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Monday, April 26, 2010

Double feature: it's all about the lifestyle

Double feature review of American Psycho and The Joneses!

American Psycho (directed by Mary Harron)
IMDB page

She said:

This film struck me in a lot of ways. More than just a film about a psychopathic murderer, this was commenting on the fakeness of a certain lifestyle. I was impressed by the way the director deftly weaves the murder scenes into a film about a man who is emotionally missing from his life.

There was a big play on the theme of masks, reflections, signs of the self (i.e. business cards) etc which mirrored the warped sense of reality the eighties business men, with their fancy suits and ripped bodies, were living in. It was really quite fascinating. Where better for a murder to hide than in a world of portraying masks and false images to make other people think a certain way of them.

If you enjoy thriller-horrors that have some intelligence to them then try out this film. It gives a great representation of the executive eighties lifestyle (such as brick mobile phones and those terrible slate grey suits that were so popular) and a nice bit of bloody violence to go with. I give this film {{{3.5 out of 5}}}

He said:
This film is one of those that you find yourself watching when you need something to pass the time. It isn't the best movie you'll ever sit down to watch but I would be very surprised if you didn't enjoy it in spite of yourself.

Helen pointed out the Masks and ideas of self above, one of the things that struck me so much about this character was his obsessive and at times intrusive knowledge of popular music.

Having gone with out being said, I really think Pat Bateman is convinced that his unending knowledge of musicians earns him a higher rank among his peers. (Though we tend to see his knowledge of music right before a very desperate and typically carnal acts.)

This is a fun movie to watch especially if Batman Begins was your first glimpse of Christian Bale as an actor. I would give this film [[[[3.5 out of 5]]]]

They said: So y'know... sex and murders... yay voyeurism!? We give this film {{{7 out of 10}}}

The Joneses (directed by Derrick Borte)

IMDB page

She said:

In short (although you know I'll ramble a bit after this sentence anyway) this film had a promising start but then died a slow and dull death until the curtains closed and we woke up.

The idea behind the film is of course 'keeping up with the Joneses' - this family is a unit of salespeople whose job is to show off the products that make up their lifestyle, and get other people to buy into it. This plot is quite genius actually. Both James and I want to have a go at this job please! It is the American Dream without the working to get their bit - the work IS it.

After this was established the family/unit started to fall apart... and so too did the plot. The writer and director seemed to have lost focus after the first act. There were interesting moral questions that were raised but not explored and sub-plots and characters introduced that never developed.

I wanted this film to end at least half an hour before it did. It was okay, but I wouldn't waste your money to be honest. I give this a generous {{{2.5 out of 5}}}.

He said:

Much like Helen I was ready for this films end credits long before they graced the screen. I am slightly curious about a couple of characters that obviously had established subplots in early versions of the script (only to have them lost in the rewrites)

I really can't say too many good things about this film other than the fact that it made me want to pursue a career like the Joneses. I could go on and on about lack of character development (and even one slightly clever twist mid-way through the film) but I would rather not waste your time.

I will say that the trailer sold this film really well, and for the first 45 minutes the film delivered as promised, unfortunately like most creative ad campaigns it's all the small print that eventually sinks the ship...

I am not feeling as generous as Helen today (Despite my very good mood) and must rate this film [[[[2 out of 5]]]]

They said:
This movie had a trailer that sold it well, unfortunately the film wasn't worth the price of admission.... {{{we give it 4.5 out of 10}}}

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