I’ve recently experienced a major lull in brain activity that has kept me away from my blossoming blog. That doesn’t mean, however, that I haven’t been watching any films. On the contrary, I’ve been watching just as many as I normally do, I just haven’t been writing about them.
I’ll just say a few things about a few of the films I’ve watched recently, because over time the profundity of my impressions have faded. Is profundity a word? Irregardless….
Open Your Eyes(1997) Directed by Alejandro Amenabar, starring Penelope Cruz and Eduardo Noriega: This film is a little bit The Jacket (2005, w/Adrien Brody) mixed with a little Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind(2004, w/ Jim Carrey), with A LOT of Philip K. Dick’s 1923 novel, Ubik. A fascinating (SF-esque) movie that plays with the protagonist’s, and the viewer’s, sense of reality.
A Clockwork Orange (1971), Dir. Kubrick: I thought I had seen this film before, but clearly I hadn’t. What I liked about this film was Kubrick’s presentation of how society (and therefore the family) deals with poor parenting and poor adherence to acceptable social values. One social value that is clearly perverted in the film is [avoidance of] violence: rape, juvenile delinquency/hoodlumery (that’s a new word I’m coining), unethical treatment of prisoners, and the mob mentality. What struck me throughout the film was that Alex was brought up in an unaffectionate household, he perpetuated violent un-affection in the world, and instead of remaining incarcerated, he was recirculated into the world by a method of ultimate cruelty and un-affection for the individual. Just another clear instance of ripping an individual’s autonomy away for perversely experimental reasons. I couldn’t help but think of Guantanamo Bay during the 2nd half of the film.
The White Diamond (2004), Dir. Werner Herzog: I suppose all Herzog documentaries can be called ‘classically Herzogian,’ and this one is no exception. An interesting story about one man’s desire to launch an airship (a much smaller version of the infamous Zeppelin-style airship) down in Guyana, the haunting history of his prior attempt, some spectacular rainforest footage, and always some interesting people to awkwardly focus in on. I love how Herzog narrates his documentaries, revealing little (sometimes awkward or embarassing) details about the people he’s filming, and how he hones in on the everyday people that he finds while on-location. This documentary has one such everyday person: Marc Anthony with his trusty rooster. Herzog spent a lot of time on Marc Anthony, and I think it’s people like Marc Anthony who make Herzog documentaries work on a truly human level.
D.A.R.Y.L. (1985). What a great movie! I saw this as a child and wanted to see it again. A young boy is really part robot and he is taken in by a foster family when one of his scientist-creators escaped the Lab with him. It is a story of love and the-right-thing-to-do. You can’t beat that!
Sunshine (2007), starring Cillian Murphy: An interesting doomsday, SF film. Plot resembles Armageddon (1998) and all the other doomed-earth films. Cool effects with the sun. Didn’t like some of the other cinematography.