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A Mighty Good Show and Some Room You Shouldn’t Stay In

1408

Expecting an average King adaptation I wasn’t disappointed in the quality of 1408, not at all. It’s a haunted house story, and that is exactly what you get. I guess the biggest problem was reading the story first and setting my standards for the room’s evil a little too high.

In the story the subtly of the horror is what makes everything so terrifying. You never see ghosts, and you are constantly questioning whether Mike Enslin is going insane on his own, or because the room is actually changing, rearranging, and torturing him. In the film however, you are given everything that a film audience needs, which includes physical ghoulies and tangible spooks. It also includes the conventions of a dead daughter and a father who can’t cope with the loss, the separation of lovers, and a final moment that leaves you questioning everything.

It would be wrong to say that this was a bad move because I am not sure how else the story would have worked on screen.
I guess all in all it is just another haunted house flick.
Sam Jackson was great in it though.

A Mighty Heart

When you go into a film knowing the ending, and knowing that the ending is tragic and unchangeable, you have to wonder what the intention of making the film was. A Mighty Heart is an exception. Despite the fact that you know where you stand years after this event has taken place, during the film you feel like there is the possibility to re-write history. Can he be found before it is too late? Maybe.

Daniel Pearl, an American journalist who was investigating the case of Richard Reid (the shoe bomber) in Pakistan, was kidnapped and later beheaded by who reports later concluded was Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. In a sentence it seems a painful enough fact. The nouns are all there supported by hideous actions, but there is something missing. It’s the emotion, the feeling, the environment, the tone, the tension, the family and the why?

A Mighty Heart fills that missing space. It follows the wife of Pearl during an intense investigation to find out where Pearl was during his capture in order to save him from being harmed. Angelina Jolie gives a surprising performance of Mariane Pearl that is reminiscent of her earlier films (Girl Interrupted, Gia), portraying a woman with so much strength and hope it is perhaps too much for her own good. This is exemplified after hearing the news of her husbands death, when Jolie drops to the ground and screams the loudest scream perhaps ever on film. Within that scream seems to be all of the emotion pent up until that point. It is a scream against war, murder, the loss of love, and at the same time a desperate cry for peace.

Jolie showed more than she normally does being more than just an awkward accent (Alexander) and a pair of huge lips, and offering a glimpse into a woman’s life that we would otherwise be unable to understand. I was impressed.

You should see the film for a multitude of reasons. If you are a writer you should see it. If you want peace you should see it. If you believe in responsible journalism or the discussion of said journalism you should see it. If you admire realistic dialogue in film you should see it. If you live in a country where you are at “war” and yet you feel like you don’t know why, then you should see it. If you feel you don’t really pay as much attention to current events as you probably should then, well, you should probably see this movie too.

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