Monday, 21 June 2010

(500) Films of Empire - Day 278

64 - Oldboy - 5 stars
It is hard to explain why I love this film so much, considering the subject matter. This is a revenge story with a twist that is so sick and nasty that it makes Kill Bill look like a slap on the wrist and a stern talking to.
What makes it work is the director's vision and the lead performance by Min-sok Choi as Oh Dae-Su who is mysteriously imprisoned for 15 years and then released with the challenge of discovering who was behind it and why.
Chan Wook Park shows great style and flair in piecing this crazy jigsaw together, from the frenetic pace and editing, jet black humour, to the glorious single take fight scene in the corridor.
To discuss any more of the story would begin to delve into the dreaded *spoiler* area, so I will just say that the twist knocks the legs out from under out main character and shows how to really destroy a man.
As for the "happy" ending, can you really call it happy? Certainly not something you can say about the poor octopus!

74 - The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre - 4 stars
I'd never seen this film before but I had seen The Simpsons episode based on it, where Bart, Milhouse and Martin pool their money together to buy a copy of Radioactive Man #1 but become suspicious of each other that they might try and steal the comic for themselves.
But Bogart and company aren't fighting over a comic, but gold. There's gold in them there hills, and they want it all, and for themselves.
It is a study in greed and madness as the friendship between Bogart, Holt and Huston slowly disintegrates due to the suspicion and distrust of Bogart's Dobbs, fearful that the others will take his share of the gold.
Terrific stuff from the three leads who develop a wonderful dynamic, and it is one of Bogart's best performances.
Also the film that gave us the great line "badges? badges? we don't need no stinking badges" which was beautifully spoofed in UHF in a pet shop... "Badgers!" :)

Days remaining - 87 Films remaining - 88

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