Archives for posts with tag: Kim Basinger

“L.A. Confidential” (1997) is a modern film noir classic that unfortunately has fallen off the radar. So has its star, Guy Pearce, who plays an idealistic cop with a streak of self-promotion. The juicy role failed to ignite the Englishman’s career. Instead, an Aussie, Russell Crowe, became the box office gladiator, so to speak, after his co-starring role as a brutal cop with a streak of idealism. The plot is delightfully stylish and multidimensional without becoming ridiculous. So are the conflicted characters played by Kevin Spacey, Kim Basinger, Danny DeVito and David Strathairn’s mustache. The Oscar-nominated score is great, too.

Advertisements

The late 1970s were a time of moral ambiguousness in America. Symbolizing that era are the morally ambiguous protagonists of “The Nice Guys” (2016). Ryan Gosling (drunken detective but well-meaning single father) and Russell Crowe (sadistically violent goon with a heart of gold) team up to crack a murder case. Hijinks ensue. There’s lots of people accidentally getting shot (yet when people shoot at each other on purpose, they’re always missing). There’s also lots of era-inappropriate speech and items (crime-scene tape in 1977?), and other terrible production values (leisure suits that go from soaking wet to bone dry in minutes).

“Fool for Love” (1985) is based on an off-Broadway play, is written by and stars Sam Shepard, and is directed by Robert Altman. So it’s basically heroin for elite movie critics. I don’t like plays. I thought it sucked. Unlikeable white trash. It’s some bizarre story of inbreeding and wife cheating told in such a way that you can’t tell what’s true and what isn’t, and you don’t care either way. For a brief moment in the middle, there is a stretch of plot exposition. That is the only interesting part. And then it reverts back to a redneck shoutfest.