Da 5 Bloods
On the Record
I May Destroy You
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This was three and a half hours of my life I will never get back. I did not learn anything more about Jimmy Hoffa, though a bit more about the mob ties, but I did learn that despite having more than three hours in which he could have satisfied the bechdel test Scorsese can still drop the ball. Really, the positive reviews for this movie seem mostly based upon a cultish belief that the director can do no wrong ("Bringing Out the Dead" so easily forgotten?), and likewise for the cast. Don't believe the hype: this movie is slow, boring, trash.
oh please: 92% on the tomato meter? no way. This movie sucked. While the visuals were nice, that's a very low bar for a friggin western: North America is beautiful and has amazing vistas. The acting was decent. The story...inane, boring, and absent any meaningful character development. Everyone was a caricature: the anti-hero former outlaw, the former mentor bad-guy, the strange sniper, the innocent kid, the noble savage, and (finally) the 2dimensional woman "love interest". Now if you think that seeing such archetypes (and human prop) interacting together might be at least interesting I will give you that; but they never really interact. everyone just postures against the scenery, bites off a few pieces to chew, and then moves on to the next scene without any cohesion. On top of that, the director's attempts at metaphor is so on the nose that you'll feel yours is broken by the end. If you like westerns, you'll be enraged. If you don't, then it is like drinking a bottle of thunderbird as an example of what wine is. This movie is not good.
This movie is fairly faithful to the source material, and as a standalone film it knocks it out of the park. The Gmork is terrifying, the swamps of sorrow heartbreaking, and Falkore is legendary. However, the movie lost two stars for me because the ending pivoted away from the source and in so doing may have spawned two sequels that are not only bad, but the probably scared people off from the original novel which is one of the greatest fantasy novels of the 20th century.
Why why why would you make a first film that cleaved so closely to the first third of the book, and made a bunch of money, only to then just throw the rest of the book out because "you know better"? This movie is a tragedy and a betrayal to the source material, and retained only the faintest aspect of the novel. If there was an art crimes tribunal that could be called, then aggravated felony charges against the producer/writer/director would be a slam dunk.
Step 1: find some good source material, Step 2: film the first 1/3rd staying true to the text and make money, Step 3: ignore steps 1 and 2, just slap the same title on it, hope the audience won't figure it out until you've got their money. This movie is so bad that for those of us who've read the book, it hurts to know it exists and may have caused some people who may have loved the first Neverending Story, which was a fairly faithful adaptation, to never read the book. If you ever see a copy of this movie in the wild, do the world a favor and destroy it- then go read the book.