Sunday, January 23, 2011
I Googled "Edgar Ramirez Nude Carlos" and this picture of Terrence Howard from 50 Cent's Get Rich or Die Tryin' came up. Teeny Peeny alert!
Okay, here's my review of Carlos. It was good, very good. And Edgar Ramirez was great as was all of the cast. There were a few editing/continuity issues I noticed (cigarettes burning at different lengths/sunglasses on, not on, etc) but overall for nearly 6 hours it was great.
It's hard not to compare it to Steven Soderbergh's Che which is similar in length and - one could make a stretch - subject matter. When I saw Che at IFC i said it was "transcendent" and I stick by that. It was an awesome experience and the movie was amazing. Benicio Del Toro was incredible. I loved it. I also felt more for Che and his cause. Carlos, the person, the character, is not nearly as likeable. He almost kills for killing sake. He's sloppy. He fucks anything he can. There's almost no dignity. He and his men & women don't believe in the Middle East Peace Process, the are anti-Zionist, pro-Palestinian terrorists. There were things about their cause that obviously I support but they end up working for other despots that make their actions equally despicable as those that they are fighting. But that's more a comment on Carlos the real person, not the movie. I apologize.
The movie is stunning for its scope. It's a huge movie. It goes all over the world from Paris to Germany to Syria to Yemen to Africa... you get the point. The supporting cast is stunning. And what struck me most - and what I appreciated most - was the lack of soliloquy. No one had any Oscar speeches. There were no 3 minute-I'm-going-to-emote-at-any-moment-now anything. It was real dialogue spoken in a way that made it feel very real.
Edgar Ramirez also did an awesome job of changing his physical appearance for the part. He gained weight, lost weight, grew hair, lost it. Near the beginning of the movie there's an awesome scene where he's trying to convince the powers-that-be that he is worthy despite his lack of age and experience. He kills someone or blows something up and then the next scene you see him get out of the tub, go to the mirror nude and and stroke his penis. Not in a sexual way but a - ha! fuck you! my-dick-is-huge-kind-of-way. I don't know if this was in the script, the director's idea of Ramirez's but any way you slice it it was great and really frames the rest of the movie. This is a man exercising his id.
Most of the characters do the same throughout. They have no morality, no particular sense of good or bad. So it makes for 6 hours of mostly unlikeable characters. This was the biggest challenge.
If you can see it in the theatre, do. It's on 12th between University Place and 5th Avenue until Thursday at 1:05 PM every day. I forget the name of the theatre. Dress warm because it was fucking freezing in there.