Friday, July 07, 2006

Depressing Movies

Warning: This movie contains scenes of deceit and self-absorption. Some characters are ruthless. People say terrible things. Many hearts are broken. The implied future is even worse. The Surgeon General has determined that watching depressing movies may cause insomnia.

I knew that Woody Allen's Match Point and Noah Baumbach's The Squid and the Whale are serious dramas, but I was not warned as to how bleakly depressing they are. I could have used a warning. Maybe I should read movie reviews instead of writing them.

I did appreciate both of the films. Woody Allen really broke out of his box by setting a movie in England, and his use of opera music gives the movie a really somber, inevitably tragic feel. Music is important in Baumbach work, as well. The soundtrack sets a mellow 1980s mood that is shattered by the story. The acting in both movies is superb. I especially liked the boys in The Squid and the Whale.

Both movies are excellent and would fit well in the Aaron Schmidt Depressing Movie Series with Dear Wendy. They would also be good choices for movie discussion groups.


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Reel Fanatic said...

I can see how they might be depressing, but I thoroughly loved both of those flicks ... Woody's was just a great portrait of the darkest side of human nature, and I thought there was plenty of humor even in the bleak situation of "The Squid and the Whale."

Anonymous said...

Wow, thanks for addressing this. I haven't seen the Woody Allen picture but was really surprised by the bleakness of "The Squid and the Whale." Particularly so because I LOVED Noah Baumbach's "Kicking and Screaming" (not to be confused with the more recent Will Ferrell movie), which I guess was also somewhat dark, but not AS dark. Anyway, if you haven't seen it, I'd heartily recommend it.

Anonymous said...

match point - depressing! the first half of the movie was rich : a good story, well paced.. not sachharine; scarlett and chris were doing well, then this guy shoots the mother of his child "born of passion" . crunch. talented mr ripley all over again, whick is o.k., but I thought the story was doing fine before he went rambo... then it's all about a kinda unpleasant schemer getting away with being an amoral worm?.. o.k.... but where's the entertainmet, dude? Watch this movie if you plan to fall asleep in front of the TV after an hour or so.