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Tuna Free Dolphin Meat

A Dolphin’s heroic quest to return fish sticks & fingers to the ocean

http://www.tunafree.com.au/

Tuna Free Dolphin Meat

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More Stuff At Mossfilm!

Hi everyone! Just a quick heads-up to let you know I’m now running my own blog. If you enjoy what you’ve read here, you’ll find more of the same and a whole heap of new stuff at:

http://mossfilm.wordpress.com

Hope to see you there!

greg

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PROMETHEUS – film review

PROMETHEUS

reviewed by greg moss

Friday 8th June 2012

Directed by Ridley Scott. Written by Jon Spaihts and Damon Lindelof. Starring: Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron, Idris Elba and Rafe Spall. Running time: 124 mins.

WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD –

Having been a fan of Ridley Scott’s ALIEN since its release in 1979 and being less than enamoured with the director’s subsequent output, with the exception perhaps of 1982’s BLADE RUNNER, I went into PROMETHEUS not expecting a great deal, but still hoping it would be somewhat of a return to form.

PROMETHEUS is Scott’s first self-generated genre film since 1986’s LEGEND (and by this I mean Scott commissioned the script based on his own original concept),

And PROMETHEUS does indeed resemble LEGEND in many ways – visually impressive, but with erratic pacing, superficial characters we don’t care about and a clumsily-staged finale.

At times the violence in PROMETHEUS is so over-the-top that it ventures into shameless exploitation. In fact, most of the various dispatchings of characters reminded me very much of Roger Corman’s exploitation pictures from the early 80’s, particularly (and ironically) his ALIEN rip-offs GALAXY OF TERROR and FORBIDDEN WORLD.

The death of Fifield (Sean Harris) is a case in point. It is ridiculous and uneccessary – incineration by flame-thrower, followed by splattery head-crunching by multi-wheeled vehicle.

Admittedly the visual effects are flawless, but this film has major problems in the script department, and genre scribes of Spaihts and Lindelof’s standing really should know better.

Apart from the seven or so principal characters, most of the crew of seventeen seem to be conveniently forgotten by the screenwriters soon after we meet them at the initial briefing. Why make the number of crew so large in the first place, if  they’re not actually utilized in any meaningful way ?

In ALIENS, at least Cameron had the good sense to wipe out most of the platoon early on in the piece, so as to leave a handful of survivors we care about to fight for their lives. In PROMETHEUS, most of the crew seem to just ‘disappear into the woodwork’ for no good reason.

Sloppy, very sloppy.

As for the performances, Idris Elba as Janek, the ship’s captain, is the only thesp who comes close to nailing the naturalism of the actors in the original ALIEN. Everyone else in the cast is clearly ‘acting’ – particularly Michael Fassbender as the android David. In ALIEN, Ian Holm’s acting style is natural and understated (and Lance Henriksen in ALIENS too for that matter). But here, from the outset, Fassbender is clearly not human – which doesn’t make a whole lot of sense in terms of how the androids are portrayed in the original films. And no, justifying this by saying David is an earlier model is nothing more than a lame cop out.

So … are there ANY positives?

Well … no … not really.

But for all of those eagle-eyed ALIEN nerds out there, there are several interesting little homages dotted throughout. Some less obvious than others.

Jerry Goldsmith’s original ALIEN theme can be heard during the ship’s descent to the planet. The bringing back of the Space Jockey’s severed head to the ship is straight out of Dan O’Bannon and Ronald Shusett’s original STARBEAST draft. The flying ‘mapping robots’ are a reworking of similar maintenance robots (referred to as ‘mice’) which appeared in Scott’s original ALIEN storyboards (but which were later scrapped due to budgetary reasons). And the Engineers’ dome-like ‘pyramid’ is a reworking of the original egg silo designed for ALIEN but never used, with the added feature of the elongated human head atop the Harkonnen fortress Giger had originally designed for Jodorowsky’s aborted DUNE film in 1975.

Egg Silo – ‘Alien’ by H.R. Giger

Harkonnen Fortress – ‘Dune’ by H.R. Giger

I’ve been aware of Scott’s concept for the Space Jockeys’ backstory for some years now – ie: in that they created the alien as a biological weapon to wipe out dominant life forms on whatever planet they chose to colonize. And for years I hoped he would never get to realize it. I mean, do we really NEED to know who they are? Isn’t it more – I dunno – alien – not to know?

