Michael Bates

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Joe Root, Nathan Buck, David English, Michael Bates and Zafar Ansari Monday 17th December 2012

Joe Root, Nathan Buck, David English, Michael Bates and Zafar Ansari

Patton Review


Very Good
In one of the most iconic images in film history, an imperious general festooned with stars, ivory-handled revolvers, and colorful medals, strides onto a stage in front of an immense American flag (a small figure dwarfed by the patriotic propulsive force of the 70mm red, white, and blue) and addresses the troops before they head off to war, exhorting them to blood lust by remarking, "Now I want you to remember that no bastard ever won a war by dying for his country; he won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country." By the end of his speech, which is by turns anti-establishment and fascist, George C. Scott playing General George S. Patton Jr., in a performance of fiery passion, majesty, and Shakespearean intensity, ends up dwarfing the flag as he withdraws from the stage, pulling the audience with him. We know what to do.

Patton follows the colorful general through World War II from being brought in as a "tank man" by General Omar Bradley (Karl Malden) after the humiliating American disaster at Kasserine Pass to becoming the American command's unchained pit bull as the brazen general barrels his way through El Gitar and Sicily. Then, after Patton's infamous slapping incident, he becomes a decoy man to fool the German high command as the Allies prepare to invade Europe. It all culminates with Patton's command of the Third Army and his army's brilliant race through Germany to end the European war.

Continue reading: Patton Review

A Clockwork Orange Review


Essential
Kubrick was a beatnik poet. His work was plagued with metaphors, and the disease of hidden meaning was always turned to his advantage. In 2001: A Space Odyssey, he had almost a precognisance about the worry of the future that the millennium has exhibited so well for us. In The Shining, he taught us that, to a degree, all fear came from oneself. In Full Metal Jacket, he said that war was the ultimate destructor of the psyche. In Eyes Wide Shut, his final opus, he told us that love, handled like revenge, can only have destructive consequences.

The message, for those of you people who were not able to discern it past the violence in A Clockwork Orange, was the same of the Hindu construct known as Karma: what goes around, comes around.

Continue reading: A Clockwork Orange Review

Michael Bates

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