2007-01-15 14:05:03 ET|
Ever have one of those times where one night you watch one movie and you are so completely disgusted by it that you want to vomit and than the next night watch a movie that is so completely amazing that you are thinking about it hours later...I had one of those moments the last few nights.
Movie #1 The Vanishing(American Version)
There was a French film made quite a bit ago, I am not certain of the year, called the Vanishing. I have seen bits and pieces of it, what I saw, I enjoyed. The basic plot is this: A man and his girlfriend stop at a reststop, the girlfriend goes into the convienence store to get something and than vanishes without a trace. Three years later, the boyfriend is still looking for her, obsessed with finding out what happened to her. Than, the man who is responsible for her disappearance contacts him out of nowhere, asking him if he still wants to know what happened to his girlfriend, if he does, than he has to go with this man. Now, this is wonderful, the kidnapper is just your everyday man who wondered if he could do something evil and it turns out that he can. Just like any true psychopath, he looks just like everyone else, he is not scary, he is not the Devil, or any of that nonsense. The boyfriend does end up going with the psychopath, and keeps asking about his girlfriend. The psychopath responds and says the only way he can find out is to go through exactly what she went through, he offers the boyfriend a drugged drink which he injest. *Spoiler Warning!!!* When the boyfriend wakes up, he is inside of a coffin. The psychopath has buried him alive, and thusly, he now knows what happened to his girlfriend. And that is the end of the Vanishing.*End Spoiler*
I have been warned to never watch the American version of this film but since I am of a curious sort, I ignored that advice and watched it.
Oh. My. God.
It was terrible, what a god awful piece of dreck, it embodied what is wrong with most America movies, which is the happy ending syndrome, which has ruined so many potentially good movies. In this version, everything is inherently the same, but, the new girlfriend saves her boyfriend, kills the psychopath, and the movie even ends with a hideously bad scene that is supposed to be humerous. Honestly, it made me want to throw my channel changer at the screen.
What made the original Vanishing so powerful, in my opinion, is the fact that the psychopath gets away with it, the message was so much stronger, there are cruel, sadistic people in this world who do reprehensible things and you know what, they do not always get punished for it, sometimes, they get away with it completely, it is a sad fact to be sure, but that is life, isn't it, complete with all it's shadows. The American version destroyed the power of the original with the ludicrous cowboy, good always triumphs over evil which is not realistic or reflective of true life in the least bit. Argh, I do not even want to think about it any longer, I wish I could have that hour and forty five minutes of my life back!
Movie #2 Metropolis(1926 version)
Metropolis came out during the silent cinema era, in 1926. It is about a future world, the 21st century, where the rich play in a beautiful city and the slave class toil below, powering the machines that makes the rich citizens lives easier. It is about rebellion, revolution and how without the heart, the mind and hands cannot hope to connect.
Now, on the other end of the spectrum, the triumph of silent cinema, the masterpiece, the thought provoking, the amazing Metropolis. Another movie I had only seen bits and pieces of, it was on and I finally sat down to watch it, wow, I have been denying myself for too long. What an incredible movie, it was awe inspiring, I could not believe how brilliant it was, how powerful. The symbolism, the metaphor, the bleak vision of the future and how certain aspects of the film ring true in this day and age, how relevant it is to this time and place in history. It was moving, it was fantastic, it was immediately put on my favorites list and it is near the top. Anyone who has not seen it, see it, you will be doing yourself a favor, it will open your mind and touch you emotionally. I was still pondering it today, going over in my mind what exactly made it so wonderful, and few movies are that excellent that I am still thinking about them the next day. Very few movies effect me like this, and I am rarely, if ever, blown away, but this movie had everything, just a truly marvelous work of film, see it, you will not regret it.