Features
Contact
AOL IM

2003 Milk Plus Droogies

Best Picture
Kill Bill Vol. I

Best Director
Quentin Tarantino, Kill Bill Vol. I

Best Actor (tie)
Johnny Depp, Pirates of the Caribbean

Best Actor (tie)
Bill Murray, Lost in Translation

Best Actress
Uma Thurman, Kill Bill Vol. I

Best Supporting Actor
David Hyde Pierce, Down With Love

Best Supporting Actress
Miranda Richardson, Spider

Best Screenplay
Sofia Coppola, Lost in Translation

Best Foreign Film
Irreversible

Best Cinematography
Harris Savides, Gerry

Members' Marquees

Critical Contacts

Lobby Reading

The Video Store

Reel Resources

The Blog Bijou

-213
-Admit One
-Artistic Delusions
-Belligerent Bunny's Bad Movie Shrine
-Beware of Blog
-The Brain Drain
Biancolo Notes
-The Big Ticket
-Bitter Cinema
-Black & White World
-Bull Durham's Hot Corner
-Brewed Fresh Daily
-Camille's Film Journal
-Chiragdshah
-The Chutry Experiment
-Cineblog
-Cineblog (II)
-Cine Club
-Cinecultist
-Cinegraphic.Net: The Avante-Garde Film and Video Blog
-Cinema 24
-CinemaMinima
-Cinema News
-Il Cinema Secondo (Italian)
-Cineaste (Russian)
-Cinematix
-Cinema Toast
-Cinetrix
-Columbina
-Concentrated Nonsense
-Confessions of an Indie Filmmaker
-Cult Movies I Dare You to Watch
-Cutting to the Chase
Cybersam
-Cynthia Rockwell's Waiting Room
-The Daily Despair
-The Daily Digest
-Day for Night
-Delta Sierra Arts
-Dinky's Docket
-Distorting the Medium
-Donald Melanson On Movies
-Electric Movies
-Fade In: Blog
-Feeling Listless
-Filmfilter (German)
-Filmgurlland
-FilmingtonBlog
-Filmtagebuch (German)
-Film Talk
-Five Easy Pieces
-Fluxblog
-Frank Booth
-Fringe
-A Girl and A Gun
-Glazed Donuts
-Greg.org
-GreenCine Daily
-Harlequin Knights
-Harrylimetheme
-He Loved Him Some Movies
-The Hobo Reviews
-Hot Buttered Death
-Iggy's Movie Review Weblog
-Iguano Film Blog
-In Development
-Indigoblog
-Ionarts
-Ishbadiddle
-Japanese Films' Journal
-Joe Sixpack's Film Blog
-Joe's Weblog & Film Project News
-Junk for Code
-Kumari's Movie Blog
-Lights Out Films
-Like Anna Karina's Sweater (Filmbrain)
-Listen Missy
-Loebrich.org
-Magnolia Girl
-Marley's Ghost
-Media Yenta
-Michael I. Trent
-Moovees.com
-Moov Goog
-Motime Like the Present
-MovieBlog
-Movie Boy
-Movie Criticism For the Retarded
-A Movie Diary
-The Movie Generation
-Moviehead
-The Movie Marketing Blog
-Movie Retard
-The Movie Review
-MovieTawk
-Moving Pictures
-Nando's Blog
-Netflix Fan
-Odeon
-Onethumbsideways
-Or Kill Me
-Out of Ambit
-Out of Focus
-Paolo - Cinema's Radio Weblog (Italian)
-Pigs and Battleships
-Plot Kicks In
-Pop Culture Junkies
-Popthoughts
-The Projector
-Qwipster's Movie Reviews
-Rashomon
-Rawbrick.Net
-Reel Reviews (Podcast)
-Reviews, Reviews, Reviews
-Salocin.com
-SciFiDaily
-The Screening Room
-Screen Watcher
-Shikaku
-Short and Sweet
-The Silver Screen
-Solipsist
-Stinky Cinema
-Sunset Blvd
-Tagline: A Movie Weblog
Talking Pictures
Tea for One
-Tofuhut
-Tom Vick's Asian Cinema Blog
-Trailer Park
-Truly Bad Films
Waste of Tape
-Wayne's Movie Blog
Whippin Picadilly
Wittgenstein's Bunnies
-Yay! Movies!
McBain Recommends
-Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
-Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
-Kill Bill vol 2
Shroom Recommends
-Top 20 List
-Brothers
-Head On
-Moolade
Joker Recommends
-Top 20 List
-House of Flying Daggers
-The Aviator
-Bad Education
Yun-Fat Recommends
-Eight Diagram Pole Fighter
-Los Muertos
-Tropical Malady
Allyn Recommends
-Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
-Songs from the Second Floor
Phyrephox Recommends
-Top 20 List
-Design for Living (Lubitsch, 1933)
-War of the Worlds
-Howl's Moving Castle
Melisb Recommends
-Top 20 List
-The Return
-Spirited Away
-Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter...And Spring
Wardpet Recommends
-Finding Nemo
-Man on the Train
-28 Days Later
Lorne Recommends
-21 Grams
-Cold Mountain
-Lost in Translation
Merlot Recommends
-Top 20 List
-The Man on the Train
-Safe Conduct
-The Statement
Whitney Recommends
-Femme Fatale
-Gangs of New York
-Grand Illusion
Sydhe Recommends
-In America
-Looney Tunes: Back In Action
-Whale Rider
Copywright Recommends
Top 20 List
-Flowers of Shanghai
-Road to Perdition
-Topsy-Turvy
Stennie Recommends
Top 20 List
-A Matter of Life and Death
-Ossessione
-Sideways
Rodney Recommends
Top 20 List
-Chicago
-The Pianist
-Talk to Her
Jeff Recommends
-Dial M for Murder
-The Game
-Star Wars Saga
Lady Wakasa Recommends
-Dracula: Page from a Virgin's Diary
-Dr. Mabuse, Der Spieler
-The Last Laugh
Steve Recommends
-Top 20 List
-Princess Raccoon
-Princess Raccoon
-Princess Raccoon
Jenny Recommends
-Mean Girls
-Super Size Me
-The Warriors
Jason Recommends
Top 20 List
-Old Boy
-Million Dollar Baby
-Head On
Lons Recommends
-Before Sunset
-The Incredibles
-Sideways

