Sunday, July 22, 2007

Amateur: Grade A


Amateur (1995)

Isabella Huppert, Martin Donovan, Elina Lohwenson. Director and writer: Hal Hartley.

I recently enjoyed Hartley’s Fay Grim, and then watched his earlier Henry Fool, and realized I am a Hal Hartley fan. So when I saw this older movie in my video store, I rented it, and it is a wonderful comedy. A mysterious man (Donovan) with total amnesia is befriended by an ex-nun (Huppert) who writes pornography so bad she can’t sell it. Their paths accidentally cross with a porn actress (Lohwenson) who thought she had killed Donovan, but now is herself being pursued by mafia types. It’s basically nonsense but the brilliant dialog delivered deadpan is hilarious. ("Why are these called floppy disks? They’re square. And they don’t flop"). There is a Monty Python element in one scene, and much spoofing of movie genres, but in general the tone is existential absurdity. The directing is innovative and dance-like. Photography is excellent, sets fabulous, music is wonderful. Pretty much a perfect movie (said the fan).

No comments:

Post a Comment