Currently browsing the "David Fincher" tag.

Arty Chick’s Seven Picks: Week 8

This week’s picks include classics and cult faves. There’s only one foreign film in the bunch for a change of pace. Two of the films come from the same director, though one is a frightening drama and the other is a sci-fi. There’s a screwball detective comedy and a Spanish psychopath on the Amazon drama. It’s heavy on the 30s and the 70s.

 

The films are: Aguirre Wrath of God, It Happened One Night, Don’t Look Now, Notorious, Fight Club, The Thin Man, The Man Who Fell to Earth

 

Review: Mank

Lovers of Old Hollywood rejoice. David Fincher (Fight Club, The Social Network) has served up a beautiful black-and-white ode to Tinsel Town’s power players and their behind the scenes machinations. Set in the 1930’s and 40s, Mank is the story of the writing of Orson Welles’ debut masterwork Citizen Kane by the alcoholic, bedridden hack Herman J. Mankiewicz (Gary Oldman, Darkest Hour, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy). His friendship with William Randolph Hearst (Charles Dance, “The Crown”, “Game of Thrones”) and his partner Marion Davies (Amanda Seyfried, First Reformed, Mamma Mia) was the basis for the film and their relationship is the backbone of Fincher’s. And as Mankiewicz writes from his bed out in the desert, he reflects back on the past decade of his life when he was a frequent guest at Hearst mansion, tolerated for years despite his loutish behavior because he was so amusing.

Gone Girl

Gone Girl is very good. And, I suspect, it’s probably even better if you haven’t read the best-selling book by Gillian Flynn (which I did, about two years ago). It’s just a solid, well-cast thriller that has enough twists and turns to keep things interesting, even if it does feel a tad too long.

I won’t say much about the plot, because the less you know going in, the more you’ll get out of it. But here’s the gist: Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck) arrives home on his fifth anniversary to find his wife Amy (Rosamund Pike) missing. A media circus ensues as questions arise about Nick and Amy, the state of their marriage, and Nick’s potential involvement in his wife’s disappearance and possibly, her death. The clues – literal and figurative – stack up as the movie flashes back on the couple’s path from instant attraction and romance to marital dysfunction.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Three of the most popular books of 2008-2010 were Stieg Larssen’s Millennium Trilogy. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is the first book and there is already one great movie of it in the original Swedish. (Here is my review of that one.) But now we have the David Fincher (Fight Club, The Social Network) prettied-up American version. I could just about recycle my first review for the new one, but there are a few differences. It is in English. Daniel Craig is hotter than Michael Nyqvist. And Rooney Mara’s Lisbeth is a great deal less insular and a lot more one-dimensional than Noomi Rapace’s.