Los Bastardos (The Bastards, 2008)
Most movies have elements of hope, aspiration, glory or triumph. This one wallows in misery and suffering. There is no redemption here at all. From the beginning it feels oppressive and hopeless. There are two elements of surprise that happen here. I need to set this one up a little bit. What’s important here is that the timing of this movie is incredibly slow. I mean really slow; the opening scene is one long shot of Fausto and Jesus walking down an empty flash flood catch basin. It takes 4 minutes – that’s practically an entire MTV video.
The first surprise is when Fausto blasts Karen with a shotgun. We know its coming because that’s what he was hired to do. However, the pacing is so slow that we don’t really ever expect to see it happen. When it does, it’s a complete shock as it’s such a huge contrast to the rest of the movie. Karen’s teenage son is really a non character in the movie – he simply isn’t there. Except near the end where he blows away Jesus. We don’t even see him until after Jesus is killed. Swift, uber-violence contrasted against the plodding pace is what makes this one so good.
Oh No, Not Leo!
I found The Departed to be just OK, nothing really stood out for me except one scene. The elevator door opens as Marky Mark, formerly of the Funky Bunch, is talking to Leo Decaprio. The doors slide open and suddenly Leo’s head disappears in a red mist. Poor Leo, he didn’t survive the sinking of the Titanic either.
I’m still undecided on the movie “Rubber”; I just don’t know what to make of it. One thing is for certain; it’s a highly unusual premise. A used tire comes to life and kills people with psychokinetic powers. What? Don’t over-think it. One of my favorite scenes is where the older guy accidentally hits the tire off the road with his truck. It catches up with him later at a gas station. And it’s pissed. The guy gets in his truck and closes the door to find the tire sitting outside his door, seemingly staring at him. The tire starts to shake and suddenly the guy’s head simply explodes. A lot of work went into this scene and a good amount of blood that was liberally sprayed around the inside of the cab.
That’s my list – let me know if something else should be included!
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