Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Prometheus


Breathable atmosphere, yes, but with significant amounts of Moronium.

The film Prometheus is a work of abjection, in regards to both its subject matter and its execution. As directed by Ridley Scott, it trades in imagery like the films in the Alien franchise that he began: of feminine power and horror, of corporeal boundaries, and identity overtaken by an “Other.” It aspires to be something much more than a prequel to or reimagining of the Alien origins, and yet it is at once so dependent on Scott’s 1979 film without earning the comparison, and so mired in its own visceral problems, that the sense of disappointment is palpable and unsettling. 

Monday, June 4, 2012

Moonrise Kingdom



No man is an island.

It seems traditional now that a new Wes Anderson film brings critical reactions that are not focused solely on the work itself, but of how it fits in his oeuvre. Anderson’s style, even as it develops and matures – and this extends to characterizations, not just production design, cinematography, music, and editing – has become so identifiable that it overshadows much of the discussion of his individual stories. This either becomes an easy target for those critics who don’t care for his films, or a default through-line for those who appreciate them. With Moonrise Kingdom, the tale of young, troubled lovers who attempt to run away off a New England island, Anderson seems to address this critical tendency, both obliquely and directly (which will be covered in the last part of this review). While this may not provoke a new approach to his work, he delivers his most balanced and sophisticated film to date.