For me, the idea of explaining who the Space Jockeys are defeats the purpose of calling the original film ALIEN in the first place.

As in:

a’lien a & n, 1. a. Not one’s own; foreign, differing in nature; out of harmony.

Space Jockey – 1979

Remember in ALIEN – the first time the Jockey was revealed – in that breathtaking crane shot? Didn’t it send frissons up the spine? Entice your imagination? Give you a sense of – awe? Like, holy shit! – what the F*CK is that? Of course it did – and that was the intent. I mean, let’s not forget, Scott hired Giger with the express purpose of creating this feeling in the first place! It’s like the first time we saw the monolith in ‘2001’ – its presence was enough – it didn’t need to be explained – it didn’t need to be anything other than an iconic image which inspired awe.

And so it is with the Space Jockey.

However, now Scott has well and truly ‘jumped the shark’ by reducing the Space Jockeys to nothing more than ‘bio-suits’ for a bunch of bald-headed humanoid neo-nazi astro thugs!

And that’s not all – THEY CREATED US AS WELL???

This clumsy shoe-horning of Von Daniken’s theory of alien intervention in human evolution into the ALIEN universe is something akin to Lucas using midichlorians to explain away the mystery of The Force in THE PHANTOM MENACE. Except in this case, the damage is far more profound, affecting the very integrity of the original films.

Yes, but has Sir Ridley forever ruined the mythos?

Well, not for those of us who remember ALIEN as a stand-alone – we can always ignore this ill-conceived, sloppily-made abomination.

But for subsequent generations, I’m sad to say the answer is yes.

Viewed in 3D at the V-Max Cinema, Westfield Marion, Adelaide, June 7 2012.

Greg Moss is a film school graduate with a background in directing music videos and is currently seeking representation as a screenwriter. He likes right-brained people, feeding the cat and watching genre movies.

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UNDER THE RADAR – Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me and The Mothman Prophecies

Little film gems which escaped wide attention and perhaps yours too.

by greg moss

Under The Radar is a semi-regular post in which I bring to light little-seen films, which got lost in the crowd due to lousy distribution or were misunderstood at the time of their release, but which deserve to be seen for one reason or another.

First up this week …

TWIN PEAKS: FIRE WALK WITH ME (1992)

Directed by David Lynch. Written by David Lynch and Robert Engels. Starring Sheryl Lee, Ray Wise, Moira Kelly, Dana Ashbrook and Kyle MacLachlan.

Homecoming queen Laura Palmer’s secret life of drugs, hallucination and prostitution spirals out of control, exposing a terrible family secret.

Why it’s worth seeing:

Figured it was time I feature something from David Lynch. It was a toss-up between this and The Straight Story (which I may still yet cover in a future post). And no, I won’t be featuring Dune any time soon as so much has been said about it already.

But having said that, if a fully-restored, Lynch-sanctioned version of his original extended cut of Dune were to suddenly surface – then I might be so inclined.

Despite the baggage Fire Walk With Me was forced to carry (being the spin-off of a highly-successful critically-acclaimed TV series) this film, remarkably, stands capably on its own.

In other words, you don’t need prior knowledge of the TV series in order to understand the events of the film. Actually, it would be an entirely different experience to see FWWM this way, but it wouldn’t lessen the impact, as the true concerns of this film don’t lie in merely tying up loose ends.

No – there is a something else going on here.

Some time after the infamous preview at Cannes, where the film received a hostile drubbing from critics, Lynch received a letter from a young woman who had seen the film, thanking him for articulating a terrible trauma which she had (like Laura Palmer) experienced as a child.

Needless to say, Lynch was extremely humbled by this.

In exposing what lays at the heart of Laura Palmer’s torment, the filmmaker is dealing with some very sensitive issues here.

Make no mistake, despite some flashes of Lynch’s trademark surrealist humor in the first act, this is a very dark film – a descent into the abyss.

But it is not without hope.

In the film’s final moments, when Laura is finally released from her torment, it is the happiest we’ve ever seen her – ever. And it’s not difficult to feel her joy, and yet at the same time, we feel an immense sadness at the loss of another beautiful, if damaged soul.

Undoubtedly this film belongs to Sheryl Lee. Seemingly without effort, she convincingly conveys Laura’s world-weary acceptance of her fate.

