Monday, October 19, 2009

Review catch-up — Films seen recently

Gilliam's The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus

The state of the art of SFX is such now that he can do in CGI/live action what he was doing with paper back in the Python days; and it managed to carry off the multiple actors filling in the gaps in Heath Ledger's role in a smooth and unobtrusive fashion (were it not for the fact that Ledger's Australian accent stood out from the understudies).

But (and you were waiting for the 'but') I found the supporting characters grating and unsympathetic, and the inclusion of "socially relevant" elements made the story lurch back and forth too much. Inclusion of the sordid nature of contemporary London for contrast with the pure world of the imagination, yes; but the mood swings were a bit too violent and "am I relevant yet?" in nature.

His Munchhausen was better, IMHO.

Once upon a time in the West

Reissued, remastered, very much of its time, a fairly archetypal "Man with No Name" western, where, with Charles Bronson as the revenge driven guy in the white hat, there are really only shades of grey.

District 9

This savage black comedy is the best new movie I've seen in a long while, with hints of Python and early Peter Jackson in a mix that savages so many stereotypes.

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