Saturday, December 23, 2006

After Hours

When we discussed Blue Velvet in my film studies class, my professor remarked that it shared a striking number of similarities with After Hours, a Martin Scorsese film released around the same time. It finally came up on Netflix, and I watched it (somewhat distractedly) while I packed up what remained of my life in Boston.

I guess they both share the theme of voyeurism, and both share a really dark worldview, but other than that, I wouldn't really say that they are all that similar. I did find After Hours pretty interesting, though. It's a comedy, but a comedy loosely defined. It's unsettling in a way similar to that of Blue Velvet, except Blue Velvet wasn't funny. Blue Velvet said, "Laugh at me, and Frank will fuck you up." After Hours says, "Have a crazy night!" It's got a lot of references (obvious and subtle) to The Wizard of Oz, including the overall structure of the film with its dreamlike quality.

All in all, a worthwhile rental. But it's Scorsese, and even the lesser entries in his filmography have some value.

Friday, December 22, 2006

So I have this blog...

But life happened. Which is unfortunate, considering that I've seen lots of exciting movies of late. More soon, I promise.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Casino Royale, or, My Continuing Love Affair With Daniel Craig

I suppose I should begin by saying that the James Bond films have never really done much for me. I've seen a few Sean Connery Bond movies, and they're alright. Goldeneye was pretty good, and I'll watch A View to a Kill every time it's on because of the presence of Christopher Walken. But as a whole, the franchise has never held that much of an allure for me. Maybe it's all because of the crazy person who tried to talk to me when I went to see Die Another Day.*

All that being said, I was somewhat excited to see Casino Royale. The movie had been getting a lot of good buzz, and Daniel Craig, as I mentioned a few posts back, was totally bad-ass awesome in Layer Cake. Oh, and he is make-me-weak-in-the-knees sexy. So regardless of my apathy towards previous Bonds, this one was going on my must-see list.

As I'm sure you are aware, Casino Royale takes a look at the beginning of James Bond. Which means that he's not quite so smooth and polished as we've come to expect. This is hot. It's way more interesting. And thank god, there's no ridiculous gadgets like the freaking invisible car. We see him get his Aston-Martin. We see him request his famous drink. We see him put on his tux for the first time. And we swoon (especially when he puts on the tux). The plot is your standard James Bond stuff - terrorists, lots of money, villains with strange/creepy quirks like crying blood, exotic locales, and hot girls. And Jeffrey Wright, the best actor you don't know about, plays Felix Leiter who is the CIA version of Bond and apparently a reoccurring character in the franchise. You should be totally stoked about that.

Oh, yeah, and then there's that scene where Bond comes out of the water in that skimpy bathing suit. Actually it happens twice. Sure, the movie's a little long, and as with all Bond movies, if you think about it too much your head starts to hurt and you stop enjoying it. So don't think. Just go, watch, swoon. You won't regret it.

*This is a story for another time.