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Scarlett Johansson’s Literally Killer Body Stars in ‘Under The Skin’: A Movie Review

Scarlett Johansson’s Literally Killer Body Stars in ‘Under The Skin’: A Movie Review

Scarlett Johansson’s Literally Killer Body Stars in ‘Under The Skin’: A Movie Review

“Under the Skin” and the Sexualization of Scarlett

The opening essay in Chuck Klosterman’s 2006 collection, IV, is about an interview the author (him, not me. I only refer to myself as I, me or my (hell, you got three examples in the last sentence and a half)) did for Esquire with Britney Spears. The year was 2003, and only 36 hours prior to the interview, Spears had announced that she had sex with Justin Timberlake when she was 18. Prior to then, she was sold to the American public as the virginal sex kitten. It’s the same trick Jessica Simpson’s handlers used for their client, but to lesser success. Spears was the girl you wanted to touch, but never could. Even, supposedly, if you were her pop-star boyfriend. Strangely, with her cat (so to speak) out of the bag (she was photographed pantless for the cover), she spent the entire interview denying she was any kind of sex icon or that there was anything overtly sexual about her music, her videos or her personality. It’s impossible to believe even an infant could be less self-aware.

I happened to read this entry the day before I saw “Under the Skin,” the latest film by director Jonathan Glazer (“Sexy Beast,” “Birth”), which stars Scarlett Johansson as an alien traipsing around Scotland in attempt to seduce men into an apparently mobile pool of liquefied blackness. If that sounds bizarre, I’m not here to dissuade you from your initial reaction. To be honest, I wouldn’t be 100% confident in the alien thing if it weren’t mentioned by other critics and there wasn’t a short shot of three pinkish lights in the sky – which you assume to be UFOs – shortly after Johansson’s character arrives on Earth. It seems like the kind of thing that would’ve been put in the press kit, just to make sure critics were certain of at least that much. It reeks of something spelled out in a way the film never bothers – nor needs – to do.

The extraterrestrial Johansson roams around the Scottish country- and city-side in a white van, attempting to lure lone men into her vehicle, by doing that most stereotypical of female driver actions, asking for directions. Though that sentence would make the film seem sexist, it’s done with a nod toward empowerment. It’s like a gender-reversal version of the long-running pornographic trope of a man picking up a girl on the street to have sex with him in his van (Why do I know this? Let’s just say it’s because I’m smart). In the film, the alien Johansson at least has the decency to pull off to an abandoned home for the next step of her plan. She’s the one who wields the power.

Unlike Britney Spears, Johansson has never struggled with her sexuality, at least on-screen. In a what-would-like-to-be-believed-by-young-boys-as-apocryphal story from “The Island,” Johansson wanted to be shown nude, and it was the film’s director, Michael Bay, who dissuaded her. This is the same Michael Bay who cast a longing camera at Megan Fox’s glistening torso in “Transformers,” after an almost-certainly-not-apocryphal story about her audition for the film, in which Bay forced her to wash his Ferrari in a bikini, while he filmed the affair. Doesn’t quite sound like the same guy. Nevertheless, the first time I’d ever laid eyes on Johannsson, she was offering to give Billy Bob Thornton a blow-J (© “Superbad”) in the Coen Bros.’ “The Man Who Wasn’t There.” That’s something not even a “Slave 4 U”-era Britney was doing.

under the skin pic

One of the chief discussions around Johansson’s prior film, “Her,” was of the actress’ ability to solely use the sultry tones of her voice to convey sexiness. The simple idea of not having the easiest conveyance for this ideal – her body – at her disposal was, for most, worthy of calling for an Oscar nomination. “Under the Skin” gives her a British accent, her body back and also lets her finally do the nudity she was supposedly so willing to present to Bay’s cameras back in 2005. I normally wouldn’t note this, but I imagine it’s the producers’ only hope of competing with “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” and they’d want the word out if it could lead to any additional box office take. Johansson’s E.T. role allows the actress to flex every muscle she has and use every weapon at her disposal in a way she’s never fully been granted. She’s seen as a seductress. Let her seduce some men. Like Charlotte Gainsbourg seems perfect for the weird world of Lars von Trier, Johansson fits in exquisitely in the Earth of “Under the Skin,” at least as Glazer has depicted it.

