Saturday, January 14, 2006

Movie Updates

The Valachi Papers by Terence Young is a nice take on a mob story, from Peter Maas's The Valachi Papers, which was the first public look at the inside of the mafia from someone who really knew.

There are some weird technical issues. They have not one but several medium shots on the period car driving down the road with obviously not period cars driving along side it. Some of the day-for-night shooting is really nice, but some is downright messy. It's led by a sensitive, virtuoso performance by Charles Bronson that keeps it in gear all the way through.

Red Eye by Wes Craven did not begin with an especially strong script, but Craven along with actors Rachel McAdams and Cillian Murphy manages to keep it taut and suspenseful almost the whole way through.

This suffers the same problem that every airplane thriller I've ever seen does... Once they get off the plane, the movie loses 30,000 feet of suspense, plausibility and interest.

What Have You Done With Solange? is a really interesting giallo, based on a novel by Edgar Wallace. Fabio Testi is especially sexy with the shaggy hair and beard machoing up his prettiness. The story is quite clever, twisting some of the expectations for the more sordid and unsavory expectations for exploitation and even misogyny and by the end twists them into something very different and rather unexpected.

Delirium: Photo of Gioia by Lamberto Bava, which I keep reading as "photos of goyim", is pretty standard stuff. The only selling points really are the loveliness (and fairly strong performance) of buxom Italian star Serena Grandi and an intriguing element where we see the hallucinatory visions of the victims through the eyes of the killer prior to the killings. Otherwise, pretty standard stuff.

Anyway, I'm pretty sure I'm legitimately tired and not overly stressed, so I should take the opportunity to rest. I hope everyone is well. I may be off on a two day bender here, so I may not be harassing your sorry asses nearly so much.

Rock on!

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