The Curator of Schlock #110 by Jeff Shuster
Legends of the Fall
It’s fall movie reviews, not that stupid Brad Pitt movie!
Your Curator of Schlock went on a movie binge has been seeing quite a few movies lately, so much so that I’ll be writing two blogs on the movies of the fall. Do you know what I learned? Cinema isn’t dead! We’ll do four this week. Look for the other four next week.
Something weird happened while I was watching Sicario. I was actually engaged in the story. I wasn’t thinking about future squeals or expanded universes or Internet fandoms. It felt like I was watching a actual movie because I was watching an actual movie. Sicario is about the war on drugs and has been compared to Traffic. I don’t know why. It’s much better than Traffic. They both starred Benicio del Toro and he gives a chilling performance in Sicario as a cartel consultant to the FBI or the CIA or some other organization I’m not familiar with. I won’t really go into details save for the realization that this movie isn’t about defeating evil, but about containing it. Emily Blunt and Josh Brolin also star. Check it out!
No. I’m sorry, but no. I love Guillermo del Toro movies, but this one doesn’t cut the mustard. It’s a gothic romance? With ghosts? Why are there ghosts in it? They don’t seem to serve any purpose. I know. I know. The main character was trying to write a novel about ghosts and her publisher wanted to shoehorn in a love story so del Toro gives us a romance film with ghosts shoe horned in. Oh right! It’s not about the ghosts…THEN WHY ARE THEY IN IT! Even Jessica Chastain and Tom Hiddleston can’t save this thing.
The Walk from director Robert Zemeckis is about that French guy who walked a tight rope between the Twin Towers back in 1976. Oh, his name Philippe Petit and he’s played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt. I wondered if got the part because their names rhymed. Don’t get me wrong, he gives a wonderful performance. We see Petit go from a street juggler to a high wire artist under the tutelage of Papa Rudy (Ben Kingsley), a circus performer and high wire expert. The rest of The Walk feels like a caper movie with Petit and his merry band of misfits planning and executing their plan to get the cable secured between the Twin Towers.
I typically decry 3D, but this is one of the few movies I’ve seen where I actually wished I had paid for the upgrade. I can only imagine how this film looked in IMAX. I wonder if anyone got Vertigo from watching The Walk.
Johnny Depp plays Whitey Bulger, a famous Irish-American gangster from the 1970s. This is one of those movies that’s based on real events which means we’re supposed to believe all of it, but should probably only believe a third of it. Apparently, Whitey Bulger decides to become an FBI informant on other gangsters in South Boston. This allows him to get rid of his rivals while getting FBI protection for his own nefarious activities. And that’s about it. The rest of the movie is Johnny Depp being extra creepy and killing people and getting away with it until the FBI decides it’s not a good idea to keep protecting a vile gangster. And then Bulger goes on the lamb before finally getting caught 16 years later. Justice is served! Props to Johnny Depp for portraying a human snake. Seriously, he looks like a snake!