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Confessions of a Dangerous Mind  [US Import] [Blu-ray] [Region A]
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Showbiz autobiographies don't come any stranger than Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, a fractured kaleidoscope of film styles--from sitcom to paranoid horror--accompanied by an infectious musical mosaic. It's based on a memoir by Chuck Barris--the mastermind behind The Dating Game (the format we know in the UK as Blind Date) and The Gong Show--which interweaves a fairly straight account of his toils in the television industry with outrageous fictions about his secret life as a CIA hit man. First-time director George Clooney takes Barris' bizarre book and--working with screenwriter Charlie Kaufman, who similarly mutated the truth in Adaptation--makes an extraordinary picture, with an awards-quality performance from Sam Rockwell as Barris.
Clooney takes the secondary role of Barris' enigmatic boss, and there's sterling work from Drew Barrymore as Barris' ditzy regular girlfriend and Julia Roberts as an espionage dragon lady. It's an acidly witty film that consistently turns the tables on its hero and the audience. Priceless tiny gags include: a silent Brad Pitt and Matt Damon as contestants of The Dating Game and Barris coming up with the idea for a TV quiz show while half-listening to a CIA instructor explaining torture techniques. --Kim Newman --This text refers to the DVD edition.
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Sam Rockwell is his usual brilliant manic persona (go to "Seven Psychopaths" after this) and the quality leading ladies Drew Barrymore and Maggie Gyllenhaal excel too.
If however you're going to buy on BLU RAY - stick with the UK variant because no matter how cheap the 'US' disc may appear - it's on Lionsgate and is REGION A LOCKED - so it won't play on our machines unless they're chipped to be 'all regions' (which few are).
Use the following Amazon reference - B005GJTNFI - in the search bar above to get the right BLU RAY issue. It clocks in at about a fiver and is well worth the buy...
Sam Rockwell turns in a great performance as the would-be hitman, and is supported brilliantly by Julia Roberts, Drew Barrymore and good ol' George himself. To begin with, George's performance is a little sketchy, and it will take a while to get used to theat moustache, but he does eventually settle down and play a very cool role that is hard to characterise as 'friend or foe'.
Damage to the finesse of the movie is done by the limited camera techniques used for effect. Even though there are some very well storyboarded and executed scenes, due to the constant mood and pace of the movie, it is easy to notice when a scene runs dry. But, the movie picks itself up well and all the performances are consistent after the first 25mins.
I went to watch this at the cinema just due to the boredom of the day, but I was pleased to find a funny, witty, independent movie that will become an excellent DVD to own. Treat Yourself :)
After all, there is no big distance between masses manipulation and political one.
They say Soderbergh helped him make the film and I think that the student surpassed the master.
Excellent blu ray both from visual and sound point of view.
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