Mel Gibson's Apocalypto
Let's just get this out of the way. Mel is a mess. His dopey dad, the religious OD and super stardom mixed up a bad brain chemical concoction in his brains. Mel looks like the type of guy who on a bad day probably chugs a bottle of booze, draws angry circles in his notebook until the pencil snaps, then gets naked and goes into the kitchen and smashes all the plates and uses a shard to cut his palm to smear a cross on his face- then finally passes out next to the toilet mumbling a singsong lullaby that involves the word 'kikes'.
That being said, it's sort of shocking that he can walk out the door with who knows how much money and fly to who the hell knows where to shoot a movie about god knows what and have it turn out to be as awesome as this movie is. I actually couldn't believe how much I dug this movie. I figured I'd walk out with some sort of mumbling respect for his 'vision' and 'ambition'- but this movie did a cinematic hat trick for me. It starts off culturally interesting and sweet. Then it shifts gears to genuine dementia and terror. And finally throws down the hammer on the hollywood action. This movie might not be the smartest movie ever but it did make me legitimately think on a human level-- and bonus! it's definitely the most exciting flick this year and flaunts the biggest balls.
It's really pretty shocking for me because the trailer for this flick and pre-buzz made me think everything was gearing up to be a mega-flop of embarrassing proportions. That Mel finally went down a road all by himself and built a house in loonyland. I would have been fine with that of course and I was half-hoping for it. This flick being terrible would save me the conflict of supporting Gibson's mental habits by buying a ticket to his spectacle. (btw tonight I compromised and bought a ticket for The Fountain and wandered into Apocalypto instead. The Fountain can use the money. Mad Mel will probably be ok without my $10. I think it's a very good way to go if you're torn on the support aspect. Switch the ticket. Just give the money to a needy movie cause-- but see this movie on the big screen.)
Oh wait! I'm supposed to be talking about the actual movie. I really don't know what to say about it. Visually it was friggin stunning. Great colors. Culturally it was fun and coolio. Actionwise it was slammingly good. I was angry at the bad and cheered in my heart at the good. In terms of the violence it was pretty severe but not all worthless overkill like Passion was. It was just over the top fun. I like my movie gore just fine thank you. You ain't never going to hear me complain about seeing brain. Yadda, once the movie decided to ditch the 'cultural' aspects and just roll into Mayan Rambo I felt sort of disappointed in the sell-outness-- but friggin-a! whatever! With action like this movie delivers...culture schmulture! I can always read a book if I'm that interested.
Three Good Things About this Movie
- The faces, costumes, and colors.
- I thought the acting was solid across the board.
- When the bad guys got it... they got it real good.
Three Bad Things About this Movie
- No matter what you couldn't separate Mel from it. If Malick made it the
critics would be worshipping on their knees.
- The dialogue was unnecessary hokey and modern sometimes.
- It made me sad for everything that's been lost.
All in all, gotta hand it to Mel that sick bastard. This movie rocks. I'm actually stunned. My mouth hung open in awe at times. It deserves a Best Picture nomination. Sure there's a real cornball aspect to all of it but whatever. People clapped for it after it was over and I walked out all jazzed. It just felt so deep breath good to see something so differently lunaticky and accessible. Not sure if I ever need to watch it again but for one time dose of wildness I ain't seen nothing like it. It's just a shame that while watching this flick, Mel's spirit kept distractingly tapping me on the shoulder to remind me to question his true intentions or personal worth...