Category — Great Scenes
What ever happened to real dirt in film? There are exceptions, but it seems like somewhere along the way filmmakers stopped using actual grime and started painting it on. That was the first thing I noticed about William Friedkin‘s Sorcerer – these dudes look terrible! And I love it! This 1977 remake (the original being Henri-Georges Clouzot‘s 1953 masterpiece The Wages of Fear) about four criminals hiding in Nicaragua and risking their lives for a few thousand pesos is absolutely worth your time, but this scene is something really special. There’s dynamite leaking nitroglycerin in the back of a truck and here are the dudes just crazy enough to inch it across a broken bridge in the middle of a storm. These men have each done something horrible, but as we see them drive through the jungle, they move beyond their past and become nothing more than desperate human beings. This scene captures a lot of the essence of the films’ grit and emotion while simultaneously delivering some serious thrills. Pay attention to the sounds – is that wind, or a howling otherworldly monster? These men are obsessed with getting their money and in their attempt to bend nature to their will they are beaten down to their most primal emotions. Watch the battle between nature and progress rage outside while the battle between determination and common sense boils within.
March 13, 2013 5 Comments
Today’s scene comes to you from director Ngai Choi Lam‘s The Cat [Lao Mao] (1992) starring Shaw Brothers veteran Philip Kwok as one of a group of Nicely-Suited-Hitmen (movies in the 90′s were legally required to feature NSH’s) who stumble upon a mysterious creature that appears to be a cross between The Blob and The Thing, with little white hairlike tendrils that somehow amp up the heebie jeebies (Hong Kong films of the 90′s always amped up the HJ’s). Let me preface things by stating that this is one of the tamer scenes from the movie. Lam also directed Riki-Oh: The Story of Ricky (1991), which will give you a sense of the weirdness you’re in for. Quick inventory: haunted house (√), cheesy effects (√), an ex-Five Deadly Venom (√), limbs torn asunder (√√√) all punctuated by foreign entities invading orifices (√). And for the diligent fan of oddity cinema, there’s even a bodily possession shot recalling Goke: Body Snatcher from Hell (√√√√√√)! What the Hell else could you ask for? Subtitles? If you think that’s gonna help make sense of this chaos you haven’t been paying attention!
February 12, 2013 No Comments
In director Spike Lee‘s 25th Hour (2002), Edward Norton play Monty Brogan, a drug dealer facing serious time in prison. He has one day and night to say adios to his closest friends and loved ones before the rest of his life is altered forever. His father James (played wonderfully by acting powerhouse Brian Cox) does his best to entertain his son during this bleakest of days, but as you can imagine it’s a hard enough road to face – let alone discuss. When Monty excuses himself to use the restroom he experiences a moment that Spike Lee punctuates with a reflection of not only the man but an audience sitting in the dark. Staring into the mirror (but detached in his movement), a lost Monty sees the simple words “Fuck You” underlined and accented with an . A common enough occurrence in all our lives, but what follows is cinematic brilliance, the ultimate montage, laced with hatred and wrapped in venom. Monty unloads on his native New York, highlighting everything – and everyone – he thinks is wrong with it. Blame is cast like buckshot as he eviscerates all races, creeds and walks of life. But before the audience can scream “enough already” it clicks: Monty’s the only soul to blame. His pain is his alone, earned alone, and to try to pin the situation on anyone else would be the ultimate lie. A grand illustration of the old adage, “you made your bed, now lie in it.” And though he used a similar scene in He Got Game (1998), Spike Lee employs it better here – where it lands like a ton of bricks and reveals the darkness in all of us, which seeps out when times get tough and we seek to take things out on our neighbors.
January 29, 2013 2 Comments
Been a busy past couple of months here at IOC, with new writing gigs and a few health scares diverting us from our usual pace – but we’re still alive and kickin’ – so bear with us as we try to right the ship and return to our normal frequency. In the spirit of overly ambitious undertakings here’s a terrific scene from American Movie (1999), a documentary directed by Chris Smith about the love of moviemaking and the quixotic attempts of Mark Borchardt to make Coven. If you haven’t seen it you’re missing out on some hilarious can-do spirit! And don’t forget to follow us over on our IOC FB page where we do a pretty good job of keeping up with the latest movie news – and posting a ton of posters three times a week!
December 18, 2012 No Comments