Saturday, November 17, 2007
WHAT THE HELL?
I have just seen Richard Kelly's SOUTHLAND TALES. One of the most bizzarre movies I have ever seen in my life. I can't even begin to describe how I feel about this film at the moment. A maddening, sprawling, wilfully incoherent political satire that while never really working as a piece of sensible storytelling, consists of so many individual moments of brilliance that I am not able to dismiss this film as others have. It's a failure, to be sure, but one of the most spectacular and interesting failures that I've ever seen. SOUTHLAND TALES is a film that will drive some people utterly fucking crazy. I mean that. The film takes swipes at current politics, television, the internet, Hollywood, the environmental crisis, the war on terror, pop culture, the media, and pornonography and while it misses more than it hits, there is some remarkble stuff on display. The last 30 minutes, are, in a word, staggering; it's some of the most outright engrossing visual storytelling of the year. But it arrives at the expense of a lot of nonsense, half-baked ideas, and a cluttered narrative that's big enough for three movies. My full review will be posted soon, but I must say that Kelly, while not delivering a film as well put together as his debut, DONNIE DARKO, has fashioned an eerie, surreal, Los Angeles nightmare that only someone with a genuine vision could have created.