Tag Archives: Film

The Ghost Writer (a review)

There seems to be a weighted significance in every shot of The Ghost, albeit a mundane significance in most; a glance at a page, a turn of a tap, the ex-Prime Minister resting his hands on a full-wall window.  There is not a wasted shot, but, then again, it could easily have shed many of them.  It’s a paradox vital to the decent mystery thriller.  One is uncertain of the unrest – the mysterious mood and the cause itself – so every element is granted a lingering suspicion.  Some objects fade in the narrative.  Others drop out to return at a pivotal plot reveal much later, almost cathartic in its recognition and the pursuing uttering of “Of course” to oneself in the theatre’s night.  There is a wonderment of companionship when the character on-screen realises something the very moment you do; mouth agape, important document dropped to floor, popcorn missing the mouth to collect in the lap’s rubbish tip.

It is a restrained film in its editing and pace.  And hardly any violence depicted at all.  Then why is there such foreboding?  Alexandre Desplat’s score (flickering between a Christmassy enchantment and booming threat) is too inconsistent and sometimes invasive to warrant for much.  The film’s stormy weather is effective, but often blows into cliché.  It lies in the traces of violence and perversity left in each scene.

Pulsing lights are frequent; warning lights on the back of a ship, outside an estate’s entrance gate, the beating illumination of a ringing mobile phone, the island’s lighthouse.  The set design is also important.  Adam Lang, the ex-Prime Minister, decorates his house with a series of nightmarish paintings.  Red is persistent, in an introspective Rothko way, and is scattered in violently in them.  As though the war crimes Lang is accused of took place in his very house, so complacent in his position, or maybe, so haunted by his decision, they are left there scarring the walls.

However, it is in the dialogue and actors where the tangible menace most evidently lies.  They issue their threats in the most disguised form – plain delivery!  When Ghost (Ewan McGregor’s ‘ghost writer’ is never given a name) boards Lang’s plane, he remarks that this is the first time he has flown on a private jet.  “Let’s hope it’s not your last”, replies Lang’s assistant, Amelia Bly.  Said in such a discarded, sarcastic way, as so often happens in reality, becomes a snarling threat – given emphasis by the suspicion and paranoia compounded beforehand.  As I noted before, the pace is restrained, but in the way a rabid dog is restrained; forcing its way closer and closer, bearing its teeth and tongue, back paws pushing the earth aside – but always inches away.  Teeth are bared in these dialogues, enough to remind you of what remains on that leash – and the inevitable knowledge that its handler will hold on for only so long.

For The Ghost is a very entertaining and engrossing thriller.  But this is also its main flaw.  In its conclusion (which is as redemptive as the final scene in Michael Clayton, oddly enough also starring Tom Wilkinson), it conforms and contorts into all the conventions typical of its genre.  The conspiracy theory is revealed.  Everything is once again black and white.

This is in opposition to the scenes before it, which pose some interesting questions – questions, might I add, which prompt a response from one, which makes one contemplate.  The thriller narrative, of course, doesn’t want to accommodate an ambiguous ending, where one would leave the cinema still contemplating, and instead neatly wraps things up.  One question posed, which I found the most intriguing and the film’s greatest moment, arose when Ghost confronted Lang about the conspiracy theory which lay beneath the accusations of war crime.  Lang, at its end, is invigorated with anger – not of an arch-villain, but of a real, regretful human being.

He shouts that if he could do it all again, he would make airports have two queues; one with no searches or regulations, with everyone’s liberty and freedom intact; the other controlled strongly, with checks and intelligence sourced from torturing terrorist suspects.  Which one then would parents send their children on? he venomously concludes.  That he says all this with such passion, yet aware of its own abhorrence, makes one realise that he is much like us.  He shares the same disgust of torture tactics, yet has clearly advocated its use.  But this has most probably made his country safer.  What, then, of us?  Of our complicity with this all?  The idea that the torture of few for the safety of many is a very uncomfortable truth, and it bursts from almost nowhere in a thriller film which has set Lang up to be a great evil.

Sometimes, when someone is placed in a position of extraordinary power, and makes decisions which impact the lives of many, it is very easy to consider them an embodiment of pure evil.  Sometimes they may be right.  But most of the time, I expect, and a case made in The Ghost Writer, they are hardly any different from us.  As uncomfortable as that may be.

