Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Love for Glory / Rains 'a film classic'

Well, Toronto came to an end at the weekend, but chitchat about Pride and Glory did not, and the interim days have seen a slew of belated positivities.
  • Firstly, Brightcove have a complimentary video review by The Hollywood Reporter's Michael Rechtshaffen. His only real criticism is of the title and he sprinkles praise on the film itself.

  • At Collider, Monika Bartyzel gives the impression she expected a hackneyed cop drama but was pleasantly surprised. She also is a fan of the film's female contingent.
[...] [Pride and Glory] contains all that we’ve come to expect from the genre. It is not, however, completely old and tired. A compelling story rests inside the familiarity, breaking out of the weight of cliché and increasing in fervor, pace, and execution. ...
Each moment fuels the journey and accelerates the players towards the inevitable and tragic conclusion, and this is what makes the film. Nothing is superfluous in the film, each person and scene upping the ante and revealing a piece of the story and puzzle. ...
Rather than simply existing as thorns in the men’s sides, or filler for the story, the Tierney wives pull out fundamental aspects of each cop and the rationale and motives for their actions. Their scenes are brief but dramatic, and always purposeful. ... As a quest for the truth, and a film that questions notions of honor and obligation, Gavin O’Connor has hit the nail on the head. [...]
  • Continuing the trend, it's 4 stars and a thumbs up from J. D. MacNamara at CinemaBlend, whose satisfaction comes from the quality of the film's characters:
[...] Pride and Glory succeeds because it grounds itself in fully developed characters who, amidst the violence, greed, dishonor, pride, and glory that comes with bleeding NYPD blue, never waiver in either their morals or motives. ... True to itself, its characters, and the rules set down by O’Connor, Pride and Glory is on the level with cop dramas like The Departed, but possibly even better because it relies less on twists, turns, and things left unsaid. [...]
  • Next, a thank you to Janet for drawing our attention to Richard Corliss' Time review, which while mixed, praises the performances including that of Ms Ehle:
[...] Voight...doesn't make a misstep; Norton executes his usual business of revealing little but threatening plenty; and Ehle, her head shaved as a cancer patient, deftly underplays her function of providing the poignant feminine touch. [...]
  • While we're on the subject, Pop Entertainment have a (potentially already posted, not that I can spy it) Colin Farrell interview from way back in February. Talking about why he thinks Pride and Glory is a 'really strong piece', he says:
[...] Great performances from Voight and Norton, and Jennifer Ehle is amazing. [...]
  • On the 'blink and it's gone' side, John Foote of InContention cites 'some strong performances', but considers the film too familiar, Duane Dudek at the Journal Sentinel says the movie has 'a Mystic River vibe' along with 'the gritty verisimilitude of dirt under your fingernails', while the Irish Times report that Colin Farrell had fans 'screaming in shock' at the film. (They hint however that this was due to its violent nature rather than a lack of quality!)

  • Finally - as the official website now notes, and as those of you receiving a pre-ordered present from the postman today will be aware of - Before the Rains is now out on DVD. This has prompted more thoughts on the film, such as those of the contented Courant. After describing the cinematography as 'gorgeous' and claiming that Rains constitutes 'absorbing, elegant entertainment', they importantly add:
[...] Jennifer Ehle is good as the wife, who is smarter than Moores wants her to be. [...]
Meanwhile, two enthusiastic Amazonians have already gone online to share their thoughts since yesterday's release, granting the film 4 stars and 5 stars respectively:

[...] Beautiful scenery...There is a lot to this movie and yet it is not a complicated plot. ... The movie is a little slow in places, but never boring. Highly recommended. [...]

[...] I've now seen this film a couple of times in the theater. It is, hands down, one of the most beautiful and moving films I've seen in a long time. Linus Roach [sic] is great and Jennifer Ehle is one of my favorite actresses. A really great, film classic! [...]

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