Monday, 5 October 2015


THE TALENTED MR. RIPLEY: Ripley's game is one of dark deception. If you thought Matt Damon's (the man who right now is an expert in getting lost in space) con was on in the 'Oceans' trilogy than wait until you see him in 'The Talented Mr. Ripley' adaptation, you and Jude Law hope without a paddle. Still, before the marvellous movie also starring leading ladies Gwyneth Paltrow and Cate Blanchett came the brilliant book, a classic by 'Strangers On A Train' legendary writer Patrica Highsmith. A slick, globetrotting, cat and mouse, catch me if you can thriller between New York City and the picture postcards of Europe that sees an insecure confidence trickster trying to convince the socialite son of a wealthy man to come home...but with a deadly twist will he ever? This perfect prose is a dark description of the anxiety of loneliness and the trappings of jealousy. Its not only a fine tuned story and woven plot...its also only a straight forward look at the weakness of human nature that blindsides you like a change in tide in a sea of trouble. Classically complex like only book muses like this are. 'Talented' is not the word.

THE BLACK DAHLIA: Dripping in noir and dark red blood. Part of 'American Tabloid' writer James Ellroy's quartet set in Los Angeles is off the Q.T and very "hush, hush" like 'L.A. Confidential'. Based on the real Black Dahlia murder mystery in Los Angeles this Hollywoodland homicide was adapted into a movie starring leading men Josh Hartnett and Aaron Eckhart and femme fatales Scarlett Johansson and Hilary Swank. Read with slick, classic lead cop investigative narration like its been ripped fresh off the typewriter, you feel how all drawn out this is like the case of the unsolved 'Zodiac' killer that demonised the angels of the city of Los Angeles. With brilliant boxing ring asides with the fire and ice of two partner cops in busting crime in the jaw, like the fire and ice of classic Laker Baylor and West this rages like a bull. All the way until the end which seems to go on until one of California's cruellest mysteries is brought to a light realer than a cinematic one. Until then the death of the Dahlia will never fade to black. TIM DAVID HARVEY.

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