Monday, June 30, 2008

Where's that Baby!

Before I kick it and head off to the great screening room in the sky, I have to figure out how a movie like Raising Arizona is made. There are comedy films that induce laughter, and there are fine movies; well acted, well written, good structure... so on and so forth. Raising Arizona is the complete package. To take such a strange story line, so many zany characters and to bottle them within rich dialogue and beautiful imagery... how is it done? 

Film comedies are by and large fairly awful. There are bad dramas and bad romance, but we let those slide by and the majority of these films have some redeeming qualities. But, for whatever reason, many comedic films are not simply bad within there genre, they are poorly made movies (I direct you to the makers of Epic Movie, or say the John Leguizamo vehicle The Pest.) The Coen brothers are not simply great directors of comedy. They are wonderful filmmakers.  

So many little things I love about this film. Here are just a few: 1) Leonard S
malls (the bounty hunter to end all bounty hunters) has the same tattoo as H.I. implying that the two are some how related, perhaps H.I. was Smalls' long lost son! 2) Gale and Evelle are literally born in the film as they appear from the earth when they break out of prison. 3) After H.I. awakens from his dream of the biker of the apocalypse he looks out the window and says, "It's a hard world for little things." a reference to the Robert Mitchum movie "Night of the Hunter." Too much symbolism and weird stuff going on to account for it all.

This film is so much richer and stranger and more inventive than 95% of the standard hollywood fare. It's a wonderful comedy that can be watched over and over. So many interesting things going on. And of course the yodeling.

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