- Contributor: The Film Stage / Little White Lies / MUBI / Cineaste
- Managing Director: San Diego Asian Film Festival.
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
A film in which Kirk Douglas sings in Spanish, wears colorful bandanas, shoots a Derringer, is obsessed with Dorothy Malone's character as a sixteen-year-old, and gets seduced by a teenager before realizing she may be his daughter. Damn this is a creepy and unappealing movie.
In this postmodern acid wash nightmare called 21st century America, some of us no longer have the ability to register rock bottom. We just spiral deeper into the neon abyss, documenting our own demise by way of pop culture and ego and delusion. Complex emotion is meaningless. The momentum of deceit is unstoppable. Those contemplating the limits of excess are either delusional or weak, unnecessary, disposable. As a result, the Culture teaches us to be cold, unfeeling, and obsessive to the pursuit of nothing else but those boobies y'all. We are what we lust after, and we are lusting after self-destruction. Mission Accomplished.
This is Spike Lee's RASHOMON; splintered perspectives, shifting timelines, and morally ambiguous intentions. The first hour is a masterpiece, beginning with one of the great credits sequences of all-time. I love that the reason Keitel takes such a strong interest in this case is that he feels like someone is pulling the wool over his eyes, and that won't fly. The film slips slightly in the latter stages simply because it loses steam and becomes stylistically more banal. But how could it keep up such an overtly kinetic (and experimental) pace? Strike's forced departure foreshadows the sublime ending/trek/dream of 25th HOUR.