Isn’t there some rule against repetition in storytelling? Most tales that purposely retread the same ground all over again do so lazily, a conceit allowed either because a concept begs the question (a la time travel tales) or simply because we, the audience, are feared to be too dimwitted to get it. Thus do Guy Ritchie movies and movies like The Illusionist regularly spend the entire climax copy-and-pasting stuff from the first half of the movie, albeit with a little added flair. Yes, we get it, it’s like poetry, they rhyme. Surely Orwell or Strunk and White have some preventative edict concerned with this brand of laziness, no? Surely repetition is the friend of the lazy writer, no?
Anyway, Happy Groundhog Day! Looks like little Phil didn’t see his shadow. Think we’ll be stuck in a time loop, forced to relive today over and over again? I gotta say: it’s 8:28 AM here and I can’t say I’m exactly thrilled with today’s results this far. Still have a ways to go, I know. Maybe starting over would actually be a good thing, though. I’ll be careful what I wish for. I’ll also be careful to remind everyone that this hysterical song is the theme for Groundhog Day:
Continue reading Groundhog Day (1993)
Ah, Matt Jamison. He’s not the main character of The Leftovers. He’s not the one most directly affected by the Sudden Departure, nor is he the one who’s lived most nobly in its wake, nor is he a handsome shining studly hero with a constant grimace (see: Kevin Garvey; John Murphy). But anyone who’s seen last season’s “Two Boats and a Helicopter” knows that Matt Jamison was the most passionate character in the whole of the show, the most tragic, and now that we’ve had another Matt-centric episode in “No Room at the Inn” it’s safe to say that those characteristics carry over into the second season.
We’ll talk about the cyclical writing involved in Matt’s stories, but first: Christopher Eccleston. There’s a lot of strong acting in The Leftovers, with Kevin Carroll’s John Murphy being the particular standout in season two. Eccleston is the veteran to Carroll’s newcomer, but the scenes between the two of them in “No Room” absolutely crackle. And for the duration of the episode Eccleston exudes an easy sense of identification with his character; he’s so natural as Matt that if more people watched The Leftovers Eccleston might stop being “the guy from Doctor Who” and start being “the guy from The Leftovers“.
Continue reading The Leftovers 2.5 – “No Room at the Inn”
Okay. I just put on Deception, streaming on Netflix. Looks and sounds fairly enticing in an early-’90s Juror/Basic Instinct/Malice sort of way. It’s got Liam Neeson and Viggo Mortensen, both of whom I’m eager to see in a movie together, and Andie MacDowell, whom I really know nothing about. I’ve seen Groundhog Day and Four Weddings and a Funeral, so maybe it will be interesting to see her in a drama. The poster has moody lighting and Neeson is standing behind MacDowell in a subtly menacing way, suggesting that Deception is a cat-and-mouse game of, well, deception.
Okay! This sounds pretty exciting! Let’s get this movie started!
…….wow. Did David Lynch direct the credit sequence? That wasn’t very intense at all — oh, but I get it, I’m being deceived.
Continue reading Deception (1992)