Yet another year with yet another update.
2012 version can be found here.
2013 version can be found here.
A soundman accidentally records the evidence that proves a car "accident" was murder, and consequently finds himself in danger.
I'm lowering the rating on this from my last viewing, but not because I enjoyed in any less. On the contrary: if anything I enjoyed it more with the benefit of hindsight and the ability to focus on particular elements of the film. Rather, I'm giving it a lower rating this time around because I can see where other audiences might not love it the way I do.
There are several aspects of the film which are pulpy or cheesy or even slightly thin or superficial. In particular, Nancy Allen's ditz of a character, John Lithgow's cartoonishly evil villain, and Pino Donaggio's lavishly bombastic soundtrack all feel like something out of a trashy slasher film. But for me, that's part…
The works of Brian De Palma are cinema's comfort food, and Blow Out is the tastiest of all. Plus, it has John Travolta, and an ending for the ages.
No one wants to know about conspiracy any more!
Oh, I beg to differ...
Actually, I was never a big fan of conspiracy films. I mean I like them, but it's not a sub-genre I was ever quick to hunt down.
I was never a big Travolta fan.
I was never a big De Palma fan.
Who knew that by putting them all together would make an instant favorite? I sure as hell didn't.
First, I gotta say, I'm with Quentin Tarantino on this one...why the hell did directors never use John Travolta to his full potential after this one? I mean, shit man. He's just incredible. Every one else is great too, but Travolta completely owns this show and…
"The bang was before the blowout."
A movie sound man stands on a bridge, recording the sounds of the night. He then hears something - a car. The vehicle comes into view as he witnesses it crashing off the road and into the small lake below. He quickly dives into the lake and manages to rescue a female passenger from the backseat. The driver, the governor of Philadelphia and a Presidential nominee, is dead.
The sound man, named Jack (Travolta), plays back his audio recording of the car crash and hears what seems to be a gunshot right before the car takes its plunge into the lake. Jack believes that the gunshot is what caused…
Everything I wanted but didn't know. From the very first frame I was hooked. The film has the look and feel of something made in the 70's and I guess it's close enough.
I loved everything about it. The music is still playing in my head. It hits all the notes one could want. Dramatic, chilling, fun and beautiful when the scene calls for it. It really sells the deeper moments between Travolta and Allen - not that the actors don't do a good enough job selling it on their own. In fact, this is probably Travolta's finest performance. I'm with the guy all the way. And Nancy Allen is so sweet and endearing in this role. Normally her type…
Blow Up and The Conversation as filtered through Brian De Palma is actually a pretty good formula for a film. De Palma is a talented filmmaker who knows how to insert a little fun into his tense thrillers, and while there are moments when he lets his cheezy instincts get the better of him, there are also moments where that really works--see the later scene where John Travolta drives through the Liberty Day parade at full speed, for instance.
This film is full of great shots, but the one that stuck out most is the one where the prostitute is in the subway station bathroom, and the Liberty Bell strangler walks in. It's shot from above, with the prostitute in…
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
They just don't make 'em like this anymore. The beginning threw me off, like what-tf is this? Haha. The girl was kind of annoying, Travolta was good though. I enjoyed watching him use the recording equipment; reminded me of The Conversation. I also like how the hit-man was willing to become a serial killer for the sake of a cover-up. Hmm, yes, interesting film, with a dark and twisted ending. Respect, De Palma.
The first and the second acts were immaculate. Then the third act started, shit started to unravel and, finally, the film ended abruptly. If only the ending had kept up with the rest of the film, this would have been a five-star film.
As much as it pains me I have to agree with Tarantino. In the Scorsese/Coppola pack of directors, De Palma stands much taller than the rest. The film is about a sound editor, so it should be no shock that the sound in the film is nothing but flawless. I particularly loved the scene where Jack was recreating the crime in his head.. nothing like sinking your teeth into some De Palma. And who knew Travolta could act?!
Thought of as one of Brian De Palma’s lesser watched films (despite its current popularity of Letterboxd), Blow Out came to my attention by way of The Canon podcast where they made a better argument for the film than I ever could. The level of talent involved in the film is incredible and what they accomplish on a visual level is breathtaking (the fish market shot, the fireworks shot, etc…). Considering the relative forgotten nature of this film, I was impressed that DP Vilmos Zsigmond film immediately previous to this was the infamous Heaven’s Gate and editor Paul Hirsch had just completed The Empire Strikes Back.
Yo that was fucked up using that scream Travolta
What can you expect when the movie is directed by Brian De Palma and the main actor is John Travolta? Also the movie is from the golden age of 80s. This movie is very good but I actually expected a little more. Travolta is expert on sound mixing in movie editing and one day when he was catching sounds in nature, he witnessed a car crash where one important person tragically dies and he saved a girl. He was also involved in serial killings by psychotic killer, who's played by John Lithgow. The ending was shocking, the movie is thrilling, but also something's missing.
Blow Out is, without doubts, my favorite non-gangster Brian De Palma film, a fantastic thriller that got all its main influences from Italian cinema, sort of a mix between Antonioni's Blow Up and any type of giallo, the suspense and horror-esque moments are incredible, as well as the rest of the film that completely enganged me, from its beginning to its "screaming" finale, the soundtrack is a classic — I already knew it way before I watched Blow Out — and the storytelling is marvelous. Also, Brian De Palma's visuals, long takes and close-ups are brilliant and Travolta's performance is stunning.
Quintessential DePalma, though I've never liked that the whole thing eventually amounts to a cruel joke.
The entire Criterion collection organized by spine number.
I don't know why I did this.
Number I've Seen: 190/768 (25%)…