The director strips the connective tissue of comprehension bare, leaving not much more than chronology. Even the male victims of the alien speak in a Scottish brogue so thick the company hired to create subtitles for home video will have difficultly deciphering the meaning of every word. But his images are both haunting and glorious. The Salvador Dali-esque inky darkness swallowing the alien’s victims, transporting them into a swimming pool, bloating – then dissolving – them of their insides is a nightmare worth reliving. However, he also manages to capture whole scenes of complete captivation, like the alien’s soft appeal to a wary, facially-disfigured young man. Though we know what the end-game-to-come is, it’s hard to not be touched with the tenderness by which she treats him. Glazer presents scenarios that will linger in the recesses of my brain like the alien’s victims in their post-seduction/pre-skinning state.

The film is based on a 2000 book of the same name, by Michael Faber. My first instinct is to try reading it to get at some answers, much like my initial reaction to seeing “2001: A Space Odyssey” was to find out what Arthur C. Clarke was willing to provide us in text that Stanley Kubrick wasn’t on film. I never did and probably never will. Only part of the reason being there apparently aren’t many more answers contained within the book. There’s a similar mysterious quality to “Under the Skin” that makes the allure of explanation potentially more fulfilling, but at the same time lending fear to knowing the perhaps better off unknowable. If things are straightforward, a work of art loses its ability to provoke debate. It’s what keeps the Mona Lisa the most discussed painting ever created (I’m not saying this film is on par with the Mona Lisa, I’m saying it’s better. Only Dan Brown has made me care about Da Vinci’s “masterpiece”).

“Under the Skin” is not an easy film. But sometimes, as a viewer, it’s good to be challenged. Alfred Hitchcock once said, “Some films are slices of life. My films are slices of cake.” In this case, Glazer’s is a slice of brain you were forced to eat in a dream you once had. But it’s a dream you wish to have again. However, if you’re the type that needs the extra incentive, you get to see Scarlett’s boobs (hey, if it can be pointed out in an Academy Awards opening number, it can be pointed out here). For those crying sexism, there’s also more male genitalia between this and the “Nymphomaniac” films than I’ve seen in the mirror the past month. Though Britney Spears may have been unaware of her appeal, Johansson and “Under the Skin” know how the bills are paid and you might just get something unique out of the experience.

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Mini Movie Reviews: Gosling’s ‘All Good Things’, McConaughey’s ‘Mud’, Hoffman’s ‘Capote’

Mini Movie Reviews: Gosling’s ‘All Good Things’, McConaughey’s ‘Mud’, Hoffman’s ‘Capote’

Mini Movie Reviews: All Good Things, Mud, Capote

All Good Things (2010)

all good thingsAll Good Things stars Ryan Gosling as David Marks, a man born into money, with a past that is hard to overcome. A young Marks meets and marries Katie (Kirsten Dunst), and the couple move from urban New York to hippy Vermont in the 70’s. Katie doesn’t know the control that David’s Dad (Frank Langella) has over him nor about David’s mysterious past (he was forced to see his mother commit suicide as a child). Eventually, David is pulled back into the family’s shady real estate business against his will. Despite the money, Katie and David grow apart and Katie goes missing.

The story is told through what essentially is a flashback event in real-time, as an under oath David explains to a jury these past events. Does David know what happened to Katie? Does he know what happened later on in other deaths? The story spans some 30 years and what starts out as a thriller turns into a bit of a head-scratcher. It’s not poorly done and carried intrigue, but the story – supposedly based on real events – just is a little weird and disjointed. It’s like watching one of those ABC doc shows about missing persons and in the end it is about as entertaining and interesting if that is something you care to engage in.

