Cheer Up Charlies
"...The series pairs both Belmondo's arthouse classics with his time as one of the premier action stars of the time, and it kicks off with the initial salvo of the Nouvelle Vague (shh, don't tell Jean Cocteau), Jean-Luc Godard's Breathless. Whole forests have suffered from the amount of ink and paper used to discuss this seminal film, and rightly so..."
"...McDonald plays Brendan, a shy, reserved Dublin schoolteacher who spends his days absently teaching English to the sort of boisterous soccer-hooligans-to-be who seem to exclusively populate Brit and Irish films since time immemorial and his nights devouring all things cinema. Both his schoolroom and his flat are decked out with posters from A Bout de Souffle -- Breathless -- and the look on his mother's face when his Christmas gift to her is a Godard biography (“It's different from last year's,” he tells her) says it all..."
"...French New Wave director Jean-Luc Godard supposedly described film history as a history of boys photographing girls. For American actress Jean Seberg -- herself one of the girls photographed by boys like Godard in his film Breathless -- this history proved fatal, resulting in a career that had more stops than starts and a sense of self ground to nothingness by the time of her death, an apparent suicide, in 1979 at the age of 40..."
"...The usually charismatic Foxx exudes little of his usual snap, and Gabrielle Union as his character’s ex-wife has little to do but hold a phone receiver and berate Vincent over the whereabouts of their son. The 95 minutes it takes for this sleepless night to unfold onscreen feel tedious rather than breathless..."
"...That’s it, really, although Cuarón’s cinematographer, Damian Garcia, does a downright painterly job of portraying the high desert as a place of both indifferent death and otherworldly vistas. That’s not surprising – Cuarón’s last feature film gig was penning the breathless outer space epic Gravity for his brother Alfonso, who directed – but here the story is very much pulled back down to Earth..."
"...It also chronicles his turbulent personal life, one marked by messy relationships, an obsessive need for privacy, and bitter tragedy in the form of his son Christian’s conviction for murder and his daughter Cheyenne’s subsequent suicide. But it’s the private, confessional Brando (particularly in the self-hypnosis tapes he made late in life) that will leave you nearly breathless..."
"...Audiences have a long year to wait for Part 2. Would it not have been better to leave them breathless than heaving a sigh?..."
"...Anyone who watched the 2009 Kentucky Derby remembers the rush of watching the long-shot contender, Mine That Bird, start dead last and finish first in a breathless, come-from-behind upset you thought could only happen in the movies. The victory was so unexpected that the network sports announcer didn’t realize the figurative dark horse had taken a significant lead in the home stretch until a few seconds before the race ended..."
"...More significantly, it puts Renner and Weisz in the same frame, and that’s when the picture starts to zing. The hero is humanized, the film finds its focus, and the action – breathless, savage, and exquisitely staged – matters because the film has finally produced characters worth worrying over..."
"...The Destroyer: WTF? Discuss. Thor moves at a breathless pace, taking zero time for anything resembling the endearingly nuanced romance between, oh, I dunno, Spider-Man and Mary Jane..."
"...If you're going to fault Aja's manic take on Corman's old terror-tory at all, you might say it's too much of a good (or bad, depending on your gag reflex) thing. The effects work by latex legends Howard Berger and Greg Nicotero is wickedly gruesome – I suppose you haven't lived until you've seen a prehistoric fish regurgitate a gnawed-off male member – and the pace is appropriately breathless..."
"...Everything was a lie, and suddenly, everyone was dying – literally, morally, spiritually – and it all went wrong. British director Greengrass (United 93, The Bourne Supremacy, The Bourne Ultimatum), working from a breathless and fine script by Brian Helgeland (Mystic River) based on Rajiv Chandrasekaran's equally riveting book Imperial Life in the Emerald City, posits the immediate and fruitless search for WMD as an exercise in 120-degree, sun-drenched neo-noir, with Damon's Chief Warrant Officer Roy Miller as first a pawn and then a dogged seeker of the truth..."
"...Yikes. For all its hyperkinetic camerawork and Carpenter's breathless, panic-attacky hysterics (and some unnervingly realistic gore effects), Quarantine is a one-note nightmare, nicely pitched to the high-C howls of the bitten and the biters but offering considerably less froth than last year's The Signal, which mined similar nightmares with far more fulsome results...."
