Thursday 18 August 2022
93/2102. The Buddy Holly Story (1978)
Must all Hollywood biopics be commercially compelled to warp facts to fit their desired narrative? We're led to believe that Holly was a diva and The (racist, sexist) Crickets' careers died with him, neither of which is true. Good music, though.
Hit the road with Coca-Cola!
94/2103. The Westerner (1940)
Gary Cooper's usual "gee, shucks" cowpoke is alternately persecuted, befriended, and persecuted again by a caricature of infamous lawman Judge Roy Bean. Given that there is never any doubt that Cooper will win in the end, I found the experience punishingly boring.
95/2104. Mystery Train (1989)
Anthology movies can be real hit or miss, but everything really works here in a setup that presages (in style and function) what Tarantino will bring to prominence a few years later with Pulp Fiction. If you like indie cinema (or Elvis mythology), this is totally worth a watch.
96/2105. The Bronze (2015)
This movie answers the unasked question, "What if Kerri Strug grew up to be a total bitch?" Forced to train her successor, not-Strug's story is a gymnastics version of Kingpin told by less competent filmmakers. There are a couple of genuinely funny moments, but they are far too few and far between.
97/2106. Hollywoodland (2006)
This movie avoids answering the much asked question, "Did Superman kill himself?" That's the question the fictional protagonist detective is investigating, but the whodunnit is only superficial. The real subject is the more metaphysical question of what gives a man's life meaning. It doesn't answer that question, either, but it does rule out some commonly held possibilities. Not bad.
Up, up, and down the hatch!
98/2107. Alice's Restaurant (1969)
What's most surprising about this anti-war comedy movie (based on an anti-war comedy song) is how cynical it is about counterculture. Society is so rotten, even those who would try to escape it are already corrupted, and all we can do is keep a sense of humor about it. Obviously, I liked this.
More to come.