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Film Poster Art REVOLUTION

Reading Sight and Sound this morning I came across an article on Polish Film Posters.  I’d been introduced to this a few months earlier at the monthly BFI film quiz in a fatal picture round.  The concept is that all imported films have their posters designed by national artists.  Free from commercial restraints, the designers can indulge in thematic abstraction, or even childlike simplicity.  A few exhibitions run by Cinephilia have run over the last couple of months.

Then – reading The Independent this afternoon – I came across a like-minded article on the recent surge in graphic designers uploading their own interpretations of classic films (in poster forms) to the internet, to boost their own portfolios.  They hark back to Bob Peak or channel Saul Bass and almost give the films they promote a moment of freshness, as if they are to be released this very weekend and the entire world would experience them anew.

It’s such a progressive and productive notion, and one that surely can’t be too harming to the film industry, to give movie posters the space and liberty to transcend into something more artistic – of a much higher caliber than the increasingly similar output mainstream currently provides.  As Tim Walker noted, “Modern movie posters tend to follow a fairly banal formula…red and white for rom-coms, or cool blue juxtaposed with explosive orange for action blockbusters”.

Here’s a few examples of what could potentially decorate our billboards, provoking awe and thought, rather than our actor-filled, tag-line centered tosh…

Albert Exergian

Tavis Coburn

and my personal fav, Ibraheem Youssef


Buried (release date has been, well, released)

I remember Lars von Trier once saying in an interview that every director’s ultimate dream is to make a film simply about one man in a room.  Or in his case, I suppose he would opt for a woman.  He hates them

Anyhow, I read about the film ‘Buried’ when it premiered late one night at Sundance earlier this year.  It echoes von Trier’s cinematic grail, centring on a private contractor who has been buried alive in Iraq.  He has 90 minutes of air left (which, in PAL, translates at around 87), and only has access to a lighter and a mobile phone.  I’ve read so many positives about the film; from the quality of Ryan Renolds’ performance to the sheer innovation of the camera – something pretty essential considering the ENTIRE film takes place inside the coffin.

It immediately sparked a bidding war, quickly being picked up by Lionsgate the very next day.  They’ve just announced the release date (which I think may be the American one) as September 24th, 2010.

Here’s the trailer to make you as excited as I am…

I don’t think the film is shot like a mobile phone throughout, which I consider a shame.  Sally Potter already let me down on that one [see: the crisp HD of Rage].

I only fear it may be too ripe for the Orange Wednesday chaps to spoof.

The Hurt Locker (a review)

By the most glorious of chances – a chance, I might add, which has a perfectly reasonable explanation and should not be reduced to fate, luck, fortune or any other absurd cause – I viewed both The Hurt Locker and In The Loop on the same day.  Even if the films were completely different, to see, or experience, anything in such close proximity would provoke comparisons.  Where the films were similar, where they contrasted, the difference in themes, performance, aesthetic techniques – a dialectic stance is inevitable in such instances.

Due to its Oscar win, and presumably a sense of victory for ‘independent’ cinema, The Hurt Locker was screened yesterday afternoon – 18:20 to be precise – at my local, independent cinema, Genesis.  Coincidentally, In The Loop was present on BBC iPlayer, having being screened earlier in the week on Sunday night, and as this was my only chance to watch it before its expiry date (the life of a student being so busy) I watched it only hours after having seen The Hurt Locker.

I very much enjoyed The Hurt Locker.  In the rare instances where I remembered I was watching a film, I recalled Hitchcock’s musings on cinema as instrument…

“I enjoy playing the audience like a piano”

In a lengthier quotation, Hitchcock asks his cinematographer to image a day when a machine, like a piano, exists, and all the director need do is hit a button on it to obtain a specific emotion from his audience.  The notion that if a director uses a certain shot at a certain time, it causes me laugh out loud is fascinating, and it was at full work in The Hurt Locker.  Not so much with the laughter response though.  A tense sequence of bomb diffusing needs to be portrayed.  Fine – we’ll use a series of cut aways of people watching, juxtaposing long shots with extreme close up.  Parallel editing, depicting two events unfolding simultaneously – we’ll use that too.  We can show someone running away, who is already established as the potential bomb planter beforehand, at the same time as showing someone diffusing the bomb.  Simple.  Can the bomb be diffused?  Will the enemy be captured? – too many questions need a response for one’s attention to stray.  This is a supreme method of emotional engagement, and one that Katheryn Bigelow uses to perfection, plucking one’s heartstrings just as Hitchcock plays his keys.