The film is not without its share of Lynchian weirdness and I’m beginning to suspect there is a possible connection (apart from the obvious) between FWWM and Inland Empire and perhaps even Eraserhead – as these are all stories which seem to deal with parallel worlds which are just as real as this one and (at times) converge on this reality.

Hell, maybe I’m completely wrong – and there is no actual ‘Lynchian Mythos’.

But I guess this is one of the joys of art –  as it can act as a spark to ignite the idea of ‘a possibility’ in the person who is experiencing it.

And having seen Roman Polanski’s Repulsion and John Frankenheimer’s Seconds just recently, it’s interesting to speculate how much influence these particular films may have had (if any) – on not only Lynch, but others of his generation.

As with all of Lynch’s features, the filmmaker’s customarily ominous sound design creates an unrelenting sense of dread. And his use of music is evocative as always.

Particularly effective is the throbbing, dirgy swamp-rock piece (which Lynch wrote himself) known as The Pink Room which dominates the notorious night club scene.

Perhaps David Lynch’s most reviled and misunderstood feature, Fire Walk With Me just also happens to be one of his most powerful and affecting.

Highly recommended.

Next up …

THE MOTHMAN PROPHECIES (2002)

Directed by Mark Pellington (writer-director – Arlington Road). Screenplay by Richard Hatem, based upon the book by John A. Keel. It stars Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Will Patton, Debra Messing and Alan Bates.

Grieving Washington Post reporter, John Klein, begins to question his sanity when he becomes convinced a terrible catastrophe will befall a small sleepy riverside community.

Why it’s worth seeing:

The Mothman Prophecies is perhaps the best X-Files film never made. And no, I’m not suggesting it was ever meant to be part of the X-Files canon, but it certainly has the same ‘feel’ as that iconic series ie: creepy atmosphere, smart writing, all done completely straight.

Inspired by real events which occured in a small West Virginian town in 1967, where sightings of a half man half moth creature heralded a major disaster, this stylish supernatural mystery-thriller is unsettling in tone from the very first frame,  and director Mark Pellington sustains a sense of unease and dread right up to the extremely well-staged catastrophe which ends the film.

Richard Gere gives a fine performance, ably supported by Laura Linney and Will Patton and Fred Murphy’s beautiful cinematography lends the film a classy sheen not usually seen in genre films of this sort.

Highly recommended.

Greg Moss is a film school graduate with a background in directing music videos and is currently seeking representation as a screenwriter. He likes right-brained people, feeding the cat and watching genre movies.

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UNDER THE RADAR – Spirits Of The Air, Gremlins Of The Clouds and Franklyn

Little film gems which escaped wide attention and perhaps yours too.

by greg moss

Under The Radar is a semi-regular post in which I bring to light little-seen films, which got lost in the crowd due to lousy distribution or were misunderstood at the time of their release, but which deserve to be seen for one reason or another.

This week –

A couple of debut features from two first-time directors. And yes, OMG! – one of them is the first AUSTRALIAN FILM I’ve featured in this particular series of posts – quick, somebody stop me!

Ahem.

First up …

SPIRITS OF THE AIR, GREMLINS OF THE CLOUDS (1988)

Written and directed by Alex Proyas (The Crow, Dark City, I Robot). It stars Michael Lake, Rhys Davis and ‘The Norm’.

Felix, a wheelchair-bound inventor, lives with his religion-obsessed sister in a barren future wasteland. Felix’s dream of building a flying machine to escape the desert appears a step closer when a fugitive stranger arrives.

Why it’s worth seeing:

After a successful stint in directing music videos and high-end TV commercials, Alex Proyas’ debut feature Spirits Of The Air, Gremlins Of The Clouds never received a proper theatrical release and has pretty much slipped into obscurity.

Having been an admirer of Proyas since seeing his 1981 student short Strange Residues (at the time it received a cinema release – back when shorts supported main features) I was later lucky enough to be one of the few to see Spirits Of The Air on the big screen, as part of the AFI award screenings in 1988 (the year Vincent Ward’s The Navigator took out all the major prizes).

As an aside, it only just struck me while watching it again recently – the parallels between Spirits Of The Air and Vincent Ward’s first dramatic feature Vigil, as they are both tales set in remote locations where a stranger’s arrival upsets the status quo.

An oft-used classic theme, I guess.

Spirits is a fable set in some distant future, after an unspecified cataclysm has befallen humanity.