Mud (2013)

mud movie pic

Matthew McConaughey stars as Mud, an outlaw of sorts running from gunmen out to seek revenge for Mud killing a man. The real star of the film however is Tye Sheridan’s (Tree of Life) Ellis, a young boy, who with his partner Neckbone, discovers Mud living on an abandoned island in Mississippi(I believe). When the boys encounter Mud, they learn of his past over a few short days and hatch a plan to help the mysterious loner reconnect with his “girlfriend” Juniper, played by Reese Witherspoon. Eventually, the gunmen catch up with Mud and you have to see the film to find out the rest.

Mud is really about Ellis and his desire of love. His thoughts of what love is, his growing up and his relationships (with Mud, Neckbone, his parents and his “girlfriend”). This is a coming of age tale in some ways, mixed with a boy growing up too soon, dealing with adult themes and pressures placed on the young man. Though the film is slow-paced, it is engrossing, primarily due to Sheridan’s performance. You can feel his innocence, his desire to learn, his disconnectedness from certain elements and more. Mud may star a recent Oscar winner, but it’s Sheridan’s movie and his performance that makes the movie worth seeing.

Capote (2005)

Capote Hoffman

Capote won the best actor Oscar for Phillip Seymour Hoffman, the man who recently passed tragically at 46 to Heroin. Hoffman plays the titular character, flamboyant, charismatic, conniving, deceptive and reveals all his flaws for us to see. Capote follows the New Yorker author discovering a story of senseless killings and his relationship with one of the killers over a period of several years, before the killer (played by the underrated chameleon Clifton Collins Jr.) is sentenced to death by hanging. In the interim, Capote has penned a book based on these characters, “In Cold Blood,” and its hailed as the book that will change how people write and one of the most important and impressive books in American modern literature.

Capote is Hoffman’s film, and though I’ve seen it previously, based upon his recent passing, I wanted to take in more performances of the talented actor. Here you can see him transform so seamlessly into the character it is hard to separate performance from reality. One can sadly see how difficult is must have been to be so engrossed in a character and placing that thought process on him multiple times over in a career can certainly begin to lead to trouble off camera. Capote is a good but strange and at times meandering movie. You can see why it won Hoffman a statue but also why it failed to capture any more meaningful prizes during from the grandest of Hollywood awards that year.

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Watching More Movies: Authority Rules In ‘Compliance’

Watching More Movies: Authority Rules In ‘Compliance’

Watching More Movies: Authority Rules In ‘Compliance’

For about a year, I swore off reading any movie news. I felt I was too immersed in every detail of any film I was interested in and it left my enjoyment of each anticipated movie lacking once I saw it. During this time, I wondered how I was supposed to know what movies I wanted to see in the first place. The big movies I’d already been aware of, but what about the smaller ones? I decided I’d at least watch trailers. They’d give me a sense of whether I wanted to see something or not. About a month ago (long after my year off ended), I saw the trailer for “Compliance”. I’d never heard anything about it, nor knew anyone involved. But, the trailer did exactly what it was supposed to do, it hooked me.

“Compliance” is based on a real event, which the end of the film mentions was actually one of only 70 similar instances across the nation in a span of about a decade. Becky (Dreama Walker) is a server at a fast food restaurant called ChickWich. Her manager, Sandra (Ann Down), gets a phone call from a police officer, saying he has a patron with him, accusing a server of having stolen money from her purse. The officer gives a description of the server that matches Becky and asks Sandra to bring Becky back into the office for interrogation. Except he won’t be the one interrogating her. He instructs Sandra to do so.


It was obvious from the trailer this phone call was from someone only impersonating a police officer and I wonder how long it would have taken to figure out if I hadn’t known beforehand. It’s curious the film is nearly forty minutes into its runtime before it reveals the call is truly a prank and from a disturbed individual and not from an officer of the law (not that those two things don’t coincide from time to time). But, because you know it’s a prank, whenever you figure it out, it’s definitely an exercise in frustration, much like I felt with the Italian “classic” “Bicycle Thieves,” in which the main character gets a job that requires owning a bicycle, which he’s pawned and spends the length of the film trying to retain it. “Just borrow one,” you want to shout.

