Monday, January 30, 2012

Review: Haywire


Between Haywire and Steven Soderbergh's last film, Contagion, one could posit that the director is very much in a period of genre exploration.  To an extent, he's always been this way.  Soderbergh tends to pick up 'typical' Hollywood fare (the heist film, the biopic) and generally finds a way to elevate it just beyond expectations. Yet, Contagion and Haywire feel quite different than the fun, high-kitsch aesthetic of something like the Oceans films.  There's a minimalist sleekness to each of them, a spartan nature that reads as an almost clinical dilution of a larger, showier affair.  Contagion and Haywire are each essentially B-movies that have been considered, shot, and polished as if they were aspiring for the art house. They lay out their bare-boned roots in such a confident, stylish manner that you dare not say, for example, that Haywire has a lot in common with your average Jason Statham actioner, or that Contagion is just another disaster flick.  Something about both films dismisses those ideas as ridiculous, even though they’re really quite true...

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Award Season: Golden Globe Winners


During the Golden Globes I was all over the Twitter tweeting the usual inane reactions to the disappointing wins and celebrity back patting.  Is it just me, or have the Golden Globes really become quite deflated over the last few years?  I used to really enjoy this award show, but the last couple years have become so very tedious...

Highlights : Christopher Plummer's win, Homeland and Woody Allen recognition, George Clooney's bad jokes, Elton John's facial expressions, the obvious disdain of many for the winners...all caught on camera. 

Disappointments : Ricky Gervais behaving well, snubs for Rango, Midnight in Paris, Tilda Swinton, and Michael Fassbender. The lack of celebrity variety (how many times can we see Angelina Jolie?), Madonna's completely affected acceptance speech, the omnipresence of Piper Perabo (say what now?).  

And the winners were...

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