Felix (Lake) is the wheelchair-bound inventor, whose dreams of flying upset his sister Betty (Davis). Betty is somewhat unhinged herself, a result of her upbringing by their puritanical, recently deceased father. Actress Rhys Davis steals whole scenes as Betty, with her bizarrely hysterical but oddly convincing performance – think Isabelle Adjani in Possession and ramp that up to eleven.

When the fugitive Smith arrives (played by actor ‘The Norm’) and he is persuaded by Felix to help him build his Da Vincian flying machine, Betty becomes deluded into believing Smith is a demon come to take her brother away. Threatening to derail Felix and Smith’s attempts at flight – she, in effect becomes the antagonist in this story. Tension is further elevated with the realisation there is a posse of trackers on Smith’s tail and they will arrive within days. Will Felix and Smith succeed in building the flying machine before the posse gets there or will Betty do something REALLY crazy?

As Proyas has been the first to admit, the film is not without its flaws –

Michael Lake’s performance as Felix is unconvincing at times and the tone wavers here and there – perhaps the integration of humour could have been a little less jarring than it is (Proyas was later more successful in balancing pathos and humour in Garage Days).

But the positive aspects far outweigh the negatives.

The production design by Sean Callinan, with its ‘found objects as art’ visual aesthetic (something you might find in a music video – as opposed to any film I can think of) gives Spirits an oddly cohesive sense of surrealism which is entirely unique.

David Knaus’ lensing gives the big blue skies and red earth a definite Australian yet otherworldly feel, which recalls nothing less than Razorback (also shot near Broken Hill) in the way it presents the Australian landscape in a highly-stylized, almost alien manner.

Peter Miller’s atmospheric score (particularly the lilting lullaby theme which runs throughout the film) is effective in enhancing the dream-like feel of the piece.

Although not even close to being Alex Proyas’ master work (Dark City has that distinction) Spirits Of The Air, Gremlins Of The Clouds is a fascinating signpost to where the filmmaker would take both his visual and story-telling aesthetics.

Next up …

FRANKLYN (2008)

Debut feature written and directed by Gerald McMorrow. It stars Ryan Phillipe, Sam Riley, Eva Green and Bernard Hill.

The lives of four seemingly unconnected characters living in contempory London converge with a vision of a parallel future world in which a masked vigilante seeks retribution for the murder of a young girl.

Why it’s worth seeing:

Perhaps the most authentic first-person portrayal of schizophrenia ever put on film, although the illness itself is never mentioned, Franklyn is essentially an extremely clever psychological puzzle movie in the tradition of Dark City, Lost Highway, The Fountain, Jacob’s Ladder and perhaps even Donnie Darko.

Although on first viewing, it is easy (normal even) to feel frustrated during the first half of Franklyn – being left in the dark about how the future London sequences relate to the contempory London story strands, just sit back and let it unfold – as everything becomes clear by the mid-point, leading to a poignant and wholly satisfying pay-off at the end.

It’s one of those films you can’t explain too much without giving it away, as part of the joy in watching a good puzzle movie – is watching how cleverly it unfolds.

One for those willing to put their trust in a talented first-time filmmaker who clearly knows what they’re doing.

And it’s always great to see Bernard Hill in something.

Highly recommended.

Greg Moss is a film school graduate with a background in directing music videos and is currently seeking representation as a screenwriter. He likes right-brained people, feeding the cat and watching genre movies.

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UNDER THE RADAR – The Keep and The Adventures Of Buckaroo Banzai: Across The 8th Dimension

Little film gems which escaped wide attention and perhaps yours too.

by greg moss

Under The Radar is a semi-regular post in which I bring to light little-seen films, which got lost in the crowd due to lousy distribution or were misunderstood at the time of their release, but which deserve to be seen for one reason or another.

First up this week …

THE KEEP (1983)

Directed by Michael Mann (Thief, Manhunter, Heat). Screenplay by Mann, based on the novel by F. Paul Wilson. It stars Jurgen Prochnow, Scott Glenn, Alberta Watson, Gabriel Byrne and Sir Ian McKellen.

A German army garrison, occupying a medieval Romanian fortress during World War II, find themselves picked off one by one by a terrifying force of evil. It is up to a mysterious ethereal stranger to bannish this ancient evil and spare humanity from unspeakable horrors.

