April 20, 2007
Black Book. Again."As someone who undervalued the political smarts of Basic Instinct and Showgirls when they first appeared, I'm probably not the best one to fault others for not taking [Paul] Verhoeven seriously, but I still have to say that, ethically speaking, Black Book seems far less vulgar than a feel-good Holocaust movie like Schindler's List," writes Jonathan Rosenbaum in the Chicago Reader. "In fact, part of what I admire about Black Book is how it offers a kind of bracing rebuke to Schindler's List, providing a much darker vision that refuses to let its audience off the hook so easily, though ostensibly it's more fictional." "Within 30 seconds of meeting Verhoeven, it's immediately apparent that the potent and sometimes uncontrolled life force that pulses through his films comes directly from him," writes Sam Adams in the Philadelphia City Paper. Also: "In some ways, Black Book is a dangerous movie, but it's the right kind of dangerous." The LA Weekly's Ella Taylor might disagree: "[W]e live in dodgy critical times when aesthetic sophistication trumps moral and political discrimination. And when pop aestheticism reaches all the way from effusing over the ritualized violence and reverse feminism of a Sin City or a Grindhouse to heaping laurels on a movie that pits sensitive Nazis against treacherous resisters, it may be time to get uncool and start pointing the finger."
Posted by dwhudson at April 20, 2007 7:15 AM