Thursday, July 21, 2011
KILL THE IRISHMAN and the reason why CGI must be stopped.
This past weekend I sat down with Jonathan Hensleigh's KILL THE IRISHMAN. A decent time-waster based on the exploits of Irish American mobster, Danny Greene and the "Bomb City USA" years of 1976 Cleveland. Good acting, competent direction and unfortunately a shit-ton of horrible CGI explosions that really make me consider my devotion to film in general.
This type of lazy filmmaking is exactly what I feared from the rise of CGI. There's nothing remotely real about any of the explosions in this movie. I mean, fuck, couldn't you even build a model and blow it up? At least I'd know some thought and time would've went into it. Even the spliced-in stock footage explosions from EXECUTIONER PART 2 are more realistic.
The idea that you would make a movie revolving around a mob war that hinged on bombing and cheap out on the very thing that made it what it was is pretty fucking galling. And I know there's a bunch of people who wouldn't even give a fuck, that it's me who has the problem. And maybe they're right. After all, if I sucked down video game after video game and was very receptive of lame-ass digital filmmaking done by everyone's grandmother who had an inkling of making a movie once, well, yeah, I guess my expectations would be lowered enough to accept this cinematic chicanery.
Here's a thought: Instead of using the shit passing for explosions here, why not purchase 70's public domain footage of cars exploding and intercut it with the actual Cleveland news footage of the time chronicling the aftermath? It'd be creative in an editorial sense and add a sense of realism that the picture is sorely lacking.
There was a time when spectacle enhanced low-budget cinema if only to belie it's lack of funding. Now it's just an afterthought handled by "visual effects" nerds who've probably never lit a fuse on a firecracker.
So here's to the creators of the post production explosions on KILL THE IRISHMAN. Romanians kicked your ass in 1974.