Tag Archives: upstream color
The cinematic powers-that-be tend to decree that Citizen Kane is the best movie ever made, or sometimes Raging Bull. I don’t have a problem with that appraisal. It’s fun. Lists are fun—they expose people to cool movies they may not have heard of, and cause debates over who’s the most badass horror villain from the 80s, or what the best movies for libertarians are.
However, what is annoying is that whenever these movie freemasons decide that Vertigo is the third-best movie of all time or something, it causes all the opinion-scavenging cinephiles-in-training to rant their little hearts out about how The Rules of the Game or whatever really deserves to be ranked third-best. These lists also do a good job of tricking people into thinking The Godfather is artistically superior to Back to the Future, which is ridiculous.
June 29th, 2013 12:06 AM. My girlfriend and I nestled in for a night on Netflix. This is what happened.
It started with a really ‘clever’ and ‘quirky’ movie called Spork. That didn’t last long. Then we tried Kink, a Canadian TV show about an assortment of really arrogant and obnoxious S&M purveyors. The bumpers took up more time than the fucking interviews. Next. Then we tried that Sushi documentary that every keeps talking about but it was boring as fuck. Then we entered what I call ‘the blur’. This is where you turn off so many movies that are all so similar that they run together. I can’t remember what any of them are called.
After a while, Netflix kind of beats you down and you end up sticking with the least shitty thing. Generally, you want to pick something that’s just bad enough to be fun to make fun of, making it bearable. Most movies are far below that, but finally, I found one. Here’s what I wrote right after it ended:
Upstream Color (2013)
Written and Directed by Shane Carruth
What’s more important, story or storytelling? I honestly have no idea.
A great story will stick with you for the rest of your life, whether or not it’s told well, because the beats of it, the brilliant bare components, resonate with your soul and become a part of you, and help expand how you see the world on a moral level. ‘The Tortoise and the Hare’ is a great story. It’s so great we don’t even stop and think about how great it is. It’s just a part of us, as humans. You almost can’t remember a time in your life when you didn’t know it. And even if someone were to tell it to a little kid really poorly, its truth and importance would still come through.