See? Sometimes we do get limited release films around here. At least I think this one’s still only in limited release. I’m not sure about that sort of thing anymore. But the theatre was packed. Just as the previews started, every person over sixty-five in the greater metropolitan area showed up, and they took forever to settle down.
So for this one, I did a little research. There were two things involved in this film that I really didn’t know anything about: the real-life Zodiac killings, and Jake Gyllenhaal. I’d heard of both, but really couldn’t pick either one out of a line-up, so to speak. I wasn’t even born when the killings began, and (like just about everyone else I know), my history class in school barely made it up to World War II, so my knowledge of anything after the Battle of Britain is a little shaky. I’m not sure we would have covered serial killers anyway.
Q: What do you call one hundred Persians at the bottom of the ocean?
A: A good start.
I like Frank Miller — he’s been at the forefront of getting comics and graphic novels recognized as serious work, and I’m glad of that — so I was looking forward to this film. And now, though I may be a lone voice crying in the wilderness, I have to say that I didn’t really like it. Sigh.
Before leaving for the theatre, I checked the run time on this movie and saw that it was just 95 minutes. Well, I reasoned, it’s probably just one long fight scene, and there’s only so much you can do to pad things out even with bullet time. As it turns out, bullet time is useful for even more than that, but we’ll get to that later.
A while back, a family in Virginia was looking through some old papers and found some newspaper articles from the 1930’s that mentioned some relatives of theirs — namely, the Bondurant brothers, Forrest, Howard, and Jack. The family knew they must have made and sold a little moonshine, since back then in Franklin County, where they lived, everyone made and sold a little moonshine. That’s just what people did. I think half the people within a hundred-mile radius must have died of something alcohol-related, or they wouldn’t all have been able to stay in business.