Clint Eastwood always looks like he’s wearing shoes two sizes two small nowadays. In The Mule he casts himself as a ninety year old failed horticulturalist who — out of a misplaced sense of pride — instead of turning to the family he abandoned years before, starts running drugs in order to make a living. His perpetual irascibility serves him well, he seems like a man that it just ain’t worth the time to fuck with.
In a cinemagoing landscape where the definition of spectacle has narrowed down to superhero antics — whether they be performed by Avengers, Jedi, or The Rock — A Star is Born arrives to remind us that something don’t gotta be huge to feel huge. There’s something in its two hour fifteen running time that quietly cements it in the tradition of the epic.
Hi. This review is going to spoil the new Marvel movie Avengers: Infinity War. I ain’t joking. I ain’t playing. There is gonna be some frank discussion of the ending and what it is and what it means. It is impossible to turn a reasoned critical eye to the film and avoid discussing, it demands you to. So, if you care about the film it’s probably best to avoid reading this until after. And if you think you probably don’t care enough, you definitely don’t care enough. Feel free.
When I got to thinking about the original Guardians of the Galaxy and this new one, I keep coming around to the title sequences. The first one starts, as films irritatingly thought they could do for a while before, the production cards with that prologue about the death of Star Lord’s mother. Then it has the character walking through the remains of a destroyed alien city to some downbeat orchestral as the titles start to flick up, a nice fakeout to the point he puts on his headphones and Come and Get Your Love by Redbone starts playing and the title card flashes up. Course we’d all had the tone spoiled for us by the trailers before then.