We often see a film on Saturday night and I usually write about it on Sunday. We saw Sidney Lumet's Before the Devil Knows You're Dead this weekend. I didn't feel as if there was much to say about it. It looked good and it was well acted. It was very dark. As I watched it I felt myself grow tired of shrugging off violence and darkness not just in this film but overall. I thought more than a few times about Marisa Tomei's breasts for a couple days. She is quite perky, especially for a forty-three year old woman. I don't feel any shame for thinking about her tits. But I am aware of my prurience. I would rather not have her tits on my mind. It's so impossibly unsatisfying to obsess about them. There's no possibility of satisfaction. I watch this film and I'm filled with lustful desire that is totally unrelated to the rest of the film. I'm disconnected. And that's not why I go to movies. I go to movies to reconnect. To find some bit of the something that binds us all together. I don't go to be entertained or aroused sexually. I certainly don't want to be made to feel any more alienated. I want transubstantiation at the cinema. Anything less and I might as well watch television or pornography.
I'm not calling Mr. Lumet's film tv or porn. I have tremendous respect for him. He often seeks to show the dark side of humanity in his films and has done it masterfully, especially earlier in his career in films like Network, The Pawnbroker and Dog Day Afternoon. In those films there's something redemptive. A hint at deeper albeit horribly confused intentions. Not so in this Devil.
On a Soapbox,