Thursday, May 28, 2009

My Week of Movie Watching

Blood for Blood – a.k.a. Sunday in the Country, a.k.a. Vengeance is Mine. A low-budget Canadian flick starring Ernest Borgnine as a farmer who takes the law into his own hands when a trio of vicious bank robbers threaten his home. This is obviously influenced by Straw Dogs – The poster even cites the Peckinpah film - but alas, it’s not very good. Borgnine’s sudden transformation from pious farmer to avenging angel just doesn’t make any sense. The film also tacks on a completely unnecessary (and violent) conclusion. Not recommended.

Baraka – I finally got a chance to check out the Blu-Ray disc of this, and it didn’t disappoint. Director Ron Fricke examines both the natural and human worlds, and points up some intriguing parallels, like juxtaposing shots of hundreds of baby chicks going down an assembly line with commuters flowing down an escalator. This movie is a wondrous visual experience, and I recommend it highly.

Shark! – Noirish Sam Fuller offering from 1969 with a pre-superstardom Burt Reynolds as a scoundrel getting involved in diving for sunken treasure. This was a better watch than I was expecting, with a tight little plot and some good underwater photography. The conclusion is well written and beautifully ironic. The film is dedicated to the movie industry’s stunt men, owing to the fact that stuntman Jose Marco was killed by a shark during filming.

Asphalt – Enjoyable 1929 German silent directed by Joe May. A by-the-book cop allows himself to be seduced by a woman he’s trying to arrest, with tragic results. The plot here is somewhat similar to that of The Blue Angel, where a man of respect and authority is undone by lust. This one backs away from that film’s sour finality with a happy little ending, however. Still, recommended.

1 comment:

Jennifer said...

Oh I saw Baraka, It was so beautiful. I never saw a film like that before. I was memorized!!