What’s the point? Honestly, if I stole something I’d want to put it on display. Like that snowman I stole in college which was in a cruel twist of irony, stolen again from my front window a week later.
Hey Robber, don’t walk away in silence. Give it up.
Toronto – This is a rather old film (September 2007 according to imdb). So if you have seen it, bear with me.
BenX is the plight of an autistic teen against the world. And I’m going to spoil the ending because I loved it – he triumphs like spelling “victory” in caps – yet it may have mean nothing more than farce to him. Ben has Asperger’s syndrome (AS) – Wiki pins it at having difficulties in social interactions, atypical language and behavior, and lack of empathy. Ben’s world, as far as the film portrays, consists of repeating patterns and rules. He does this not because he is inclined to – but because it’s safe. He and his single-mother has learned that these patterns that Ben adheres to keeps the society comforted, to a certain degree. This is brilliantly embodies in his camcorder – splinters of edifying Superman crystals that teaches him what is the “correct” way to interact.
We soon find that Ben is marginalized by not only society at large, but also his peers, who generally wants nothing else but to see him suffer. They tease him in school. They tease him after school. They drug him, belittle him, physically abuse him. I guess the assumption is that Ben does not understand shame, nor empathy, anger, etc. It’s as if he is one big walking Milgram Experiment – the mind on the other side of the glass pane is not one of us. Here’s where you find humanity’s best qualities – our curiosity and fascination with experimentation. Or was it just sadism and the evolutionary need to show superiority even when it’s not contested? Through out the film, snippets of documentary clips show up. His mother, his father, the school principal, classmates, all provides a backdrop to Ben’s adventure. He likens himself to his online avatar – it’s funny how he learned and excelled at that game but was not given a chance to play in real life. Ben decided he would change this. The transfer of “EXP” from games over to real life is a good analogy – he designs an “endgame” for his oppressors together with the help of his clanmate and girlfriend Scarlite. Without ruining the ending completely, I’ll say it makes you think if AS sufferers really are handicapped at understanding emotions, or are they so passively astute that they are above it like Vulcans. Sure, the argument can be that Ben has traded one evil for another – but that’s something we cannot judge as “able-bodied” persons, since we are as ill-equipped to pass-judgment as he-who-reviews-the-iPhone-without-ever-touching-one, and I think that’s the most wholesome message the film carries. Bottom line: unless you’re a sadist, you’ll like the movie. My only gripe is that the English subtitle wasn’t always coherent…
“Good morning, Ben… kiss your mommy good bye like regular people do.”
The video for Verve’s final closing set can be found on BBC here
At the 28 minute mark, right before the festival closing song (guess what it is), commenting on their position as closing band for Glasto, Ashcroft saids “Im worried she didn’t think we were as good as Keane or something like that”.
Not really a dig, but still pretty funny.
There are a lot of good shows on that BBC page, including Hot Chip, Massive Attack and MGMT. Check it.
Toronto – Lets get the basics out of the way first: This movie is essentially a mashup of The Matrix vs the Fight Club vs John Woo’s movie. As you undoubtedly know by now, Wanted is a movie about a would-be loser living a boring life (ie. Ed Norton in Fight Club or Neo in the Matrix) who finds himself thrown into a world of Assassins who kill “1 to save 1000″. Angelina Jolie plays Carrie Ann Moss (only hotter, although that is not hard to achieve) and Morgan Freeman adopts the Morpheus role. Thats about as much plot as I’ll write about, since it’s mostly irrelevant.
Action. That is what Wanted is about. Check your brain at the door and enter a world where bullets can curve, cars can flip at will and people can leap across buildings. From the opening scene til the credits, this movie is pretty much non stop “chris bridges” action. So what separates this movie from the rest of the movie? Style. There are shoot’em up assassin movies all the time, but this one does it with massive style. It seems as if every action sequence in the movie pushes the envelop just a bit. A car chase scene is usually pretty exciting, but you know what..lets have Angelina Jolie in a dress lying down on the hood of the car shooting the truck behind her while steering the car with her legs!. Thats the insanity I be speaking of. I think a few times in the movie, I spoke out loud with a “WHAT!” at some of the stuff you see. However, this movie was built with ‘fun’ in mind, and it fits the bill.
The other thing I love about this movie is the complete disregard for human life. I can’t remember the last assassin/action movie where so many innocent/pedestrians die. You know Ron Howard can’t pull off this shit. Thats whats refreshing about having this russian director. Too often we’ve seen gun fights where the hero saves a baby in the middle of the gun fight or helps a senior across the street or something. In Wanted? Nope. You dead, if you in the way. Thats the way Assassins should be. James McAvoy cares not if he has to kill hundreds of people to get to his man, thats what it takes to get the job done, son.
So how is the acting? Stellar. We all know current boy-du-jour James McAvoy can act from Atonement and Last King of Scotland, and he really does a good job conveying the transition from poor office nerd to cold blooded killer. Much better then Neo, but every Keanu Reeves movie, I expect him to say ‘whoa’ for some reason. Angelina Jolie doesn’t really do much in the movie, aside from show off her ass, her tattoos and her twigly arms. I think she needs to eat some more. Having said that, it never hurts to have Angelina Jolie in a movie, even if the only emotion she shows is that of no emotion. Morgan Freeman, is Morgan Freeman. He’s old, he’s wise.
In conclusion, you should see this movie. It’s got insane action, it’s got humor, its two hours of escape and you will leave the theatre with a smile on your face.