In addition to being an exercise in audience frustration, it’s a psychological look at what people will do when in the midst of authority, similar to the “The Stanford Experiment.” While some might feel frustrated, I never once felt I was in the hands of anyone but a fantastic craftsman in writer/director, Craig Zobel. He makes the camera shy away in the most sensitive of story areas and he keeps the camera trained in spots that ratchet up the tension perfectly. A disciple of David Gordon Green, I’m very intrigued by what he does next. I’m glad the trailer was good enough to hook me.

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President Obama Releases Statement on Talent Harold Ramis’ Death

President Obama Releases Statement on Talent Harold Ramis’ Death

President Obama Releases Statement on Harold Ramis’ Death

Sadly, a growing category of deaths continues to hit Tinseltown. Hollywood multi-talent Harold Ramis passed on Monday. Most of you know this by now. The director, writer and actor died at age 69 due to a four year battle with auto-immune inflammatory vasculitis. When he passed, given the recent deaths of James Gandolfini and perhaps even more notably, Philip Seymour Hoffman, few could have expected the outpouring of love and support of the man and his talents. It’s natural for Hollywood to have a reaction to the passing of one of their own, such as when Judd Apatow commented on Ramis:

“Harold Ramis made almost every movie which made me want to become a comedy director. Animal House, Stripes, Ghostbusters, Vacation, Groundhog Day. These films are the touchstones of our lives. I interviewed him when I was 16 years old for my high school radio station and he could not have been more gracious and hilarious. I looked up to him as a director but even more so as a man. We hired him to play Seth’s father in Knocked Up because we all saw him as the dream dad – funny, warm and wise. Harold was one of the nicest people I have ever met and he inspired countless people to go into comedy. His brilliant work will make people happy forever.”

Great words and sentiments to the Ghostbusters star and writer. But when the POTUS Barack Obama gets involved, the passing becomes even more noteworthy. The President released the following statement on Harold:

Michelle and I were saddened to hear of the passing of Harold Ramis, one of America’s greatest satirists, and like so many other comedic geniuses, a proud product of Chicago’s Second City. When we watched his movies – from “Animal House” and “Caddyshack” to “Ghostbusters” and “Groundhog Day” – we didn’t just laugh until it hurt. We questioned authority. We identified with the outsider. We rooted for the underdog. And through it all, we never lost our faith in happy endings. Our thoughts and prayers are with Harold’s wife, Erica, his children and grandchildren, and all those who loved him, who quote his work with abandon, and who hope that he received total consciousness.

Chicago native or not, those are significant words. Ramis will indeed be missed. Thanks to Deadline for info.

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Rest In Peace: Philip Seymour Hoffman Passes at 46

Rest In Peace: Philip Seymour Hoffman Passes at 46

Rest In Peace: Philip Seymour Hoffman Passes at 46

Acting giant Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead in his apartment on Super Bowl Sunday, February 2nd, 2014. This news stings particularly because film fans will be missing out on engaging with one of the best actors of this generation. The man who took home the Best Actor Oscar statue for portraying Truman Capote will be missed.

Hoffman never really rated as “must see” actor originally yet he grew into that status. I always took notice of a new role of his and still watched most of his movies with eager anticipation. Though he was strong in a small role in 1996′s Twister, Hoffman made his mark with me in Paul Thomas Anderson’s seminal Boogie Nights. His Scotty J., a pen-biting, half-shirt wearing joto, was a genius revelation that led to instant intrigue into what this talented actor might do next. He had other strong roles shortly thereafter in PTA’s Magnolia, in Cameron Crowe’s Almost Famous, and the Coen’s The Big Lebowski. His diversity was always one of the most amazing things about the actor.

PSH Scotty J

Hoffman’s Scotty J was just one of multiple significant characters he brought to life.