The human element too, of our boys in Iraq (soldiers, for me, despite being anti-war, seem to command a sense of respect – of sympathy) keeps one emotionally invested to an extreme.  That she manages to draw out, over the course of a feature film (130mins, in this case) the rather tired premise of “blue wire, red wire?” is commendable.  ‘Which wire to cut?’ has become such a gimmick in mainstream actioneers that it has resigned itself to cliché.  But this film answers the conventional, suspense building technique, the gimmick, with reality.  In a Warhol-esque style, bomb diffusion is robbed of all its style, of its spectacle.  In being desensitised from it through constant exposure, one is allowed to objectify it, to focus more upon the routine of it all.

The Hurt Locker is an extraordinary film, and I would recommend it to all.  However, as an Oscar winner, I teethe with it slightly.

I try not to judge, as I have yet to see Avatar (I’m booked in for the IMAX this Sunday night [is it meant to be written in capitals like that, or is it because when I think of the imax, I actually think IMAX?]), but the Oscar winner for Best Picture, for me, always signifies a certain style.  Every year I have a personal favourite American film.  2007 was Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford.  2008 was There Will Be Blood.  2005, like it matters, was Brick.  Now, although I don’t expect my favourite, American film of the year to win best Oscar, in my mind, it always stands out as the true winner, overshadowing the official ones.

For me (I fear I use that introduction to a point far too much), I always envision superior American film to be of a specific aesthetic, as an example of a national cinema.  Inherited from John Ford and Nick Ray, I always think of the mature American cinema as being slow, long panning shots.  A very restrained editing pace.  Very understated character motives.  My favourite example of this is Cool Hand Luke.  Slow…superficially deep (in a paradox I’ve only ever experienced the Americans to manage)…long shots of landscapes.  Like I said, I don’t expect my favourite American film of the year to win an Oscar (it won a best supporting actor Oscar – who? – George Kennedy – oh yeah, I REMEMBER HIM), but certain aesthetics are key, certain outlooks are needed.

The Oscars, contrary to what it would like to believe, will very rarely crown the world’s best film of the year.  It will barely even crown America’s best film!  Yet it is still representative of a conservatism to the American ideal.  As distorted as the Baftas are today by its subordinate status to the Oscars, the Oscars themselves are distorted by its love of excess, of success.  This year, instead, it came from a particular, political dialectic, between an underdog and its juggernaut.  As I said, I have yet to see the latter and refrain from judging, but I would suspect the more worthy, more traditionally worthy films, for Best Picture were ignored.

Now this is where the paradox stands up to me, shouting “erm…like, you’re full a shit”.  I looked at the nominations list for Best Picture in hope of evidence for defence against my claims.  No such relief.  There is no film here that embraces this mature, American style…

  • Avatar
  • The Blind Side
  • District 9
  • An Education
  • The Hurt Locker
  • Inglourious Basterds
  • Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire
  • A Serious Man
  • Up
  • Up in the Air

Now, in order, I haven’t seen Avatar, from which I gather is a spectacle like no other – having accomplished incredible technological and commercial bounds (just note, how I left out ‘critical’)

The Blind Side, from what I understand from its trailer, is for idiots.

District 9, as much as I love shit blowing up, is just making up the numbers to 10.

An Education, again, I haven’t seen, but I fail to think it appeals to the American ideal  – it seems too in tune with the British style, from what I gather.

The Hurt Locker, as I neglected earlier (in account of its extraordinary merits), has the attention span of a 24-series camera operator, on Chomp bars and the editing pace of a serial, music television flicker.

Inglorious Basterds won’t win Tarantino an Oscar.

Precious, I haven’t seen, but from people whose opinions I respect, I gather it to be rather generic.  Only boosted by the ‘Oprah’ factor.

‘Up’, at the end of the day, as emotionally crippling as it is, will never get the award because it’s an animated film.

Up in the Air, likewise, although I haven’t seen it, I presume suffers from the same cartoon style that the Academy so readily distances itself from.

Now, I have left out A Serious Man.  Mostly because I believe that this was the most suitable winner.  It is an incredible film, and to be honest, my favourite film of the year (bar Sherlock Holmes).

