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such a nasty woman | by maryann johanson

speaking of originality: the good, the bad, and the ugly sides of ‘The Black Dahlia’

Well now. Brian De Palma’s lastest disaster may be so awful that it actually made me feel sorry for Josh Hartnett, which is surely a sign of the apocalypse, but I have to admit that it is strikingly original in its awfulness: the ending alone, which reduces the entire cast (or at least the ones unlucky enough not to have had their characters killed off by that point) to fits of screeching may well be worth the price of admission, if only in an ironic way. So I guess I shouldn’t complain too much about boringness at the movies this weekend.

And Black Dahlia is notable for another reason: it’s the first film to have entries both in my Totally Quotable list of great lines of movie dialogue and in my Say What? list of really dreadful movie lines. I’m not sure what that means, if anything, but I can say that the lines do parallel the decline of the film: it starts off kinda intriguing, if messy, and the quotable line is from very early in the film, and gradually tumbles into a parody of itself by the end, which is where the terrible line appears.

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  • Shadowen

    To review: you have reviewed a George Lucas (Episode III) movie and made note of a bit of good dialogue…and yet here you are surprised you were able to find both good and bad dialogue in a single movie?

    Methinks thou doth make much ado about nothing. :p

    Although I don’t think Lucas’s good/bad segment/dialogue dichotomy had the synchronocity of the one you found in The Black Dahlia, so you may have a point.

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