Friday, July 22, 2005

The good ol' days.

I saw Michael Bay's The Island two weeks ago and, well, because it's pretty blasphemous to say so, I didn't let y'alls know that... uh, I liked it way more than I should have. Now, I had a couple vodka and tonics in the system, so that might have made the sturm und drang go down smoothly. Or maybe I'm just a troglodyte. Who knows? But the fact is, I gobbled up every little scrap of fizzy NutraSweet celluloid that Mr. Bay threw at me. Sure, Bay still has no subtlety whatsoever and there are lots of leaps in logic and it all looks like an elaborate commercial and... You get the picture. I still had a damn good time.

And I will say this: Bay has matured a little. Rather than setting off a bunch of pyro/testing the theater's sub-woofers in the first fifteen minutes, he waits a good thirty to forty minutes. Plus, he seems to be interested in some watered-down-Gattaca ethical questions. See? The man's growing as an artist. (That was not written with a straight face.)

Of course, A.O. has to go and remind me of the good old reckless days: "Mr. Bay treats us to some of his signature set pieces, including a freeway chase in which giant metal train wheels roll from the back of a fast-moving truck into speeding traffic. (He did something like this in 'Bad Boys II,' but with embalmed corpses instead of train wheels.)" Dammit, Michael, why'd you have to go a get mature on us? Embalmed corpses rule! Maybe for Return to The Island.


At 5:24 PM, Blogger girish said...

Jeanine Basinger wrote this with a straight face, and I usually like her stuff.

And Kent Jones (whom I really like) actually says, in all seriousness:"...Pearl Harbor is Bay's least personal film....", as if any of them were.

So, now I'm all confused.

At 11:47 AM, Anonymous sacha said...

My favorite part f A.O. Scott's review is: "Apart from the explanatory cross-talk and the occational flight of philosophical speculation, the dialogue is mostly breathless imparatives. "Run!" "Watch out! "Go!" An by all means do, if you're in the mood for glossy, witty eye candy with some moderately chewy stuff in the middle."

And who isn't ever in the mood for that?

At 7:43 PM, Blogger Ben said...

Girish: I love the agonized hand-wringing/critical backflips that the Criterion Collection does to justify its inclusion of two of Bay's films.

Sacha: Exactly. Sometimes you need cinematic nougat.


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