Saturday, May 17, 2014
1. James McAvoy - I'm assuming that McAvoy is not eligible for an Oscar for this movie, since it was released in the UK last year...right? The rules on that are always a little unclear for me. If he was eligible in 2013, then he certainly should have been nominated (and he would have been the clear winner in the category). Despite McAvoy's popularity, I still consider him "underrated" in terms of criticism. He's always the best part of any movie he is in, and I don't think he gets credit for the fact that he takes chances in the roles that he chooses. I know that I'm a bit biased, because I LOVE him, but I honestly think he's super talented (and that's what I'm attracted to). Many years ago, I stumbled across the UK series Shameless, and I've been smitten with him ever since. I can't even bring myself to continue watching the show after the first season, because I know that him and Anne-Marie leave the show, which would leave me devastated. I just pretend it's a one season show (I'm pretty sure it's still going, which means it's on its tenth season, at least). Speaking of Anne-Marie, I hate that I like her so much, because I can't even be snarky and hate on her. They are a cute couple (whatever.). What was I even talking about??? OH YEAH....McAvoy is incredible in this movie. It's an ugly, dark and massively unpleasant role and he embraces all of it, fearlessly.
2. The downward spiral - Who doesn't love watching someone spiral out of control? It's always a calming experience for me; a nice realization that I'm not as crazy as I think I am. The movie could easily be dismissed as a story about a pathetic, narcissistic asshole cop who abuses his power, but there is a layer of truth to this character that made me want to watch him. His obsession with humiliating his co-workers to gain a promotion is pretty humorous, as he takes down all other possible threats to the position, and you can't really blame him (they are all pretty pathetic characters). The story starts off pretty dark and fucked up, but then it just keeps getting darker...and darker - to the point where it is out of control, with no possible positive outcome. I felt some scenes were unnecessary; as if some were added for a "shock" effect, but overall I was quite entertained (in a stomach turning sort of way). We don't fully understand what is going on in the movie until the end (unless you've read the book, I guess), but it's really interesting to watch this man destroy everything and everyone around him; I was somehow compelled to care about him.
3. The end - Often in these types of stories - one, in which, a person is a horrifically awful human being, light is shed on their situation and suddenly the audience is supposed to forgive. It's frustrating at times, which is why I appreciated the end of this movie. We are not expected to forgive him; he's not seeking any sort of redemption. He just wants peace. The final moments in the film are heartbreaking. It's about as perfect as and ending can be.