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Talkin' films

Watch the skies

I don't share this often but most of my long-time friends already know I love films. I came very close to studying film in college a few years back. But that his neither here nor there.

Playing along that line, though...

Don't get me wrong, I can talk about Citizen Kane all night long. I love watching it, but mostly from a technical perspective. I still appreciate the emotional elements of the film but I'm not kidding myself. Most people find Citizen Kane boring. It's not a film I would sit down and watch with friends and family. It's just too long and the pacing doesn't sync up well with contemporary audiences.

If I had to pick a film to share that I feel is watchable but still works, scratch that, excels in the fundamentals of solid cinematography, I may pick Steven Spielberg's 'Close Encounters of the Third Kind.' I just watched the film again with a friend of mine, and while this may be the wine talking, Spielberg does an amazing job telling a story within a tight cinematic framework.

It makes me wonder how audiences of that film's generation may have been more sensitive to a multimedia experience. 'Close Encounters' conveys so much information without literally telling the viewer what is going on. Spielberg does such a great job representing the five senses in this film. Today, most films do so much hand-holding it's amazing. And that's fine, the only constant is change.

Maybe I'm getting old but watching 'Close Encounters of the Third Kind' again was a refreshing reattachment to some classic elements of tight storytelling that I find so endearing. Some people consider Spielberg overrated at this point in his career and they're entitled to their own opinion. And sure, there are other films, newer films, that create a similar experience.

I just happened to be watching Spielberg's tonight. =)


Purple Tentacle
Michael Rutledge

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