PSH, as he’ll be affectionately referred to throughout time, became a star without having the looks of a model. He earned his status through dedication to his craft and revealing the depths of his soul through his characters. He was never afraid to push the envelope. He could show great depth with sadness (multiple roles), simmering rage and authority (The Master), and even an everyman (something he was but yet you rarely saw him play) in 25th Hour. Hoffman could do a sidekick in comedy (Along Came Polly), villainous (Mission Impossible 3) and carry a film (Synecdoche New York, Jack Goes Boating). The hefty man could pull this all off while hiding or fending off a terrible addiction in his private life.

H (heroin) is reportedly the cause of PSH’s death. This is tragic in and of itself. It’s interesting, the more I write and reflect on his career, perhaps selfishly, the more sad I become. The fact that the man leaves behind such a diverse and successful filmology will have to be our saving grace. Hopefully, Phil found some sort of peace from his demons in his passing, but that leaves a little bit of emptiness in the heart of his fans everywhere for what we witnessed and still hoped to see from the triumphant actor. Condolences to his family and you will be significantly missed Mr. Hoffman. R.I.P.


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2014 Film Independent Spirit Awards Nominees List

2014 Film Independent Spirit Awards Nominees List

2014 FILM INDEPENDENT Spirit Award Nominees Announced

The full list is here. You can read more about the announcement and catch a video on Film Independent’s website. Enjoy.

Best Feature
12 Years a Slave, All Is Lost, Francis Ha, Inside Llewyn Davis, Nebraska

Best Director
Shane Carruth, Upstream Color; J.C. Chandor; All Is Lost; Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave; Jeff Nichols, Mud; Alexander Payne, Nebraska

Best Screenplay
Woody Allen, Blue Jasmine; Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke & Richard Linklater Before Midnight;Nicole Holofcener Enough Said; Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber, The Spectacular Now;John Ridley, 12 Years a Slave

Best First Feature
Blue Caprice, Director/Producer: Alexandre Moors; Producers: Kim Jackson, Brian O’Carroll, Isen Robbins, Will Rowbotham, Ron Simons, Aimee Schoof, Stephen Tedeschi; Concussion,Director: Stacie Passon, Producer: Rose Troche; Fruitvale Station, Director: Ryan Coogler; Producers: Nina Yang Bongiovi, Forest Whitaker; Una Noche, Director/Producer: Lucy Mulloy, Producers: Sandy Pérez Aguila, Maite Artieda, Daniel Mulloy, Yunior Santiago; Wadjda,Director: Haifaa Al Mansour, Producers: Gerhard Meixner, Roman Paul

Best First Screenplay
Lake Bell, In A World; Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Don Jon; Bob Nelson, Nebraska; Jill Soloway,Afternoon Delight; Michael Starrbury, The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete

John Cassavetes Award (best feature made for under $500,000)
Computer Chess, Writer/Director: Andrew Bujalski, Producers: Houston King & Alex Lipschultz;Crystal Fairy, Writer/Director: Sebastiàn Silva, Producers: Juan de Dios Larraín & Pablo Larraín; Museum Hours, Writer/Director: Jem CohenProducers: Paolo Calamita & Gabriele Kranzelbinder; Pit Stop, Writer/Director: Yen Tan, Writer: David Lowery, Producers: Jonathan Duffy, James M. Johnston, Eric Steele, Kelly WilliamsThis is Martin Bonner, Writer/Director: Chad Hartigan, Producer: Cherie Saulter

Best Female Lead
Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine; Julie Delpy, Before Midnight; Gaby Hoffmann, Crystal Fairy;Brie Larson, Short Term 12; Shailene Woodley, The Spectacular Now

Best Male Lead
Bruce Dern, Nebraska; Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave; Oscar Isaac, Inside Llewyn Davis;Michael B. Jordan, Fruitvale Station; Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club; Robert Redford, All Is Lost

