Oct 18, 2009


I believe that most of our lives go on unplanned. As much organizing and effort one puts into having a straight line from point A to point B, most of the time, line has lots of curves and waves. If you did have a straight line, then the points you can stop at between A and B are infinite. Or so my math teacher taught me.

For me, a very important stop happened when I needed an elective and the only class offered was a photography class. What on Earth am I going to learn at a photography class?! I learned things I wish to never forget. My professor once told me, when she was in France, she witnessed something that she did not expect. Artists there are treated like doctors and lawyers. With so much respect and admiration. I was reminded of that by director Nicolas Saada when he said something very similar. He said "by declaring yourself an artist you are removing yourself from the class system".

SPY(ies) (or Espion(s) in French market) tricks you into believing you are going to be watching an action flick. The kind of film with lots of gun shots, Bourne like fighting and blood gushing out of everywhere and everyone. It is certainly not that. It is something so much better.

Just like what I thought about my life, the characters of this film think that the distance from point A to B is limited to the stops they chose to make but realize that things almost always go unplanned.

I am still amazed at the speed my heart was pounding during a scene where Guillaume's character, Vincent, was engaged in nothing but a walk down a well lit and well populated London street. It was as if I was undergoing a magic trick. The tension Saada was able to create without falling into the trap of the "action/thriller" stereotype is a true mark of talented director. I look forward to seeing more of his work.

SPY(ies) essentially starts where every action film does but the more you dive into the story the further you are from where it began. In places here and there you can smell the intoxicating dark scent of film noir.

You are confronted and taken aback by the honesty of the reason Vincent's decisions are being made through out the film. They are not motivated by his greed, his loyalty to his country or even fear of his life's cessation. He does what he does for Claire. For the love he has for a woman. A part very well played by Geraldine Pailhas. I remember watching the first time they kiss and how effortless and cool (for a lack of a better word) the entire sequence looked. There was a type of passion I haven't witnessed before. If there was a comparison to be made it would be a graceful ballerina dancing on an extremely hot bed of coal.

There are "bad guys" in films, that you just hate. After all, they are going after the good guy that you are rooting for. There are ones you love to hate, almost admire secretly; think Hannibal Lecter. Malik, did not seem to fit either category. His honesty about the type of man he is prevents me from showing any hatred towards him. He tells you very soon after you meet him that he "does not know any nice people". He knows who he is and does not care how his actions will affect your opinions of him.

Spy(ies) is about the kind of romantic story that transforms your heart in to a Nascar racing track. The art direction does not disappoint at all either accompanied by a great score. The film ends with the kind of hopeful glimpse into the future that leads to believe that fairy tales do exist. See it, it will do you some good.

No comments:

Post a Comment