Wednesday, April 02, 2003

The Straight Story (1999) dir. David Lynch
Alvin Straight is the subject of the film that progresses with an un-Lynchian straight linearity. Straight, in his 70's, decides to drive an old tractor straight across Iowa and into the middle of Wisconsin to visit his ailing but estranged brother. The film, produced by Disney, is about the journey, not the destination, and it manages to warm the heart without sappiness, partly because Lynch's sense of terror pervades the film and because the characters that Straight encounters along with the way are all to real.

Suspicion (1941) dir. Alfred Hitchcock
A weak ending mars this otherwise suspenseful tale of a woman (Joan Fontaine) who is too passionately in love with her husband (Cary Grant) to care that he is a reprobate who steals and lies. When he contemplates murder, though -- her murder -- she realizes what she has done. Hitchcock makes you envy the woman's delirious passion, thus deepening the film's tragic tone. If you watch this, read a synopsis of the book and note the latter's more effective conclusion.


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