"...Turistas is being tagged as a down-market version of Eli Roth's Hostel, but that's lazy criticism and obscures the fact that, if anything, this is the more compelling film, commingling as it does echoes of everything from Ruggero Deodato and Umberto Lenzi's ultrarealistic green hell horrors, the spelunking aspects of The Descent, and Marino Girolami's scalpel-happy Cannibal Holocaust aka Doctor Butcher, M.D. Very believably acted throughout and featuring a literally breathless underwater sequence of cat-and-mouse, Turistas is, surprising, given its lousy marketing campaign and thankless release date, a solidly visceral piece of work..."
"...A less cohesive action-comedy than its predecessor, Full Throttle is instead a freewheeling collection of random action sequences strung together with little or no discernible rhyme or reason. You can clearly see the writers (John August, Cormac Wibberley, and Marianne Wibberley) struggling to come up with one breathless bit of badassery after another, with the end result being a witless, tiring mishmash of things that go boom, boom, boom in the night: It’s like a rave with a drunken DJ who just can't seem to get the beats to match..."
"...(In 1999, the BBC held its own pseudo-scientific investigation, the centerpiece of which was a young kid tramping through a field with a flat board attached to his feet who managed to come up with some nifty faux-circles of his own. So much for alien intervention.) Gazecki, who scored an Oscar nomination for his documentary Waco: The Rules of Engagement in 1997, clearly knows his stuff when it comes to ley-lines, ancient Celtic peoples, and the various and sundry oddball personages that make up the backbone of crop-circle researchers, but for all its breathless excitement and earnest believers, Crop Circles comes off as less a “quest for truth” than an extended example of preaching to the converted..."
"...Summer has now officially arrived, and with it, the first real summer movie of the new millennium. The Perfect Storm is nearly a perfect film, from its bold and epic man-vs.-nature conflict to the breathless scripting, editing, acting, and direction..."
"...It hardly matters, though, when you have Cruise and Scott trading body blows atop growling motorcycles, dueling at 80kmph atop an Australian clifftop, while the fate of the free world hangs in the balance yet again. As pure a summer popcorn overdose as you're likely to find, M:i-2 is breezy, breathless, brainless fun, falling just short of Woo's own Face/Off but head and shoulders above anything else out there just now...."
"...Adapted with an eye toward ennui by Eileen Atkins (from Virginia Woolf's 1925 novel) and directed with all the radiant flair of a soggy scone by Academy Award winner Gorris (Antonia's Line), Mrs. Dalloway transforms one of the masterpieces of 20th-century literature into a rambling series of misfires and who-gives-a-damn subplots that eviscerates the source material's breathless interior monologues and radiant prose..."
"...Day plays Al relatively straight, acting as the conscience and moral center (what there is of it) of the pair. The remarkable thing about Kiss or Kill -- and the reason that such a cliché-ridden set-up seems so fresh -- is Bennett and cinematographer Malcolm McCulloch's breathlessly nontraditional pacing and editing techniques..."
"...T4 this is not. Nor will For Ever Mozart leave you Breathless...."
"...Chan's style of filmmaking has more to do with the old Mack Sennett two-reelers than it does with modern feature filmmaking, although in this particular case it owes just as much to the Spielberg/Lucas camp, and, in particular, the Indiana Jones series. Silly, action-filled fun, with breathless pacing and the occasional bare bottom..."
"...in this Tinseltown tradition, and it's another delight. Cats Don't Dance is an inspired movie movie, one that celebrates and spoofs cinema with wit, verve, and a breathless enthusiasm for the form..."
"...Despite the genuinely ludicrous story here, The Cat is oddly appealing in a surreal sort of way. Like so many other Hong Kong fantasy films of late, The Cat moves at a breathless pace, with action that's so far over the top it makes your head spin..."
"...Despite the obvious comparisons to Woo's films, Full Contact survives on its own gritty merits. It's a down-and-dirty little actioneer that leaves you squirming, breathless in your seat...."
