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Crash (2005)

Reviews

1/10: And Burn
Monday, February 27, 2006

I wrote this as a two part review. Part two has spoilers.Part 1: No, this isn't that one about the sex with car accidents. This is the one about racism in L.A. You know, the one where everybody is a racist, and race is the topic on everybody's mind at all times. Race.Its like the movie has a form of turrets syndrome where race is the constant theme. Race. Racist. Racism. Race Relations. Relay race.Paul Haggis made a movie which took the structure of Magnolia, which was used to show the disconnect of people who are tangentially connected, and then screwed it into a 1'53" mental vomit about racism in America. RACE. In the 24 hour period we have 7 stories running parallel all connected and about race. The first hour, people say ridiculous stuff and do absurd things in an effort to be real about racism in America.For example, the story...

1/10: A tale told by an idiot
Friday, September 2, 2005

The film's tagline is "You think you know who you are. You have no idea." I reject both the suggested idea that I have no idea who I am and the inferred suggestion that this film tells me who people truly are. If people in real life are really like this, then man, we're screwed.A bilious film that I walked into late and left prematurely. A film which is so wrapped up in its goal of becoming The Race Film of All Time that it loses sight of the very tools a film must use.The rules of Hollywood are such: if you show something in the first half, it must be used in the second half. Thus the gun that the daughter worries about her father buying will somehow find its way into the story in the second half. The rules of Hollywood are to make dialog 'real' - a concept which changes with every decade. Is...

4/10: Great acting ensemble but the movie left a bad taste in my mouth
Tuesday, March 7, 2006

THE GOOD: The acting were great especially Terrence Howard and Thandie Newton. Terrence Howard should have been nominated for Best Supporting Actor instead of Matt Dillon.THE BAD: I'm a visible minority (non-white) and I have experienced some form of racism in my life. BUT despite my life experiences and the movie's subject matter, I would definitely NOT say that this movie is the best of the year, in fact, it's FAR from it. I have problems with this movie both from a moviegoer's perspective and from a visible minority's perspective. Some of my problems with this movie are:(1) Poor character development (or none at all). Just because we saw extremes in a character, for example, Matt Dillon being a racist cop and being a good caregiver to his ailing father, that does not mean in any way that the character is well-developed. Yes, I admit that in a big cast ensemble...

3/10: aesthetically and intellectually offensive
Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Contrived, self-conscious, obvious, repetitive, manipulative, heavy-handed, pretentious--apparently these qualities do not count against a film today, at least as far as critics and major awards organizations are concerned. Roger Ebert called "Crash" his favorite film of 2005, and the Academy Awards gave the film more recognition than I would have thought possible--even considering the large quotient of lowbrows in Hollywood today. To put it as kindly as possible, "Crash" presents us with a shockingly manipulative story and treats delicate social issues with all the subtlety of sledgehammer blows. In essence, it is a bad knock-off of John Sayles, and you would do much better treating yourself to a very fine film like the criminally-neglected "City of Hope" (1991) or "The Sunshine State" (2002).I should make it clear I wasn't disappointed at all in the performances or the look of the film. No, the trouble is something a bit deeper than that. As...

1/10: Insults intelligence and cheapens the message, if there is one
Wednesday, October 19, 2005

I saw this "movie" partly because of the sheer number of good reviews at Netflix, and from it I leaned a valuable lesson. Not a lesson about ethnic diversity however...the lesson I learned is "Don't trust reviews".Yes, racism sucks and people are complicated, but the people who actually need to see this movie are going to be the ones who are the least drawn to it and least affected by it if they DO see it. The only reason that I can think of for the number of good reviews is that it's being reviewed by people who aren't used to thinking, or who've seen their first thought-provoking movie and somehow think that Haggis invented the concept. In fact, he basically made this film, which should be called "Racism For Dummies", as emotionally wrenching as possible, seemingly to give people who don't spend a lot of time thinking the impression that they...

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