I swear i'll be writing more in 2014

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Stanley Kubrick and Reverse Infinity

It's not that the second half of Full Metal Jacket, the Vietnam half, is bad. It's more that the first half, the basic training, is pure gold. It's gold Jerry! Gold! After all, a good sequence of any war movie is the hidden sniper picking off people one at a time, be it this one, or when Vin Diesel gets it in Saving Private Ryan or the German WW2 propaganda film about that Moeller guy. The problem with Kubrick's version of it, is after a couple people go down, they THEN decide to go with the smoke screen. Maybe it's just a valuable lesson about dealing with sniper fire that I learned from this movie, but as soon as one person gets shot by a sniper, use the smoke screen then. Sure, this wouldn't have saved Vin Diesel in Spielberg's scene, but who wants to save Vin Diesel? Shouldn't we have had a "Vin Diesel's Acting Career is Over" party once he did that movie he was a nanny? Most of us never thought he was a good actor, and he never really did get any really good parts, but "Guy Shot By Sniper Fire" in Saving Private Ryan will certainly be the apex of his career.

I shouldn't even be discussing Diesel in an entry where I'm supposed to be talking about Stanley Kubrick's last great film. As much as I love Scorsese, or the Coens, Kubrick's strength is in his cinematography. He shoots his films as if you're looking into a mirror with another mirror behind you so that you "see infinity." Who doesn't love infinity? The coolest thing about visual infinity is that the further way you get from the original source, the image weakens, even though it continues to get smaller and smaller. Infinity is always used to describe things like outer space because of it's size or two children arguing about who has more of something which leads to one saying "times infinity" which is naturally followed by "infinity plus 1", but it is rarely used to describe it's reverse effect which is just as man has no concept of the greatness of space, we are equally ignorant in the littleness of space as well. This amazes me. It seems as if infinity can turn air inside-out, after all, can we not constantly divide? It's almost as if the concept of nothing doesn't exist because there's always something. You can even use infinity to describe the roles of Vin Diesel's career, because as bad as he was, there was always the possibility of greater roles for him, but instead, he's now faced with the prospect of starting to have to do television, then commercials, and eventually Goofy. Ultimately, the question about reverse infinity is, is there anything less than Goofy? Of course there is.

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