labellementeuse: a girl sits at a desk in front of a window, chewing a pencil (Default)
[personal profile] labellementeuse

I saw Edge of Tomorrow tonight and I quite enjoyed it actually, but god what a terrible ending. It really seemed to betray the entire story that preceded it. It didn't offend me the way, say, Cage surviving and everyone else dying would have, but I liked the way the movie seemed to be about to subvert the everyone-else-sacrifices-themselves-so-the-manly-or-rarely-womanly-action-figure-can-survive trope. The ending seemed awfully easy. I would have cut off with him floating dead in the water and cut to documentary footage or something of the aftermath, like everyone on the battlefield when the mimics suddenly die, and news reports and so on. Found-footage collage-style ending. It's still a difficult ending but at least it's not the non-ending that actually happened. (You could also cut to him just waking up on the helicopter but a) that doesn't really make sense, like why then? and b) that introduces a stupid Inception-style ambiguity and ugh.)

Anyway I'm going to try to hunt down the original and see if the ending's different!

I thought Cruise was reasonably good and Blunt was fantastic. It was great that she had such an important role. But, also, on the weekend I saw The Long Kiss Goodnight (which I loved) with some friends and we were talking about female action heroes and how they don't goddamn look like action heroes, like Geena Davis and say Katee Sackhoff and Sigourney Weaver do - or the woman who plays Brienne in Game of Thrones. V said she blamed Joss Whedon and in a way she's not wrong - these girls who have superpowers so they don't have to physically look strong, they can just magically be strong. So from that perspective I found Emily Blunt's hairdo really distracting, even though they have the mecha suits that mean she doesn't have to be super-strong or whatever. Just. IDK. It's a thing I was thinking about while I was watching, just like I was thinking about the way male action heroes aren't necessarily inevitable. You can make the dude the sidekick some of the time. Hey, maybe someday we won't even need a dude sidekick ...

I was pretty impressed by the way they dealt with what could be a pretty draggy set of material with the looping. They had a pretty light hand with repeating things and I think did a great job of showing what was new and what was repeating and so on. I did think, though, that there wasn't a lot of tension. Which was great for me because I fricking hate tension, so I found it really relaxing to go through a movie for about 90% of which I wasn't worried at all about anyone dying. But I don't know if it works as well for real action fans. Maybe it does because action fans are really interested in the pain and difficult journey of the hero and that all happened? Maybe it's better because the hero is experiencing not just pain but actual death all the time? IDK. I don't really know what action hero wants.

In completely unrelated news, I'm going to be in the US in October (a few days in San Francisco, New York, at least a day in Boston and a few days in Chicago) so hit me up with recs or let me know if you would like to hang! :)

Date: 2014-07-01 10:53 am (UTC)
china_shop: Neal, Peter and Elizabeth smiling (Default)
From: [personal profile] china_shop
I enjoyed the lack of tension too, and the casual way she kept shooting him in the head. I think it was supposed to be light action (rather than hard SF type action), so maybe it doesn't matter than no one could die?

But when they died at the climax, I did expected them to stay dead, and resetting then felt like a cheat.

Date: 2014-07-03 11:08 am (UTC)
china_shop: Neal, Peter and Elizabeth smiling (Default)
From: [personal profile] china_shop
I've always thought the point of action movies was the tension and uncertainty, but now that I think about it that doesn't really make sense because the endings are sort of inevitable anyway, aren't they?

You could say the same of any romance story, but the couple (or moresome) getting together still provides a payoff.

Was just talking about this (Edge of Tomorrow) with the boy, and he pointed out that they were trapped in a dystopian nightmare, with no escape, and they were desperately trying to achieve a goal and thwarted at every turn. So you know, not every stake has to be "personal survival", perhaps? I think he has a point. :-)

I don't think it's necessarily about pain so much as working (and hopefully being smart) to overcome insurmountable odds.

Date: 2014-07-01 06:39 pm (UTC)
aria: (Default)
From: [personal profile] aria
I vaguely recall being excited on twitter, but while you're in Boston you're absolutely welcome to stay with me and Polaris/hang out with us during some day! :)

Date: 2014-07-01 08:30 pm (UTC)
birke: (Default)
From: [personal profile] birke
I wish I'd been able to visit the museums in Chicago -- the Field Museum, the Planetarium, and the Aquarium, specifically -- but I can't recommend them because I've never been. :-(

There's a long-running theatre show called "Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind" in Chicago. I enjoyed it.

Date: 2014-07-03 12:32 pm (UTC)
birke: (Default)
From: [personal profile] birke
Museums are like, my favourite thing when I'm traveling
Me toooo

Date: 2014-07-03 02:19 am (UTC)
go_gentle: (Default)
From: [personal profile] go_gentle
Yeah, I agree that they did an excellent job pacing what could have been really really draggy. (And as we were leaving the theater, I turned to my mom and said, 'I bet that's the Hollywod ending'.)

Boston! I am in Boston!

Date: 2014-07-03 05:04 am (UTC)
go_gentle: (Default)
From: [personal profile] go_gentle
Oh, and about women action heroes - yeah, there are a couple of actresses who semi-regularly do action roles that I'm thinking of, that are actresses I like in films I like, but they're just built very lightly and I find it sort of frustrating. (Haywire is my favorite counter-example, because Haywire is my favorite counter-example to many things.)

Date: 2014-07-03 07:48 am (UTC)
genusshrike: Aeryn Sun will mess you up (aeryn sun)
From: [personal profile] genusshrike
I read a review which was like 'no if you don't like the ending it is just because you don't understand it'. THANKS I have gone away and thought about it and I still don't like it!

Also something something the ending represents reaching nirvana ... and I am like, I don't think that is how nirvana works :-/ Him getting to die at last would have been much more fitting in that regard.

I know I said I didn't disagree with you, but now I am going to take that back but only in that I personally didn't find it lacked tension. Maybe because it reminded me of playing video games. Like the billion attempts it took me to kill that one particular reaper in Mass Effect 3. Where by a billion I mean like 30. I was pretty damn tense by the time I got to that 30th attempt. So, I guess the repetition invoked tension for me, because I associate it with feeling helpless and frustrated.

Same sort of thing with getting NPCs killed. I think I found the deaths more affecting before Cage lost the power, actually. That's the point for me where the movie got a whole lot less interesting, because at that point you know, right, Cage is now a badass, he will get through this scenario he's never encountered before without any trouble (where by trouble I mean game over, not just getting NPCs killed). It is the triumph of innate skill over perseverance. And I empathised less with Cage from that point.

So, I didn't really feel bad the last time Emily Blunt died (even though I was expecting her to stay dead), when I had felt bad the earlier times. Because I had emotionally detached.

I went and read the book afterwards – it's quite different even before you get to the ending. But I will not say any more than that!


labellementeuse: a girl sits at a desk in front of a window, chewing a pencil (Default)
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