Manhunter ★★★★

Sixty in September: 35/60

Couldn't let this pass without a word, but didn't know where to start. Manhunter has become a kind of emblem to me, representing high 80s cinema. The aesthetic's been obsessing me. And just now I've watched As Tears Go By. And the style there catapults me back here.

It's just so ultracool. It's in the hush of Graham looking at his reflection in the restaurant window. Every scene, every shot, almost, has got that hush, that cool, that crisp of the neon color. I can't say it enough, either, but I'm so madly in love with this soundtrack. The way those synths climb, Vangelis style, into the celestial ether. Ooh. How cool I think Graham is.

And then, how much it all breathes. How terrifying Noonan is. And how wonderfully unorthodox Cox seems as Lector. Slow burning, deliberate, in the sharpness and haze of a full-on style. It lets the aesthetic cocoon the drama. It closes around Graham like the time that's running out, like uncertainty. Everything inside is amplified. Words are sharp with importance. Colors bleed and glow like you might never see them again. The beach is like the backside of paradise receding. That suit, that tie. A blind woman and a sedated tiger. Malaise rolls through everything.

I really like, too, when I see how much other people like certain films. And I get this deep nostalgia for the supreme 80s aesthetic in this movie, despite never having seen the film before. Letterboxd gets me that way a lot. I love the love. It warms my heart to know when films are beloved by some.

There's nothing quite like watching a film and feeling that pulse of love for it out there. Maybe it's a weird place to feel that, in a film like this. But that seems to be how it works out sometimes. Gimme more of that midnight hush. That offbeat neon soul.

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