Indochine (1992)

Communism as Theater Nothing has the same flavour of sadness as a film gone awry, especially a film with weight. And this has weight at least from its aspirations and budget — even more from the much delayed European examination into their colonial crimes. There’s some lovely photography here, but none of it is cinematic.… Continue reading Indochine (1992)

Zero Effect (1998)

Son of What There are only a few ways into a story. One of these is to embrace the narrator and carry the viewer through their eyes and the engagement of the world that gives us love. Here, Kasdan does this while referencing Holmes, where this notion of detached observation originates. There’s an elegant purity… Continue reading Zero Effect (1998)

Impromptu (1991)

Fluid, Woven Passion Sometimes you just like a movie. I admit I was prepared to like this. It features Chopin, and he is a large part of my musical world. His stuff really is magical, but only when flowing through a rich vessel. The things he wrote when he was with Sands are a touchstone… Continue reading Impromptu (1991)

First Strike (1996)

Step by Step Watching Jackie movies is sometimes a real challenge, especially the English language ones. This barely qualifies as English, but is the best one. What he does with ordinary objects is absolutely amazing. There’s a classic ladder bit here. Ignore the plot — standard filler. Ted’s Evaluation — 3 of 3: Worth watching.… Continue reading First Strike (1996)

JFK (1991)

Conspiracy of the Simple I have my own theory about film. There is always an explicit acknowledgement that what you are seeing is a film, distinct from reality. Many films incorporate that recognition into their being; the simple ones are just films about films and filmmaking, but there are other sophisticated ways of self-reference. It… Continue reading JFK (1991)

Exit to Eden (1994)

Whipped I am particularly attracted to odd genre-crossing experiments that fail. When they work, the reasons why are too tied to the mysteries of perception to tease out. Like explanations of the economy, they are all speculations bound to be bogus. But failures are easier to understand and appreciate. Gerry Marshall has accumulated some heavy… Continue reading Exit to Eden (1994)

Go (1999)

Unbearable Lightness of Going Critics and commentors have beaten to death the Pulp Fiction’ comparisons. Yes, this has parallel stories, time folding (but not the time shuffling of Pulp’), black and white shuffling, guns drugs and ironic violence, diner scenes and a hip perspective. But to me that is less central than the relationship of… Continue reading Go (1999)

Snake Eyes (1998)

The Eye That Lies This is a wonderful experience. Never mind that the acting is poor and the story weak — that was never the point. This film was made because DePalma knows how to make his camera dance and wanted to make a film based on that notion. A central question in most art… Continue reading Snake Eyes (1998)