Monday, August 22, 2005

Snatched ... (2)

Ferrara's Body Snatchers improves on a second viewing. The camerawork is more intelligent and foreboding than I had realized a few months ago. The creaky acting not such a distraction. In short, the sense of the film being a messy palimpsest (the B-movie brainchild of several disparate & divergent figures) lessens a bit, and everything works a little more cleanly than before. (Some spoilers again.)

As Brad Stevens notes in his book on Ferrara, the final shot, which has a soldier on the landing zone guiding our heroes' chopper in, echoes several earlier shots in the film, such as the one Stevens explicitly points out (Meg Tilly as a pod-mother, sounding the alarm when her human family flees), but the final image is a low-angle shot where the soldier is ominous like Ermey and Whitaker both are in the scenes which introduce them. The point is not that the pod people are frightening, but that the military people are, and the difference between the two ('mindless drones') is hard to spot.

(Has anyone noticed how much Gabrielle Anwar & Tilly's hair suggests the pod tendrils?)

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