It’s as if Sidney Lumet decided to re-create the experience of sinking into a soft armchair next to a crackling fireplace with a well-worn copy of a choice detective novel. What it lacks in tension - the immediacy and urgency of Lumet’s best films is unfortunately absent - it gains in sheer sensuality. The accommodations are quite opulent, with Tony Walton’s lavish, gilded production design, Geoffrey Unsworth’s soft, glowing photography and Richard Rodney Bennett’s cozy, romantic score making it easy…
The logical endgame of Marvel’s jokey-smirky compulsions. If anything it’s too funny; all the gags and quips crowd out any chance for you to get involved on an emotional level. I don’t need poker-faced gravitas from a melting pot of fire demons, rock monsters, ancient prophecies, alien gladiators, flamboyant grandmasters, giant-ass wolves, goddesses of death and enormous green rage monsters, but this is the first time I’ve ever laughed hysterically and twiddled my thumbs at the same time.
This movie breaks the world.
Seriously, let’s take a moment to remember what this actually is, a sequel to a 35-year-old movie that’s been enshrined as a classic. Everything about that points to a stain on the original’s legacy, the best case scenario being one that would fade with enough bleach. This couldn’t be good.
And it’s not. It speeds right past being “good” without breaking a sweat.
What it is is one of the most intelligent, ambitious and provocative…