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After the Credits Roll and The Lost

Posted by: Matthew Turner 01/05/2008 @ 11:41
Subject: Film

Films seen so far this year: 129
Films seen this week: Iron Man (twice), Doomsday, Joy Division, The Ruins, Tovarisch, I Am Not Dead

Post-Credits Scenes
Like most like-minded film obsessives, I am an inveterate credits-watcher. This week I sat through the closing credits of Iron Man (twice), on the off-chance that there was a post-credits scene (there wasn't then but there is now - see comments below). Sometimes, however, you get a really good one, which occasionally feels like a little reward for being such a geeky credits-watcher in the first place. Usually they're meant to be funny (the odds of getting a post-credits scene are higher with comedies) but occasionally they're plot-related and people end up paying to see the film again, just to see them, as happened with Professor X's voice at the end of X-Men 3. Here, off the top of my head, are five of the best:

1. Ferris Bueller's Day Off: Ferris turning to the camera and saying "What are you still doing here? The movie's over! Go home!"
2. Napoleon Dynamite: a five minute long scene in which Napoleon's brother marries LaFawnduh and sings a song called "The Internet Is Great".
3. Talladega Nights: Jane Lynch (Ricky Bobby's mother) having a literary discussion with Walker and Texas Ranger (Ricky Bobby's kids)
4. Dodgeball: a much fatter Ben Stiller singing "Milkshake" and jiggling his man-boobs for much longer than is strictly necessary
5. The Zombie Monkey at the end of Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl

Please Release Me: The Lost
The Lost is an independent American drama about a small-town psychopath, based on the cult novel by Jack Ketchum. Basically, it's yet another film I saw at the Edinburgh Film Festival two years ago and again, there's still no sign of a theatrical release over here, though it is available on Region 1 DVD. Here's what I wrote on my Edinburgh Film Festival Blog at the time:

This is very good but the sickening violence at the end has probably killed its chances of getting a decent release. Shame, because until the climax, it's an enjoyably pulpy study of a small-town psychopath. It's set in a small town in the American Midwest and stars Marc Senter as Ray Pye, a charming, eye-liner-wearing sociopath who could have stepped out of a 1950s biker movie. The film opens as he commits a brutal murder and then we flash forward four years and discover that Ray's still walking around because the police couldn't make the case stick, despite him being the only suspect. Ray continues to deal drugs and have sex with a string of teenage girls, but cracks are beginning to appear: an ex-cop's girlfriend, Sally (Megan Henning) has gone undercover at his mum's motel to spy on him, while his erstwhile girlfriend Jen (Shay Astar, who looks a lot like Aisleyne from Big Brother 7) and his best friend Tim (Alex Frost), who both witnessed the murder, are close to breaking point. On top of that, he meets Katherine (Robin Sydney), a beautiful woman from a rich background and finds himself falling in love with her. But is she just after a walk on the wild side or does she have something else in mind?

There are some unusual character touches in the film, such as the relationship between Sally and her 60-year-old cop boyfriend, Ed (character actor Ed Lauter) and Ray's bizarre walking style, which a caption at the beginning informs us is the result of Ray putting beercans in his boots to make himself look taller. Director Chris Sivertson displays a definite sense of style and uses some effective techniques, such as a speeded-up sequence of Ray angrily trashing a hotel room. There's a subtle Twin Peaks vibe to the small town sequences that works well. The performances are all good (particularly Megan Henning) but the film really belongs to Senter, who thoroughly inhabits the role and even manages to elicit glimmers of sympathy before the horrific, blood-soaked climax (think Sharon Tate) completely obliterates that. Not for the weak of stomach but definitely worth seeing. Four stars.

Top 10 Films On Release This Week (as recommended by me):

Hardly any changes this week, except for Iron Man rocketing into the top ten. I suspect There Will Be Blood and No Country For Old Men won't be around for much longer so catch them while you can.

1. There Will Be Blood
2. No Country For Old Men
3. Iron Man
4. Persepolis
5. [REC]
6. The Orphanage
7. In Bruges
8. Happy-Go-Lucky
9. Stop-Loss
10. Forgetting Sarah Marshall

DVD of the Week: Bonnie and Clyde (two disc Special Edition, out Monday 5th May, RRP £15.99)

This week's DVD of the Week is Arthur Penn's 1967 classic Bonnie and Clyde, which gets the two disc Special Edition treatment. It stars Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway (both of whom were Oscar nominated) as the eponymous 1930s outlaws and features a terrific bluegrass soundtrack. It also has one of the sexiest opening scenes in movie history, with a naked and bored (but strategically shot) Faye Dunaway lounging around in her bedroom until she's distracted by an impossibly young-looking Warren Beatty trying to steal her grandmother's car outside her window. The DVD features almost two hours' worth of documentaries, wardrobe tests, trailers, two deleted scenes and commentary from Arthur Penn, Warren Beatty and Roger Ebert. If you've never seen it, you're in for a treat, as it's unquestionably one of the best films of the 1960s.

Comments

by  Anonymous  02/05/2008 @ 12:26
Apparently there is supposed to be something after the credits on Iron man. Maybe it's only in the states where you see it but it's meant to be pretty good: cineuruguay.blogspot.com/2008/05/stay-after-end-credits-of-iron-man.html
by  Matthew Turner  06/05/2008 @ 22:04
Thanks for that, Anonymous (and thanks for all your previous comments too!) I was about to email the editor to get that line taken out. I was aware of the post-credits scene (hence me sitting through the credits twice) but the UK PR swore blind that it had been dropped from UK prints. It turns out that it had been dropped from the prints shown to critics but not the theatrical prints. Infuriating. I should have known something was up when they denied that the scene even existed (well after it was already up on YouTube). I shall amend the blog accordingly.
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