Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Reevaluating my opinion of Richard Kelly's Southland Tales movie

Subjecting others to Richard Kelly's Southland Tales.

Over the Holidays I thought that it would be a good idea to introduce some of my family members to Richard Kelly's Southland Tales, a movie that I picked up on DVD at some point in 2008, and which never really saw the light of day as a wide theatrical worldwide release, appearing in only select theaters. To my dismay, they never reacted as I had hoped.

Everyone knows Southland Tales was slaughtered by film critics, and fans alike, only a few oddball hardcore fans have really grown to appreciate it, myself included. It's entertaining. The movie makes me laugh. Some ideas presented in the film about technology, politics, and time travel were intriguing, and visually it's a nice looking film, with an atmospheric soundtrack to go along with it. Being most of my relatives have similar tastes to my own in humor, and movies, I felt it was a safe bet that they'd enjoy it. So I tested out the movie on them. I was curious to see how they'd react.

One of my relatives (female, over 40) is very political, hates George Bush, Republicans, right-wing conservatives, and loves debating anything to do with government, science, and medicine. Another relative (male, over 30) grew up reading comics, and science fiction novels, enjoys all sorts of movies from the arty, to cult classics, to mainstream, and from time to time gets into political debates as well. These two for the most part I consider to be very well educated, well-rounded individuals, who have an appreciation for the satirical. A third relative (female 19), is a college student, someone who soaks up pop-culture, and mainstream entertainment, who is neither political, or into science fiction. This person never saw Donnie Darko, but when I mentioned that Justin Timberlake, and Sarah Michelle Gellar were in Southland Tales, her interest was piqued.

Without any introduction, aside from "I gotta really cool movie for you guys to watch", I went ahead and popped it into the DVD player, preparing myself to watch their reactions like they were guinea pigs.

The opening of the film held their interest, but soon after that, their interest started to breakdown. Confused, and unamused throughout the movie, they asked that I stop the movie before before Act 3. I found myself the only one laughing at 'Teen Horniness is not a Crime', and other parts of the film. Something was missing, they just didn't 'get it', like I did. In short, they hated it. So I popped in 'Army of Darkness' instead to win back their trust in my film choices.

While I can watch Southland Tales, more than once, it seems some people can't even get through the first time viewing, without losing interest. Indeed, 'Southland Tales' isn't for everyone. I'm such an oddity for liking this movie. If you're reading this Richard Kelly, I tried to introduce more people to the movie, but they quickly denied it! I'm definitely looking forward to 'The Box.'

1 comment:

swift said...

I enjoyed Southland Tales enough to watch it all but it was just such a weird movie. Certain parts pushed it over the top for me. But I did love all the actors and actresses. JT, The Rock, that dude from American Pie and SMG were perfect. I loved watching SMG play the dumb porn star. Too bad we didn't get to see any actual porn scenes. HAHA!