The herring is a fantastic film. I give it 9/10.
Originally inspired by the real-life shooting of a Zairean teenager in police custody in 1993, this film portrays a single day in the life of three young friends from a low-income housing estate on the outskirts of Paris. It's far from an average day for Jewish Vinz, Arab Saïd and black African Hubert, a friend has been beaten to coma in custody while their estate has been rioting.
It's unusual for a seventy-five year old film to maintain any vitality but Fritz Lang's "M" manages just that. Co-written by Lang and his wife Thea von Harbou this tale of a serial child murderer stalking city streets undetected offers a highly watchable film without basking in the sordid theme. Rather it holds relevance to modern viewers, but more thoughtfully than anything you're likely to see, read or hear now.
Last nights DVD: a bio-pic based on the last weeks of Brian Jones, original Rolling Stones life.
King Kong (2005)
Peter Jackson can do no wrong if you are to believe the slavish following he has amongst the cinema going public and the hordes of film magazines out at the moment.
He single handedly managed to allay the fears of the Lord of The Rings fans worldwide and at the same time broke box office records and walked home with more than a fistful of awards including several Oscars for his triumphant interpretation of the trilogy.
When it was announced several years ago that his next project was a remake of the classic King Kong you could feel the excitement building.
So what we have here was certainly the necessary elements to make a huge popcorn blockbusting movie-and has he succeeded?
Well yes and no is the answer to that one. Certainly KK works effectively on many levels. It has the big budget feel to it-but certainly lacks in other areas.
Its pace seems slightly odd with Jackson deliberately attempting to build the excitement with a long slow drawn out first hour which he does by padding out some of the characters in the movie-I found this totally unnecessary. What we have here is a movie where the hero is the monkey. Everything else plays second fiddle-and to pad out a lot of the characters many of which die seems a pointless exercise and one that doesn’t add a great deal to the film except give the film goer a sore arse.
By the time the extended
At this point however
The slow initial pacing is completely thrown out of the window and we’re bombarded with CGI effect after CGI effect (some of which is slightly rough around the edges) with lots of death, screaming and close up shots of KK. After the first glimpse of KK-and when the amazement of the facial expressions along with other CGI effects had sunk in-once again I felt somewhat bored.
Herein lies the weakness. I just didn’t feel engaged enough with the movie-certainly not enough to warrant a 3hour and 15 minute sitting.
By the time the final sequence arrives (by far the best in terms of FX) I was wanting it to end. Just as I was waiting for the boat to sink in Titanic-the ape falling off the
Certainly the performances of the leads are excellent (particularly Jack Black)-the cinematography is breathtaking but that is of no consequence-what we have here is an exercise in blockbusting action with a CGI hammer wrapped around ones head several times.
If this is your cup of tea KK will certainly float your boat. Behind it all though is a flawed remake which doesn’t even match the original but beats the 70s remake well into second place (which lets face it that isn’t too hard).