Movie Diary 12/4/2018

Play Misty for Me (Clint Eastwood, 1971). I can watch this thing anytime. Despite some clumsiness (including a few crude zooms), there’s a lot of interesting stuff in here, including the portrait of the beach town, which is unforced but authentic-feeling. Eastwood’s treatment of his own studly character is hand-in-hand with The Beguiled as a skeptical portrait of masculinity, much more complicated than what was coming from a lot of the counterculture at the time. Also, how odd is it that after one of the film’s big shockeroo sequences, the narrative is taken up with three songs in a row?

Vice (Adam McKay, 2018). Christian Bale really brings it as Dick Cheney, with every facial tic and vocal mannerism in place. In general, one misses the more overtly comical approach of McKay’s The Big Short.

Destroyer (Karyn Kusama, 2018). Nicole Kidman goes the hideously deglamorized route in this narratively-fractured hard-crime movie that would ordinarily feature a burned-out male in the central role. A weird, weird film on many levels, but the treatment of Kidman-as-actress is the weirdest.

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