Friday, March 25, 2016

The Current Cinema 16.2

Knight of Cups

If Terence Malick's "Knight of Cups" existed as a travelogue of modern day California, complete with Emmanual Lubezki's stunning images of both of the familiar and the not-so familiar etches of landscape in and around the city of angels, then we'd have one of the best pieces of cultural propaganda around. But, it's not a travelogue and Malick continues his wispy, spiritual examination of man including the mid-life crisis of Hollywood-ite Christian Bale as he wanders the world trying to escape his ennui filled existence of paternal frustration and sexual conquests. Unlike his last film, "To the Wonder", his male alter ego doesn't get to bed hop with two beautiful women and then complain about it, but something close to a dozen, which features some of the most dazzling ladies in the biz including Cate Blanchett, Freida Pinto, Natalie Portman and Imogen Poots. It's a terrible life whose rampant vapidity is as clear as the black eye sheltered behind the sunglasses of one of the beautiful women lounging at a luxurious party. And we get that over and over and over. Once able to conjure up majestic emotions and elicit a primal sense of mood from his philosophical meanderings, writer-director Malick has lost me with his last two films, succumbing to moribund scenarios that feel less like actual films and more akin to someone working out his own personal demons on the screen in front of us. Sometimes, in the most personal art, that can be liberating and terrifyingly vivid for the viewer. Here, it just comes off as facile.

10 Cloverfield Lane

Infinitely better than the shaky-cam found footage 'parallel' film in this burgeoning series, "10 Cloverfield Lane" benefits from a great lead performance by Mary Elizabeth Winstead in what's essentially a psychological two-hander between her and captor John Goodman. Naturally, the film delves into monster territory like the first at the end, but what precedes it is just as interesting and unexpected. A nice surprise.

Get A Job- Full review on Dallas Film Now

Krisha- Locally grown film that deserves a view after its long festival circuit run. Review also found on Dallas Film Now

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