22 posts categorized "Psychological Thriller"

January 09, 2023

TÁR

COLE SMITHEY

Groupthink doesn't live here, critical thought does.

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ColeSmithey.comPeople are a complicated mix of good and bad elements. Talented people more so. 

Cate Blanchett's lesbian orchestra conductor character Lydia Tár is a lot of important things to a lot of people. 

Lydia preys on young women when she isn't busy rehearsing, composing, giving interviews, co-parenting a child with her partner, and all that goes into leading the Berlin Philharmonic.

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Where does Lydia find the time for keeping up the subterfuge of pretending to sublimate her ego for art?

Todd Field's first film in 16 years is a (seemingly) rigorous psychological thriller, an intellectual puzzle if you will.

Sadly, it's a broken puzzle.

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Lydia Tár gets in Dutch with the mob rule of social media — ironic especially because social media is neither social nor media.

No telling how many lives social media has destroyed.

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As for its creator, Field gets in Dutch by cutting too close with the character of Lydia Tár to real-life lesbian symphony conductor Marin Alsop, music director laureate of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and chief conductor of the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra.

For the record, Marin Alsop has voiced her outrage at the film, and its parallels to herself.

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Marin Alsop calls Tár "antiwoman."

Hard to argue with Marin Alsop.

You're a fool if you do.

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As such, "Tár" comes across as a cheap parlor game.

Why Todd Field chose to craft his film so closely to a specific musical artist is a mystery deeper than any in the film.

If Todd Field had an axe to grind, that axe has come back to hit him in the face.

"Tár" does itself another disservice by neglecting key elements of a suicide subplot that contributes to the challenges of its unreliable protagonist.

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Reality has stepped in too much for "Tár" to be considered the masterpiece that it strains to be, much less what it is, a B-movie in big budget trappings.

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Cate Blanchett is nonetheless transfixing as ever, even if her narcissist character is a flat cardboard creation.

Rated R. 158 mins. 1 Star

Cozy Cole

Cole Smithey on Patreon

April 26, 2022

BAD TIMING — THE CRITERION COLLECTION

COLE SMITHEY

Groupthink doesn't live here, critical thought does.

This ad-free website is dedicated to Agnès Varda and to Luis Buñuel.

Get cool rewards when you click on the button to pledge your support through Patreon. Thanks a lot pal! Your generosity keeps the reviews coming!

Cole Smithey on Patreon

 

ColeSmithey.comNicolas Roeg is at his most inventive in this suspenseful erotic psychological drama.

The visionary filmmaker behind “Performance,” “Walkabout,” “Don’t Look Now,” and “The Man Who Fell To Earth” reached his peak of cinematic daring with “Bad Timing: A Sensual Obsession.”

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Art Garfunkel represents an unbalanced academic narcissist who exploits a romantic interlude with Milena, an ostensibly bi-polar adulterer (Theresa Russell) while visiting cold-war Vienna.

Jealousy and tortured distance are at the heart of the couple's dysfunctional relationship.

Screen Shot 2022-04-26 at 1.43.16 PM

Garfunkel's psychoanalyst Dr. Alex Linden would make an effective serial killer. Perhaps he's working up to it.

"Bad Timing" is twisted, in a good way.

Love, romance, and sex are overrated. 

Rated R. 123 mins.

5 StarsEpisode #92 — Brooklyn artist Valleire Trachsler came on the show to talk about one of Isabelle Huppert's favorite films included in the Criterion Collection, Nicolas Roeg's BAD TIMING: A SENSUAL OBSESSION. Bon appétit!

Bad-timing1

Cozy Cole

Cole Smithey on Patreon

March 14, 2022

THE LIGHTHOUSE

COLE SMITHEY

Groupthink doesn't live here, critical thought does.

This ad-free website is dedicated to Agnès Varda and to Luis Buñuel.

Get cool rewards when you click on the button to pledge your support through Patreon.

Thanks a lot acorns!

Your kind generosity keeps the reviews coming!

Cole Smithey on Patreon



ColeSmithey.comA stone-cold masterpiece.

"The Lighthouse" would make great Broadway play.

You heard it here first.

Inestimable performances from Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe ramp up with excruciating suspense and terror.

You will squirm in your seat.

Just don't wet yourself. 

ColeSmithey.com

Co-writer/director Robert Eggers conjures up all sort of fetish hay lurking in the troubled minds of two lonely lighthouse keepers on a New England island in 1890's America.

Hungarian filmmaker Béla Tarr's influence is all over this lush black and white film.

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A harsh game of master/servant plays out on a mythical level as a metaphor for how men relate in subtle and not-subtle games of oneupmanship.

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Brinksmanship.

Fucking hell.

 Rated R. 109 mins. 

5 Stars“ColeSmithey.com“

Cozy Cole

Cole Smithey on Patreon

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