As I wrote up my favorite 25 movies of 2019 a few weeks ago (yes it feels like years ago, why do you ask) I realized, as I went to link to my reviews, that there were a few of them I never properly reviewed. The end of the year crush takes its toll, and time was scarce -- remember what it was like for time to be scarce? The past two days I haven't gotten out of bed before 10:30.
Anyway! One of the movies I loved but never reviewed was Mike Leigh's Peterloo, which was one of the movies I made sure to cram in before making my list, and the one I was most glad to have taken the time for. It's brilliant, it's devastating -- it feels epic and yet you can at the same time feel it closing its vice like grip on you as it rolls along, as the horror of what's to come makes itself unavoidable. For a film shot mainly in wide shots it's somehow so claustrophobic you almost can't take it by the end. It's a tremendous accomplishment from one of our greatest living filmmakers and I urge you to use some of your quarantine time to tackle it -- it's streaming on Amazon right this second!
their latest e-book is a deep dive into Peterloo, with interviews with the costume designer, the editor, the cinematographer, a couple of the actors (Rory Kinnear!), and of course Mike Leigh himself, plus a couple of critical pieces that slap the film into its historical context -- I wish I'd had this all on hand when I scoured the Peterloo Massacre's Wikipedia page after seeing the film!
And here's the deal! Because we're all trapped at home the book will only be 99 cents tomorrow! So go watch Peterloo on Amazon and then go buy Seventh Row's book. Or vice versa, whatever, I don't own you. My point is there, I just filled one of our now endless empty string of afternoons with actual honest to blog excellence. You're welcome.