Sunday, May 25, 2014
THE ROCK (god help us all), KINGPIN and STRIPTEASE. Maybe not the greatest but not the worst either. My rose-colored glasses tell me that those were ok times and looking back on it now this film feels like a high-water mark (to lift from Hunter S. Thompson) for blockbuster filmmaking of the era before things became that much more corporatized, CGI overwhelmed things and the superheroes hit the scene. They still had the potential for fun, they could still be cool. The mid-nineties didn’t last. Nothing ever does although for all I know MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE sequels just might, whoever stars in them. But the cool vibe De Palma infused this film with stays with me, the images of this film stay with me, the flow of how certain shots go together along with the growing intensity of the score are undeniable. Through every frame of its cinematic delirium De Palma makes the film his own. He makes MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE his own. And, as far as I’m concerned, it’s what MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE always will be.
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
Thursday, May 15, 2014
DIE ANOTHER DAY) seems to have a knack for working with actors but doesn’t display any particular affinity for the material while the screenplay (story by Pete Dexter and Floyd Mutrux, screenplay by Pete Dexter) has potential with the occasional speech that offers genuine bite but it feels like too much may have been bled out via rewrites and studio notes. It was also edited by the late, great Sally Menke and individual sections often play fine with certain edits within scenes in particular showing off how good she was but the entire picture doesn’t coalesce, as if a reel or two was accidentally left out of the release version (Glenn Erickson at DVD Savant seems to have been in the know on the production and confirms that cuts were made). Nothing really connects very much—the central mystery involving Connelly is never as enigmatic as it seems it might be at first and any metaphor, whether connected to the nature of the film’s title or the atomic age imagery, just comes off as a void like that huge pit in the middle of the desert courtesy of a test blast that the squad stops to gape at.