"...On the plus side, however, the principal performers are engaging despite these limitations. Allen is great as the miserably prim, drawn Zeena, and the romantic chemistry between Neeson and Arquette's characters creates a palpable sexual tension which lends a sense of breathless anticipation..."
"...If you stick through to the end of the credits, the director has thoughtfully tacked on a “gag reel,” that is, stray shots and bloopers of all the stunts that went wrong (the one involving Gi-King and a speeding car windshield looks especially, er, painful). Eee-yowch, this is a rollicking good time that will leave you breathless and exuberant all at the same time: “Oh man, that part where he...”..."
"...This holiday season, DVD distributor Genius Products is releasing a four-disc box set of films that span the great Frenchman's career, from his earliest New Wave breakouts, which announced a bold new presence on the international film scene, to one of his most recent releases, Notre Musique, an experimental three-part meditation on the nature of war. The set opens with Godard's most famous picture, 1960's Breathless, which, by this point, has moved beyond its reputation as a mere revolutionary artistic masterpiece and entered into the rarefied air of the cultural touchstone, where images become part of the collective consciousness..."
"...They quickly bond over their shared obsession with cinema, and when Isabelle and Theo’s bohemian parents leave town for several weeks, Matthew moves in. With the Cinémathèque now closed, the three feed their movie love by re-enacting scenes from A Band Apart, Breathless, and Queen Christina (real footage from the films is interwoven with the re-enactments)..."
"...Speed talker, master planner, inspired hustler, endless self-promoter, creative gremlin, Carson starred in Jim McBride's David Holzman's Diary; helped McBride remake Jean-Luc Godard's Breathless; birthed the USA Film Festival in Dallas; wrote The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 for director Tobe Hooper; co-wrote Wim Wenders' Paris, Texas; mentored directors Guillermo del Toro and Roman Coppola; was involved in countless film projects; and nonchalantly discovered Wes Anderson and those wild Wilson boys, Luke and Owen, as he shepherded Bottle Rocket to the screen. Like any gambler he was always looking for the next high-stakes game, as with any wanderer he was never at home but always just visiting..."
"...Mondo Belmondo: Breathless Another French Revolution was launched when Jean-Luc Godard put a Gallic spin on the Hollywood tale of a crook on the lam and the dame who has the bad luck to fall for him. Jean-Paul Belmondo puts a match to the screen and torches it in the role that made him a star..."
"...There's none of the stereotypical modern kitchen dictator, but a pleasant, driven sexagenarian who has never tired of what he does. The tone – relentlessly and slavishly hagiographic – is set in a literally breathless introduction narrated by de Maistre, as if making a film is almost a side effect of his own quest to spend two years with the great chef...."
"...The opening action sequence of Maze Runner: The Death Cure, the third film adaptation of James Dashner’s hit YA series, is such a corker it takes a minute to remember that series star Dylan O’Brien suffered a severe head trauma on set doing a stunt that shut down production for a year. Should we feel bad for delighting in The Death Cure’s breathless action scenes? And what if the action is one of the only things worth cheering here?..."
"...Gov. Greg Abbott tweeted that the state "banned sanctuary cities to stop this." The Travis County GOP issued a breathless statement accusing "Sanctuary Sally" of "needlessly" endangering the public by "outrageously" releasing Mendoza-Caballero into the public...."
"...“I did bring my oxygen machine,” LaFave offered that night. “I’m not worried about being breathless from the cancer..."
"..."I did bring my oxygen machine," chuckled Jimmy LaFave in concert Friday at Threadgill's. "I'm not worried about being breathless from the cancer..."
"...Using this moment in history, Ozon has made a quietly powerful film whose ultimate message is one of rebirth. The final shot will leave you breathless...."
"...It’s hard to believe this actress began her career as an industry joke: a boy-crazy surfer; a flying nun; the girl with something extra. Luckily, something miraculous happened when she found parts requiring more than a perky smile, leaving us breathless in performances that eradicated all memory of Gidget and Sister Bertrille..."
"...Far more affecting for followers of the Ip Man storyline is the fact that Ip’s beloved wife Cheung Wing-sing (Xiong) is stricken by cancer. Amidst the brawls and standoffs – in particular a breathless, close-quarters skirmish in an elevator against Muay Thai fighter Sarut Khanwilai – Yen and Hung raise some powerful, atypical-for-the-genre emotional stakes in the face of Mrs..."
