You may have noticed there hasn’t been much activity lately here at Bitchin’ Film Reviews. My sister had a baby, which means lots of distractions. Family has been in the area, and I’ve taken up holding the baby as one of my new past times. This comes at a good time since everything in theatres right now is pretty ass-y (not including Shutter Island, which I’ll see soon). This also took a toll on my Library Loot watching time. So I didn’t get to a lot of stuff last week. Including the two Tarkovsky films. I’ve mentioned this before, but I have some sort of mental block when it comes to him. I watched half of The Mirror, and got busy with something else, and didn’t even start on Stalker. Nor did I get to L’atalante or The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie.
Casablanca was everything I’d ever heard it would be. Believe it or not, it’s the first Humphrey Bogart film I’ve ever seen. I suppose this was the perfect place to start. And I can’t get enough of Ingrid Bergman.
All Quiet on the Western Front presented two of my biggest movie-watching obstacles: made before 1930, and the war genre. To say it simply overcame these problems is an understatement. This film was totally bitchin’. I couldn’t believe how effective it was. The entire thing had me glued to my seat, and I got more emotionally involved in the characters than I’d like to admit. The one problem I had was the last two minutes. It may be the pessimist in me, but it just didn’t work. I see how it could have in the original book, but on the screen, it seemed kitsch.
Read My Lips was as bitchin’ as well. I wouldn’t expect anything less awesome from Jacques Audiard (The Beat My Heart Skipped is one of my all time favorite films, and A Prophet might join the ranks soon). I couldn’t help but be reminded of Neil Labutes In the Company of Men, the plot premises are similar, but Audiard takes the idea and mixes it with love, violence, and some of the most dexterous scenes I’ve seen in a long while.
This week’s Loot: