Friday, August 19, 2005

Withnail and I (Robinson, 1987)

One of the great things about Criterion DVD's is the way they use the supplemental material to make an argument for a film's value and/or importance. Watching the mini-documentary on the cult following for this film, I can sort of see how it might be fun to quote some of the more memorable lines at a party or on a road trip or something. I can imagine myself crying out at a particularly tense moment, "I've gone on holiday by mistake!" However, I can't say that I really cared a whole lot about the sum total of watching this picture. The lead characters seemed like the same drunken, half-coherent nitwits that I've seen many times before (kind of like characters from The Young Ones, but less funny) and I found the paranoic use of homosexual aggression as the source of most of the film's plot and humor discouragingly lame. In the end, the film scrambles to find a sense of poetry in the mess that has unfolded, but it was far too late for me to be invested in who succeeded and who failed.


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