Saturday, March 7, 2015

The Judge, in flight

While unable to sleep more than 1 hour in a non-reclining center seat on Air France last month, headed to Europe, I watched “The Judge” on the plane.  Robert Downey Jr and Robert Duvall gave superb performances in the film.  It’s a little heavy handed and stereotypical, but still a good movie nevertheless.  

A string of near impossibilities and absurdities made it less enjoyable for me as a viewer, since I prefer to see a story to which I can relate , that makes sense, and that doesn’t try to Force me to suspend disbelief to the nth degree.  Robert Downey Jr as the sleazy, successful lawyer-to-the-richest defendants, ok, I get that.  Duvall as the hard line, strict disciplinarian who only understands “tough love”, ok, I get that.  But 
- bizarre sentencing histories, 
- a strange small Indiana town that is faster to fly to than to drive to from Chicago
- a town so small that it has only 1 bar and everyone there knows everyone, yet big enough that it warrants multiple judges in its tiny little court house
- a distinctive lack of flying insects (I think they probably shot it in California somewhere) in any of the scenes (that Ain’t Indiana)
- Robert Downey Jr ramming a perfectly good garage door (his father’s), backwards, just to be an asshole 
- a sentenced judge not being raped or killed or severely beaten in a small county prison system where he put most, if not all of the prisoners, into that system

Billy Bob Thorton and Vincent D’onofrio have very under-stated, under-played roles.  I loved Billy Bob’s portable metallic collapsing water glass.  I used to have one of those when I was in Scouts many years ago.  D’onofrio could have done so much more with his part…  but maybe directing and editing threw a wet blanket over his excellent acting.

You know…  I saw another film while I was flying for 7 hours, sleeping for one 1, and tossing and turning for nearly 4… but I can’t think of what it was right now.   If I recall it, I will blog about it here.

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