Sunday, April 18, 2010

Tokyo Sonata



Kurosawa's melancholy sonata intertwines repression, disappointment, and failure in the most inevitable and beautiful arrangement of post-corporate suburban japanesse angst that one can imagine. The subtle stains of his horror roots lurk and surface throughout the first two acts, but when they come to their cathartic fruition, he maintains a masterful insinuation of his (typical) urge supernaturally horrific disaster in a series of outlandish disastrous intertwined experiences; all of which find a satisfying subtle resolution.

++++

Friday, April 09, 2010

Thelma & Louise



I'm so glad that I returned to this great road-trip, come-uppance, getaway, feminist film; the way the performances, script and directing manage to employ every genre cliche in the book, and yet spin them in fresh fierce directions makes every moment worth the ride. Are all road trips this much like a string of pearls, delightfully meandering journeys punctuated by beautiful poignant moments?
++++

Friday, April 02, 2010

An Education



Jenny meets David at precisely the moment that her wide-eyed wanderlust leads her haplessly into his fanciful empire of worldly delights where she learns to ask worthy questions of her formal education and her middle class destiny; while the story has a satisfying arc, those worthy questions are unworthily brushed away with arguably one of the most hegemonic voiceover endings ever used to sell-out an indie flick to a uplift-greedy mainstream art house audience. The period elements are sumptous, the performances of Seymour, Molina, Mulligan and Saarsgard are particularly subtle; overall a delightful taste, but dangerous to swallow.

+++1/2

The Hurt Locker



In this procedural drama thriller about a cowboy-of-a-bomb-diffusing-specialist in vaguely-anywhere-Iraq, every episode of suspense produces precisely the sort of suspense we hope for in such a film; side benefits include a conceptual tour of the varieties of everyday tension typical (?) of Iraq and an assurance that the realest of the real American Men, while they may have some gooey marshmellow-y inside, their essence is as leathery and sinewy as their exterior. I can't imagine a better marriage between camera work, direction, performance and mise en scene for *this* script; I'm just a little surprised that a film with so little *depth* can sweep so many awards in the film industry.

+++1/2