Set in Vietnam in April 1968 - three months after the tide-turning Tet Offensive and one month after the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. - Point Man is the story of a U.S. Army fire... See full summary »
Joshua Dela Cruz,
Joe W Nowland,
Jimmy Ace Lewis
One of the most celebrated war correspondents of our time, Marie Colvin is an utterly fearless and rebellious spirit, driven to the frontline of conflicts across the globe to give voice to the voiceless.
Iranian director, Maryam Keshavarz, returns after a seven year hiatus.
Viper Club (2018) on Youtube subscription.
Iranian director, Maryam Keshavarz, returns after a seven year hiatus. Her previous brave movie, Circumstance (2011), showed the plight of Iranian lesbians in a harsh political country filled with hypocrisy and misogyny. In Viper Club, she places the USA under a microscope and reveals plenty without being overloud.
The basic premise is that of a mother attempting to deal with the issue of her kidnapped journalist son in the Middle East. While the FBI and the government are stalling (because one doesn't know what the other is doing), the frustrated mother turns to a wealthy fundraising group with connections in high places. All this while attempting to keep down her job as a shift nurse, doing long hours and deprived of sleep.
Director Keshavarz creates a social structure of the USA within that story frame. The obvious one is the bureaucratic red tape from the Government and the games they play for political purposes. Then there is the wealthy groups and the power they have when they lend a helping hand is raising the ransom. Most importantly is the hospital where the mother works as a nurse. It is the hub of a multicultural society. A workplace where people of different cultures get along, even under duress. There is one underplayed sequence during an emergency rush hour of gunshot victims, obviously from another U.S. shooting spree, but that is never spelt out. It is scenes like this, and others, where the filmmakers have placed faith in their audience to decipher.
The main thrust of the story is the mother's ordeal. She is only a small player in this kidnapping saga because she really has no control, and all the while has to juggle the heavy load of shift work and life. This is revealed in short scenes, with some lingering shots on Susan Sarandon's tired and emotionally drained features that were powerfully effective.
This was all achieved by a somber tone. Almost like being in the same shock trance as the mother. It also had a powerful sense of realism, with the slight handheld camera movement and the care it took in showing the mother's daily life. Almost reminiscent of a Ken Loach or Mike Leigh style of filmmaking, where the characters are more important and carry the story.
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