Day 271 & Day 272 – Jack Frost (MST3K) (1965) & You Were Never Really Here

Resized_20180929_091957_6531

Movie Title: Jack Frost

First Watch / Repeat Viewing

Running Time: 1 hr. 24 min.

Rated: Unrated

Who did I watch with?: Flying Solo

Where did I watch it?: Home

Review:

Jack Frost is a Russo-Finnish fairy tale with an illogical story and strange plot. Nastenka is your traditional Cinderella character. She has an evil mother, a downtrodden father, and a sister that receives everything. Nastenka is a beauty and has to do all the work. The preferred sister Marfusha is a brat and expects to be married off to a rich husband. The mother has a disturbing habit of painting her face and shoving candy into her mouth at strange times. It is unusual. Pursuing Nastenka is a dim witted, but apparently noble boy named Ivan that is briefly turned into a bear for his selfishness. He eventually changes back for some unknown reason. Ivan eventually is forced into conflict with a Baba Yaga that lives in a tree that has chicken legs and walks. After the Baba Yaga’s magic is not enough to stop Ivan from pursuing Nastenka she tries to kill her with a cat and lastly hires bandits to try and kidnap her. It is all very strange. The titular character does not appear until very late in the movie and he plays match maker for the couple. The plot is best viewed as a pursuit by Ivan for Nastenka’s hand because beyond that it is insanely illogical.

Verdict:

While apparently fairly well loved by old Russians this movie is dreck. Skip it.

Tomorrow’s Movie: You Were Never Really Here (2018)

 

Movie Title: You Were Never Really Here

First Watch / Repeat Viewing

Running Time: 1 hr. 29 min.

Rated: R

Who did I watch with?: Flying Solo

Where did I watch it?: Home

Review:

You Were Never Really Here is in many ways unoriginal, but at the same time captivating. Joe (Joaquin Phoenix) is a complex character. He suffered terrible child abuse at the hands of his father and he suffers from PTSD from war time service. He attempts to control the emotions he feels as a result through self harm. He suffocates himself with plastic bags and stabs his skin. In a scene reminiscent of Taxi Driver he presses a knife to his tongue pantomiming cutting it out.

Joe’s job is also unusual. He lives off the grid taking care of his elderly mother who suffers from dementia. To earn a living he finds and rescues kidnapped girls. He is extremely brutal to the kidnappers and prefers to beat them to death with a hammer. His latest case involves the kidnapped daughter of a state senator. He wants to keep a low profile because he is running for higher office with the current governor. After he rescues the girl things go very wrong. Joe is forced to suffer painful losses and make difficult decisions to get his revenge.

You Were Never Really Here has a jangling soundtrack, disconcerting flashbacks, and fantasy elements that help bring the movie to life. Joe himself is a very disturbing character. It is very much influenced by Taxi Driver and the character of Travis Bickle.

Verdict:

While far from being totally original it is still a dark and intriguing movie. See it.

Tomorrow’s Movie: On the Waterfront (1954)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s