Thursday, April 19, 2007

Pistol Opera

I can here the catcalls now: another female killer movie..we have this reviewer in our sights! Well let me only say I wish I could do a favorable on "Pathfinder" and I am still conflicted about Grindhouse...but "Pistol Opera" was terrific! Ok...I probably should qualify that, based on reviews I read during research. Not everyone sees this as I do!
I like movies as pictures. Composition if you will. Jim Jarmusch, who has a dozen frame able shots in every film is one of my favorite artists. Wong Kar-Wei, Andrew Blake, Terrence Malick, David Lynch, those are my favorite directors, and they are about visuals. This director, Suzuki, is a new favorite, even if his other films don't stand up (heck they might, I have just begun the journey).
This tale of competing underworld killers is a series of carefully framed tableaux- static framed shots all strung together by a the barest wisp of a plotline, never mind a timeline! This is advanced film making, and requires a leap of faith and a touch of concentration on the viewers part.. I just let the beauty and color wash over me..I think "lurid" is the adjective used pejoratively to describe these saturated primaries.
I won't even discuss the frustration at tuning the darn TV to fit every film's color palette, suffice it to say saturation, while having it's limits, does more accurately reflect my minds eye. Suzuki, Merkely, and Coulter's (not Ann) too.
Imagine this director having to explain to critics why his movie isn't in chronological order. This, 50 years after Gyson and Burroughs, 10 years after Pulp Fiction, and what..7 years after Memento?
Wong Kar-Wei made his trilogy of the span of a decade and each movie taken apart and taken as parts weaves time like memories--and that is the point. I am digressing.
Pistol Opera is a fine Girls with Guns film as long as it is not where you start!

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