USA Up All Night (also known as Up All Night and Up All Night with Rhonda Shear) is an American…
Julian makes a lucrative living as an escort to older women in the Los Angeles area. He begins a relationship with Michelle, a local politician's wife, without expecting any pay. One of his clients is murdered and Detective Sunday begins pumping him for details on his different clients, something he is reluctant to do considering the nature of his work. Julian begins to suspect he's being framed. Meanwhile Michelle begins to fall in love with him.
There is quite a bit I do not know about "American Gigolo." For one thing, I can't tell if the film is misogynistic and homophobic, or just so melodramatic that all of its characters seem a bit like caricatures. I also can't quite tell if the film is legitimately well made, or just so strange that I can't help but become absorbed by it. But one thing is for sure: I was never bored by this movie.
Fueled with a synth score that may feel awfully out of place but is pretty damn good, "American Gigolo" is a moody piece of melodrama fueled by surprisingly decent lead performances. Many of the supporting players do a bad job here, but Richard…
Richard Gere > Rob Schneider
Almost a forgotten masterpiece.
Until the final 15 minutes of this movie I was thinking that I rediscovered a 1980’s film that was under-appreciated and possibly lost in the drudgery that was 80’s cinema. Then the ending derailed the movie enough that I am tempted to give it a negative review.
Written and directed by Paul Schrader, who also wrote classics like Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, and The Last Temptation of Christ as well as directing Auto Focus and Affliction, this movie depicts the life of a high class male escort living in L.A. in the early 80’s. The movie’s plot focuses on a murder that the protagonist, Julien as played perfectly by a young and sexy Richard Gere, is…
Julian Kaye is an allegory for Joseph/Josef K. in this neon-tinged and lightly adapted version of Kafka's THE TRIAL set in 1980s Los Angeles. More broad strokes than an actual adaptation, AMERICAN GIGOLO plays more like a series of Kafka's aphorisms, evokes passages of THE TRIAL rather than the entire text, or at the very least riffs on a character who finds himself variously above, between, below, and/or in conflict with the law, whatever that means.
Having lived in Westwood for two years, 2010 - 2012, this movie feels like a kind of indescribable time travel to a time that I never knew but to places that I have known intimately from personal experiences. The power of narrative cinema is…
It's amazing that a movie released in 1980 was so able to encapsulate the entire decade that would follow. Or perhaps this film gave the decade something to aspire to: the veneration of image and surface over substance. The film is so flat that it lulls you into a trance. Richard Gere is the perfect actor to portray an impenetrable blank slate. Only in the end do we start to see cracks and see what is underneath. No matter how hard you try to look a part, the real you is still in there somewhere. Could have stood to be much shorter though.
The epitome of a cool movie.
A very young Richard Gere in a 1980 movie in which not a lot is happening, but the pace and atmosphere are good. The movie itself is rather predictable and never is exciting but the acting of Gere makes up for this.
This film frustrated the hell out of me.
Is it supposed to be this prescient work on the 1980s and its decline into materialism, vapidity, ego, and puritanism?
Not really. The first third or so of the film—especially the scene where Julian (Richard Gere) chooses his suits—has a style that hints at a juxtaposition of glamour and emptiness. But mostly these potential themes seem accidental, as they're fleeting and inchoate. The arrival of the murder plot only muddles things further.
Ok, is it a character study then? A look at the life of a gigolo circa 1980?
No, because the murder plot ruins that, too, forcing Julian into a wrong man narrative that's heavy on plot and light on character…
The epitome of a cool movie.
First of all, excellent cinematography and cool music (it was all based on Blondie's song call me). What I didn't like was the cast, they weren't that great, especially Gere. The best part was the end. Overall, it's a pretty good drama, but it really could have been better.
There is a winsome naiveté in Richard Gere's eyes countered by a tragic over-confidence that slowly emerges through Schrader's targeted juxtaposition and subtle character detail. That little line of cocaine enjoyed offscreen (in private) before dancing around to Smoky Robinson while picking out the suit for the night. On the surface, Julian is a man of refinement and cool calculation, but in reality he is merely a man who knows how to match tie/jacket combos and is extremely lucky to be where he is in life. As a gigolo, he is top of the line, more through his training and handling than his character. So it goes.
Schrader is happy to allow the audience to distrust Julian. Despite the facts…
Fantastic movie. One current is an electric crime drama (and the challenge of justice for outsider groups). Another is the steady melancholy, loneliness, and emptiness of the protagonist’s life. Awesome clothes. And OMG Lauren Hutton. Another good movie that explores the tensions between a criminal profession and desire for a normal life: Thief, of course.
I was so awestruck by the opening sequence that I watched the film's first 20 minutes again after finishing the film: the music, fetishistic closeups of a Mercedes Benz's body parts, the road rushing by, the bleached out California streets, and finally a smirking Julian (Gere). As Julian walks confidently (the way he walks in perfectly tailored clothes should have been enough to garner him an oscar nod, it's an incredibly physical lead performance by Gere and he is the only truly erotic element in a movie heavily-drenched in sexuality), the camera excitedly circles him, making it immediately clear that the camera is obsessed and Julian will be it's object of obsession.
Rather than disrupting the way society functions, Julian's…
Pretty rad 'May December' love story with a kickin' synthy score riffing on Blondie's 'Call Me'.
- A Nightmare on Elm Street
- A Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2: Freddy's…
- A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream…
- Boogie Nights
- The Last King of Scotland
- Eastern Promises
- The Dreamers
- Saving Private Ryan
- Three Colors: Blue
- Record of a Tenement Gentleman
- Odd Man Out
A list of all of the films featured in Mark Cousins' television series, The Story of Film: An Odyssey, in…