I have decided to leave my feature article piece for another day as it might insight a bit of controversy, as well as the fact that I am having a rough time formulating a final draft. Some things just aren’t meant to be I guess. Luckily for me I am an entertainment whore and I have a stock pile of things to review! So here is another mini.
Literature: M. Butterfly, a play by David Hwang. Most of America is familiar with the acclaimed opera Madame Butterfly, the story of a U.S. soldier, Pinkerton, and his love interest in China, Cio Cio San. It is considered one of the corner stones of fine Western Opera. In Hwang’s spin-off of the opera he explores the story of a French diplomat, Gallimard, in communist China and his affair with Song Liling, a Chinese diva. The story uses the basis of Madame Butterfly, a western man infatuated with an exotic Eastern beauty and that which she represents. It is a wonderfully written play that explores the dualities of gender, sexuality, race, culture and imperialism. It spent a good deal of time on Broadway and is critically acclaimed for its originality and candor. The play explores the meaning of sexuality, love, and stereotypes when, after a 20 year affair, Gallimard finds out that his lover is both a Chinese spy and a man. It is extraordinarily composed in both dialogue and staging; its motives are relevant to modern society and revealing of the way in which global politics affect our perceptions of the world and the roles designated to each person by society. Star Rating: 5
Movies: Twisted, with Ashley Judd and Samuel L. Jackson. Judd plays a homicide detective, neo-feminist-tough and troubled by a dark past. Her father went on a killing spree which ended with his wife and himself, leaving Judd’s character orphaned, to be raised by her father’s partner in the force, played by Jackson. The plot is set up from the start Judd has anger-management problems and an appetite for alcohol and anonymous sex. After she is promoted to homicide a string of murders occur. In the hunt for the killer, Judd finds that all of the men are previous lovers of her, all signs point the blaming finger at her. The plot reveals that she has a stalker and several possible suspects emerge: her new partner, an obsessive ex, a former lover and lawyer of a convicted murderer, among others. The movie had great potential to be an “edge-of-your-seat thriller” and a smart movie with great plot twists. Unfortunately all the twists were formula and the ending predictable. For the average American viewer, the movie was decent and moderately surprising, but for a person accustomed to thriller movies, it was a let down. Not only did I correctly guess the identity of the stalker within the first half hour (granted I did doubt my suspicions at points), but there were many loose ends and unexplained variables. In addition, the accuracy of the directors and writers research was obviously poor. The ballistics were not in keeping with reality and the twists fell short of my expectations. It was a decent movie for the twenty-first century viewer who wants to sit and be entertained without thinking, but for the more intelligent and movie-savvy, it was yet another trite cop-flick with an empowered chick and a crazed man whose obsession turns foul. Star Rating: 2
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