Posts Tagged ‘Juice’

moon-duncan jones

Moon: Cinema has a sense of irony that has recently become predictable. It is simple mathematics, really. For example, Al Pacino x Robert Deniro = enough proof method acting does not age with grace or Catherine Zeta Jones + human/animal/plant/heavy machinery = awful. Thankfully, not all make you want to puke. One particularly gratifying arithmetic I figured out was that low budget science fiction = awesome. Now, I normally don’t fancy sci fi films. Most of them are a fruity lot, with their deliberate attempts at raising oohs and ahhs through CGI effects and elaborately silly plots. Cascading orchestral music, bullshit theories, unreasonable plot twists and so on. Somehow low budget sci fi movies such as Primer, Pi and Cube seem to rise above that shit and instead present spectacular situations that are wonderful and scary to imagine only because they could happen…uhmmm tomorrow.sam_rockwell_moon_movie

Duncan Jones’ Moon is probably the second best of its kind I have seen (Shane Carruth’s Primer is a few inches ahead). It tells a tale of an astronaut – Sam Bell – getting ready to head back to earth after spending nearly three years on the moon, servicing equipment for a multi-national energy company. Sam Rockwell tunes in a riveting one-man show. His character’s slow descent into mental and physical deterioration could pass for a long-ass music video of Eels’ Electro Shock Blues album. Quirky, lonely and melancholic. Kevin Spacey is delightfully inconspicuous as Gerty – the robot; a strange mix between Marvin the Paranoid Android and Mother Goose.

duncan-jonesClint Mansell’s original score and Gary Shaw’s cinematography are intoxicating; the combination of both dam near drove me into a hallucinatory state an hour into the film. As for the twist, well…there is a semblance of one. Matter of fact, director Duncan Jones could have saved the twist for the climax and the movie would have still been pretty darn great. The fact that he gives it away in the middle and still keeps our minds itching with pleasure until the end is a testament to just how fucking great Moon turned out anyway.


Juice: As far as I can tell, John Singleton’s Boyz N The Hood brought hyper-realistic violence to the blaxploitation genre. The early Nineties spawned a bunch of films about kids trying to get out of the muck of poverty and gang-related violence. I’m sure most of them had perfectly decent intentions of bringing to light America’s most awkward misnomer – their country’s perception of the black man. What they ended up doing (at least to a brown-skinned boy sitting in front of the tele) instead is furthering the caricature. While it isn’t as bad as Menace To Sobriety (yes I hated it), it still is a far cry from Boyz N The Hood. Juice sometimes works, but only because of Tupac Shakur’s crazed antics and Eric B and Rakim’s fantastic title song Juice (Know The Ledge). Also, check out Singleton’s Higher Learning. Much much better.plaguetown

Plague Town: This is David Gregory’s first full-length feature film and hopefully will be the last one until he gets a bigger budget. A lot of horror films have been wonderfully executed on shoestring budgets, but Plague Town isn’t one of them. The girl with the pale white mask gets the creep factor going for awhile, but soon you realize that she looks like a brooding Slipknot fan.The ending is lame too. Give this one a miss, but for Romero’s sake, don’t give up on indie horror.

Quick realization

King Crimson’s Moonchild

Ilayaraja’s Pillai Nila

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