(2004), Brad Bird. August 12, 10am and 5pm (Brad Bird and producer commentary). View count: Three.Mulholland Dr.
(2001), David Lynch. August 12, 1pm. View count: One.
Ah, the Incredibles
. Still mighty good stuff. Still a little bit uncomfortable in the areas butting up against the weird elitist agenda in regards to 'specialness', and the impropriety of hiding it under a bushel, but to me that added to the movie. I liked the way that people die in this universe, no matter how candy-colored it may appear, and I like the somewhat dark underpinnings that at the very least make it possible for Mr. Incredible to contemplate killing. His is not a complex mind, presumably, but, still.
It's a little weird how emotion-centric this movie is; it's weirdly affecting even when it doesn't quite seem appropriate. It must be something to do with the safe distance from the uncanny valley (the exaggerated, doll-like characters), and of course the Brad Bird, I imagine. Listening to the commentary, one of my less favorite scenes (the which-exit-to-take argument scene) was apparently instigated by Lasseter, which completely does not surprise me.
Visually it's pretty stunning, of course; the production design and lighting are freakishly awesome, the characters are imaginative, and the wet hair still looks really, really good. I think there were three or four things that bugged me, which I must in good conscience list. One:
Mr. Incredible's hands. They were these stubby (but not stubby enough to seem Homer-Simpson intentional) inexpressive things that ended up feeling more generically shaped than designed (viz. Frozone's hands for counterexample), and when in costume (especially when fat), the way his hands bent on his wrists seemed poorly centered. I don't know what was up with that. Two:
Clothing was sadly thick-feeling. Everyone was wearing rubber tarps or something. I know cloth sucks a lot for everyone; really, I do not even want to consider the time put into cloth and hair, so really this is pretty forgiveable. Three:
Clavicles. Clavicles are my favorite thing to harp on to anyone who will hold still. There were a few shots that made me cringe with either not enough or too much of 'em (or isolated left or right ones moving alone), but worse than that was that the default position of everyone
's shoulders was freaking zero-degrees rotation straight. Even when you have your shoulders held back, it's more that your shoulder blades are squeezing together, not that your actual shoulder joints are lining up with your spine. You still have a slight concavity between your sternum and your shoulder muscle. Completely stiff, straight clavicles were, if not rampant, then too common (especially after the insurance company sequences, when Mr. Incredible becomes less beaten down). And there was a really painful shot at the end (Dash's track meet) where everyone in the family had busted clavicles. I will take a screenshot later. If you happen to be watching it, keep an eye on Violet's shoulders and tell me that they don't look severely mis-deformed. This pains me.Four
: Eh, I don't know. I had some problems with facial deformation, but they were minor. I'm willing to accept most of this as stylistic tradeoff.
None of these stops this movie from being really quite great. It's just so fully realized and pleasing. And I have a special place in my heart for Bomb Voyage. Mulholland Dr.
This was not David Lynch's best work. It began life as a pilot for a television series, but was recut and had some extra footage shot for it so as to bring it into featurehood. This shows, and not really in a good way. It feels retrofitted; the first half of the movie feels like a series of setups, only a couple of which pay off. The second half is the story of these two women who are in love, or who hate one another, and there's some mirroring which I think that between us chmmr and I have figured out. Mostly. But the first half, and its characters, are all but abandoned for this one plot. And this plot is made more difficult to follow through a casting choice that included two short-haired, nondescript thin blond women as separate characters who never met. Frustrating.
This movie had not a little of Lost Highway about it, which helped to make it hurt more when it didn't work nearly so well. I'm used to Lynch's carefully intertwined method of showing things, and it's just off-putting when characters are dropped off the face of the movie for no apparent reason. It's all too clear that this thing was chopped to pieces. I am lining up The Straight Story and Inland Empire to be watched instead.