Thursday, October 7, 2010
To me, there are two kinds of capers: capers with charm and capers with grit. Those with charm are delightful and smart and entertaining. Two titles that come to mind are The Sting and The Brothers Bloom, two movies I like a lot. As for the capers with grit, well, there's really not much of a description except to say that the experience is pretty unpleasant. And if you want a true taste of a caper with grit, you need not look further than the films of Guy Ritchie. I recently saw Snatch, wondering if such a praised movie might raise my opinion of Ritchie's work. The result was a painfully interminable journey into the lives of European gangsters and crooks, all pursing a diamond "the size of a walnut." I should point out that my use of the word interminable refers not to the film's length, but to how long it feels due to Ritchie's vexatious style. The movie is loaded with quick scenes (there's barely any dialogues that extend beyond a minute), far more than average, and the result is that the film seems much longer than it really is. And Ritchie's "famous" techniques (the fast cuts, sudden gruesome violence, freeze frames, and slow motion sequences) were annoying, and really more of a cover-up for a bad story.