Monday, December 15, 2008

Blankness and WAGES OF FEAR (36)

I've been so focused on China and this China interview over the course of the last four days (well that and a very pleasant visit from the ex-girlfriend and her generous and lovely mother) that I've really had very little time to think about very much besides the China populaces search for identity in a rapidly changing time. This is probably the first time I've studied for anything since college (and let me tell you, there was little to be had of that even then) and you know, it's kind of exhilarating. All of I sudden I'm just knee deep in all of this knowledge and thought revolving around a country as of last Monday I knew absolutely nothing about. I can actually feel my brain swelling with the sweet sweet elixir of learning.

What I'm really trying to do is apologize for my terrible lack of anything interesting to say over the last week. I mean I wasn't exactly Albert Einstein to begin with, but now I'm feeling like Sloth from The Goonies just sort of banging on the keyboard and bellowing catch phrases at the top of my lungs. It'll get better. I promise.

So Wages of Fear (36) (also directed Henri-Georges Clouzot) is a great movie that would've been even greater sixty years ago when it was first released. If it was released today it would be considered a modern action movie, the story of a group of desolate mine workers that are asked to move truckloads of highly unstable nitroglycerin across a rocky mountain range. The idea sounds great and the movie is somewhat tense and full of amazing turns by some of the great French actors, but the problem is ... it feels dated. I grew up with action flicks like Die Hard and T2 and The Rock and Independence Day, big ass movies that just kicked you in the groin and left you writhing on the ground asking for another. Call me a modern day shmuck, but I've grown accustomed to the big, flashy action pictures and when asked to go back and watch a film that's supposed to "big" on a similar scale it's hard. I'll always take Diabolique (35) over Wages of Fear (36) because the former relies solely on mood, it doesn't need big, at times boring set pieces, all it needs is a fabulous cast and Henri-Georges Clouzot's brilliant ability to set a mood. Wages of Fear (36) is a great movie, just not as great as it would've been when it first was released.

Tomorrow: Time Bandits (37)

1 comment:

Jefferson Kim said...

I had to fast forward some parts because I got kind of nervous.