Tag Archives: child?

Creation: The “A Beautiful Mind” of the 1800’s

So I just finished this movie and, I have to say, I was blown away by its simplicity. I’m pretty sure this movie had about 5 shooting locations, and this simplicity alone was touching and dramatic. This film about the entity that is Charles Darwin and the theory that changed the world through conflict, was one of anguish, inner turmoil, and alienation. This movie may have been pure speculation about the life of Darwin and his quest to write “Origin of the Species,” but it is rare to encounter a film that makes you believe that the actor who is Darwin must have known Darwin. Must have been Darwin.

I had heard about this movie a year or so ago and have always had an affinity for Paul Bettany. All of his

Paul Bettany as Darwin with his Wife Jennifer Connelly as, well, his wife.

work is top shelf stuff. And Creation is no exception. Another amazing piece from across the sea, and it kept me entranced in Bettany and those around Darwin. The 1850’s was a time of religious dominance and this film portrayed that quite clearly. It is this conflict between science and religion (still ongoing) that frames the film. It is not all encompassing of the purpose, but gives substance to the interactions between work, family, and the past.

Martha West as Emma Darwin. What a relationship they had.

There are two amazing relationships that also frame this movie. The first is between Darwin and his daughter Annie (Martha West). The conflict between the live Annie and the memory of her past self haunts Darwin throughout the film. Annie loves her father and his dedication and fervor for life. And at the same time, she loves her mother and the devotion she shows to her religion. As Bettany says ever so touchingly, “I thought we were making the perfect child.” But it is this child that causes the loss of faith as well as the devotion to his soon to be world changing book. And, with every painful interaction, Darwin is forced to face the demons of his past and the issue that this creates with his family, most importantly his wife. And therein lies the second best relationship portrayed in the film. Between Darwin and Emma (Jennifer Connelly), there is an ocean. Emma’s religion and Darwin’s science seem to be the issue at the heart of the problem, but in a surprising and touching twist, it is the daughter that causes the rift. And the resolution is worth the watch in itself. It is rare in films that a leading man and lady would be married in real life. This is one of them. And I give that credit to whoever cast a married couple in a role like this. It’s absolutely amazing to watch two people with chemistry that is based in life to interact on film. Every scene with their interaction is so fluid and natural that I was blown away by how wonderful it must be to be those two in love. Quite literally the best part of the film.

Quite similar.

And there are a few notable mentions to make about minor acting parts. Freya Parks does a great job as Etta, the oldest of Darwin’s children, fighting for the attention of her father who is perpetually focused on the memory of his dead daughter. Her scenes are touching and tragic in the way that she tries and seems to flounder without any affection from her father. The last scene, something to see. Benedict Cumberbatch (BBC’s current Sherlock) gave a great minor performance as Mr. Hooker, one of Darwin’s confidantes and emotional support in his hour of need when it comes to writing his book. And Martha West, bless her heart, gave it her all as Annie, the focus of Darwin’s obsession and past regrets. Having to play a protagonist and antagonist simultaneously must be quite hard for a child, and she pulls it off with aplomb.

You may have noticed the title of this blog. And I would have to say this plot reminds me of A Beautiful Mind, the great Ron Howard award winning story of another theorist who could see figments of his imagination, John Nash. All of the dramatic elements are there and its done with the same grace. I gotta give credit to Jon Amiel, a director who I’ve not seen do anything like this before, directing with all he has. Throw in some scenes straight out of The Fall with their exotic nature, and you have a recipe for a great movie. 9.5 out of 10.

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The Room: Greatest Comedic Failure Ever Made

Let me paint you a tale of the worst movie ever made. Or would it be the greatest? Either way, Tommy Wiseau went there. In The Room, (Directed, Produced, Written, Starring Tommy Wiseau) we are given Tommy Wiseau’s greatest masterpiece. The Room, a story of a love triangle between a frumpy woman, a up and coming porn star, and a deranged mental patient escaped from Croatia. In actuality, the means to the end of one of the greatest dramadies ever created. And it’s so heart wrenching and inspiring that I can’t stand it.

But really, Tommy Wiseau released this film in the high hopes it would become an example of a great drama or, as he claims, a dark comedy with the humor as intentional. Let me tell you, anybody who saw that movie, in theaters, really was in for a treat. And I wish I had been one of them. This movie, in all respects, utterly fails. Whatever thought Tommy Wiseau had in his mind about this film, any idea of it as a

"Youre tearing me apart Lisa!"

respectable film at all, should have been thrown out the window the second he spoke. Or rather didn’t speak. Almost every single one of Tommy Wiseau’s lines was dubbed after the film was shot. It makes for one of the funniest aspects of the film.

