The Gift. Second viewing (the first). Very nicely done. Love the characterization through costume. Edgerton’s character consistently has something in the wardrobe that’s on the border of “uncool” and “unsettling”. Love how it shows people wrestling with intuition vs. manners, protection vs. politeness.
The Gift. I loved this movie for 90 minutes and then I hated it so much. There are a couple late plot decisions that totally broke the spell. But, credit is for a spell-binding run up to that point. It’s amazing how much tension Edgerton wrings out of thin air. I liked it.
The Town. This movie is so great. (Previously.) Follows that wonderful formula that Heat, uses: criminals + leader + wildcard teammate + romantic complication + the pressure to do just one more job = everything falling apart. Hall and Hamm’s characters seemed stronger on second viewing. Renner’s character? I can’t enough.
Doug MacRay: You can’t be up there killing people.
James Coughlin: Hey, you brought me.
Iron Man 3. I liked it more than Iron Man 2, maybe not as much as the original Iron Man, though I don’t remember it well at this point. This was definitely funnier than the first sequel, with some Kiss Kiss Bang Bang-ish genre awareness and biting humor. The villains, though, were a letdown, and the silly action spectaculars were kind of a mess. And yeah, it is kind of a feature-length damnation of wearable computing.
The Town. I would have preferred less gunfire and more of everything else, but geez. Affleck. Dude can direct! I’m excited to see what else he comes up with. Gotta check out Gone Baby Gone and Argo soon. Also, I love Renner in this. What a nut.
The Prestige. Themes: obsession, sacrifice, craft, identity, showmanship, revenge, deceit, science as magic, etc. It’s a little mechanical and maybe overstuffed, but always interesting. Hugh Jackman is excellent. I expect viewers would either love or hate the ending, in which the inevitable is delayed while the story is re-told and all is explained. I kinda hate that, but I should have expected as much. I guess that’s Nolan’s own prestige moment? I get really annoyed when you watch a movie and then, near the end, the movie tells you about the story that happened that you didn’t know about. (Yeah, I know I complained about this recently.) Good twists are fine, but they always make me wonder how you could tell the same story in an engaging way while sharing more details with the audience up front. Isn’t it also fun when we know something the other characters don’t?
I’ve now seen all of Christopher Nolan’s feature-length movies. Here’s how they stack up for me right now:
- Memento (with a commanding lead)
- Batman Begins (I’d like to re-watch this soon)
- The Prestige
- Following (tied for third?)
- The Dark Knight