Safe (the other one)

This, on the other hand, is not a Stub

Some stories work as a single sentence. Some people, who can say who, would do well to remember that.
Reported on 21st of May, 2012

As I rode away from my viewing of Safe at the Cineworld Crawley, I’m not ashamed to say I got a little misty. The Cineworld Crawley is my favorite cinema in England, possibly because of the three story vastness, and possibly because the three story vastness allows it to show films that even London doesn’t get. Cineworld’s Crawley’s repertoire includes the great Triangle and the terrible John Carpenter’s The Ward, films unseeable anywhere else, and thus making the experience of seeing films ideal, even when the films are not so.

It seems appropriate that Safe should be the last film I see here, because, um, some stuff happened in this below average film that made the experience telling and poignant as the final film of the Crawley experience. Okay, there’s no way you’d believe that; what is appropriate is my grafting on some meaning where there really wasn’t any to begin with. That’s the definition of poignancy; self-invented sentiment!

A ha! Lisbeth Salander was abused. That’s why she’s a powerful female character. Otherwise, it could never happen.

I will say this; there’s a neat little lesson flopping around in Safe, as is often the case when you get the glimpse of an cool idea in a silly film. The bit starts, and then doesn’t pay, off when Mr. Statham’s wife is killed (yawn), but then is told that whoever he talks to will be likewise killed, that he must now live his life alone without human contact. A potentially cool idea which fails for two reasons, or rather fails for one reason, and then becomes the reason that the film fails.

There is, first, a great lesson here, in what might be called The Behind the Backstory Rule. Often times characters have pasts to explain to us why they do stuff, and this works to a point as long as you don’t think about it too much. Conversely, it works for humans beings as long as you do think about it too much. It’s absurd enough to reveal that Hannibal Lecter ate his own sister (‘Oh, that’s why he eats people. He’s being literal‘), or that Lisbeth Salander was abused (‘Oh, that’s why she’s a powerful female character. Otherwise, it could never happen.’).

Safe (the other one)

18 May 2012 @ The Cineworld Crawley

$3.00 or, if one must be prosaic, and one must... 
★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆


It is far more absurd (technically speaking it’s simply dull) to dedicate an entire book/movie to same. What if you made a movie about how Darth Vader, oh, who am I kidding? Way too tired for that. Watch Spaced if you really need to ease your jones for Lucas-bashing. Then watch a double of Star Trek and Run, Fat Boy, Run to ease your jones for Simon Pegg-bashing. Fair is fair.

The point, somewhat lost three paragraphs ago is that some stories work as a single sentence, and we would do well to remember that. I’m always a fan at starting right at the action and working backwards only if you have to, and the Behind the Backstory Rule emphasizes that idea. If the film begins with Mr. Statham tossing away some pithy line that he can’t save the eidetic schoolgirl with the safe combination to the mob’s (yeah, I know, we got problems from the get), instead of us wallowing in every dull detail of what happening, well, the movie would be 42 minutes long, and we would have finally reached the point where the trailers and commercials take longer that what we’re paying to see. There’s a passage about this coming to pass in the Bible, and it does not augur well.

The end of an era, unless I don't move, or unless I see another film there, or if I move back and keep seeing films there. Can an era be a week?

The end of an era, unless I don’t move, or unless I see another film there, or if I move back and keep seeing films there. Can an era be a week?

Why, you might ask since you’re never going to see the film, doesn’t this work? It could, but only if we didn’t know who the mysterious figure was fucking up his life. It’s a neat idea; we can imagine our erstwhile protagonist wandering around and trying to discover the sinister forces at work. If you know who’s behind this torment, and you’re in a movie, and I’m watching the movie, you just seem like a chump. I’m not saying that people don’t fight back in real life – they don’t – I’m saying I don’t pay £9 to watch it not happen.

If you are moronic enough to believe that someone not exacting revenge when they have nothing to lose and everything to gain is interesting in a film, that’s fine. Well, not fine, but it might get me so incensed that I wouldn’t fight you. However, if you choose to go that way, the one person you absolutely must not cast as The Man Who Is Sitting On His Ass But Steadfastly Not Kicking Any is Mr. Jason Statham. What would happen if Sandra Bullock was cast as a fish in water? What if Brad Pitt was cast according to type? What would happen if Shia LaBœuf was cast?

You may wonder why I don’t follow my own advice and just keep short. It’s for the same reason no one does – the work isn’t done until someone’s taken a cheap shot at Shia LaBœuf. Which means were done now.

Shia LaBœuf.

The Take

A missed opportunity is still an opportunity
Nostalgic quality of the last film at the Cineworld Crawley, even though I wound up moving back to England.
Total Profits
Okay, so he’s got to remember a combination to the safe. Piece of paper, or kidnap a super-genius schoolgirl at childhood and train her to remember four digit numbers. Boy, the internet generation is just spoiled
No one will be admitted as Mr. Jason Statham…waits to do something!
Total Losses


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