However, and I’ll confess right now which may be due to the 350cl of whiskey I drunk whilst watching it, that In The Loop was my favourite film of the year.

Surprisingly, compared to the eventual Oscar winner, the film exhibited many similar techniques.  The only differences were the time – In The Loop happening in the lead up to a war, The Hurt Locker occurring during.  And the power level – The Hurt Locker obviously focusing on its soldiers, In The Loop centring on the moronic forces behind its policy.

In The Loop was just incredible.  The Hurt Locker was only incredible.

Both films used the same shaky camera, broken editing, but for different means.  In The Loop used it to stress the farce of it all, but The Hurt Locker used it to desperately grip onto reality through its connotations with documentary.

But here lies the problem.  The Hurt Locker, as brilliant and enjoyable as it was, could have been that special American film if it only wanted to be.  The Hurt Locker should not be about action.  For me, that doesn’t seem to be its point.  Instead it is about the routine of war, and the commonplace of shock.  All it needed to do was switch from its ADD style to a slow, restrained camera.  Long, static shots.

Now, this may rob some of its suspense and paranoia, which is the film’s other great strength.  Loosing this would reduce the viewing experience somewhat, but the film’s impact upon leaving the theatre would be immense.  One could then digest the film’s politics (made present by their absence) rather than be in a permanently submissive state.

As great and intelligent as The Hurt Locker is, it could have been so much more if it simply slowed itself down.

2 + 2 = 5

Placing a scientific or mathematical framework on art always gets the geek in me going.  Here’s a particularly kinky attempt from Flowing Data…

The charts offer some wonderfully simple insights into their source characters.  Han Solo’s practicality is found in his chart’s orderliness – a to do list.  Only material objects get a tick, the force skeptically left blank.  Likewise with Rick Blaine, the two pie charts only slightly overlap, indicating that he only truly sees a fraction of you.

I recently wrote an essay on the paradigmatic and syntagmatic axes of recollection in both Hiroshima, Mon Amour and La Jetee.  If one thinks of a film as a graph, the x-axis would resemble the syntagmatic, that is, the relationship between each shot to its surrounding ones, and the y-axis symbolic of the paradigmatic, in that one could go down inside, or through, or beneath, the image to find traces of reality (allusions to other films or events in history, for instance).

The most fascinating approach to film using a mathematical approach, however, for me, is the simple concept of 1 + 1 = 2.  If each shot in a film is representative of value ‘1’, the overall viewing experience would be equivalent to how many shots there are.  But, as Eisenstein rightly argues, in film’s case, this overall value is far less than what the spectator feels.  It is the relationship between shots that provides the extra experience.  The dialectics two shots can create, or their synthesis – cinema, by its status of art, will never adhere to mathematics, as comforting as it is in trying to explain its effect through it.  Cinema is more than the sum of its parts.

Thus, as was the popular school ‘joke’ in year 4…

1 + 1 = Window

For Your Consideration

I think the only outcome that would have made me completely happy were if The White Ribbon won every category – not even foreign language!? The pleasing results were too predictable to warrant a yelp of glee.  Waltz winning Best Supporting Actor, and Up winning Best Animated were the only outcomes to provoke a smile.  But no more than a smile.  As deserving as they were, predictability robbed them of cheer.  For me anyway.  I needed to search for Oscar joy, which I found in people funnier than me taking it down a notch.  Cue “laugh, laugh, laugh, laugh, laugh.  Catchphrase…”

Despite having not seen either Avatar or The Hurt Locker, I can’t properly commend or slant them.  There’s something about James Cameron that unnerves me though.  I still haven’t integrated 3D into my head, and prefer to remain petrified of it.  So here’s some kneejerk reactions to him and his crusade.  1) he always reminds me of the Michael Bay appearance in South Park’s Imaginationland episode, where special effects and plot are inseperable…

And here’s a warning video of how becoming so dependant on special effects can harm one’s life and perception of it…

I hadn’t really followed the build up to the Oscars, trying to shelter myself from most of the boredom that it exhumes.  I tell myself I don’t care and that they’re overblown and gratuitously self-affirming and that the results don’t matter, and neither, really, do the nominations.  I get up on my repugnant pedestal (in my head) when seeing or hearing any opinions I feel are ill-informed, or worse, contradictory to my own.  But the arguments for and against the Oscars are always so mundane- its criticisms and defence always the same, only with a different selection of films.  This year it was 10 of them.  That did little to change anything.

