Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Delicious As Sin

No, I haven’t seen the movie yet but having had a short glimpse of it through a trailer (courtesy of the Soundtrack Channel on cable television) I deem it already as a movie worth standing by in over-extended lines at the malls.

Catching the end-parts of the movie trailer, I felt immediately blown away by the sharpness of the renditions on the screen and it felt so much like a movie in my mind, one that I have been waiting for a very long, long time and now it finally came.

"Sin City" is shot and filmed using the black-and-white format, the way old movies were made and although this is not unprecedented, we could not help but notice it. When "Schindler's List" was done in this manner some years ago, the world virtually stood up in great anticipation and felt enormous awe after watching it. And so now I noticed how "Sin City" is similarly stunning in its visual virtues and the manner and form it decided to appear is thought-provoking to say the least. For a while there, while watching a passing glimpse of the movie preview, I thought for once that I was watching a re-issue of "Casablanca", one that have been more sharply re-editted. But instead, I was watching the image of Bruce Willis as he stood in the middle of a stormy weather while on another scene Rosario Dawson was trying to grab Clive Owens, for a hug of course. Both moments in the movie may seem fleeting, but the way it was shot was surprisingly fresh and new.

This movie is based entirely on the comic book with the same title written by Frank Miller many years ago, the superstar comic-book writer-novelist who had gained instant fame by romanticizing and re-inventing Batman in the very successful work "The Dark Knight Returns". Miller wasn't such a sell-out that when Hollywood came knocking on his door, he refused to allow a movie rehashing of "Sin City". Miller says of Hollywood, "And I know what they do. They turn everything into a bromide with a happy ending."

And then came maverick filmmaker Robert Rodriguez (Spy Kids, Once Upon A Time In Mexico) and Frank Miller found himself haunted day in and day out. Rodriguez even had to stalk him into the bars and saloons he frequented each night and begged virtually on bended knees. Robert Rodriguez promised to make a Frank Miller's "Sin City" and not Robert Rodriguez’s "Sin City" and aside from that, Miller will be on board as a co-director. Somewhere, Robert Rodriguez violated some guidelines of the Directors' Guild of America by taking in Miller as a co-director, but Rodriguez couldn't care less and resigned from the guild in a jiffy. That's how Robert Rodriguez wanted this film so much. He had to make heavens and earth meet.

As a comic-book "Sin City" was instantly popular when it was first released, becoming that rare specie of cult-favorite that had sold in the millions. It is one lurid tale of a schizoprenic goon out on a revenge binge after he woke up one morning with a hooker on his side. Pretty horrifying and violent of a theme, but violence may just find salvation in the hands of Rodriguez. And in Frank Miller's too.

It is a movie in a comic-book format or a comic book in a movie format. However which way it is a radical film in the simplest of terms. "Sin City" is one movie I that thought was so very difficult to film before but now, it had been done.
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