It’s taken me a long time but I’m finally, slowly, recently coming to the realisation that I really just don’t like Ridley Scott in general – that is, that the movies of his that I tend to love … and yes, when I like a Ridley Scott movie, I really like it … they always tend to be the ones that everyone else see as failures for him. Of the hits, only Thelma and Louise stands out for me – I’m still working through the Blade Runner Final Cut set hoping for an epiphany but it’s not looking good – add Hannibal and Matchstick Men and that’s about it for me.
With those last two in mind, particularly Matchstick Men, I actually looked forward to seeing this one, because it seemed to fit the magic mould. I’d much prefer to see Scott applying his technical sheen to a loopy, down to earth story like this than anything he did in Gladiator, American Gangster, and worst of all Kingdom of Heaven. The same goes for Russell Crowe – I don’t give a damn about the accent, I’d much prefer to see him as loose as he is here than his more commercially successful man act … I mean he truly glows in places of this movie, you can feel the France getting to him like it gets to anyone.
In short, I was far from let down. In fact, I barely stopped laughing for the whole movie. It’s barely got a thing to say worth saying, but like Matchstick Men it’s just an undeniably talented director (yeh, don’t get me wrong – I just don’t like most of his movies lol) letting rip on a story completely unworthy of that talent; and to me, the product is far more desirable than any of his more “worthy” feats. You can practically feel the breeze and smell the twilight air in some scenes here, rustic France probably hasn’t looked so inviting since Jean De Florette and Manon des Sources. The soundtrack is random as hell, the girls are beautiful, the wine’s surprisingly, hilariously rotten … what can I say but I’ll be coming back for more of this one for sure.