Monday, August 3, 2015
Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol opens with CIA frontman Alec Baldwin trying to shut down the IMF for the destruction they caused in Ghost Protocol. This establishes the conflict for the film—our secret agents must operate without a headquarters—but it also establishes the film's theme. Just as the IMF is being interrogated for the consequences of its actions, so Rogue Nation interrogates the consequences of unilateral global policing. The Syndicate, the evil shadow organization supposedly behind a series of terrorist attacks worldwide, is referred to interchangeably as a paranoid delusion of the IMF and a result of its own operations. The syndicate is both a foil for the IMF and a offspring of its own creation. Through this narrative, the film questions America's role in international politics and its actions in response to acts of terrorism. By attempting to control the world with our surveillance and espionage, we end up creating the very threats we intended to defeat.
Sunday, August 2, 2015
Saturday, August 1, 2015
There are spoilers for movies in this article. Mentioning which movies they are for might accidentally spoil those movies just by virtue of pointing out that they might have spoilers in them. If you are a spoiler sensitive reader, consider yourself warned.
Tuesday, July 28, 2015
Not the first Heroic Bloodshed film, but one which helped define the genre.
Monday, July 27, 2015
Friday, July 24, 2015
Thursday, July 23, 2015
"Until civilization arrives."
If the traditional western is a tale in which cowboys establish a society and a rule of law that they do not fit into (the reason they have to ride off into the sunset), then Slow West is the preface to that tale, the movie that makes the need for society and for rule of law unbearably palpable. Its most intense moments revolve around this need for a governing force on two different levels: the individual and the community.
Wednesday, July 22, 2015
When Edgar Wright signed on to direct Ant-Man with his writing partner Joe Cornish, everybody suddenly understood how a movie about this silly superhero could be made. He gave the movie such a reason for being that when he subsequently walked out on the production, expectations plummeted below the point before Wright and Cornish had even submitted their treatment. So it was without much hope that I entered Ant-Man, and perhaps that’s the reason I came out generally positive about its achievement.