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Author Topic: "RESCUE DAWN" FILM REVIEW  (Read 5211 times)
Colchester Kev
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« on: November 26, 2007, 03:33:00 PM »

Crock of shit ... Avoid like the plague.

Review ends.
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« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2007, 03:35:25 PM »

If we dont,will it be dark for ever?
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« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2007, 03:40:40 PM »

I haven't seen it yet but Werner Herzog’s reputation is as big as some of his films are extreme, and if you’ve seen Fitzcarraldo, complete with its unusual ‘opera for the Amazon’ storyline and its painfully realistic portrayal of a drag-a-ship-over-a-mountain effort, then you’ll know that’s really extreme. Herzog may be known for ranking everything – including other people’s lives – below his drive to fulfill his vision, but Herzog also brings a documentarian’s touch to his movies, having spent much of his years leading up to making Rescue Dawn focused on directing opera and filming documentaries.

It’s this balance between telling amazing larger-than-life stories and chronicling reality through documentaries that makes Rescue Dawn a memorable film. Like its lead character – German-American fighter pilot Dieter Dengler (Christian Bale) – this film is at once low key and incredible. Dengler survives an awesomely horrific early Vietnam War prisoner-of-war experience in Laos largely through his cool head and inventive mind, combined with an inextinguishable spirit. Rescue Dawn is hugely successful in conveying all of these aspects of Dengler’s experience. It unfolds matter-of-fact and low key, but by the end, we’re overwhelmed by the movie’s final scenes, having experienced Dengler’s trials along with him.

Herzog’s example should perhaps inspire other filmmakers to choose a remarkable story, make a documentary film about it, and then ponder the subject for a decade or so, before finally launching into making a Hollywood film version. This approach, however unintentional at the start, sure worked for Herzog with Rescue Dawn, which is both consistently credible in its look and events, and so well thought out and authentically presented that there’s no need to bash us over the head with the film’s message.

The movie has a documentary feel, with plenty of hand-held camera work and little dialogue through much of the film. Herzog’s intent was clearly to put us in Dengler’s shoes and immerse us in the experience, from plane crash (literally minutes into his involvement in the Vietnam War) through to survival in the Laotian jungles, capture and imprisonment, and escape.

Herzog has done well, but it’s Christian Bale’s performance in Rescue Dawn that will take your breath away. Bale often seems not to be acting at all – a good sign that his acting skill has reached a high level. He plays Dengler as a good natured team player and a creative fellow, who plans ahead for the possibility of being shot down, and then methodically approaches those events as a problem to be solved. We’re cheering for Dengler from the start of the film, and this isn’t because Herzog has built in rah rah speeches or overwrought emotionality to things. Instead, it’s the combination of a well balanced film and a strong, sympathetic performance that wins us over.

The supporting performances, while very much secondary to Bale’s acting, are also right on the mark. Steve Zahn is very good as a fellow American prisoner, at least briefly freeing himself from the goofy sidekick role in which he’s been typecast to play a very different sidekick – one who is understated, entirely human, and deeply affecting. Jeremy Davies accomplishes an even more challenging task, as his slightly deranged character is hard to like, yet we come to understand how – under the conditions these men are living – he is simply coping as best he can to survive.

Rescue Dawn is subtle in its politics – drawing a Vietnam-Iraq War parallel at the beginning and explicitly refusing to wrap itself in the American flag at the end – but still works powerfully well as both an incredible story of personal survival and an anti-war treatise. 


Looking forward to not seeing it now.


 Cheesy
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« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2007, 03:41:40 PM »

Seriously though, American Gangster was a film I enjoyed very much, see that
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Colchester Kev
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« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2007, 03:44:15 PM »

The acting was shit, it was like a bad "made for moron american afternoon TV audience" film.

