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A movie

I watched Fearless last night (it stars Jeff Bridges as the survivor of a plane crash). I thought it was really good. Of course, I'm a dyed in the wool Peter Weir fan, and I think it's much easier to appreciate his movies if one knows his style. But I'm still wondering why this movie isn't more well known / more popular. It's not even available in widescreen format on DVD. It's good in pan-and-scan, but I'm sure it's lots better visually in widescreen.

And don't miss Tom Hulce's hilariously annoying performance as a grasping lawyer.


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 4th, 2003 09:39 am (UTC)
I watched it for the first time a couple of years ago. Jeff Bridges is a great actor. I thought it was an interesting portrait of how something shocking can shake everything up, even if it looks like 'nothing bad happened'.

Last night, I watched _Wit_, with Emma Thompson. What a terrific film! An english professor, who specializes in the metaphysical poetry of John Donne, is being treated for ovarian cancer. Kindness and wit.
Nov. 5th, 2003 12:53 am (UTC)
Re: _Fearless_
[adding _Wit_ to netflix queue]
Nov. 4th, 2003 09:56 am (UTC)
I'd forgotten that Tom Hulce was in that. He's always good. So is Jeff Bridges, for that matter. And Rosie Perez is unexpectedly touching as the bereaved mother. And Isabella Rossellini playing Jeff's wife.

Fearless means a lot to me personally. After my niece died, that was one of the movies that helped me cope with the grief. So I don't have the appropriate level of distance from it to be a good critic. But I suspect that it didn't do so well because it's both really dark and altogether too close to home. Dark is OK if it's removed from ordinary life, but the thought that any ordinary business trip can end in a flaming plane crash is something most of us would rather not dwell on.

Who wants to think about the grief, fear, and anger of being left entirely without insurance when your husband is killed in a plane crash? When Jeff Bridges finally says what happened to his partner, he speaks in a dreamy, affectless way that's utterly chilling.

Or about not being able to protect your baby -- begging a stewardess to help, then having him ripped from your arms by G forces? Rosie Perez carries a terrible weight of guilt in that film, and nobody wants to think about what it means to lose a child. The scene where Jeff Bridges drives his Volvo straight into a wall at 40mph is unforgettable.

It's a great movie, but it's just too painful for a lot of people. It's one of my favorite Weir movies -- and I have been loving his work since Picnic at Hanging Rock first showed in this country, a quarter of a century ago.
Nov. 4th, 2003 10:42 am (UTC)
Yes, all very well described.

I guess you're right about its being too close to home. But other movies about grief and loss, like Truly, Madly, Deeply, did well. But maybe that was more approachable.
(Deleted comment)
Nov. 4th, 2003 03:46 pm (UTC)
I really like Picnic, but it's much better on subsequent showings. For me there is a rather large set of movies that are too much to handle on first showing (and so my major feeling is "creeped out" or "bored") but I find really wonderful on subsequent showings. My favorite movie of all time, Wings of Desire, is part of that set. I hated it the first time I watched it, and I have no idea why I watched it again, but I'm glad I did.
Nov. 4th, 2003 11:47 am (UTC)
I remember reading about it when it came out, but I just don't see that many movies. Never enough hours in the day, plus that most of them don't have much appeal for me -- in this case I think dead child plus plane crash would um yank my chain a little too much.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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