Friday, December 4, 2015

Classic Film Friday // Cape Fear (1991)

Cape Fear (1991)
Convicted rapist Max Cady's release from prison spells disaster for his former lawyer, Sam Bowden.
Fourteen years earlier, Sam had knowingly buried evidence that could have worked in Max's favour. During his time in prison, Max learns of this oversight and becomes obsessed with bringing justice down upon Sam and ruining his life the way Sam ruined his -- taking from Sam his family, including his young daughter and beautiful wife, his profession, his future.

Cape Fear (1991)
Cape Fear (1991)
Cape Fear (1991)
Cape Fear (1991)
Cape Fear (1991)
While I'm used to Martin Scorsese's intense and dramatic style, this one seemed very over-the-top. The jarring visuals -- including split focus, quick cuts, oblique angles, zoom shots, and even infrared -- combined with the heavy-handed music to create more than one moment of me rolling my eyes. However, it all comes together with De Niro's hugely disturbing performance, and there are genuine moments of simplicity and even great silences.
There's bad here, but there's a lot of good too. Besides, if you're a Simpsons fan, you've seen all the iconic moments in this film anyway -- season 5, episode 2, aptly named "Cape Feare." Watch it for one of the most lovingly crafted comedy homages I've ever seen.

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