Tuesday, May 17, 2005

...punch drunk criticism

I think we all know how much I love and respect the work of P.T. Anderson. Here is a wonderful examination of "Punch Drunk Love" that I found on the web. It delves into the formal aspects of the film - looking at how Anderson conveys his story semantically and referenceless.

Check it out by clicking the title of the post or copy the link



Deit Heimley said...

I really enjoyed that critique, and I really enjoyed that the analysis gave me a better appreciation for Punch Drunk Love. However, I still hate the movie.
I know, this is sacreigious talk to Jed's poor ears, but I really don't like that film. I like PT, and have loved every other movie he has made, but I just don't like that film.
But at least that review made me understand why I dislike it so. I am a big fan of the Coen brothers and their view that the world is cruel or indifferent to the plight of man, and that in the end we are all skrewed. PT on the other hand is such an optimist. As I rethink his other movies, I see a large theme or redemption and positive change. This seems like so much propoganda to me.
I really enjoy Altman films, because in his best works, people are not really much better off than when they started.
I don't think I ever bought that Barry, in real life, would anything other than harm himself and others. I did not buy that he could control his anger. I did not buy that he could find true, redemptive love. I felt betrayed by PT when, in the end, he ended up with his love, and vanquishing his demons. I just didn't buy his message for a minute.
So this was a great review because it helped me come to terms with the problem that I had with PDL, namely, that it is a movie of symolism, and I am a guy who loves symbolic movies. It's not PT's skill that irked me so, but his message. And that message was so upsetting to me, that I was not able to really appreciate the film. I may have to watch it again, knowing that I disagree with his point, just to really appreciate the skill with which he made his arguement.
So sorry, Jed, I still hate PDL, but now I know why.

urnotme said...

When I first decided to watch this movie it was because Adam Sandler was doing something other than his usual crap and was trying his hand at "real" acting. I had seen Anderson's other movies Magnolia and Boogie Nights and really enjoyed them, but was never really in to them as I am Tarantino's or Scorses's works. So I did want to see the film, but was more interested in seeing Sandlers work than Andersons. After watching it I felt the film was really pretty good and not because of Sandler at all, but rather how Anderson made the film look. Everything seemed to feel like it went together or matched, so to say. And when I would try to explain to people why I liked it I never could fully put it into words and explain why. Until now. After reading (and learning) Cubie King's sort of review or case study it all makes sense. The objects, the colors, the sound, the symbolism throughout the film I guess I never really picked up on it consciously, but I did sub-consciously and that is why I enjoyed it. This article kind of lit up a previously dim light bulb and allowed me to see more clear.
I have to watch it again with my new vision. Thanks Damifino. Thanks Cubie.

Damfino said...

Ah yes - Deit continues his desent into the dark side of nihilism and dear urnotme humbly admitted the article lit his bulb.

Bravo to both.

Now Deit go stuff yourself and urnotme - I got a few articles on RAGING BULL for you.