25th hour

Watched this latest film from Director Spike Lee.
It is a belated offering, since the filming was completed in 2002. The crew, including the director and the actors, should have devoted themselves to it even before – toward the end of 2001. In the United States, the opening date was in late 2002. I wonder what it feels like to have the feedback of the work you had done a couple of years ago(and if you have to promote something you almost succeeded to erase from your memory…). When in a fast changing environment, two years ago is another world entirely. Friends, colleagues, work condition, sometimes the address of the apartment, all affects one’s character and the way of thinking, plus adds new information and insight. We cannot look at the event in the same way.

That happens even in my life as a corporate employee. The name of the company printed in my name card changed four times in three years, due to job hopping, merger, corporate identiy refreshment (in this case, the top management simply combined the names of two different companies and made a one, lo——ng name. And they made a swift action after explaining how to spell the company name for 100 times, almost every day. The previous name was nominated as the worst corporate name in 2003, in Israel). In the movie business, I hear they work on the project basis – when one film wraps up, the gropu dissolves and go to the next project. The speed of change should be much higher. Nobody asks this question in the movie interview (it’s always done in the present mode, no matter the movie is completed three years ago), but I would like to know.

The distribution company should not delay the opening of foreign (=Hollywood 😉 film no more than one year following the home country. Specially if it’s a plot-driven movie. When they delayed the opening of “Signs” in Japan, I had to refrain myself from accessing movie reviews or bbs written in English. Or it’s not good to delay the opening if it’s a cult-type of movie either(if I am the film executive, that is the first film to be delayed, since I can count on the loyal fans who go watch it no matter what). I had to wait for more than two years before watching “South Park – bigger, longer, and uncut” and “Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back“.

My exception toward these two had overblown during the two years, and when I watched it, they had to be a masterpiece enough to affect me behaving like the main characters for at least a couple of months, or they enhance my theory of “every talented artists are essentially finished when they become 30 years old”. And I become 31 years old this spring. South Park proved itself although I decided I am too good a person to behave like the main characters. For Jay…I guess Kevin Smith made that film to convince the studio executives that there is no more point in making another franchise based on the infamous duo.

Go back to 25th hour, it is based in New York, and the reference to the Sep.11 attck is obvious.
there is a scene in which Philip Seymour Hoffman and Barry Pepper gaze into the reminiscient of World Trade Centor. That has nothing to do with the story but nevertheless the crew who are based in New York couldn’t have helped offering some tribute to the incident. And funny, it feels quite natural. The story was based in the present, so if they never brought up that tragedy in the film, I would detect that they are avoiding the topic. They could have deleted those scene intentionallly for the entertainment’s sake. But production group didn’t, perhaps not to add “reality” in the movie settings but to face the challenge they have encountered. When they show the skyscraper of Manhattan, I automatically looks for the twin towers. Even I cannot help bringing real life’s subject into the film. What would the locals in New York feel about it, I have no way to imagine, and I will never have.

This was supposed to be a movie review, and I wrote nothing helpful yet. It is one thirty in midnight and I need to be in the office by 10:00 in the morning and I need to sleep eight hours and I need thirty minutes to commute. Good night.

I will cut the sleeping hour. It is a good and entertaining movie, though not a controversial-subject oriented film like Spike Lee’s past works. The storyline, in which the lead character spends his last 24 hours before going into prison, seemed to suggest a soul-searching type of conclusion, but it doesn’t. No big incident enough to change his viewpoint happen. The atmosphere is closer to that of Blade Runner or Things to do in Denver when you’re dead. In Spike Lee’s past films, Mo Better Blues would be the closest I have seen. The cool guy keeps his virtue no matter how hard he is beaten. Evey actors provide convincing acting and although the story moves slowly toward a predictable end it doesn’t lose tension or get bored. I am not sure how Spike Lee’s core fans react, but I think the fact that this film stands out without the aid of any political or cultural message shows he is a skillful director more than his critically acclaimed films do.

I liked this film but I don’t think I will watch it again for another few years. When I first saw Do the Right Thing, while watching I felt everything was so crudely constructed I lowered my inner critic level (it’s an indie film, not Hollywood blockbuster). But when I finished, I felt an urge that I need to watch it again – I thought it was an easy film to digest, but no – felt that there was something very important in this film, and I didn’t realize it. It had a huge amount of energy in it, maybe not so well expressed(so that even a blunt guy like me can articulate it) but flowing everywhere.
I never intended to say bad things about Spike Lee but the comments are saying out loud – blame my sleepiness. Now it’s 2:30 in midnight.