Powered by Blogger Pro™



links open windows

(c)2002 Design by Blogscapes.com



The Blog:
Thursday, October 10, 2002
 
Maybe it's semantics, but I take issue with the characterization of Bloody Sunday as "documentary style." Verité, certainly, but Bloody Sunday recreates the events of January 30, 1972 with a you-were-there immediacy that can't be achieved in a documentary. The film is completely engrossing and very powerful, but afterwards I had two thoughts. The first was whether Bloody Sunday would draw the same criticisms about lack of character development and backgrounding that were directed at Blackhawk Down. And, while most of the reviews I've read have been positive, I have read a few negative ones that make such criticisms. As with Blackhawk Down, I think such arguments miss the point of the movie. The dramatic force of both films is drawn from the events themselves, much like real life. (Most people who watched the towers fall on September 11 didn't know anyone there, but it was still horrifying.) The victims in Bloody Sunday aren't completely anonymous. The film provides two people for us to follow throughout the march, shootings and aftermath. And, while the movie doesn't spend a lot of time on character development, we are given some information about them. Gerry Donaghy (the real Gerry is pictured right) is a 17-year-old who lives with his sister and has a Protestant girlfriend. When the movie opens, they're making out while babysitting Gerry's nephew. When Gerry walks her home, he stops as they reach the Protestant section of town. They agree to meet there the next evening after the march. The second person that the film focuses on is Ivan Cooper, a Protestant MP who helped to organize the march. While a non-violent civil rights activist, he's also portrayed very clearly as a politician who's never too busy to shake a constituent's hand, but is too busy for his girlfriend, who's pissed at him. It is through Ivan that we are provided some background information -- at least from the marchers' perspective. The soldiers are also given voice. Another film, Sunday, made for the 30th anniversary of "Bloody Sunday" and shown on British TV around the same time as Bloody Sunday, apparently provided more historical context. This review from the World Socialist Web Site compares the two films -- not exactly an objective source, but nonetheless an interesting take on both movies.

The second question I had was how accurate is the film? I also wondered whether it would resurrect the debate about how much fidelity films owe to history that we've seen with other recent films such as Blackhawk Down and A Beautiful Mind. My position in the debate is "it depends." The more a film relies on its "based on a true story" status for its dramatic power, the more such power is diminished by substantive inaccuracies. With A Beautiful Mind, I couldn't care less about its accuracies (although John Nash's real story sounded more complex and interesting that ABM to me). But, would I be watching a film about the fictional shooting of fictional marchers by fictional soldiers? Probably not. The only reason I'm watching the movie is because I'm interested in the real event. Still, it's incumbent upon me to recognize the limitations of a two-hour (less) movie. For example, I don't know whether the exchange between Gerry and his girlfriend when he drops her off, touching as it is in the context of the film, actually took place. If this was dramatic license, it seems of little consequence to me. Bloody Sunday also eavesdrops on the conversations of soldiers prior to the march, portraying them as on edge and trigger happy. It's probably impossible to know whether such conversations took place (although the WSWS review indicates that the makers of both Sunday and Bloody Sunday interviewed soldiers). Still, given the events of "Bloody Sunday" and the history of the Northern Ireland conflicts, such conversations, even if the product of pure imagination, seemed plausible to me. On the other hand, the film shows a soldier shooting a wounded marcher at point blank range, basically an execution. I would be disturbed if there was no support for such act. So, I did some limited research after watching the film. The way in which the shootings are portrayed seems consistent with the eyewitness accounts on the Bloody Sunday Trust website. Eyewitness accounts, especially in a situation of panic and confusion, may not be particularly reliable and it may be impossible to know with certainty what happened on January 30, 1972. That being the case, there's nothing wrong with a film adopting a specific point of view. Assuming that films such as Bloody Sunday owe some fidelity to historical accuracy (and I think they do), that should not require objective, journalistic balance (an idea which itself is a myth). Still, Bloody Sunday makes some (slight) attempt at balance. It depicts the presence of the IRA on the day of the march (a fact the Bloody Sunday Trust website disputes) and allows for the possibility that a few marchers (but not the ones who were shot) might have been armed. Bloody Sunday also leaves a fair amount of questions unanswered, suggesting a reluctance to engage in too much rank speculation.