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A Few Good Men

I've always loved A Few Good Men - even when I used to be embarrassed watching a Tom Cruise movie. These days of course I have no problem stating Cruise is a good actor who can be exceptional in roles where he plays earnestness off self-loathing, as in The Last Samurai or Jerry Maguire. Daniel Kaffee isn't his best role (that goes to his turn in Magnolia) but he's very watchable. Jack Nicholson steals the movie of course but all of the supporting cast - Kiefer Sutherland, Kevin Pollack (who now reminds me of Whitley Bradford), JT Walsh, Kevin Bacon etc - are very good. Even Demi Moore (whom I'm never impressed by) is adequate.

Random notes:

  • The contrivances in the plot - the way certain facts are withheld from the characters and the audience - are more obvious now, but who cares? Despite the ostensible murder mystery this film is driven by performance not plot. The mystery is the skeleton; flesh, life and breath is supplied by the dialogue and acting.
  • Aaron Sorkin's theme of sons with father issues rears its head again.
  • Nicholson has the most memorable lines of course, but I always remember Sutherland's reading of "No I have not" during his turn on the witness stand.
  • Interesting to find that the story was based on an actual event at Guantanamo Bay (now, unfortunately, the scene of far worse atrocities) that Sorkin's sister - a JAG corps lawyer - was involved in.
  • I love DVD commentaries but after Rob Reiner eked out all of twelve sentences in the first fifteen minutes of the movie I played Starcraft instead. Isn't it kind of obvious that you're supposed to talk during a commentary?

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Comments (1)

It is interesting to note Aaron Sorkin's scripting of father child relationships in the West Wing, interesting too that this surfaced in his Sports Night his "sitcom".
I guess I'm lucky that my father - a soldier by the way, didn't possess the failings that Sorkin's characters seem to be burdened with.

Speaking of the military, would you mind detailing or backing up those claims of atrocities at Guantanamo Bay. Interrogation has occurred at Guantanamo, don't confuse that with abuse or indeed atrocities.

In fact I would think three meals a day and the freedom to practice religion is a lot more than what would usually be available to these people.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on June 14, 2005 12:05 AM.

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