Sunday, March 26, 2006

V For Vendetta.

Isn't Vendetta a beautiful name for a girl? Strong, exotic, and feminine at the same time?

Like most movies based on comic books, excuse me, graphic novels, V for Vendetta has that great live-action cartoon sentiment behind its images. Sumptuous or bleak, but nothing wishy-washy.

Natalie Portman is Evie, an everyman (everywoman?) in a future British deistic/fascist regime. The fact that her mother and father were imprisoned for subversive leanings don't seem to play a big role in her life. V is a shadowy, masked, sociopathic burn victim with a Big Ben-sized chip on his shoulder and a penchant for clumsily quoting Shakespeare. He "rescues" her from the Matrix and tortures/trains her in a weird catacomb of objets d'art and butter with breakfast. (The odd Stockholm Syndrome that follows creeps me out a little.) As effed as V is, he's more sociable than the Phantom of the Opera, albeit much more destructive.

V wears a mask the entire movie. Fine. That didn't bug me all that much, but it did get a little boring. Hugo Weaving "played" V. I pity this guy, who so effectively creeped me out in the Matrix trilogy, for being trapped behind a mono-expressioned mask.

This movie was meant to be released last summer but it was held over for technical reworkings or some such excuse. The accepted reason is that it was too soon after the London transit bombings of last summer to show a movie featuring systematic subversive destruction of an autocratic secretive British government.

While Vendetta was a cool movie, don't expect the pants-pooping effects of the original Matrix movie. The Wachowski brothers are responsible for both. There is only one scene that hearkens back to Neo besting agents. In Vendetta, V channels Tarantino while he turns a seemingly endless line of hapless henchmen into blood geysers. It was probably cool, but I had my eyes closed.

Despite (what in my opinion were) some little niggly problems, I really liked this movie. The spectacle of the last scene was worth it. No, that makes it sound like I suffered through the rest of the movie. That's not true. I enjoyed the whole thing.

Very Good Movie.

New Linque du Jour.

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