This weekend’s movie…
So, I'm a comic creator, with a long running fascination with Alan Moore. So after Wizard World LA on Saturday, when I decided to head out with Dina and grab a movie, there was only one movie I wanted to see. Find Me Guilty.
Yeah, to be honest, I could give two shits about V for Vendetta. I'm sure it's at least a fun time, but, reviews from trusted sources make me figure I'll just wait to be disappointed on DVD instead.
Anyways, for anyone who knows me, Sidney Lumet is pretty much my favorite director, despite some pretty uneven films later on in his career. I mean, this is the guy who made Murder on the Orient Express, Dog Day Afternoon, Network, and Equus. IN A FUCKING ROW. One after the other, each one wholly different than the others, each one a hallmark of it's genre. Plus, 12 Angry Men, Q&A, Prince of the City, and my personal favorite, the Mamet penned The Verdict. The guy has just made some of the best movies in the history of the medium, and generally gets ignored in favor of guys with less range (I'm lookin' at you Scorsese and Coppola).
Find Me Guilty is a bit of an oddball, and more in line with his more recent movies like Guilty as Sin and Night Falls on Manhattan quality wise. The thing that I was left with at the end was this feeling that I'd seen a real movie. Not neccessarily a great movie, or a life-changing movie, but, by the end, you feel like you've been through this epic life with the characters (and you have, the movie chornicles two years of a trial in suprising depth considering the movie isn't that long), and like you're slightly different for having watched it. There's a few mis-steps, mostly in terms of music choice (they use this Benny Goodman like score that belies the slightly heavier tone, which I suppose was to help make it feel more like a comedy than it actually is.)
And, then, there's Vin Diesel. I've had an embarassing man-crush on Vin since I saw Pitch Black years ago. It's just a great little movie, and he's got more charisma then Steven Seagal and Jean Claude Van Damme combined. He's no Bruce Willis, mind you... but who is? Anyways, I've always enjoyed his work, even the excretable XXX and Fast and the Furious. I knew underneath all of the muscles and smart ass exterior, there's someone with a lot of talent. Find Me Guilty, well, I don't know if it quite proves that, but, it shows that Vin is definitely capable of more than he does normally. He's pretty excellent, although, I'm still left wondering how far the character is from the guy underneath. He's volatile, uneducated, and aggressive, with a hang dog look and slight paunch that goes against the usual cut and shaved Vin look, and a wonderful sense of comic timing. He's pretty remarkable in the movie. The rest of the cast is great as well, including Peter Dinklage as the lead attorney and Ron Silver as the judge.
So, look, it's not Armageddon. There's nothing exploding, and really, nothing much happens, but, it's a damn fine film, that'll take you back to the 70's at least in ethos, and considering what else is in theaters these days, that's not a bad thing.