Best Supporting Female
Melonie Diaz, Fruitvale Station; Sally Hawkins, Blue Jasmine; Lupita Nyong’o, 12 Years a Slave; Yolonda Ross, Go For Sisters; June Squibb, Nebraska 

Best Supporting Male
Michael Fassbender, 12 Years a Slave; Will Forte, Nebraska; James Gandolfini, Enough Said;Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club; Keith Stanfield, Short Term 12

Best Cinematography
Sean Bobbitt, 12 Years a Slave; Benoit Debie, Spring Breakers; Bruno Delbonnel, Inside Llewyn Davis; Frank G. DeMarco, All Is Lost; Matthias Grunsky, Computer Chess

Best Editing
Shane Carruth & David Lowery, Upstream Color; Jem Cohen & Marc Vives, Museum Hours;Jennifer Lame, Frances Ha; Cindy Lee, Una Noche; Nat Sanders, Short Term 12

Best Documentary
20 Feet From Stardom, Director/Producer: Morgan Neville, Producers: Gil Friesen & Caitrin Rogers; After Tiller, Directors/Producers: Martha Shane & Lana Wilson; Gideon’s Army,Director/Producer: Dawn Porter, Producer: Julie Goldman; The Act of Killing,Director/Producer: Joshua Oppenheimer, Producers: Joram Ten Brink, Christine Cynn, Anne Köhncke, Signe Byrge Sørensen, Michael Uwemedimo, The Square, Director: Jehane Noujaim, Producer: Karim Amer

Best International Film
A Touch of Sin, (China), Director: Jia Zhang-Ke; Blue is the Warmest Color, (France), Director: Abdellatif Kechiche; Gloria, (Chile), Director: Sebastián Lelio; The Great Beauty,(Italy), Director: Paolo Sorrentino; The Hunt, (Denmark), Director: Thomas Vinterberg

17th Annual Piaget Producers Award 
Toby Halbrooks & James M. JohnstonJacob JaffkeAndrea RoaFrederick Thornton

20th Annual Someone To Watch Award 
My Sister’s Quinceañera, Director: Aaron Douglas Johnston; Newlyweeds, Director: Shaka King; The Foxy Merkins, Director: Madeline Olnek

19th Annual Stella Artois Truer Than Fiction Award 
Kalyanee Mam, A River Changes Course; Jason Osder, Let the Fire Burn; Stephanie Spray & Pacho Velez, Manakamana

Robert Altman Award 
Mud, Director: Jeff Nichols, Casting Director: Francine Maisler, Ensemble Cast:  Joe Don Baker, Jacob Lofland, Matthew McConaughey, Ray McKinnon, Sarah Paulson, Michael Shannon, Sam Shepard, Tye Sheridan, Paul Sparks, Bonnie Sturdivant, Reese Witherspoon

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Watching More Movies: Lynne Ramsay’s ‘Morvern Callar’

Watching More Movies: Lynne Ramsay’s ‘Morvern Callar’

Watching More Movies: Morvern Callar

Lynne Ramsay has directed three feature films to date. Her latest was 2011’s “We Need to Talk about Kevin,” which I watched twice in successive days and was willing to do it a third. It’s safe to say I’m a fan. However, I’d never seen either of her previous films, so I wanted to see if the talent I adored from one film was evident from an earlier point. Her debut film, 1999’s “Ratcatcher” would have to wait, so I went with her sophomore effort, “Morvern Callar.”

The film stars a post-“Sweet & Lowdown,” but concurrent with “Minority Report” and “In America” Samantha Morton as the titular character. If you think it’s bizarre name, but chalk it up to the Scottish region from which she resides, I assure you it’s just as strange to other characters she meets. Her boyfriend has committed suicide via the ever-popular wrist-slitting in their apartment. His body lies in the middle of the room, intermittently illuminated by lights on a nearby Christmas tree. Morvern doesn’t cope with this well. Not that she cries all night, but she keeps the body around for days, failing to do anything about accepting her loss. The story tells her coping journey, which is mostly stoic, but does involve a Spanish vacation with a friend. I hope that description grips you.

