Re: RARA-AVIS: NYT piece on Winterbottom's THE KILLER INSIDE ME

From: J.C. Hocking (
Date: 17 Jun 2010

  • Next message: Ron Clinton: "RE: RARA-AVIS: NYT piece on Winterbottom's THE KILLER INSIDE ME"

    With you 100 per cent on this. A very well made movie that shocked me by actually channeling a good bit of the wrenching impact found in the novel's conclusion.


    ________________________________ From: Patrick King <> To: Sent: Thu, June 17, 2010 1:03:33 PM Subject: Re: RARA-AVIS: NYT piece on Winterbottom's THE KILLER INSIDE ME

      I agree that AFTER DARK, MY SWEET is so far the best adaptation of Thompson to film. I have not yet seen Winterbottom's THE KILLER INSIDE ME. Jason Patric is amazingly good as Kid Collins, a very hard role to pull off without going over the top. Collins is insane, but he's not stupid. Everyone else in the story underestimates him, and over rates themselves... by a lot. Even the doctor who befriends Collins and who has the best assessment of his condition, overestimates his ability to control him. I was dubious about Bruce Dern as Uncle Bud. He just doesn't look like Uncle Bud to me. But he carried the role wonderfully. Rachel Ward seemed like an odd choice for Faye, too, but I was a little in love with her myself by the end of the film. AFTER DARK MY SWEET shoots holes all through this New York Times writer's European Jim theory.

    Patrick King

    --- On Thu, 6/17/10, davidcorbett622 <> wrote:

    From: davidcorbett622 <> Subject: RARA-AVIS: NYT piece on Winterbottom's THE KILLER INSIDE ME To: Date: Thursday, June 17, 2010, 12:17 PM


    I finally got around to reading this piece, which appeared two weeks ago in the Times. I'd be interested in the list's take. I was frankly a little rankled by its premise: Only European directors know how to film Thompson, supposedly (according to Tavernier) because they see him as a literary artist, and don't play up the pulp at the expense of the "metaphysical elements" which Americans "always leave out."

    Admittedly, the American versions cited in the piece fall short, but the writer (Charles McGrath) completely ignores James Foley's AFTER DARK, MY SWEET. Weird omission. I thought it was a great film, a worthy adaptation of Thompson with deft handling of the "metaphysics" -- whatever the hell that's supposed to mean in this context; I take it to mean the psychological and moral subtlety and complexity -- but it was overshadowed by THE GRIFTERS, which came out at the same time. In fact, I almost wonder if McGrath ignored AFTER DARK MY SWEET precisely to handicap the Europeans-Do-Jim-Better canard.

    (Foley also did a great job with AT CLOSE RANGE and GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS, then apparently had personal problems and made a only few films after that. I've seen FEAR and THE CORRUPTORS, both with Mark Wahlberg, liked both, but neither were as impressive as the earlier stuff.)

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