For it was always only between two.  And the debate hardly centred around their merits, focusing more on their conditions of production.

Yet I avidly scoured the internet last night for results and commentaries.  The F5 ‘refresh’ button on my keyboard ended up slightly askew, like a Dutch angle in a student horror film.  And as I did so, to my suprise, a very specific excitement bubbled away in me.

I say specific because it evokes the same anxiety, frustration, elation and involuntary half-smile that only the Oscars can.  It shares a kinship with other, similar, events; the World Cup or European finals, the Olympics, the Dr. Who Christmas Special – all pointless in the long run, but who demand entire weeks of build up in national discourse.  Although the obvious examples are sports orientated, the Oscars are unique in their own, well, unique way.

With their glitz and glamour and schmaltz and schmuck, they give the industry’s shallows a much needed surface cover.  No thicker than silver foil, but shiny enough to keep all amply distracted FOR A WHOLE YEAR?  It gets its little top ups with grand film premieres, but the Oscars stretch its cover for the year’s entirety.  That’s why the best, Waitrose-purchased, 50m aluminium roll is needed.

Maybe that’s why those in attendance get so self-righteous and rowdy whenever depth is sought by some.  Michael Moore’s acceptance speech for Bowling for Columbine (2003) garnered such a cacophony of jeers – and these are meant to be left leaning people?  Stereotypically, anyway.  One must only look at Sting for the incredible contradictions celebrity can embody…

(go near the end for the good stuff, the pleb)

If it hasn’t become apparent, I’ve only just discovered how to embed videos in posts.  And here I am condemning the film industry for its excess.  But if one considers its current success, hypocrisy is cool.

“Laugh, laugh, laugh, laugh, laugh…”

On My Ignorance, and Subsequent Enlightenment, of Actors and Acting in Film

Although actors are incredibly important to film, for some reason I’ve spent a lot of my life (approximately all up until January 2010) regarding actors second to the text they occupy.  As a youth (I had little else to bother myself with), I always believed that the work of the director was undervalued in public discourse, feeling that its focus predominantly lay on what was before the camera – the actors, or in some cases, special effects – whilst neglecting those that operated behind/BEYOND it.

This was, however, before I had any academic schooling in film, where, pleasantly enough for my tortured soul, the situation was reversed.  2nd year Auteur Theory classes would have one believe that all is director; the actors scarcely putty to be moulded in His/Her god-like hands.

Beginning to admire Hitchcock and Bresson, directors who both explicitly state their actors are nothing more that ‘models’, only strengthened my precondition.

There is, of course, star theory and strands of that sort – but it never seems to assess acting as a technical form, as one would attribute to a camera movement, or a particularly provocative graphical edit.  They instead, in my ignorantly limited reading, preoccupy themselves with notions of the actor as auteur (in that one can tell immediately this is a ‘James Cagney film’) or in the marketing of a subject’s specific star persona.  What is needed is the mechanical deconstruction of performance – to treat the actor as one would obsess over a pan in the wrong direction (see: Le Crime de Monsieur Lange) or an effective use of light.

There is more emotional weight in one moment of falsetto speech than the rest of the The Royal Tenenbaums.  Even Anderson’s cartoon world cannot rob it of its rawness.  As Gene Hackman sits on the street’s curb, outside an imploded wedding, with his son, Ben Stiller, a little flicker in the latter’s voice sends all the deadpan that precedes it crashing down into a rubble of melancholy and rebirth.  “It’s been a tough year, dad” – his voice breaks, in the way a 13 year old boy’s would, at the start.  This second, if that, Ben Stiller ceases to be an actor.  He is Chad, the oppressed griever of his wife’s premature death.  It is a note, as in one on a piano, that is hit so crisply, yet with such tenderness, that it beats Luke Wilson’s stylicide (I tried to merge the words ‘stylised’ and ‘suicide’ into one) as the film’s most humanly invested instance.

In reflection (as opposed to ‘on reflection’), my gushing for drama may be a coping tactic for an upcoming assignment, a quasi-Stockholm syndrome if you will.  For the first time ever I will be dealing with actors as a director, and I’m relishing the idea.  And just as when one learns a new word, for that word to then crop up everywhere one looks, I have began to come away from films thinking as much about performance as I have about narrative and technique.  Previously, I don’t recall it ever entering my mindset, bar those exceptional performances that one can do nothing but talk about.