Morvern Callar

The Netflix summary for the film describes the suicide, but also mentions Morvern’s boyfriend had left a manuscript on his computer and in his suicide-Word-document asks her to submit it to a publisher for him. Before she does so, she replaces his name as author with hers. It’s not incorrect that this happens in the movie, but it’s almost completely inconsequential to anything. She does submit it and there is a scene or two with her talking to publishers, but this is such an afterthought to everything else. Another movie which could be described similarly is “World’s Greatest Dad,” where Robin Williams writes journals under his dead son’s name. If that’s the best case outcome for such a plot, “Movern Callar” is undoubtedly the worst.

That may make it seem like I hate film. I wouldn’t use that word. It’s not downright detestable like a Happy Madison production, but just completely unnecessary. I don’t disbelieve a story about coping with loss can be a good cinematic experience, but I do believe this isn’t it. With respect to Ramsey, there’s some perceivable skill behind the camera. I like the way the opening looks with the flashes of Christmas lights and I can see a similar eye in “We Need to Talk about Kevin,” but the narrative strengths aren’t remotely related. To give you an idea about how it impacted me, I’d almost forgotten I’d watched it within a half-hour of it ending. I can still wholeheartedly recommend “We Need to Talk about Kevin,” but with “Morvern Callar,” forget you read this and forget the movie exists and I’ll completely forget I watched it.

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The New Masterpiece – Ridley Scott’s ‘Counselor’

The New Masterpiece – Ridley Scott’s ‘Counselor’

The new masterpiece – Ridley Scott’s “Counselor”

You want to hear a story about a man, who might live just across the street? Imagine, that there lives a talented lawyer, who, being familiar with the law shortcuts, exceeds his authority in the chase for something extra and gets caught up in a very suspicious and, of course, criminal schemes, related to the traffic of an implausible amount of drugs. What is it? This is the new film by Ridley Scott “Counselor”. Counselor Trailer exposes only the key moments of the story line and does it pretty niggardly. The hapless counselor, who has been mercilessly betrayed by his fate, is performed by the matchlessly handsome in his dispassionate manner Michael Fassbender, his naïve sweetheart is tremendous Penelope Cruz. Other characters are not yet completely identified because of the mysterious Counselor Trailer, but the reputation of the actors speaks for itself. On the secondary roles wicked Ridley Scott has chosen none other than Brad Pitt, Javier Bardem and Cameron Diaz.

How do we depict a genuine cinematic masterpiece? How should it look like, what it should be called, what the story line should be, which director should manage it, which actors should be casted? Each person must have his own idea of a work of genius. The new film by Ridley Scott, “Counselor”, due out at 25th of October, will presumably correspond even the most demanding images of the work of cinematic art. Only Counselor Trailer by itself can be called a work of art. The author of “No Country for Old Men”, Cormac McCarthy wrote the screenplay for the “Counselor” and this fact by itself alone suggests that the film will surely be worth special attention.

Naturally, the Counselor Trailer has a story of a gentle and unobtrusive, yet very unhappy love, the illusion of a happy life, which is not destined to ever come true, an odd and unfaithful friendship and, of course, dashed hopes and dreams. Of course, there are some sinister and insidious villains, the power and bloodlust of which has no description, and terrible secrets, the disclosure of which threatens with some dire consequences. The Counselor Trailer would have failed to amaze, if it would be for Ridley Scott and his impeccable status of a great director, for Cormac McCarthy and his reputation as a talented writer, and, evidently, for the actors who has been chosen for the leading roles. It is not yet known who managed the casting, but it is either an unrecognized genius, or someone who sold his soul to the devil.

We rarely see in the cinema an undeniable work of art. There will always be snobs or connoisseurs, who will say that this is plagiarism or bad taste. However, there would hardly be a single person who will come out of the cinema hall on October 25th unhappy or unsatisfied, because the “Counselor” is about to be amazing.

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