"...Breathless, released in March 1960, shattered the preexisting template for narrative filmmaking while still keeping a loose grip on Hollywood's iconic gangster/moll iconography. Jean-Paul Belmondo's sexy-thuggish Michel and a pixified and pixelated Jean Seberg as his American girlfriend are archetypes, but Godard's hypnotically spastic editing and subversive use of the camera eye marked a caustically gorgeous subversion of the Hollywood rule book, and everything changed...."
"...While the Brooklyn quartet's sophomore effort proves lustrously polished and the rhythms more pronounced, it still treads in lukewarm waters that lull comfortably numb. The relentless yearning in its dreamlike electronic haze and the breathless sighs of Josh Kolenik works well to a point, seducing on opener "Free at Dawn" and "Canoe," yet never moves forward, the compelling Eighties glaze washing from one song to the next and ultimately settling into a decompression tank that strips all sensory stimulation..."
"...Much running and leaping across the rooftops of Istanbul follows, as does a nifty and prolonged car chase through that city's donkey-cart-narrow avenues. It may lack the precision of a Bourne movie, but Taken 2 scores points for both its breathless pacing and the key moral quandary at the heart of the story: the fact that Neeson's ex-spy and Serbedzija's anguished and vengeful father aren't, when you get right down to it, ethically that far apart..."
"...Looper makes a full-meal entertainment out of piecemealing genres: It boasts the kicky mental gymnastics that come with time-travel terrain, the relentless rapid heart rate of a crackerjack thriller, and the bursts of extreme violence, buttressed with black humor, of a modern actioner. (In a neat feat, Johnson concocts an ingenious set-piece that is at once entirely bloodless and god-awfully gruesome.) But all that breathless running and shooting and rocketing between past and future is just dressing for what is – at its anguished, morally complicated core – a blistering portrayal of the cycle of neglect..."
"...For such a winding, research-heavy piece, Portrait of Wally moves at a brisk clip, with Gary Lionelli’s agitated score lending the film the breathless quality of a police procedural. As with any detective story, certain plot threads are cut for the sake of the bigger picture; curiously, it’s the artist himself who is reduced to an afterthought (his biography is largely confined to the film’s postscript)..."
"...Not since Run Lola Run has running for one’s life (and the life of a loved one) been so literally integral to a film’s momentum and purpose. So breathless is Point Blank that its more preposterous action moments pass by unperturbedly, as any pause to question the incidents would interrupt the pleasure of the movie’s progression...."
"...native Dylan for a job opening as art director at GQ. Like a rocky first date, the film tries too hard in this early stretch, cramming in breathless banter before we’ve gotten a feel for the characters..."
"...Breathless (dir. YANG Ik-june, 2009, South Korea) Breathless is a foul-mouthed drama that delivers an unlikely mix of pathos, brutality and humor..."
"...Silverman is brilliant – understated, effortlessly lovely, and hilarious with incomparable ease. In fact, that's what makes the show so brilliant overall: Everyone is fueled by high-octane ambition, yet no one dares to come off as that breathless, starry-eyed kid from the sticks with a dream..."
"...Never given much of a serious stateside release when it first arrived here in 1996, Ashes, ostensibly a period wuxia (literally, "honorable martial arts") movie replete with flashing swordplay, heartbroken assassins, and an eerie desert locale, remains the director's only period action film to date. But Ashes of Time (Redux or the 1994 original) is no more your average wuxia than Godard's Breathless is your average gangster flick..."
"...(The better to mine material from, right?) Then reality steps in and deals them both a blow: Erik's novel is rejected, while Phillip’s is published to great acclaim – only for a psychotic break to undo him at the height of his success. This stylish, often-frenetic first feature from Norweigan filmmaker Trier (distant cousin to that Danish master of discomfort Lars von Trier) is as auspicious – and breathless – a debut as Reservoir Dogs was for Tarantino; and just as with our American motormouth savant, one senses that Trier has always been the coolest kid in the room … at least in any room that counts..."