Tuesday, November 10, 2009


I popped up a piece over at The Film Experience today, discussing Tarsen Singh's venturing-into-the-mind-of-a-serial-killer flick The Cell. I remember having to see this with the mother because I wasn't old enough (oh, dear age) and being hypnotised by the horrific, strange, nightmarish and beautiful images on display. It really is a work of art in a visual respect.

The Cell is one of the very finest films of 2000 and one that doesn't get the respect it deserves. I imagine that is because it stars Jennifer Lopez and Vince Vaughn. It's a shame that Lopez decided to stop making films such as Out of Sight, U-Turn and The Cell since those three prove a formidable trio (I'm a huge fan of U-Turn, a film far more reviled than The Cell, but a doozy in my eyes nonetheless) because she really was proving herself to be willing and interesting on screen. After The Cell, however, she made (in chronological order) The Wedding Planner, Angel Eyes, Enough, Maid in Manhattan and Gigli thus putting an end to the respectable career she may have had.

Still, for that brief period she was actually making some of the most exciting cinema going around. I'd definitely classify The Cell as "exciting" despite it's dark themes and issues. There's a thrill in watching the camera spin above and below a christening ceremony, as Lopez watches a horse get sliced and diced by bizarre glass panels, or as she tries to find a young boy through a maze of stairs and tunnels. As I mention in the piece at The Film Experience there is far more to it than pure visual aesthetics.

It's definitely a film that will be popping up in the "movies of the aughts" countdown I have floating around in my mind.


Lee said...

Given the film's poor reputation amongst our kind, I've actually been hiding my similar feelings on this for years! The film blew me away when I first saw it. Kudos for taking a stand in its support!

Glenn Dunks said...

Didn't it just? By the end of it I was exhausted and terrified and just kept saying "wow". It's poor reputation is baffling to me (outside of the whole Lopez/Vaughn angle) since it's a "mainstream" movie but also a big fuck you to audiences who expect these sort of films to be a certain way.

Audiences who went thinking this was gonna be like some Ashley Judd style thriller were sorely mistaken and I like how they just did not compromise in being as deranged as they wanted to be.