MOVIES: 'Brokeback Mountain'
So Avril and I finally got around to seeing 'Brokeback Mountain' last night, sticking Peter with the sitter for a few hours... It's one of those rare movies that lives up to the hype, and I wouldn't be at all surprised to see it win Best Picture. I was surprised at just how many gray heads I saw in the theater last night in our small, pretty conservative town; clearly this movie isn't just appealing to one demographic. It's a great, heartbreaking romance, with a measured, tranquil pace and some great performances, particularly by Heath Ledger, who I never would've expected this from. Director Ang Lee definitely makes up for the abomination that was "Hulk" and has won back my favor.
One of the things I found so interesting about Lee's direction is that the landscape is almost a third main character. The cinematography by Rodrigo Prieto is utterly gorgeous, with wide-open skies, shattered mountains and endless fields all sort of acting as a silent chorus to Jack and Ennis' dilemma. The role of landscape and surroundings in a film is something you rarely notice actively, but it plays a huge part in how successful the filmmakers are at crafting a believable world. "Brokeback Mountain" takes the raw West and rough-and-tumble cowboy lifestyle and twists it a bit, in a way that isn't quite so much subversive as it is insightful. I'm admittedly a flaming liberal type, but "Brokeback" still seems to me the kind of movie only a hardcore homophobe will dislike. It's ultimately a doomed love story, as tragic in its own way as "Romeo and Juliet."
...As I've been writing this post on this cloudy Monday off work, I went to the kitchen to make coffee. And now Toddler Peter is running around the house bleating, "Drink coff-ee? Drink coff-ee?" So it begins...