The Difficult Second Album

2007 has been the year of reckoning for several emerging filmmakers who made astonishing debuts in the last year or two.

I’ve been hearing good things about I Am Legend, especially from Ray Edison who calls it one of the best of the year. I was a big fan of Constantine so I’m glad to hear his sophomore effort is not the failure that Southland Tales and Mr. Magiorum’s Wonder Emporium by all accounts are. The summing description of Southland Tales is that  “it’s an actual mishmash disguised as an intended mishmash”, but since Helm didn’t direct his script for Stranger than Fiction I supppose Mr. Magiorum could be classed a rookie failure.

Another vindication this year of a rookie virtuoso is Atonement. The first act is a perfect short film in and of itself whose action takes place within a few hours. Apparently the rest follows the structure of the novel as closely as No Country for Old Men does and is also very good — but it’s just impossible to live up to the urgency of the first 40 minutes.

Finally, I can’t wait to see how The Brothers Bloom turns out next year. I thought Brick had some ingenious bits so fingers crossed that he’s the real deal.

So my Great New Hope score card (based on reports except for Wright’s movie which I can vouch for personally) reads:

Real deals:
Joe Wright
Francis Lawrence
Jason Reitman

Disappointment:
Zach Helm

Exposed as the fraud he was in the first place:
Richard Kelly

Remains to be seen:
Rian Johnson

Anyone I’m missing?

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2 thoughts on “The Difficult Second Album

  1. Ryan says:

    What? No posts about the new Batman trailer? Come on!

  2. Nobody says:

    What’s there to say? It’s self evident! I still haven’t seen the full IMAX footage yet.

    But what’s up with the Batbasement? Below Wayne Tower, presumably? Either the Batcave becomes compromised or he finally realized it’s way more efficient to be close to the action than have to commute from the suburbs every time there’s a crime downtown. (It’s so obvious now what an impractical idea the Batcave is, but it took Nolan to point it out to me.)

    Even though I love the shadowy Batman I like the bright flourescent lighting because it defamiliarizes the whole Batcave setup and evokes the brightly lit neo-noir of Chinatown and LA Confidential.

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