Everyone loves a good movie that makes you think... and nothing else. I've seen some pretty bizarre movies recently, so I decided to make today's Double Feature dedicated to all the films out there that are neither comedies, nor dramas, nor suspense movies, but kind of just... exist. I'm a huge fan of the whole Harold and Maude- esque genre that leaves you with a feeling in your stomach that you're not sure what to do with except think about the state of the world today. Here we go:
Cold Souls (2009)
Paul Giamatti plays an actor named.... Paul Giamatti. I know this film was not rated very well, but I really liked it. I thought a lot of really interesting choices were made, especially regarding the fact that half the movie took place in Russia. There were no subtitles during any of the scenes shot in Russian, making you not only identify with the isolation of the main character and helpless confusion about who the fuck actually has his soul, but also cements my own personal belief that you don't always need spoken dialogue to understand a story. The movie was about an actor who has his soul extracted in order to get through playing Uncle Vanya, and surprisingly, it's a totally believable premise. You'd think that something like "soul trafficking" seems stupid and ridiculous, but I found myself watching the film without hesitation. It raises a lot of interesting questions about the body and its capabilities, and also what makes someone who they are. Can you really be yourself with someone else's soul in you? An offbeat, quirky, and entertaining non-genre-specific film, I'd say go watch it in an instant.
Am I supposed to laugh in this movie? Feel sad? How about I'll just be an outsider, looking in at the goings-on of a dysfunctional family that's not mine. There are so many fucked up things that happen in this movie- rape, murder, incestuous thoughts, creepy phone calls, that it's hard to be shocked by the time you're twenty minutes in. At the same time, however, you want to applaud the crimes committed while feeling immensely sad and sorry for the characters that society and real life would tell you to ordinarily detest. It's that reason alone that makes this movie fascinating. It doesn't exactly fit into any categories other than the multiple connection and storyline aspect of it, but it still keeps you watching the entire time. I detested Lara Flynn Boyle's character, who was meant to be the only functional and successful character, and yet sympathized with Dylan Baker, the alleged rapist. It's funny how movies can shift how you look at other people (remember how you wanted to give the sex offender from Little Children a hug?). This is a fantastic movie, however offbeat and strange it may seem at times and no matter how much you want to hate yourself for liking the wrong people.
The Movie Mistress