This blog was a long time in coming, yet, with all of that time, I couldn't figure out how to begin it. So, with Ira running for cover this month in Beijing to a sturdy doorway or table during a massive earthquake or in hiding from the Red Police in the midst of an angry student protest/riot, I settled with dedicating the beginning to him.
Now, with that done, on to real business...
Guy Richie is one of my favorite directors. Partly because he writes nearly all of his own screen plays. Mostly because of the way he uses camera work to aid in telling the story as well as to artfully display
situations normal people would never be in but would like to think that they would be in.
In 1998, Richie broke into the forefront of the motion picture business with a movie called Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels, a masterpiece about "fast talking gangsters and stupid criminals,"debuting tough-guy actors Jason Statham and Vinnie Jones.
Only the first of several gambling/organized crime related works, "Lock, Stock" broke barriers for Richie and he seemed to be on the way to starting a Spielberg-esque cache of films for maturer audiences. Unfortunately, right before rapping on his new prospect, Snatch (2000), featuring Statham and Jones once again alongside Brad Pitt in a bizarre role, Richie met Madonna, whom, beautiful person that she is, sucked all of the marrow from his skeleton. They married, adopted some illegal aliens, blah-blah-blah... His creativity has, since then, been on a bit of a hiatus, with only a few short films and a detestable feature film starring his spouse. In 2005, Richie really tried to redeem himself with Revolver, again featuring Statham as leading man and mixing it up with supporting actors with veterans Ray Liotta and Vincent Pastore and hip-hop star turned actor, André "André 3000" Benjamin. Revolver looked to be a huge step for Richie, as he took his "Lock, Stock" mold to a trippy, action/thriller novel with a psychological twist. The combination proved to be too much for him to tackle all at once, though his creation in Revolver is visually beautiful and entertaining. It just seemed to lack cohesion and, dare I say it, direction... ah, well...
Things look up! A new English gangster flick from my buddy, Guy is set to be released October 31st of this year and I am super stoked! Yes, it is titled "RocknRolla" and, yes, just like every other movie coming out, it stars Gerard Butler (300), but I don't care, it also will exhibit the acting styles of rapper/entertainer Christopher "Ludacris" Bridges.
Uh... hmm. That doesn't seem too promising either, does it?
Still, I am excited. From everything I've seen so far (i.e. stills, short clips, descriptions...) it appears to be a comfortable step backward to the earlier Richie with a few hidden surprises for good measure. I haven't seen any nods to the old gambling staple yet, but it looks like bright, white shots will be used a lot as they were in Snatch. What we can really count on is there being at least one foxy lady near the beginning of the list of credits. Her name is Gemma Arterton, reportedly the soon-to-be redheaded Bond Girl for Quantum of Solace and the leading lady of the Prince of Persia movie, due in 2009 sometime. So, we can all look forward to seeing a lot of her, hopefully in more way than one, if you know what I mean.