Sometimes you just have to drag your lazy brain away from Godzilla for the 567th time and force it to contemplate something a little more demanding. We weren't breaking our necks trying to watch Knight of Cups because... you know... Terrence Malick. We acknowledge the challenge he poses to the casual viewer, happily declare ourselves Malick apologists and didn't think it was really possible to be ambivalent about his work- a shiny badge of honour in our estimation.
That being said, audible narration almost always annoys the shit out of me and a thick crust of random decorative/pointless hos over anything is going to piss me off too. But then what's not to like about wandering ocular direction, atypical structures and hey, Christian Bale so... have we finally arrived at an equivocal reaction to Malickian produce? Hells bells. I think so.
No one does wandering/pondering like Malick, so don't listen to all the jelly haters- it's not like KoC is a waste of your valuable time. I doubt anything he ever does will enjoy that dubious distinction. If it's taken you a while to get over yourself and rent the damn thing, hit the button or you'll miss stuff like Terrence using the utterly incomparable Emmanuel Lubezki like a charmed bird on his hand, seeing it all and explaining everything, rendering sound and even performance largely redundant. Even if you're not into all that temporal tapioca you might as well glide disembodied though LA and Vegas on the slick scales of a VIP pass or get your head dunked in a cold breaker- what the fuck else were you going to be doing? The swoony ride is well worth the price of admission.
Some of his contemporaries have insisted that Malick needs an actual fucking writer and I would concur if I thought he needed words at all. He really doesn't, and that is a truly transcendent achievement. KoC is probably best viewed with the volume off; the cast's breathy observations contribute little and are elbowed into insignificance by the visuals anyway; the performances are solid within the same slightly pointless context. No one really blew us out of our shoes but I will say Bale largely rose to the challenge of his nebulous mandate and managed to get Rick the peripatetic dumbarse onto the screen in a recognisable form, for which he probably deserves all the darn Oscars.
I’m old enough to remember the original original SW release; I wasn’t jerking off to its awkward, nonsensical, sexless juvenilia back then and I'm not jizzing my pants over the prospect of more, so yeah, I think it's fair to say this is a disinterested assessment. Despite all the screechy fangasms, SW:TFA is just a lukewarm rehash, repackaging the first trilogy into a contemporary launchpad for the endless instalments to come, cleansing the central concepts of their less palatable nerdscurf whilst pandering to the infamous conservatism of the fanbase with a truly stunning lack of creativity. Reiteration is a perfectly acceptable device, but christ on a fucking cracker, man, this shit was straight-up déjà vu bromide.
Booting Lucas from his own goofy-arse oeuvre was always going to be a good decision. Abram’s middlebrow extruded vanilla stylings haven't exactly stolen my heart either, but he is a perfect fit for this pedestrian material- there, I said two nice things.
Star Wars seems thematically and tonally archaic these days and not in a good way. Stripped of their novelty, the gallactical faux-politics are laughably moribund; the Rebel Alliance is still a wee bit rebellious and it is rumoured that they do plan to flip off the oppressors from a prudent distance in the fullness of time, going forward. But hey, the Empire seems to have pulled finger and rebranded- they've got yes, another Death Star blowing shit up from afar; the monstrous and cowardly injustice of it all etc etc. Whatevs.
To an old bitch like me, the visual feel was disappointingly non-filmic, scrubbing the meagre appeal of the originals. And now I'm running out of shit to say. It’s not like we hated SW:TFA; there’s nothing there to get riled up about. Chalking that up as a thumbs-down situation.
Why don't I just say what I really mean and tell you this tiresomely self-referential, five-year-old internet meme/microwave dinner with the plastic melted into it type-thing bored the everliving shit out of us?
It really, really did. Ryan Reynolds is blessed with the comic timing of a dugong, killing jokes like they're a fucking threat to his family; maybe it's just that I'm not a sheltered fourteen year old boy but I found the alleged darksided humour dated and embarrassingly harmless. If the writing did occasionally get there, very few spontaneous smirks survived Reynolds' insecure bugfuck delivery.
The action was mediocre, the story retrograde-retarded, the origin shit made me wonder what we'd done to deserve it and there was no sign whatsoever of the saucy gayness and dodgy adult themes that I was promised. Which strikes me as A: fatal shortchanging of such a proprietary fandom or B: karmic redress upon numbnuts with no fucking taste. Just don't fall for the oversell. Deadpool is nowhere near as clever or subversive as you might be hoping.