Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Pancakes are love!

I thought my review of Speed Racer was enthusiastic. Check out Evan Derrick's boyish, buoyant review at Moviezeal. Exuberance in its purest form. While the film is taking its lumps critically, there is a forming brotherhood of online critics and bloggers whose enthusiasm for this revelatory trip is volcanic.


Craig Kennedy said...

Do you find when you're on the opposite end of critics and audiences, it makes you like something even more?

Pinko Punko said...

Saw it tonight, while too long, I felt the same way I did during Kun Fu Hustle and Amelie. An actual family film that didn't feel sketchy, too talky to three year olds and featured humans as opposed to the critic-acceptable cartoons. I enjoyed this movie more than almost all recent CGI family fare. I felt like a kid in a movie that was its own, it didn't pander and was completely the film it wanted to be. I really do think Kung Fu Hustle is the touchstone here. I simply can't believe certain bloated, problem-paced, poor choiced fantasy epics somehow can avoid all critical eyes (save Jeff Wells) while this film just seemed to be trashed without people even watching it. Yes, someone was snoring during the poorly attended screening, and a small child couldn't stick with it because it was too long, it was exceptional for what it wanted to be.

Evan Derrick said...

Thanks for the mention, Bowen! (by the way, do I call you K., Bowen, K. Bowen, or just go with the standard appellative 'Mr. Awesome'?) There is something slightly elitist about being in a small group that disagrees with the majority, as if we're in on a secret that all of them missed. It's almost enough to make you want to do it on a regular basis.

I think the most important sequence in the entire film is when little boy Speed is sitting in the classroom and the world blurs around him into Crayola lines and he's racing in his own imagination. The Wachowskis, right there, are telling you everything you need to know, and at that moment you either accept or reject their premise - that a film can be made using the same rules and laws that a little boy uses in his imagination. If you don't buy into it at that point, it's over for you.

K. Bowen said...

Yes, definitely. There's nothing better. When I think it's appropriate, I like to stick a misunderstood critical pinata in my top ten list. Domino comes to mind. There will come a day when people realize what a subterranean genius Tony Scott actually is. There's a great article out in Web land that makes the case.

Pinko, I figured you would like it. Do you remember the conversation years ago where you stated you liked The Hulk because it was devoted to being a comic book on screen? I figured you would have the same reaction to this. I think you did.

Evan, great point about that moment. That is the fork in the road. I know which way I went.

K. Bowen said...

And you can call me Kevin.

Pinko Punko said...

Yeah, I really did love it. I don' know if I would have changed much. I think I would have added a little distance/scale to the racing scenes. While they were incredibly well edited and quite frenetic, there were almost no shots suggesting the apparent speed of the car from the perspective of the spectators. This isn't even a quibble, the film made many excellent choices. I was shocked that I found it so funny.

For one, the bees. Two, bad guys getting paid in animal pelts. These didn't even feel like they were over the top because they were throwaways in the good way- you weren't hit over the head. I felt like there were lots of little easter egg type visuals. The attention to detail was exquisite.