Why it’s worth seeing:

Mann’s second feature (after his 1981 James Caan-starring heist thriller Thief), The Keep is a film which appears oddly out of place in the director’s oeuvre and one which Mann himself has seemingly ‘swept under the carpet’. It remains his only feature still to receive an official release on dvd (let alone blu-ray).

And yet, ironically, this has possibly worked in its favour, as it has gained somewhat of a cult following over the years.

As with all of Mann’s features, The Keep is visually sumptuous, with atmospheric lensing by Alex Thomson and surreal production design by John Box (Sorcerer) it evokes memories of Werner Herzog’s Nosferatu, in terms of creating a haunting dream-like ambience, which stays with you long after it has ended.

It was Mann’s intent to create ‘a fable for adults’ – one which broached the subject of absolute evil in the context of what was happening in Germany in the early years of World War II. In this way, he pretty much abandoned the novel’s Gothic tropes and opted instead to explore – for want of a better term – ‘the inherent potential of evil in men’.

In this respect, the film is a triumph – as it does indeed delineate the difference between the ordinary regular German soldier (Prochnow’s empathetic Woermann) and the psychopathic black-shirt Nazi Kaempffer (Gabriel Byrne).

Having never studied German history in high school – I was never aware there was a difference or that there were indeed elements within the regular German army who harboured feelings of dissent against Hitler’s regime.

So, in my mind at least, Mann achieved his intent.

And he really should be applauded for this.

Yeah – but is it scary?

Well … not particularly.

But there ARE moments which quicken the pulse – particularly the pivotal scene where the evil is released – a beautifully orchestrasted sequence made all the more effective by the use of music by Tangerine Dream.

But then, The Keep isn’t meant to be a horror-fest  – as in the novel.

It’s more like a bad dream – as opposed to an all-out horror.

It is undeniably unsettling, and yet there are moments of sublime visual poetry – as in the scene where Molasar (the entity, not yet fully-formed) rescues Alberta Watson from a couple of Nazi soldiers intending to have their way with her. The seamless integration of music and visual effects (Molasar is portrayed as an imploding collumn of smoke with glowing eyes) creates a mesmerizing sequence of startling beauty.

As far as the actors go, Jurgen Prochnow gives it his all – a standout performance.

He outshines the rest of the cast.

Summing up –

It’s a real shame Mann seems to have abandoned The Keep, as it seemed, at the time, to have been a highly personal project. Which is perhaps why he has indeed left it buried in obscurity.

Well worth a look though, if you can find it.

Next up …

THE ADVENTURES OF BUCKAROO BANZAI: ACROSS THE 8TH DIMENSION (1984)

Debut feature directed by W.D. Richter (screenwriter – Invasion Of The Bodysnatchers 1978, Dracula 1979, Big Trouble In Little China). Written by Earl Mac Rauch. It stars Peter Weller, Ellen Barkin, John Lithgow, Jeff Goldblum, Christopher Lloyd and Clancy Brown.

Just how do you describe this crazy movie in just a few lines?

Um … okay … how ‘bout this –

Scientist, brain surgeon, test pilot, inventor, rock star and all-round amazing dude, Buckaroo Banzai, must recover a stolen invention of his own design in order to stop a band of renegade alien beings from the 8th dimension (all named John) in returning home and overthrowing their own planet.

Why it’s worth seeing:

So what the hell exactly IS this film?

Well, essentially, it’s a comedy with science fiction overtones – played absolutely straight.

As Richter stated at the time of the film’s release, his aim was to drop the audience into a completely realised world, without providing any explanation or backstory to events as they unfold. Don’t get me wrong – there IS logic to everything which transpires, however, it is up to the viewer to pay close attention to every moment and every throwaway line of dialogue (which isn’t difficult, as virtually every line is a quoteable gem in itself).

It was precisely this ‘outside the square’ concept which bamboozled the distributor’s marketing department – they had no idea how to effectively promote the film.

The result being –

It never found an audience.

I remember seeing it in a small theatre, with only one other person present!

Buckaroo Banzai is yet another example of a film which was misunderstood at the time of its release, but which was essentailly ahead of its time and is only in recent years (thanks to dvd) being appreciated for the entertainingly clever hoot it is.

Highly recommended.

Greg Moss is a film school graduate with a background in directing music videos and is currently seeking representation as a screenwriter. He likes right-brained people, feeding the cat and watching genre movies.

