Movies of the Week #15 (2018)

Short on movies this week. Box looks sadly empty. HBO takes the second one in a row.


Another one strikes against abuse

  • You Were Never Really Here (2017): The lauded Lynne Ramsay film starring Joaquin Phoenix has a bit of a Drive (2011) vibe, mixed in with a bit of Leon (1994). There’s nothing riveting about the story, as Phoenix’s character, a fixer, is hired to recover a kidnapped girl. Some political commentary, about big fish and little fish, finds its way into the movie, but it stands out thanks to the calculatedly fierce Phoenix, his young, ice-cold co-star Ekaterina Samsonov and through the way it plays its cards. It proved a more surprising experience than I expected, so I cannot but recommend it, even if it may not be everything you thought it would be. 8/10

And one about some American-Indian coop

  • Hostiles (2017): If you like your Christian Bale all frowny, then this movie was just made for you! Seriously though, Hostiles takes a while to get into and is best when its characters stay silent, which, thankfully, is a lot of the time. Set at the turn of the 19th century, “a legendary Army captain reluctantly agrees to escort a Cheyenne chief and his family through dangerous territory” (IMDb). The movie is a contemplation of life and, mostly, death, and although it never reaches the depths one would have wanted, it works well enough to warrant a recommendation. Let’s be professional and say it’s for the cinematography and the costumes, when in actuality it’s for Bale’s mustache. 7/10

And one about American WWF culture. Or was it WWE?

  • Andre the Giant (2018): As anyone born in the (late) eighties, I was vaguely familiar with Andre the Giant – foremost because of his role in The Princess Bride (1987). I’m not even sure I knew he was a wrestler, because wrestling was never big around here and I’ve never taken to it much – I did recently watch Glow (2017) though! So in spite of this, Jason Hehir’s documentary proved to be unexpectedly emotional, a tender portrait of a person who seemingly had the weight of the world on his shoulders, and not even those broad shoulders could hold it. Andre was a stand out and Hehir frames him excellently, while also referring to a lot of nostalgia, not only for wrestling, but for a time when myth-building was more than an edition of the evening news. It transmits that uniquness, that sense of once in a lifetime, something that’s been devalued by ubiquitous availability. On some meta-level I question how much of the emotion was real, in the way in which I would question wrestling, but I guess as long as it feels real, it is real, right? 8/10


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