Thursday, January 5, 2012

War Horse

If you're thinking of seeing Steven Spielberg's movie War Horse, take a minute and look up the word "schmaltz" in the nearest dictionary.

You might end up saving yourself a few bucks and a couple hours of your life...

On the other hand, you might enjoy spending 146 minutes trying to guess from which better movie some of the set pieces have been "copied".

There, that cavalry attack looks suspiciously like one in Lawrence of Arabia. Wait a minute, didn't they do that in Gone With the Wind? Paths of Glory, anyone?

Plus you get a record number of close-ups of attractively lit actors and actresses with one glistening tear running down their faces...

Throw in a nondescript John Williams' score and your evening is complete.

What Mr. Spielberg has done, successfully, is drain all of the theatrical magic out of the play--and without that magic there is nothing much there. What he has attempted to replace it with is very technically adept chicken fat.

By the end I was praying for one last shot of the noble beast, (indeed the noblest of all beasts), this time with a single tear running down his noble equine face.

Fade to black.

PS if you want to see a great movie by a great director, see Hugo. It is magical.

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