Monday, October 23, 2006

The Prestige, Reds

A couple of brief thoughts on the movies I watched over the weekend:

The Prestige - I'd like to know, from other people who've seen the film, when everything fell into place - twist-wise - for you, because I figured everything out that was coming about an hour into this movie. And, see, this is not normally the case with me; normally I am, like in life, consistently blindsided by surprises, having my head firmly lodged up my behind on almost every occasion. But I spent the second half of The Prestige waiting for what I'd figured out already to be revealed, hoping the movie had other cards up its sleeve, and then it didn't, and it played off it's "revelations" in the end like it was supposed to be blowing my mind, which it decidedly was not. So that was disappointing.

Still, it's not a bad film, it's got two so-charismatic-it-hurts lead actors sparring off of each other in gorgeously rendered turn-of-the-last-century eye-porn with a rabid desire to entertain. But either I'm a genius or this film's not half as clever as it thinks it is, and I think we all know which of those cases are the more likely.

Reds - Even though I spent the majority of the day yesterday in a self-medicated fog, I could still see that I was watching a film as perfect as Casablanca. Reds is a perfect film, and an important film, and I'm now even more thoroughly irked it was unavaliable for so long on DVD.

And Diane Keaton's performance as Louise Bryant is maddeningly great. Maddening because it made me wonder where this Diane has gone, having been swallowed by her Annie Hall mannerisms for the past 30 years*; it made me want to write a part for her where she leaves the neurotic tics at the door again, because she is really a wonder here.

*Mind you, I adore her Annie Hall mannerisms; one just forgets she's capable of other great things.


Scott said...

I figured out what was going on with the Jackman side of things long before the end - and some comment in one of the scenes with Scarlett made even single point of that side clear.

I also had, more or less, an understanding of what was going on with the Bale side of things, though that could have been at least 2 things and I didn't know the "real" one for sure until the final reveal.

Nonetheless, it still kept me interested in all the details, and was vastly more entertaining in terms of the mysteries at its heart than The Illusionist was (talk about predictable). And for that reason - and several others - I definitely enjoyed it. Good movie.



see i thought the twists in the Illusionists were more shocking. But not for a good reason. for the cheap, we withheld all the info and we surprised you BOO as if you can figure things out without any info. dumb.

The Prestige was fun but should have been much tighter and i really wish they hadn't started with the end. it would've been much more nervewracking as a straight narrative I think.

that said I only figured out the Jackman part and not the Bale part.

Merchant said...

I spent most of the film wondering when Christian Bale acquired that little skin nubbin' near the corner of his eye. Surely that wasn't there before. GET IT LOPPED!