Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Pan's Labyrinth, again and Dark Knight

I experienced Pan's Labyrinth again. The DVD arrived over a week ago but I delayed viewing until I felt in the mood to give the work my undivided attention. Usually when the story is familiar I lose the emotional engagement. Afterwards I attempted to obtain the Wikipedia review as a marker that I had seen the film again but was unable to find one, but what caught my eye was a review or Blog headed one of the greatest films of the 21st century. That is a premature boast given we are yet to completed its first decade, and in fact a judgement only possible in about a century from now. I suspect that by then it will be possible for everything we do and say to be experienced by anyone, anywhere, anytime with the technology and the only difference between what I do now and that situation is that there will have been a comprehensive record from birth and until death. Will the fictional film have been abandoned as all the real life events of everyone everywhere become viewable?

Pan's Labyrinth is a brilliant film combining the impact of the Spanish Civil War upon a small local community with the imagination of an unhappy young girl who has lost her father and whose mother has taken up with a previous acquaintance who becomes a ruthless local commander of the fascists, but he could just as well as have been a ruthless local commander of the communists. The mother character would have been happier living among the Maasai tribe which was the subject of Tribal Wives last night.

I was much happier dozing through the Black Knight during the afternoon after a lunch of beef stir fry. There is a film of the same name opening this week in theatres but I was and remain too lazy to find out the connection. In this film which appears to be part of a comic book type of series Ivanhoe and his mate Rebecca enter a monastic citadel when called in by the Abbot because his star pupil has been taken over by 1000 year old Black Magic demon out to destroy Ivanhoe and his good deeds. The core of the story is a labyrinth maze game in which Ivanhoe as the white knight races with the monk and his accomplice as the Black Night to reach the centre area of the board and gain power over a super demon devil. Nothing the Abbot can do will stop the game playing board until the good guys and gals realise that board game is merely the representation of events going on in the labyrinth below the citadel. The film is risible and it is difficult to see who would take it seriously now given that Abbot and Ivanhoe and his mate are educationally challenged as they give up their weapons to the monks because "we have no weapons in this place" and then set off to combat black magic and real devils with only their courage and their stupidity, Lara Croft was turning in her fictional grave throughout.

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