Monday, February 7, 2011

A Touch of Class

Tonight I conquered a film unlike any other I'd seen- one that had me captivated from start to finish and sent me off to bed (and to my laptop) with my mind still reeling from the cinematic brilliance I'd just witnessed.
Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb(1964) is able to do what movies of late seem to be unable to accomplish: satirize subtley, and taunt with a touch of class. Rarely does a film, old or new, require such a deep mental analysis and express its message in such a cleverly veiled manner.
Only Stanley Kubrick's twisted mind could create satisfying humor from the dark tale of a nuclear accident. Surely, this film is a testament to his genius. The deliberately impersonal, precise manner in which he presents his story demonstrates how firmly Kubrick must have held his anti-Cold War sentiments, and his efforts build to a perfect tragicomic ending worthy of intense praise. Watching Slim Pickens as Major TJ King Kong ride that bomb down to Earth like he was riding a bull made me want to laugh and cry at the same time. I think Kubrick was actually aiming for this emotional paradox, as it is representative of the entire nature of mutually assured destruction.
A fantastic,fantastic film.
Peter Sellers is incredible as well. He brings something different and intriguing to each of the three roles he plays, especially lighting up the screen as the flamboyant, flailing Dr. Strangelove himself. I'm amazed that he didn't win the Oscar for these performances...yet another unbelievable snub to make me question the Academy's wisdom.

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