The Cormac McCarthy Scripted Thriller Time Forgot

author Cormac McCarthyRecently passed away at the age of 89, several of his novels were adapted into films (road, Old Men) but only one play is named after him. 2013 crime drama counselor starring Michael Fassbender, Penelope Cruz, Javier Bardem, Cameron Diaz, brad pitt There are even legendary Ridley Scott command. The film itself baffled critics and audiences upon its release due to its apparent lackluster (something the screenwriters are well known for), but a closer look allows one to appreciate the tone and choices of all these Hollywood heavyweights, even if you don’t Not a fan of the movie itself.

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Counselors don’t waste time making you uncomfortable

Michael Fassbender and Javier Bardem toast on 'The Counselor'
Image via 20th Century Fox

The basic plot of the film is fairly simple; Fassbinder plays a lawyer (we never learn his name, since everyone in the film simply refers to him as a consultant) (played by Baden) is in trouble after his drug deal fails. Like any good thriller, there’s a lot of murder and betrayal and all that jazz, however filmmakers McCarthy and Scott are less interested in plot and details etc and more in atmosphere. Now, since that vibe is “drug dealing gone bad,” you know these two aren’t kidding. In fact, from the film’s very first scene, it’s clear that the director and writers aren’t afraid to go to uncomfortable places, as we see Fassbender having an unusually explicit morning with his girlfriend, played by Cruz. . Neither star actually gets naked, but the dialogue and the way Scott puts the camera under the sheets teases the characters with each other, which certainly creates a very hot moment; but somehow we also feel as if we’re seeing too much many. Private moments that can only be shared between two lovers in the safest of places. But of course, as the movie goes on, we know that’s the point, as we follow the titular advisor and get a front row seat to a world that no one should see.

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Now, if the scene of two of the most charismatic actors on earth playing each other like violins isn’t enough to make you drop the game, the following scene will implore you to hold the proverbial beer when you see Diaz’s character, Mal Kina rides with her pet cheetah in the desert near El Paso, Texas. And before you ask, yes, she does have gold teeth and a cheetah tattooed on her shoulders. Before your brain starts processing what you’re seeing, the film introduces Bardem’s character Reina, whose entire cast can only be described as Spain’s answer to Guy Ferry. For a not-so-subtle display of wealth, the pair brought along a portable bar and personal chef, you know, as a treat. Reiner poured a few drinks and brought one to Malkina, who was gazing into the distance. Reiner asked if she liked the view very much because it reminded her of other places. “I like it myself,” she replied. Feeling itchy in his heart, he asked another question. “Do I remind you of anyone else?” “Yes,” she admitted. “Is there anyone you miss?” Reiner asked. “A person who is dead. I don’t think I miss anything. I think to miss something is to wish it would come back. But it won’t come back,” she replied. Reina replied without hesitation: “Don’t you feel a little cold?” “I think the truth has no temperature.” Oops.

This quick exchange is the perfect sales pitch for what the film is selling. Some of Hollywood’s best actors deliver some of the most poetic and bleak dialogue while engaging in deep, tasteless dialogue about anything (but also nothing?), while offering few details about what actually happened. Admittedly, it wasn’t the most glamorous pitch for many (or for most, it turned out), but the courage of the filmmakers reveling in the dark and the complete and utter commitment of the cast proved The feverish dream of this movie can’t help but be convincing.

Bardem and Diaz make biggest shift in performances in film

Cameron Diaz stares into the desert in 'The Counselor'
Image via 20th Century Fox.

When it comes to the cast, Bardem and Diaz probably have the most screen time since The Counselor, and they’re both really good. Bardem’s Rainer is easy to mock (and Bardem is utterly reckless toward that), but through conversations with Fassbender and Diaz, McCarthy subtly hints at who the man really is, and Baden perfectly interprets all this. One of the monologues in particular stands out, in which Reiner describes to a consultant a moment when Marquina straddles the windshield of his Ferrari (you read that right), and Bardem recounts it as if it were a moment It had a profound, life-changing effect on him: jaw-dropping in its singularity and, if anything, fascinating to watch an actor of his caliber pull out all the stops on such material. However, Diaz appears almost entirely in another movie. Her performance as the ruthless Malkina is close to camp, and a few lines are instantly seared into your brain (her “I’m hungry” line in the film’s final line is unprecedented). But in the context of the movie, it makes perfect sense. While Malkina is completely in her own world and does what she wants whenever and wherever she wants, Diaz goes all out with mesmerizing results.

Brad Pitt doesn’t get much in the film, but the character actor trapped inside his lead man commands attention every time he’s on screen. The actors are mostly for illustration (at least the little the movie allows), but Pitt makes McCarthy’s dialogue sing, even as he accurately describes how Cartel likes to “look after” those who wronged them (hint: it’s not pleasant) . Even though Cruz plays perhaps the most thankless character in the film, he also delivers a solid performance. Her role is little more than a plot device, but because Cruz is an incredible actor (which Ridley knows all too well), she effortlessly and quickly convinces the audience that her love for Fassbinder is Everything fully embodies the last trace of kindness. Counselors may have.

Which brings us to the consultant himself, Michael Fassbender. For most of the film, the actors just react to the frantic characters and situations around them with a sense of calm bewilderment. However, during a Hail Mary talk with the cartel leader (showing apocalyptic calm) Ruben Blaze) Fassbender finally breaks down after realizing the reality of his situation (hint: it’s not pleasant either). Watching the counselor accept his doom is one of the most devastating moments in the entire film, a heartbreaking performance by Fassbender.

Ridley Scott blames poor marketing for movie failure

Brad Pitt and Michael Fassbender to star in 'The Counselor'
Image via 20th Century Fox

When the film premiered in October 2013, it was well-received by critics and audiences alike, and it did gross a measly $16 million domestically (although it made $71 million on a $25 million budget. The global box office saved a bit of face). At first glance, it might seem like it could be blamed on the dark material and barely there plot, but Ridley Scott doesn’t think so. The director has since criticized the film’s studio, Twentieth Century Fox, for poor marketing. “You’ve got Brad (Pete), you’ve got Cameron Diaz, you’ve got Javier Bardem, you’ve got Penelope Cruz, you’ve got Michael Fassbender…you fucking Are you kidding me?” Scott continued. “You don’t show it, you advertise it, you put it out there, and you get a $50 million opening weekend.” If you watch the original trailer for the movie, it’s hard to disagree. The marketing team is busy trying to sell the plot that the filmmakers desperately want you to ignore, while pushing all the atmosphere and vibes out of the way. According to the director, this was a fatal step in whetting the audience’s interest.

Despite poor box office and poor reception, counselor In the decade since it hit theaters, it’s gained some big-name defenders, and fans of Scott’s and McCarthy’s work are excited to get to know what this strange, dark little film is about. Thankfully, too, any movie that shows Javier Bardem in a mesh T-shirt while poetically waving about the vital use of a bar’s dance floor is one to remember.

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