I was gutted as i was really looking frward to seeing it.


still not to worry, im watching "Good Luck Chuck" tonight ... an American "Comedy" film ... will review that one tomorrow LOL
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« Reply #5 on: November 26, 2007, 04:10:53 PM »

anyone else getting excited about, but simultaneously dreading, seeing the Golden Compass?
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Colchester Kev
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« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2007, 04:23:19 PM »

anyone else getting excited about, but simultaneously dreading, seeing the Golden Compass?

http://uk.rottentomatoes.com/m/his_dark_materials_the_golden_compass/trailers.php

watch the 4th one down...

looks like a great family watch.

great site this by the way ... even if they did score "rescue dawn" highly
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Graham C
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« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2007, 07:20:32 PM »

anyone else getting excited about, but simultaneously dreading, seeing the Golden Compass?

lol yes, exactly the way I am feeling about it!

Saw Stardust at the weekend, not bad for a love story
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« Reply #8 on: November 26, 2007, 07:22:42 PM »

not bad for a love story

hehe - I made Matt sit through Romeo and Juliet at the weekend.  He's got West Side Story to look forward to next time Cheesy
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« Reply #9 on: November 26, 2007, 07:23:50 PM »

not bad for a love story

hehe - I made Matt sit through Romeo and Juliet at the weekend.  He's got West Side Story to look forward to next time Cheesy

That is just mean Claire,  Matt I feel your pain!  Was Annie for me yesterday Sad
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« Reply #10 on: November 26, 2007, 07:26:02 PM »

not bad for a love story

hehe - I made Matt sit through Romeo and Juliet at the weekend.  He's got West Side Story to look forward to next time Cheesy

That is just mean Claire,  Matt I feel your pain!  Was Annie for me yesterday Sad

palestine.....
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« Reply #11 on: November 26, 2007, 07:47:29 PM »

Seen a few films at piccies recently...

 Good Luck Chuck - was suprisingly good considering it got pretty poor reviews from most. 7.5/10

American Gangster - now here was a film i was really looking forward to, and i have to say, although it was watchable - i was disappointed. I think Denzel Washington is a brilliant actor and loved the fact he was the main man in this film, but it just didnt deliver as it should have. It was slow starting, the 2nd half of the film was much better but it was just too late.. 5/10

Darjeeling Ltd - Simply poor, dont even bother watching it... No point to the film really, three brothers go on a spiritual journey, sigh... Most of the time they are at each others throats and then after 90 minutes, they have suddenly learnt to love eachother, just doesnt happen! Really bad ... 2/10

Any more that i remember i will let you know! Grin lol
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« Reply #12 on: November 26, 2007, 11:28:04 PM »

Nice one Rookie...keep the reviews coming folks!.....

Don't visit the cinema very often, brought home by the fact we had two vouchers as Xmas present last year which are still pinned to the noticeboard and expire in a couple of weeks!

Trouble is every time I've looked at top films list/reviews in the past couple of months there just seems nothing there that merits making the effort.

Bearing in mind we have to see something......Good Luck Chuck's shading it from Stardust at minute......with Kev's review to come!   
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Colchester Kev
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« Reply #13 on: November 26, 2007, 11:48:23 PM »

Just watched "Good Luck Chuck" ... very very predictable, think "shallow Hal" without the novelty value of a story line that hadnt been done to death..  Although predictable and requiring no brain cells to watch, the film did actually deliver a couple of LOL moments ... and any film which allows you a glimpse of Jessica Alba in her pants always gets a bonus point Smiley

Overall it killed an hour and a half of time which i wasnt really planning to do anything else with ...which is just as well otherwise i would have been a tad pissed off...

So to sum up, it was ok, it had norkage a plenty and it had Jessica Alba....


I bet barry norman is going down the job centre tomorrow, his job has been taken by blondeites LOL
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« Reply #14 on: November 26, 2007, 11:56:19 PM »

Agree Kev, predictable yes, but entertaining and very much so LOL...

Stardust - Have not seen and will not ! Not my cup of tea tbh...

Ratattouille (sp)  - Saw this a week or two ago as there wasn't anything else on.. Suprisingly this was very enjoyable, funny moments throughout really... Ling enjoyed it more than i did mind you! 7/10 from me.

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