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By Ben Cohen a “legendary master of the left field.” -BRP!

“Unintentionally misunderstood since 1975.” –Anonymous

“A big f@#k you, to the audience.” -B. Pendarvis

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Saturday, January 30, 2010


The first time I saw Sam Rockwell, I fell in love.  And it is not just that he is fellow product of the Bay Area acting scene, just a kid from Daily City.  It was like seeing Harrison Ford as Han Solo or Indiana Jones for the first time.  In Box of Moonlight as The Kid you saw all the quirky charms Rockwell brings.  With John Turturro's complimentary character and the surprising circular tale it is still one of my favorite films.  That very same night I saw Glory Daze not a great movie, but one that is nostalgic for people with a connection to Santa Cruz.  Illustrating his ability to transform I didn't even realize Rockwell was also Rob in that movie until weeks latter.

Since that night I have seen him live up to my admiration, only limited by opportunity and the quality of the film he is in. It is hard to beat his performance in The Green Mile...its hard to be anyone's performance in that film.  In Confessions of a Dangerous Mind he plays one of America's most interesting persona, Chuck Barris and saves the film for me.  He makes Matchstick Men and The Hitchhikes Guide to The Galaxy for me.  He is a welcome ensemble piece in Frost/Nixon.

In Moon what you get is a lot of Sam Rockwell.  This film has four things things going for it, Rockwell, its take on our energy future, its hart and its pithy length (1hr 37min).  In fact without this it would be just another 2001: A Space Odyssey, long, depressing and seen before.

1 comment:

  1. A very well written review. I do not follow you on the last line. 2001 was a work of art that still transcends almost every movie that ever followed it. Many films sacrifice realism, plausibility, and functional detail for just the opposite and cover it up with story, cliquy dialog and details that dazzle, strictly for show. In other words, eye candy.

    In Moon, for instance, my only true complaint would be the sounds heard in a vacuum but not in the cockpit as the Helium 3 surface strip mining took place. Sam Rockwell (Lawn Dogs) should be able to hear it as it is falling on his lunar rover. Aside from that, the far side of the moon has nightfall just like its counterpart. Maybe we just missed it, but the surface would be pitch black. Other than the fact that,I spotted the clone thing very early in the film. I loved how the director brought its element into the movie.

    Depicted in the film about how companies will do anything to cut costs, increase productivity, get what they want and disregard human life, is familiar in the sci-fi family genre. Alien, Outland, District 9, Johnny Mnemonic, Robocop, ect. all have these elements.

    The film left me with a dilemma that has only one solution out of ten... That is my top ten favorites must be re-evaluated and one nocked from their prestigious perches I have entrenched them into. The list is as follows, and not in this order... Blade Runner, Alien, Fifth Element, Dark City, Wrath of Khan, 2001, Black Hole, Solaris, Dune and Tron. Wall-E, Contact, Sunshine, Beyond Thunderdome, THX 1138, Cocoon (to name a few) and even Hitch Hikers Guide didn't make that cut for various reasons even though it was in there for a short time along with films like Saturn 3 (which shares much in common with Moon including its back story). Matrix, for instance, was phenomenal movie but got ruined by the second and the third still had part twos flaws hanging over it. Outlander was "wow" but WTF! I am not sure which one should be bumped out but I know which one everyone else would. There are so many to choose from. All are worth watching at least once, even Zardoz. But only a few have a serious trace of reality. Moon is a masterpiece.

    -Jay Campbell