Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Zodiac: Blood, Guts and Seriously Uncaught Murderous Maniacs

Hmm … 

Now, I’ve got to confess, usually — if I’m seriously impressed by a film — I’ll usually be itching to start writing about it, straight away.

As you’re no doubt VERY aware, if you’ve read my write-up of Pontypool*.

At any rate, I have to admit to having had a quiet night in, last night.

Along with quite a lot of tea … and a copy of the 2007 David Fincher directed whodunnitº, Zodiac.

Which, despite not getting the Immediate Post treatment, is definitely worth watching.


Based on Robert Graysmith’s non-fiction book of the same name — and dealing with the Zodiac murders™ of the late 1960s and early 1970s — Zodiac sees Jake Gyllenhaal as Robert Graysmith:  a young cartoonist on the San Francisco Chronicle who slowly becomes involved with the investigation of a series of killings, when his employers receive a letter.

A letter that claims to be from the killer, complete with details known only to the killer and the police AND a threat the killer will do something suitably nasty to a schoolbus.

That’s not all the killer sends

He ALSO includes a message in code, as well, with a challenge to decode it.

AND a piece of one victim’s shirt.

AND a running score … !

As the Robert Downey Jnr character, Paul Avery, puts it: “… he took credit for it anyway, because he's in it for the press.”


Now … 

Let’s get cutting to the chase, shall we … ?

You’re probably going to ask me something along the lines of “Paul, should I see Zodiac … ?”

My personal answer is going to be a very definite “Yes”.

Granted, I don’t necessarily think it’s quite to the emotional tension of Pontypool or Silence of the Lambs†.

But Zodiac is a very well paced thriller: and despite being over 157 minutes, a thoroughly engrossing one that kept me pinned to my seat.

Go see
One more thing

I’ll leave you with the tune the film used as both opening and closing theme.

I’ve not quite got it out of my head, yet … 

*        If you’ve not seen Pontypool, you’ve missed a very good film.   (I’m ALSO still um’ming and ah’ing about the 4 whole stars I gave it, it was that much of a toss up between 3.5 and 4.   I went with four, purely on the basis I’ve not shut up about it, since … !)

º        OK, it might not strictly be a whodunnit: I’ll leave the actually arguments to both regular movie night maven, Kevin D, and to regular commentor, Debbi Mack, who knows a thing or two about crime novels.

†        Very few films have the emotional tension of Silence of the Lambs, in my humble opinion‡ … !

‡        Yes, I know that’s possibly the SILLIEST phrase ever invented: I’m always thinking the only time people use it, is to actually say “This is my opinion on the matter: I’m right, you’re not, and nothing else need be said.”   Apart from when I do it, obviously … … … … … … 

™        Just as a minor point, here … ?   An unsolved series of murders … ?   An unfound killer … ?   And a series of letters to both press, police and assorted legal wonks, that take credit for the grisly deaths … ?   The phrase, “What goes around comes around,” springs to mind, here

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