For the longest time, Max Von Sydow was one of those perennial “faces” in film. You know, the ones who show up and make you go “Hey! That’s the guy from…” I’m speaking of my personal experience of course. As such, he was never someone that I was particularly looking for when I picked out movies at the video store, or took recommendations from one of my High School French teachers. For the life of me I can’t remember how we got into something of a contest – recommending movies to each other that had not seen theatrical release in Australia. The goal was to go obscure, but still give a hook to convince one another that the movie was actually worth watching. Continue reading
Watching The Dirty Dozen immediately highlights how complicated modern movies have become. If the film were to be remade today (heaven forbid), I can only imagine how many subplots would have been crammed into the story to make it ‘more accessible’ or to give individual actors beefed up parts. Instead, we engage with each of the characters as part of the group rather than individual anti-heroes. We can’t really root for any of these men, but we can root for The Dirty Dozen.
Though the film was criticised heavily for its violence upon release, it seems almost tame by today’s standards. Rather than over the top explosions and gore, the deaths in the film are sudden and undramatic, far more fitting for the film’s nihilistic message. There are no heroes here, these men are soldiers with one mission – to kill as many of the enemy as possible, soldiers and civilians alike. The Dirty Dozen remains a gripping experience to this day; it’s a classic for a reason. Highly recommended.
‘Set in a future where the Capitol selects a boy and girl from the twelve districts to fight to the death on live television, Katniss Everdeen volunteers to take her younger sister’s place for the latest match.‘
Given the enormous success of the Harry Potter franchise and the fact that the Twilight films are about to wrap up, it was inevitable that Hollywood would find another young adult novel franchise to mine in the hopes of continuing the gravy train. While Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games trilogy doesn’t have the high-profile of its predecessors, there is still a massive inbuilt audience for any film adaptation and the studio has banked on that with a reported $100 million+ budget. Unfortunately, the filmmakers have relied far too much on the source material; leaving the film a confusingly mediocre experience that feels like it should have been so much more. Continue reading