Monday, April 24, 2006
WHERE HAVE I BEEN? I FINALLY WATCHED THESE ON DVD:
I finally got DVD copies of Braveheart and Latter Days through Netflix, watched them this past weekend, and I must say I enjoyed both films tremendously.
I was probably the last person in America that had never seen Mel Gibson's 1995 Best Picture movie about our Scottish hero William Wallace standing up to those nasty evil and cruel English. WOW! What a movie! The emotional content of the film is superb as is the gruesome but very tolerable violence in its many battle scenes. It was definitely one of those mandatory long Oscar-caliber films indeed, but I did not feel bored nor like it dragged at any point. It was riveting in its display of character depth, and I really enjoyed its period piece appeal and the way it captured a lot of the feel for that very dark and savage era.
Mind you, I'm not a big Mel Gibson fan at all, but I do enjoy some of his movies. He strikes me as rather comical when trying to be serious, but he was pretty decent in this role, although I could probably deal with him just being a director. Masterful job on this one Mel, much much better than that overhyped The Passion of the Christ, which I found excessive.
The actress who portrays William Wallace's one true childhood love then wife has got the most beautiful and sweetest face I think I have ever seen. Her murder broke my heart indeed. The actors in this film overall are wonderful: the evil bastard English king, the hilarious gay prince and his lover, the French princess, Wallace's fellow Scotsmen, the leper Scottish king and many more are all really really good and enjoyable to watch. GOOD JOB KIDS! And the Oscars loved you too apparently.
Latter Days was obviously completely different and contemporary, about a young man--a Mormon who is adorable, but struggling with his homosexuality as he comes to live and missionize in Los Angeles after having grown up in a very conservative Idahoan household. He (by fate it seems) moves in with other fellow Christian brothers as his new roommates next to a very openly gay pretty boy and well...you can only guess how the film proceeds from there.
I was pleasantly surprised though. This little gay movie is much more than what I expected. The relative unknown actors are all wonderful and highly believable. The fact that it takes place in Los Angeles was really freakin' cool. My hometown baby! On the very trendy and world-renowned Sunset Strip no less. T'is a witty, poignant, and moving little picture, and I am glad I finally saw it, since it looks like most gays have already mandatorily seen it some two years ago when it was released. Kinda like the Jack and Ennis gay cowboy love story. Whatever that movie was called.
It's always nice to find movies that others saw years ago, that I end up discovering later. It's a testament to these films and their enduring power and appeal forevermore.