Tuesday, October 15, 2002


Before last week, I hadn't seen a movie in a long time. During the week I saw "Knockaround Guys" at a free employee screening. Seeing as how I am sitting in the offices of the company which made the film, it probably wouldn't be proper to rip into the movie. But, I am just a temp... Let's just say the movie isn't good. With a cast that includes Dennis Hopper, John Malkovich, Vin Diesel, Barry Pepper, and Seth Green, it should be a lot better. There are some occassional laughs and a few solid lines of dialogue, but the plot is weak, the pace is plodding, and the energy surprisingly flaccid. Malkovich is simply awful. I don't think I've ever seen a worse performance from him, featuring the least convincing New York accent I've ever heard.

"24 Party People" is a much more fun movie. The subject is Tony Wilson, a Manchester native who somehow managed to place himself at the forefront of Punk, New Wave, and Rave cultures. Wilson parlayed a television magazine show about music into Factory Records, a cutting edge record label, and an ultra-hip nightclub called The Hacienda. Factory Records launched the careers of Joy Division, New Order, and the Happy Mondays. The Hacienda may have very well been the birthplace of the rave. This mocumentary is full of rich performances, most notably Steve Coogan as Tony Wilson, a slew of sentient music sequences, and some of the finest digital video cinematography to date. I took My Girl to see the flick at the Academy 6 in Pasadena. This old theater is quite a vivid experience, from the old-school version of stadium seating to the old-fashioned raffle-style tickets to the schlocky corridor serving as an arcade featuring a crumbling Ms. Pac-Man machine, Arkanoid, and three other old games. There couldn't be a more perfect place to see this scrappy movie, and it happens to be the last theater in Los Angeles playing the quality art-house film. Overall, this "Party" is definitely worth showing up for. To be courteous, you should probably bring a bottle of wine or a box of cookies or something.

No comments: