30-Minute Freeze-Frame Challenge #2: A Clockwork Orange
30-Minute Freeze-Frame Challenge #3: Blade Runner
Simon Kinnear, not just a The Incredible Suit viewer (and therefore already beyond criticism) but also a real, proper film journalist who doesn't just fanny about boring people silly with the interweb equivalent of a puddle of armpit sweat like I do, but is actually paid to witter about movies for Total Film.
Incidentally Total Film recently published a list of '600 Movie Blogs You May Have Missed', which was one of the worst things I've ever read, for obvious reasons, but The Incredible Suit does not bear a grudge against Mr Kinnear for that. The article's author Dan Goodswen, on the other hand, had better watch out for falling pianos from now on.
See what I did there?
Oh forget it.
0:30:00 Here's Sam contemplating his choice of piano stool location. Yes Sam, I think it would be better off on the floor too. While this looks lovely and all, especially considering it's in the middle of a tracking shot, I'm not sure you could market the film with it or hang it over your fireplace.
1:00:00 Here's Captain Renault and Rick exchanging timeless, slickly-written dialogue crafted by angels with typewriters made of silver clouds. However we can't hear it, and all we can see is Rick looking in the wrong direction. Bogey, you amateur!
1:30:00 Here's Rick, Ilsa and Victor meeting surreptitiously after office hours. Obviously this shot perfectly describes the mood of the story and is an abject lesson in top-notch cinematography, but in itself it just doesn't get the blood pumping.
This was a toughie, it has to be said. Casablanca is such a sublime example of near-flawless filmmaking that people should probably have just stopped making movies after 1942. While every shot of the film is a masterclass in composition and lighting, that's not what the 30MFFC is about. I know I didn't really think the rules through very carefully before I embarked on this abortion of a feature, but basically the chosen frames have to be good enough to use as promotional material or to stick on your wall, and Sam staring at the floor or Rick turning his head at the wrong moment is enough to result in a Fail.
If it's any help, if these three shots had come up instead, it would have passed:
So sorry Mr K. Casablanca is textbook excellence but the 30MFFC sticks its neck out for nobody.
If you've got a film you'd like to see go under the Suitoscope, or a rant about what an insult to art, common sense, taste and decency this feature is, let me know via the magic of clicking here