However, it is a welcome change, and one I feel a tad idiotic and embarrassed for dismissing so readily before.  There is a notable example I would briefly like to mention.

The Lovely Bones, a frustrating film (and one I can imagine even more so for readers of the book), does not excel in acting.  That is, at least, I think.  I’m still a newcomer to this ‘appreciate the acting’ lark, but on an innocent’s experience nothing really impressed me.  But for that matter, little of the film did.  Yet on sitting through the credits (another new habit I have picked up to the annoyance of some companions) Stanley Tucci’s name scrolled upwards.  “Who was Stanley Tucci in that?” I asked impressed.  “The killer” came the reply.

I had lost interest in the film when it premiered about 5 years before its general release.  Much of my anticipation had been rooted into other ventures (mainly, the live Monday night war between WWE and TNA starting IMMINENTLY), and had left me very lacklustre about even seeing it.  When I did get round to seeing it, I had forgotten the film’s premise and actors.  Whilst watching I would pick them up here and there.  One can hardly miss Mark Whalberg (who I have always been a huge fan of despite my animosity towards thespians, and he is responsible for my favourite moment in the film – an entire character summed up in his neurotic, but charming questioning of whether developing one roll of film a month, as promised, for his daughter was fair or not), and eventually one realises that that is Rachel Weisz; the grandmother is Susan Sarandon; that is girl from Atonement; I neither care about the actors or the characters for the majority of the supporting cast.  Apart from…holy shit is that Chris from Sopranos – it totally is.  A friend from work still calls him Spider from Goodfellas.  And he has completed the Sopranos.  I don’t agree with that, but it’s interesting how one can place an emphasis on an actor as always belonging to a certain role.  Well, that, I suppose, is star theory…

I digress…

…I always thought, throughout the film, that the killer was played rather fun.  In the way that hideous characters can be fun because they are so interesting, not because I find child rape (a theme that is pretty much absent from the film, it rather focusing on the much more acceptable and public-friendly child murder) fun.  He was the atypical loner.  He trimmed his roses.  He has a retro moustache and Denis Taylor glasses.  He made model dollhouses and presented himself as an obsessive, or rather, a perfectionist (a trait he shared with Mark Whalberg, whose hobby was boats in glass bottles, but I never quite worked out this parallel).  A complex character, yet so steeped in obvious psychological motives that psychoanalysing him became redundant (besides, who does that anymore, it’s soooo 1970s).  One was released from these shackles to enjoy his performance, a rather campy villainous type.  Indeed, much of my enjoyment came from not knowing who he was, as an actor, and suppose I must have fully bought into his portrayal – preferring instead to focus on the character rather than thinking “Wow, [insert actor’s name here] is having a lot of fun with this character”.

This is why I was so pleasantly surprised that this was in fact Stanley Tucci.  A name and face I’m very much acquainted with – making the prospect of me not realising who it was even more absurd.  To me, at least.

From this absurdity I obtained a large sense of bemusement and glee.  A grin carved on my face like a loon, I walked through the Bexleyheath Cineworld foyer constantly updating my facial expression.  From furrowed eyebrows of disbelief to looking up at the ceiling (there was no sky inside) to find an answer.  All this time my companion was providing insights into how the film had differed from the book.  Usually, as I did not want to see the film in the first place and submitted only because my preferred choice was The Crazies, I would have been gloating “I told you so”.  Although I know that if I had developed an attachment to the book and had gone along to see an unfaithful adaptation of it, I would be in the same state of resentment and annoyance.  However, the criticism that “it wasn’t nearly as good as the book” has become such a generic thing to say (despite being completely valid and nearly always right), to those with no emotional involvement with the source text it merely becomes white noise.  Yet none of this crossed my mind.  I just walked and muttered in disbelief, that that was Stanley Tucci, and I had no idea throughout the entire 120 minutes that it was anyone other than a real character.  My disbelief had not only been suspended, but hoisted up into the rafters with reinforced adamantium.

It’s simply such a fresh experience.  And imagine that was the case for all film.  No billing to gloom over the poster and every actor so lost in character that it is impossible to place them in your head – the task becoming pointless and for one to accept them for what they are, people.  Not fictional characters, but also not real actors.  People.