Jazz, film, and improvised culture.
1,000 Times Good Night: Getting the Shot, No Matter the Cost
women have also become homicide-suicide bombers in Afghanistan. An Irish
photojournalist with the hints of a French accent has the photos to prove it.
In fact, she could not stop taking them, contributing to a premature detonation
while she was still within the general blast area. She survives, but the damage
done to her family unit will be harder to patch-up in Erik Poppe’s 1,000 Times Good Night (trailer here), which opens this
Friday in New York.
you find it problematic to compulsively document (and consequently somewhat
fetishize) a terrorist bomber’s final hours, than congratulations. You had the appropriate
human response. On the other hand, Rebecca argues she is bearing witness to the
inhumanity of the world, but at some point bearing witness will come to
resemble abetting through inaction.
Good Night’s opening sequence
consists of some truly provocative, visceral stuff, but to really understand
it, you also have to see the symmetrically related conclusion. Ultimately, the
film forces Rebecca to confront the ethics of her calling in gut-wrenching,
soul-churning terms. However, to reach that point, we have to slog through some
just okay family drama.
Rebecca is finally discharged from the hospital, she has clearly lost a step
physically and might be gun-shy for the first time in her career. Her
marine-biologist husband Marcus is ready to divorce her and their daughters are
emotionally reeling from the near permanent loss of their often absent mother.
Frankly, the youngster bounces back faster than moody teenaged Steph, perhaps
because the older girl better understood the circumstances. For the sake of her
family, Rebecca resolves to retire, but maybe she can be convinced to take
Steph on a bonding tour of a Kenyan refugee camp, because it’s absolutely,
positively safe as houses.
Juliette Binoche ever gave a bad performance, the sun might start orbiting the
earth. In fact, she is admirably restrained, given the horrors her character
witnesses and the bodily and spiritual wounds she suffers (had Meryl Streep
overacted the part in her place, she would have been rending her garments and
howling at the moon). Instead, Binoche smartly and convincingly portrays a
woman forced to emotionally blinker herself, for survival’s sake.
the mother-daughter melodrama becomes tiresome over time, Lauryn Canny is still
quite impressive as Steph. Likewise, Game
of Thrones’ Nikolaj Coster-Waldau does his best to scratch out something as
the long suffering hubby. U2 fans should also keep their eyes open for Larry
Mullen, Jr, who is perfectly respectable as Tom, a friend of the family.
Good Night is an uneven film,
but when it does connect, it is with a haymaker. You have to keep with it, but
it is worth it if you do. Recommended on balance, 1,000 Times Good Night opens this Friday (10/24) in New York, at
the Quad Cinema.
Labels: Juliette Binoche, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau