Recently, I've become aware that certain films are able to transcend the medium by being completely self-assured in their atmospheres…
The Straight Story
"The Straight Story" chronicles a trip made by 73-year-old Alvin Straight from Laurens, Iowa, to Mt. Zion, Wisconsin, in 1994 while riding a lawn mower. The man undertook his strange journey to mend his relationship with his ill, estranged, 75-year-old brother Lyle.
There are twelve levels of cinematic emotionality. It goes like this, in order from least serious to holy shit bro, stop crying:
1. A slight clenching in the throat and behind the eyes.
2. Eye moisture.
3. Greater amounts of eye moisture.
4. Actual, honest-to-god, mobile tears.
5. Tears accompanied by a trembling of the lip.
6. So many tears that it becomes difficult to see.
7. Repressed whimpers.
9. Loud whimpers.
10. Full on bawling.
11. The Straight Story.
12. Shitting yourself to death.
Only three movie scenes in my life have ever actually made me cry. And when I say cry, I mean CRY. Like cry cry. I "cry" during movies all the time. But I…
Angelo Badalamenti's score swells with pure emotion. Similar to another brilliant and beautiful story, Paris, Texas, (there's way too many commas there) this is about a man on the path to redemption. Similar to that movie, this is a pure mannered, unmelodramatic weeper.
Little by little, this curious man is unpacked like a Russian doll. Across Iowa to Wisconsin, cornfields galore on his small lawn mower, we're truly in the midwest. And as the film unfolds, we're confronted with a man whose crippled old frame belies his brutal past: a past of war and alcoholism and brotherly love and loss and children reared amidst violence and tempers. It's almost unbearably close to home.
I think Forrest's stellar review sums it…
Film #89 of Project 90
”I'd give each one of 'em a stick and, one for each one of 'em, then I'd say, 'You break that.' Course they could real easy. Then I'd say, 'Tie them sticks in a bundle and try to break that.' Course they couldn't. Then I'd say, "That bundle... that's family."
David Lynch is famous for his mind-bending and surreal style and his special way of mixing reality and dream which eventually leads to nightmarish and perplexing experiences, but with this he shows that he has the ability to move out of his comfort zone and deliver something even more fascinating, and more amazingly he doesn't need anything special, just give him a stubborn old man…
Is it possible to give a film seven stars on here? Because it should be.
Fuck off, "Magnolia", this is my favorite movie now. Why? Because David Lynch. Because Richard Farnsworth. Because Angelo Badalamenti. Because Harry Dean Stanton. Because Sissy Spacek. Because dat soundtrack. Because dat emotion. Because dat "that's family" speech. Because dat fucking ending, holy shit.
THIS is how to make a movie, people. It's slow-moving but not boring. It's intensely emotional without being sappy or sentimental. It's well-directed, well-edited, and brilliantly acted. Richard Farnsworth deserves an enchanted longsword for the performance he gives here. My god. His face is like some sort of ever-changing, capricious elven forest. His face is like a "Magic: The Gathering" card.…
It is sometimes easy to forget what a versatile director Lynch really is as he lately only deals in vagueness and weirdness. The Straight Story is a gentle reminder of what Lynch is also capable of. Delving into a character and placing him into the real world through us, his viewers.
The title is far from a clever play on words but its ambiguity serves the film really well as this really is a simple story told in the straightest way imaginable by a director who can find the realness in a performance and a character, be they big or small. Just look at the faces of the people our hero encounters, they are real people, heck, look at our…
I've been going through some major life changes recently. I'm attending college, I'm becoming a full-fledged adult, and, for maybe the first time ever, I feel genuinely happy. I feel content and optimistic and hopeful about my life and the direction in which it's going. But there's one event that definitely takes the cake in terms of amazingness.
If any of you have been following me for long enough, you might remember an earlier review I did for this film. In it, I described how THE STRAIGHT STORY had become my inspiration for reconnecting with a friend who I treated like dogshit. Well, your long wait of bated breath is finally over, because I am here to tell you that…
Um road movie a passos de tartaruga, um drama sem conflitos e uma história tão simples e bem dosada que na metade do caminho já tinha destruído meu coração.
“Ninguém nos conhece melhor que um irmão da nossa idade, ele sabe quem e o que somos, melhor do que ninguém. Eu e meu irmão ofendemos muito um ao outro, coisas impossíveis de esquecer, mas estou tentando esquecê-las. Estou engolindo meu orgulho com esta viagem e espero que não seja tarde demais; irmão é irmão.”
Como disse o personagem, algumas viagens apenas nós podemos fazer.
Scoff, that hypocritical David Lynch keeps rambling on and on about not wanting to get oppressed by studios, and then he goes and sells his soul to Disney... which, you know, has never made anything weird and experimental. Seriously though, Lynch is settling down his experimentalism so much here that this film actually advertises itself as a "straight story"... about an old WWII veteran traveling the Midwest on a lawn mower on a journey to reconcile with his dying brother. Having seen "Paris, Texas", I just find it weird that someone is now on a slow journey to "visit" Harry Dean Stanton, which I might would do if I'm trying to catch up to him on a journey to visit…
That was probably the inspiration for Nebraska.
Nota = 7,5
A masterpiece in the art of tearjerking.
Aside from some tedious and frequent -albeit arguably necessary- dissolves, I'm really into this. Knowing how people have deemed this as a 'non-Lynch' film, I went into this with a completely different mindset, but realized about 10 minutes through that this is indeed a David Lynch film, even if the subject matter may not be as outwardly dark as, say Blue Velvet (or even The Elephant Man, for that matter).
Crazy how Lynch does pull this off (one of those rare instances in modern American cinema that does a good job with sentimentality, even if that feeling is not always at the forefront of The Straight Story's mind; it is one that is found warmly in the thought of our…
The opening credits offer what might be the most pure lullaby to a Lynch fan the world has ever encountered; Badalamenti's score plays like the white lodge version of Laura Palmer's theme. After credits in an all-too familiar font, we see a small town bathed in sunlight; as much as we are reminded of the compromise of Twin Peaks, we find a purity in The Straight Story. Where Twin Peaks is a world in which pretension has obscured happiness, The Straight Story exists in a world wholly apart; it boldly claims that there is, in fact, good in this world.
The Straight Story looks to tell a story of redemption, in which a man drives his tractor from Iowa to…
Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!
Originally a list made prior to Cannes 2014, now updated every mid-April.
This is every Palme d'Or nominee since the…