Let’s just go through how this movie fails, and in that way, how it succeeds. First of all, Tommy himself stars in this film as Johnny. He’s the man who’s being cheated on by his fiance with his best friend. His best friend. But Mark (Greg Sestero) is his best friend. This point will be driven home about every 10 minutes. Juliette Danielle plays Lisa, Johnny’s disgusting wife. Really, I don’t know why either guy in this film wants to bang her. And speaking of banging, the first 40 minutes of this film is a softcore porno. And, to make things worse, Tommy Wiseau jumped on Danielle within the first day of shooting. She really would’ve been better off trying to start her career in porn and failing miserably.

But the first 40 minutes is wherein lies the beauty of the film. The soundtrack. You will be serenaded to a handful of tracks as both Johnny and Mark mount

Whats going on here... Possible sex scene?

Lisa from the side and the top, in that awkward angle where all you see is Tommy Wiseau’s tanned and wrinkling buttocks. It’s quite strange. I really hope that he never intended for those sex scenes to come off as anything more than some twisted ego trip to force people to stare at his glorious body naked, on screen. But yes, we are given Boyz II Men quality R&B love ballads as Tommy does his thing all over Lisa, and then he does it again, and then Mark, and then Mark again. You really don’t know what direction this movie is taking within the first half an hour.

The rest of the film is fantastic. We are introduced to Michelle and Mike (Robyn Paris & Mike Holmes. Wow.) the couple who love to perform chocolate oral sex in other people’s living rooms, and then get caught by an old woman. And that old woman? Claudette, the breast cancer ridden nagger who is relentlessly trying to convince Lisa, her daughter, to stay with Johnny forever. If only for money. And from the looks of their apartment and how retarded Tommy Wiseau is, I would say there is no financial security in that man. She comes over, from I don’t know how far away, to have 3 minute talks in Johnny’s apartment. What kind of a mother is that.

Favorite character hands down? Denny (Philip Haldiman) This kid really brings the film together. Denny is the financial egg and complete dependent of Johnny and Lisa and makes it a point to come over. All the time. For no

Look at Denny, that creep.

reason. He’ll just pop his head in with a football. Break in and make his way to the roof. All sorts of creepy shit. It’s really bothersome. And he has a thing for Lisa. AND Johnny. He wants them to both have sex in front of him, just for the pure pleasure of watching. And he doesn’t even look young enough to play a high school/college student. There’s just something not right with that weirdo.

And you can tell this movie wasn’t good. A ton of anonymous members of The Room came out and said terrible things about the movie. Another great part of the movie was when Peter miraculously and inexplicably becomes Steven. Peter (Kyle Vogt) dropped out of the film and was replaced by Steven (Greg Ellery). And there are no attempts to explain why some random guy comes over and tries to help Lisa with her relationship problems. This film has more holes than a block of Swiss cheese. And smells worse when its grown mold. Just hilariously awful.

I mean, what else is there to say about The Room? Terrible actors. Covered. Terrible director/producer/writer/actor. Check. The bad Boyz II Men tribute soundtrack. The actors that fall of the face of the earth like the Rock of Gibraltar. The sets. OH THE SETS. This movie takes place in 3 locations. Bedroom, apartment roof, living room. That’s it. And you can tell that thoser sets haven’t been used since the 70’s. You can tell that they’re sets! As Johnny and Denny throw the ball around like 3 year old girls, you know they aren’t ballin’ it up on a roof. They’re ballin’ it up right next to the set of Full House. Pathetic.

And therein lies the genius of this film. If you can call what Tommy Wiseau egotistically calls a tour de force of drama. But let’s imagine, if you will, for a second. What if Tommy Wiseau released this film, with the hidden intention of solidifying his film as the worst movie ever made? Just 8 short years ago, good ole Tommy got the idea to break the boundaries of what is considered a film and put together the worst one possibly conceivable. Then what a genius he would be. Every critics review would turn into amazing praise for the God that is Wiseau. He would be winning Oscars left and right, for years past 2003. That, in truth, would be the work of a true film aficionado. Sadly, I feel that this mentally deficient, psychotically narcissistic sociopath could not have concocted such a brilliant plan. If he did, 10 out of 10.

Really. Enough said.

But he didn’t. 0.1 out of 10 (Although for humorous purposes, I would give it a 6.3 out of 10.)

And here’s the best scene. You’re my favorite customer.