Monday, February 27, 2006

Movie Reviews: A Triptych.

Part I

I saw Romancing the Stone this afternoon for the first time. I really enjoyed it. I spoke to Lisa soon after and she said, "Isn’t it amazing that when that movie was made, Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner were considered the best looking people around?" I laughed. The first time Douglas turned to the camera, all straggly and Indy Jones-ey, my first reaction was to recoil a little and go, “huh.” All in all, worth seeing.

The Oscars are on Sunday. I always like the Oscars, because I get to think about movies without seeming too obsessed. I hate that this year, I didn’t see all 5 best picture nominees. I passed on Munich when it was in the cinemas here in Charlottetown and the week after it left screens here, it was announced as one of the best pics. Bah. I hear it’s long and a real downer, anyway. Fuck that noise.

Part II

I went to see Capote by myself. I love going to movies by myself. It makes me feel very cosmopolitan, independent and strong.

Capote is the portion of Truman Capote’s life while he was writing what ended up being his last novel, “In Cold Blood,” which he called a “nonfiction novel.” He was excited because he thought that he was inventing a new kind of writing; bridging the gap between fact and fiction. He was interviewing (primarily) one man who was accused of murdering a small-town family to fulfill research for his novel. The accused was an articulate, meek man, and Capote soon made a connection with him.

Philip Seymour Hoffman’s character study of Truman Capote is absolutely captivating. Conniving at times, extroverted at times, genius and naïve in turn, it was an enjoyable (and sometimes brow-furrowing) movie. I don’t want to give too many details because I don’t want to ruin your experience if you haven’t seen it. I won’t deprive you of those small intakes of breath not quite big enough to call gasps.

Part III

Clooney! Jesus, I cannot tone down my deep, deep affection for The Clooney. It's visceral.

This is me, Stanley Kowalski-esque, at the bottom of a staircase wearing a ripped sweaty tee-shirt, yelling in anguish: "CLOONEEE!!!"

I went to see Good Night, and Good Luck at City Cinema, the rep theatre in Charlottetown. Lisa was my date.

Good Night, and Good Luck was the story of TV personality Edward R. Murrow’s reaction to Senator McCarthy’s Anti-American Activity trials of the 1950s. The parallels with today’s American administration attitude of “if you’re not with us, you’re against us,” are not lost on most.

Clooney (Even when we’re married, I’m going to call him Clooney. “Clooney! Thank you so much for this yacht! Clooney, did you know that your Italian villa is tax-free because you're so handsome? Clooney! It's your turn to give little Asher and Felicity their baths!”) wrote, directed and starred in this film. In high-contrast black and white, which makes for seamless integration of archival footage.

This is a different character study from that of Capote. It’s a less in-depth look at these non-fictional characters. It’s almost voyeuristic. There are a lot of characters that, by the end of the film, we know what they’re thinking, but I think it’s more a testament to the high quality of the actors rather than a crackerjack screenplay (no offense, Clooney). No, maybe it’s screenplay and actors and direction.


Catherine said...

P.S. I've been thinking about writing Clooney a letter that reads:

Dear Clooney,
If you're free this weekend, wanna get married? Let me know,
Catherine Sweet.

I think he'll instantly understand our connection and take me up on my offer.

Holly said...

Happy Saint David's Day!