the Yahoo Sports NCAA Twitter account, another, yet different, ad: Follow Yahoo! Sports' college basketball coverage on Twitter. 

What this says about the editors of the website, I'm not sure. Are we to expect them to filter their ads based on the content of the articles to make them more appropriate? Can we really expect them to be in complete control of all their content, when the job really is to simply get the news out there?
The answer: Yes, we can.
We can be a bit more sensitive, or just less douchy, without sacrificing the truth.
We don't have to be like Diana Christensen, a real heartless bitch. Or build websites that are the digital personifications of Tom Grunick, opinion-less and vacant, yet pretty.
Just sometimes I wish we could get up, get up right now and go to the window. Open it, and stick our heads out, and yell, 'I'M AS MAD AS HELL, AND I'M NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!'

Wild Wing Tuesdays at Buffalo Wild Wings, don't miss it!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Slice of Life - A Look at Terrence Malick's new film The Tree of Life

Terrence Malick's new feature, The Tree of Life, deals with concepts of creation and evolution, of loss and faith, and questions of being and existence. That is not to say the film need be watched by the mindful eye of a believer or the un-trusting one of a skeptic to make any sense. The film is, after all, on it's surface an exploration of relationships: a son's to his father, a son's to his mother, a husband to his wife, a human's to God, and so on.

At first glance, we are bombarded by familiar image. In fact, any person bored on a Sunday afternoon can turn on the Discovery Channel and see replicas of, or maybe even exact shots of, large chunks of Malick's Act II (what I like to call, Simulacra Earth). He brings the viewer through his version of the beginning of life here on Earth: an explosion of rock and fire, the beginnings of life in the ocean, even a vaginal-looking jelly fish, followed by a quite phallic-looking fish creature. Then dinosaurs, that's right, dinosaurs. All leading up to a fetus in utero and then birth.  The problem is (disregarding the none-too-real-looking CGI monsters/dinos) that we've seen it all before. The overdone shot of Earth as a large rock mass plummets to the surface causing ripples in the deep blue. The obvious replay of the unborn fetus, pink and black-eyed like so many eye-witness testimonies of Extraterrestrials. The much (over)used swooping tracking shot across the ocean, the desert, the whatever surface fits. All of it not new.

So what's all the fuss about over this film then you ask? I'm not really sure.

What we do have is an exploration through memory and death. What we don't have is a narrative to follow. Here's the premise: a man raised by a very strict father tries to come to terms with the loss of his brother years before. 2 hrs. 18 min.

Ok, ok, there are some positives here. Malick's characters are believable and warm, especially the father and mother (superbly acted by Brad Pitt and Jessica Chastain). And the boy, Jack, played by Hunter McCracken (unfortunate name, I know) takes us to depths of character with no dialogue needed.
The set design is nearly flawless as we seamlessly shift from the 1950's ahead to present day. The juxtaposition of the suburban world little Jack grows up in versus the glass and steel one he must try to make sense of as an adult nearly become characters unto themselves.

And then there's the themes mentioned above, specifically loss and faith. An important part of the film comes when a little boy drowns in the public pool. This is the moment when Little Jack really begins to question his faith, a faith written on him by his father not one chosen by him. His voiceover is a question to God, in fact all of the voiceovers in the film are not questions to self or to the audience, but instead a dialogue between the character and God, Jack simply asks why. From this point forward Jack struggles mightily with many things. The confusion of God and Dad being a biggy, along with the difference between right and wrong. Something Jack also struggles with. There are times when he is about to do something wrong and we can see in his eyes he knows the difference but his body goes ahead and does it anyway. Maybe to get attention from Dad/God; even though negative, it is still attention.  The major problem here is that by the time we see Older Jack (Sean Penn) we don't get enough of him. The audience can't connect to his older self. This mis-connection might be a casualty of editing, who knows.
This is a film of a 67 year old man (Malick) coming to terms with  life and death (his own), while at the same time dealing with loss and death of the people around him. And for that, I applaud Malick. He's honest and true and all of his films are beautifully composed and smartly shot. Sometimes though, I just need more.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

You haven't seen that?

"You haven't seen that? And you call yourself a film teacher?"
Truer words were never spoken.  A true film lover should see every, single movie ever made. Not just the "important" ones, classics, and his/her favorites, but EVERY ONE. How else can you even begin to wax intellectual about them? Judge and criticize other films? What have you ever done? Roger Ebert wrote a movie, you know. But that's besides the point. Jumanji  is a classic movie.  When the guy runs out of bullets and they give him another gun, but the new one is, like, huge...awesome! Or in Snakes on a Plane when there was those snakes on a the...plane mother fucker! Should be canonized, I tell you!  
Gigli, Waterworld, Attack of the 50 Foot Woman, Troll 2, From Justin to Kelly, It's Pat, Showgirls, Battlefield Earth, Freddy Got Fingered, Who's Your Caddy?, The Hottie & the Nottie...
Go back, get a Netflix subscription and learn, my friend.