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UNDER THE RADAR – Streets Of Fire and Manhunter

Little film gems which escaped wide attention and perhaps yours too.

by greg moss

Under The Radar is a semi-regular post in which I bring to light little-seen films, which got lost in the crowd due to lousy distribution or were misunderstood at the time of their release, but which deserve to be seen for one reason or another.

First up this week …

STREETS OF FIRE (1984)

Directed by Walter Hill (The Warriors, Southern Comfort, 48 hrs). Screenplay by Hill and Larry Gross (48 hrs). It stars Michael Pare, Diane Lane, Willem Dafoe, Amy Madigan and Rick Moranis.

Rock diva Ellen Aim is kidnapped by outlaw motorcycle gang The Bombers and it is up to Ellen’s former flame and soldier of fortune Tom Cody to come rescue her.

Why it’s worth seeing:

A stylish neon-lit urban western, Streets Of Fire is Walter Hill’s attempt to make a film for young people.

As Hill himself states in the soundtrack album liner notes …

Streets Of Fire, is, by design, comic book in orientation, mock-epic in structure, movie-heroic in acting style, operatic in visual style and cowboy-cliche in dialogue. I tried to make what I would have thought was a perfect movie when I was in my teens – I put in all the things I thought were great then and which I still have great affection for, custom cars, kissing in the rain, neon, trains in the night, high-speed pursuit, rumbles, rock stars, motorcycles, jokes in tough situations, leather jackets and questions of honor.”

Hill’s intention is admirable and his explanation goes a long way in explaining why the film failed to find an audience with young people in the mid 1980’s.

Perhaps he misjudged what appealed to his target audience in the decade of ‘Me’.

Despite being billed as a ‘Rock & Roll Fable’, the film is by no means a ‘musical’ in the traditional sense (ie: characters bursting into song mid-sentence) and this is a misconception which needs to be addressed. Yes, music is intrinsic to the piece (with a score by Ry Cooder and songs by Jim Steinman), but it is merely the glue which binds it all together. The film was unfairly judged at the time, as being nothing more than an extended music video (much like the accusations levelled at Russell Mulcahy’s Razorback – also produced in 1984).

But, as the intervening years have shown, the highly-stylized MTV editing (which cuts TO the music) is derigeuer twenty years later – which ironically (despite the 80’s hairdo’s) gives the film a familiar contemporary feel.

I know Streets Of Fire will divide a lot of people, but it is a fascinating curio well worth a look.

Next up …

MANHUNTER (1986)

Directed by Michael Mann. Screenplay by Mann, based on the novel Red Dragon by Thomas Harris. Starring William Petersen, Tom Noonan, Stephen Lang, Joan Allen and Brian Cox.

FBI agent Will Graham must consult with his dreaded foe Hannibal Lektor in order to capture a serial killer known as The Tooth Fairy, risking his sanity in the process.

Why it’s worth seeing:

A stylish thriller from Michael Mann, which is now recognised as being far superior to its (overrated) oscar-winning stablemate Silence Of The Lambs, and indeed the Brett Ratner remake Red Dragon – not to mention the abominable Ridley Scott gross-out Hannibal (don’t get me started on that mean-spirited awful piece of shite).

Manhunter has much to admire.

For starters, it is a beautiful-looking film, thanks to Dante Spinotti’s widescreen cinematography and Mel Bourne’s sparse, clean-edged production design.

It has a look all its own.

And, as with all of Michael Mann’s features and indeed his TV series Miami Vice – his choice of music is a major part of its appeal. Here he employs three existing songs by UK primal funk outfit Shriekback for key scenes to great effect – Evaporation for Petersen’s stake-out of the murdered family’s home in the woods, This Big Hush for the love scene between Dollarhide and his blind lover (Joan Allen) and Coelocanth for the tiger-stroking scene at the zoo. Iron Butterfly’s classic rock track In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida also makes a surprise appearance during the final confrontation between Petersen and Tom Noonan’s killer.

Speaking of Tom Noonan, he is mesmerizing as Dollarhide. Both terrifying and sympathetic, it is difficult not to feel conflicted when his heart is broken.

And despite the grisly subject-matter, this film is refreshingly devoid of overt violence and gore, instead relying on atmosphere to create tension.

Highly recommended.

Greg Moss is a film school graduate with a background in directing music videos and is currently seeking representation as a screenwriter. He likes right-brained people, feeding the cat and watching genre movies.

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