Wednesday, March 19, 2008

movie minute

Gory Games: Just watched the film Sleuth with Michael Caine and Jude Law. The film, directed by Shakespeare aficianado Kenneth Branagh tells the story of two men who conspire to outwit, outplay and outlast each other. Oh, wait, I'm thinking of Survivor; sorry, my mistake. First of all, I'd like to ask people out there...If you were sleeping with someone's spouse, why would you go to the cuckold's (look it up) yourself? Foolishness, pure foolishness.

Anyway, Caine plays Andrew Wyke, a writer, who invites his wife's lover, Milo (Jude Law) to his estate and encourages Milo to steal his expensive jewels. He already has Andrew's wife, why not take his jewels too? He literally insists that Milo make it look like a burglary and even walks him through it. The "game" takes a deadly turn and soon Milo is begging for his life.

Cut to three days later and a seemingly inept detective shows up at Andrew's estate asking after Milo. Soon, there are more games afoot for both Andrew and the detective.

This movie is a remake of the highly entertaining 1972 film which was directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz (All About Eve). The film starred Sir Laurence Olivier (as Andrew, the writer) and Michael Caine (as Milo). The film had a playfulness about it and the writing was sharp. The remake, which was released last year, has a sense of corniness and the writing is insipid. What's more, Jude Law is sorely inept in his role as Milo; Michael Caine acted rings around Jude as both Andrew AND Milo. Everything about Law is unconvincing, even the ring on his cellphone (not to mention annoying). I think this remake was unnecesary (not as unnecessary as the Psycho remake) but unnecessary nonetheless.

One more thing I'd like to say is, I don't know who Kenneth Branagh is sleeping with these days but I think he needs to come out of the closet because he is definitely taking out his homosexual tendencies on these characters; especially in the third act of the film. If he's not gay, then maybe he should be.

If you are a Caine fan then check this out. If you are a Law fan, rent The Holiday and skip this seriously sloppy seconds.

Bags of popcorn (out of 5): 1.5


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