The Machinist

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Remo D
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The Machinist

Post by Remo D » Mon Dec 13, 2004 8:45 pm

Still in the arthouses, but finally out of "limited release" hell. A mainstream hit this could never be, but you'll certainly want to see the followup from the director of SESSION 9.

We've all heard how Christian Bale lost 63 pounds to play the tormented protagonist--but believe me, there's far more to his presence than his physical appearance (which, of course, is frightening enough here). And that's crucial.

If the point of THE MACHINIST were to build up to a surprise ending--to challenge you to second-guess the resolution--then it would be a failure. It's too easy to stay ahead of Trevor as the potentially lethal harrassment of a mysterious co-worker begins--and the film proceeds down the exact road you expect it to. At least, as far as the PLOT goes.

But the point of THE MACHINIST isn't WHAT it is. It's HOW it is. You've got top-drawer acting from Bale and Jennifer Jason Leigh (not to mention Michael Ironside!) You have excruciating suspense sequences (the pre-credit preview will certainly grab you), powerfully dark, color-drained "dead" cinematography, and hugely disturbing setpieces (the industrial accident and the carnival ride, to name two).

Of course you'll have it figured out. But it won't stop the film from working, and that's the point. And there's far more than simple "I was right" satisfaction at the end--there's cinematic and emotional CLOSURE to be had, as well.

It's a rough ride, but it's well worth it. THE MACHINIST deserves your attention.
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Kimberly
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Post by Kimberly » Thu Dec 16, 2004 10:31 pm

I haven't seen Session 9 so I'm not familiar with the director's previous work...

We went to see The Machinist this evening and I loved it. It was very dreamy in it's look... and though Remo says that it's pretty easy to keep a step ahead of Trevor thru the film... I couldn't. I mean sure you don't sleep for a year it's gonna fuck your head up... but there's this nagging while watching that it's gotta be something more... or is it?! It wasn't until things were brought to light that ah yes, it all makes sense now. The movie gave me a feeling of being right there... a witness to this man's emotional spiral...

And spot on Remo about the feeling of emotional closure... the end of the film it was as if a weight had been lifted...

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Post by Latte Thunder » Sat Mar 12, 2005 7:20 am

I caught this last night. I liked it a lot but I couldn't figure some things out.

Trevor's big revelation comes and he proclaims, I know who you are... but I didn't. Who the fuck was Ivan? I just couldn't follow it.

I loved the look of the movie, though, very dreary.
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Post by Remo D » Sat Mar 12, 2005 11:40 am

Latte Thunder wrote:I caught this last night. I liked it a lot but I couldn't figure some things out.

Trevor's big revelation comes and he proclaims, I know who you are... but I didn't. Who the fuck was Ivan? I just couldn't follow it.

I loved the look of the movie, though, very dreary.




SUPER SPOILER


SUPER SPOILER


SUPER SPOILER


Ivan did not exist except in Bale's subconscious. Ivan was his guilt personified. And he's not the only character that Bale "interacts" with throughout the film when it just isn't possible. By recognizing and "killing" Ivan, Bale finally comes to terms with not only who he is--but what he has yet to atone for.

Top film. I'm including a write-up in a "Loss of Identity" book project... more details to come...
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Post by Griff [Mola] » Tue Mar 22, 2005 8:07 am

Not a fantastic movie but a very interesting one. I think the execution is better than the script, actually. What I found most disturbing was that Trevor reminded me of a few folks I've known who've overdone it on the drugs thing...

My hat's off to Bale, though. Let's see Cruise do THAT to himself. Jennifer Jason Leigh... she's gotta be in her 40's now and she's still shakin' it. The woman is fearless. And hey, its always nice to see Mr. Ironside.

Apparently the writer and the director for this one are up for THE CRAZIES remake.


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Post by Inearthed » Fri Jul 15, 2005 8:39 am

I really enjoyed this movie. I went in knowing absolutely nothing about it other than the fact that Bale was on the "Apple a day" diet and was settling at an unhealthy weight. This was probably the one movie that I've seen in a long time that didn't leave any loose ends, everything that was focused upon at one time or another in the movie had relevance or meaning. At the same time, they never have to have a voiced over montage of alternate versions of scenes from the movie to explain everything.

Just watch the movie carefully and everything should make sense. There is a lot of cool stuff throughout.

I actually like the fact that they didn't do some wacky surprise ending where we find out Trevor actually is actually an alien or whatever. It progressed as a movie should and gave hints away to keep the viewer on the right track but not hints so subtle that you'd miss them unless you're the master of "symbology" as Detective Dolly would say.


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