Sunday, June 17, 2007

DVDs I watched last week, from favorite to least.

Another Billy Ray thriller about a mediocre staffer (Ryan Phillipe) who ostensibly proves his worth by revealing that his more successful, more fascinating antagonist (Chris Cooper) is living a whopper of a lie. And like Shattered Glass, it's so aggressively factual that the DVD includes a commentary track with the real-life hero (who looks greener than Phillipe!) and a corroborative news segment. As it concerns the FBI rather than The New Republic, Ray gets to incorporate gunplay and races against time. Not only is Cooper's performance unsurprisingly more layered than Hayden Christiansen's was, Phillipe (who has carved a niche as a well-intentioned lightweight with this, Crash and Flags Of Our Fathers) makes for a better hero than Peter Saarsgard, despite the marital strife cliches.

Nick Nolte's chiseled sheriff of few words eventually has a showdown with childhood friend/romantic rival/drug kingpin Cash Bailey, who understandably refers to himself in the third person and is played by Powers Motherfucking Boothe. Additional gunfire for director Walter Hill's Peckinpah tribute is made possible by an elite cast of B-movie veterans, including Michael Ironside, William Forsythe, Tiny Lister and Lamar from Revenge Of The Nerds. Hollow, but I'm not complaining.

A casually pathetic French millionaire tells a cabin car of polite countrymen about his obsession with a manipulative virgin. Pretty thin compared to Discreet Charm Of The Bourgeoisie.

Peter Weir used the outback as an ominous mystical/natural threat in Picnic At Hanging Rock. Here he uses Aborigines, which is a lot more offensive whether or not he thinks white Australia deserves what it gets. Richard Chamberlain, playing a visionary attorney, doesn't help.

No comments: