Author Topic: L.A. Confidential  (Read 2284 times)

Offline Dragonfire

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L.A. Confidential
« on: June 16, 2010, 11:53:16 PM »
L.A. Confidential



Director Curtis Hanson and a terrific cast serve up a "ravishing, thrilling tale of police corruption and Hollywood glamour" (Marshall Fine, Gannett Newspapers) in this film of James Ellroy's novel. Three cops (Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe, Guy Pearce), a call girl (Kim Basinger), a mysterious millionaire (David Strathairn), a tabloid journalist (Danny DeVito) and the Chief of Detectives (James Cromwell) fuel a labyrinthine plot rife with mystery, ambition, romance and humor. The film captured nine 1997 Academy Award® nominations (including Best Picture*) and won Oscars® for Best Supporting Actress (Basinger) and Best Adapted Screenplay (Brian Helgeland and Curtis Hanson) after scoring an unprecendented number of Best Picture/Best Director honors from critics groups nationwide.

*Other Nominations: Best Director (Hanson), Art Direction/Set Decoration, Cinematography, Film Editing, Music - Original Dramatic Score (Goldsmith) and Sound.

My Thoughts

I wasn't interested in this one when I first saw previews for it.  I just didn't think I would like it.  Then I kept seeing the trailer and I started changing my mind and I eventually saw the movie..and I loved it.

The plot is rather complicated, so people could get confused or lost if they don't pay attention.  Things do start off slower while characters are introduced and situations are set up.  Some of what is shown doesn't seem that important at first, but it all ends up being tied to what is going and adding to the set up of things.  I think there ends up being a decent amount of mystery and I didn't find the movie to be predictable at all.  I remember being really shocked by one thing that happens - though it does make sense for the story. 

I did end up reading the book after I had seen the movie.  I think I'd seen it a few times by that point.  The book is even more complex than the movie with even more characters and events going on.  I think the movie is a really good adaptation since it focuses in on the most important elements of the story.  From what I remember, a lot more time is covered in the book.

Even though there aren't any actual sex scenes in the movie, sex does have a big impact on the story.  Sid, the tabloid reporter, is always hoping to catch famous or sort of famous people in some sort of compromising sexual situation.  Sid even sets some of them up, promising one person that no one else will ever know..and then he plasters the pictures all over the cover of Hush-Hush, the tabloid magazine he writes for.  Lynn, the main female character, is a call girl who looks like Veronica Lake.  There are other call girls who look like other actresses, though they are mostly just talked about and only one of them is briefly seen.  Bud and Lynn have a relationship and it is very clear that it involves sex even though not much is shown. 

There is a lot of violence in the movie, some of which is rather graphic and extreme.  There are shoot outs and fights with several people getting hurt or killed.  The violence didn't really bother me, though some people may feel differently.  The movie definitely deserves the R rating and it isn't one for children.

Several of the characters are just in a few short scenes, but they still manage to be interesting.  This was the first movie I saw Russell Crowe and Guy Pearce in.  I really didn't like Pearce's character Ed at first.  Technically he is the good guy since he is out to end corruption, but his attitude at first makes him unlikeable.  I don't see Bud as really a bad character, though he isn't all good either.  Jack has gotten use to being a bit of a celebrity thanks to the exposure from working with a tv show and the busts that he sets up for Sid to take pictures of.  Jack is a bit corrupted, but no where near the level that some other cops are.  The cast is wonderful in their parts.

I really like this movie and think it is has held up very well. At the time, I was ok with Titanic winning more Oscars, including best picture.  Now I'm thinking this one really should have won. 



I posted a review on Epinions last night - my 1300th review there.  :)

L.A. Confidential


Offline Antares

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Re: L.A. Confidential
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2010, 11:55:18 PM »
Good review and damn straight on the Oscars, Titanic should have never won.

Najemikon

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Re: L.A. Confidential
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2010, 12:17:28 AM »
Good stuff, Marie, and 1300? Wow. I've seen it several times. Last time for my Oscars Thread. I honestly think this is the best genre film released for years. Certainly I can't think of anything since to better it.

Curtis Hanson is less than prolific, but have you seen Wonder Boys? That's a great little film. And writer Brian Helgeland has hardly had a glittering career either, but Payback, especially the newer cut is great and shows again what a good grasp of classic movie writing he can have.

Offline Dragonfire

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Re: L.A. Confidential
« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2010, 12:50:36 AM »
Good review and damn straight on the Oscars, Titanic should have never won.

Thank you. :)  At the time, I was a bit caught up with the hype of Titanic and liked that it won. I have seen that movie 2 times, both in the theater, and I haven't watched it again.  I haven't wanted to watch it again and I've never been tempted by the DVD.  The movie did have some good points..but I don't see as many now as I did back then.

With L.A. Confidential, I can't remember how many times I've watched it since the first time.  I had it on VHS and watched it several times that way.  I actually triple dipped with this one because I have the earlier DVD release too.  The movie has just held up better I think.  The plot is much more complex and entertaining..and interesting. 

I'm just glad that I came to my senses in time to see this on in the theater.

Offline Dragonfire

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Re: L.A. Confidential
« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2010, 12:52:16 AM »
Good stuff, Marie, and 1300? Wow. I've seen it several times. Last time for my Oscars Thread. I honestly think this is the best genre film released for years. Certainly I can't think of anything since to better it.

Curtis Hanson is less than prolific, but have you seen Wonder Boys? That's a great little film. And writer Brian Helgeland has hardly had a glittering career either, but Payback, especially the newer cut is great and shows again what a good grasp of classic movie writing he can have.

I can't think of anything like it.  Black Dahlia tried - also based on a book by Ellroy - but it didn't work as well. 

I saw Wonder Boys years ago.  I can't remember a lot, but I remember liking it.  I have that version of Payback.  I just haven't watched it yet.

Offline Achim

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Re: L.A. Confidential
« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2010, 04:04:00 AM »
I wasn't interested in this one when I first saw previews for it.  I just didn't think I would like it.  Then I kept seeing the trailer and I started changing my mind and I eventually saw the movie..and I loved it.I really like this movie and think it is has held up very well. At the time, I was ok with Titanic winning more Oscars, including best picture.  Now I'm thinking this one really should have won. 

It was exactly the same for me.

I think my favorite character must have been the one played by Kevin Spacey. They were all very interesting though. I own the Blu-ray and it looks marvelous!

Darn, you made me want to see it again. :laugh:

Offline Dragonfire

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Re: L.A. Confidential
« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2010, 04:18:13 AM »
Jack might be my favorite character too.  I know I wasn't happy with how ..things with him worked out.

Offline Achim

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Re: L.A. Confidential
« Reply #7 on: June 17, 2010, 05:06:39 AM »
Jack might be my favorite character too.

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Offline Dragonfire

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Re: L.A. Confidential
« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2010, 05:21:58 AM »
Jack might be my favorite character too.

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Offline Achim

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Re: L.A. Confidential
« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2010, 09:27:26 AM »
Jack might be my favorite character too.

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