one of the 10/15 best pictures of the last 20 years. it’s an epic similar to the godfather in that it’s ostensibly about a business (porn vs. the mob) but is really about a family. it’s a story of broken families and how those parts make up a new family that is more stable and workable than that which they left behind. to me it had in spades what the godfather lacked – humanity without bravado and humor; all that and it’s not pretentious. i think that a good sense of humor goes a long way, and this picture illustrates that as well as anything else i can think of right now. it’s hard for humor to be pretentious, it’s hard to dislike a human drama that acknowledges the humor in life and it’s hard to not enjoy a film whose humor agrees with yours.
anderson moves the camera, uses music and intercuts characterizing shots very well. i love the little one-two second shots of a room which introduce you to a new space. he films his subjects in an equally efficient manner. we immediately know who/what characters are. if you compare the characterization in a film as vast as this to almost any other film released in the last ten years you get a very good idea of the limitations of hollywood film.
if you charted my emotions during the viewing of this film it might look like this \/\/\/\/\/\/\/. most filmmakers prefer a steady incline or decline, but anderson likes to alternate the funny and the depressing. it’s never taxing or forced, rather it somehow it feels like the natural ebb and flow we know as life.