The Kite Runner | “There is a way to be good again.” For the first time, in a long time, I can safely say that the book was in fact, better than the movie. This is not to say the movie was terrible; it was actually pretty good. However, the fault lies in the storytelling. The Kite Runner, as a story, is story and plot-driven. The book spends a lot of time building on the back stories and the relationships, to create an impact at certain points and the film, for the sake of time, doesn’t do that. So a lot is lost in that process. It generally felt a bit rushed. The boy who played Hassan as a child was simply excellent, and I heard he has since been flown to the UAE because his family fears for his life by way of ‘the rape scene’ in the film. In fact, the best scenes of the movie were early on, when they relived his childhood. The stoning of the woman in the stadium was kind of disturbing even though it was some what brief. Ever since reading The Kite Runner as well as the Swallows of Kabul, I always wondered what a stadium full of people throwing rocks looked like. It wasn’t as high blown as I’d imagined it in my head. I also always wondered how they managed to get all the rocks off the field so they could continue the game, but I imagine that after the half time entertainment brought to you by the Taliban, there wasn’t much to come back to.
As of now, the film is Golden Globe nominated for best foreign film although I don’t know how foreign it really is when half the movie is in English. It also received a nomination for its musical score, which I must say, is absolutely brilliant. It’s not the kind of music that you’ll just ignore or forget; it really stands out in the film.
A watchable flick: 3/5
No Country For Old Men | “There are no clean getaways.” Everyone knows the Coen Brothers make good movies. Many of them are odd and strange and a bit screwy, but people seem to enjoy them and so do the critics. No Country For Old Men is no different. A hitman chases a Texan whose stumbled upon 2 million worth of drug money, while an aging sheriff chases both, in between dealing with the changing times, in a plot set in 1980. Like most of their movies, the film is character driven, with an emphasis on developing classic and memorable figures. Javier Bardem, who plays the hitman, Anton Chigurh, carries around a cattle gun, his weapon of choice that is bullet-free but makes a deafening sound that’ll send a chill running down your spine. His portrayal might even remind you of Hannibal Lecter; both are just as calculating and psychopathic, but Chigurh is as cold and calm as ever, making it very, very difficult for anyone to take their eyes off the screen whenever he shows up.
If anything, you should watch this movie just to watch Bardem do what he does. It may very well be the movie of the year, and rightly so.
An enjoyable feast: 5/5