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Sunday, March 04, 2007
Three Brief Notes
Zodiac was very good. And by "very good" I mean "exceptionally good." Easily Fincher's most accomplished and mature film. I wish I had more to say about it, but it's the kind of film that requires another viewing or two to really appreciate the craftsmanship and intricacy of it. It is not the sort of happily and easily resolved, meaningless serial-killer thriller that audiences are used to seeing, which sadly I expect is hurting its popular and critical reception. I've even seen and heard people complain about the ending in which (SPOILER ALERT) the cops fail to capture, or at least satisfyingly blow away, the killer.
Which is the sort of thing that makes me think someone, somewhere, has missed the point. And I don't think it was me.
On a similar note, I rewatched Dario Argento's Bird with the Crystal Plumage recently. It still holds up as a well-crafted, though not entirely fair-play, thriller. It's stylistic tics and innovations still impress me. The early scene, with Tony Musante trapped between the security doors of an art gallery, unable to either get out and call the police or get in and help the woman who has been stabbed, is still one of the most nerve-racking set pieces I've come across. Oh, sure, Argento's latest films are fairly crap. And I think I've decided that Stendahl Syndrome is the most misogynistic film I've ever sat through. But I still like Argento's formula. It's hard to go wrong with: black-gloved killer, secret from the past menacing the present, misremembered clue, work of art providing critical clue. Death or serious injury by modern sculpture optional.
Oh, come on, the character was named Osiris! If you didn't see that coming from the moment he was introduced, I'm sorry, there's no help for you.