I went to watch Shooter yesterday. It was a good action movie – fast-paced and lots of action. There were quite a lot of tense and heart-stopping moments, which is how an action movie should be. Mark Wahlberg could be the new action hero for the silver screen, as he carried the role well.
This movie was in deep contrast with the artistic film which I wanted to watch called I Don't Want to Sleep Alone and I posted about here.
I had expected long shots of a particular scene, where nothing including the characters moved. Those shots that just focused on them staring, lying down or something similar.
I nearly fell asleep.
It was initially quite interesting, where there were the use of various language of songs – the Malay couple singing on the walkway to Pudu LRT, the Chinese oldies song playing from the radio and the immigrants watching a Hindi movie with lots of song. There is this line from the Hindi song which I quite like and it goes something like this – You are the lotus in the pond of my heart; You quench your thirst with the water in the pond.
Most of the scenes were shot near the Pudu Jail near Berjaya Times Square. The colourful but faded mural was shown quite a number of times.
The movie was more like a microcosm of three peoples’ lives. It was an observation into their lives, of how they go about their daily chores. As they are immigrants to Malaysia, we get a glimpse of the difficulty, loneliness and their disconnection from the general society. They usually don’t get a second look from us when we passed by them.
Some scenes which you don’t usually see in movies include one with Rawang carrying Kang to the toiler, holding his weight so that Kang can stand to pee but failing, helping out Kang to unbutton his pants and after peeing putting back his penis into pants. This was shot from behind, with no frontal nudity but just the ass.
Another was Rawang bathing him with a towel. Kang was lying on the mattress still injured, only in his underwear. The underwear was thin and the outline and shape of his penis was clearly visible. Rawang patiently, gently and tenderly turned him on his sides and wiped him all over. After that, Rawang put on a sarong on him. He put his hands into the sarong and remove Kang's underwear for washing.
It all looked very nice and sweet, save for the decrepit and bare furnishings. The tenderness and care was clearly felt emanating from Rawang, but not from Kang. He seemed slightly cold and stiff; no response of appreciation whatsoever.
I wouldn't mind doing the same for my boyfriend, but to a stranger ... it just feels strange. Which obviously points to the fact that Rawang has feeling for Kang.
The other character Chyi helps the owner of a coffee shop. She also helps to take care of the owner's husband who is a vegetable. She cleans and feeds him everyday. She is supposed to be Kang's girlfriend too.
Ignoring the fact that the main character isn’t cute, he is not very likeable. He had sex or at least used his finger to pleasure the coffee shop owner (who is also his so-called girlfriend's boss) in a dark alley.
Kang is also disgusting. He squirted from his mouth orange juice into Chyi's mouth before they had sex. And the sex scene between them was laborious, as it was during the haze and the both of them were coughing and moaning. It's too absurd that it's funny.
In addition, since the characters couldn't afford masks, they put on polystyrene bowls and plastic bags. Like hello, those things don't work!
The part that takes the cake is that, between the three main characters, only Rawang has lines. And it totalled less than 10.
Imagine, Kang and Chyi did not utter a SINGLE word in the entire 2 hour movie! I know it's an artistic movie, but this is way too artistic for me. I kept looking at my watch, anticipating the moment when they would actually speak. Needless to say, that moment never come.
Another saving grace that I could think of is the angle of the shots. Some of them are really creative and interesting. The location was well chosen too. I was not aware that there is an abandoned construction site near Pudu, which was the scene to the intercourse and one hilarious moment in the film.
The week before, I watch "The Number Twenty Three". Avoid this at all costs. It doesn't make much sense, even though Jim Carrey played the role well.
Seeing the number twenty three in everything (like 11/9/2001 adds up to twenty three and there are twenty three pairs of chromosome in a human cell) doesn't make one go psycho and want to kill people. I mean, what if someone was born on the 23rd of November 1978 (1978 is divisible by 23) and live on No 23 Nutty Street? It doesn't make sense that he will go mental and becomes murderous.
In short, these are my ratings:
I Don't Want To Sleep Alone: 6/10
The Number Twenty Three: 5/10