The ending of The Comfort Of Strangers still hits like a hammer, dividing audiences to this day. Is ‘Battlefield Earth’ Worth a Second Look? Leading man Christopher Walken is up next in a quick, six-minute interview where he speaks about his thoughts on the character he plays in the film, what it was like working with Schrader as a director and how he acted with an accent in the picture. Walken in particularly is very interesting to watch here, playing his character with a memorably strange accent and infusing his Robert with all of the quirkiness that you might expect if you're familiar with a lot of his work. The Strangers was loosely based on various home invasion murders, including The Manson Murders, and based upon an Austrian couple that was murdered by three teenagers in their vacation home in The Czech Republic. Everett is far more enigmatic, if only because his character is struggling to define where his relationship stands, as well as grasp the hold Robert has on them. 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Mirren's character is, on the surface at least, much more fragile than the others, and she makes this character very interesting to watch. This is the actor in his prime, when he was a hypnotically intense, adventurous film star, using his Academy Award (for “The Deer Hunter”) as leverage to appear in risky and eclectic movies like this one. Ian lives in NYC with his wife where he writes for DVD Talk, runs Rock! Richardson, having just played the title role in Schrader’s uneven but respectable “Patty Hearst,” is very good in this and serves as the audience surrogate. However, the movie really does hold up remarkably well. Rupert Everett and Natasha Richardson are pretty solid as the couple out of their element in more ways than one. There’s also the question Mary and Colin keep asking themselves: “Why did we come back?”, RELATED: Why ‘Eyes Wide Shut’ Lives up to Kubrick’s Legacy. The last new interview gets editor Bill Pankow in front of the camera for fifteen-minutes to offer his thoughts on the editing process employed to finish the film as well as the movie overall as a whole. June 15, 1981; ... Mary at the end will form a theory, of course - men want to hurt, women seek to be punished - … Schrader's attempt to make a European style arthouse film is an interesting picture, despite its flaws. What plays out is an unsettling, sadomasochistic seduction imbued with an atmosphere of sumptuous dread by the elegantly gliding tracking shots of cinematographer Dante Spinotti, lush score by Angelo Badalamenti, and carefully controlled direction of Paul Schrader, who choreographs a mesmerizing pas de quatre of sustained erotic and emotional tension. None of what happens in the film feels particularly plausible, yet we go along with it because the production values and acting is so good. He's a writer, living as a bachelor, while she has two kids from her first marriage. “The Comfort of Strangers” explores that elliptical question. A second archival interview, from 1981, sees novelist Ian McEwan speak for twenty-seven-minutes about the process of writing the novel on which this film was based. She’s earthy and luminous, providing the film with its emotional center. Pop!. When that killer ending arrives, it doesn’t hit as hard as the finish of Nicolas Roeg’s “Don’t Look Now” (another worthy companion piece) but it leaves us stunned and, most importantly, completely creeped out. We want them to be able to rekindle what they have, and they certainly work towards that, but at what price? Schrader’s films are about transformative moments, in which, to cite a few examples, characters change their values (“Hardcore” and “Auto Focus”), faith (“First Reformed”), state of mind (“Patty Hearst”) and even their physicality (“Cat People” and “Dominion -- Prequel to The Exorcist”). The Movie: Based on the novel of the same name by Ian McEwan and adapted for the screen by playwright and screenwriter Harold Pinter, director Paul Schrader's 1990 film The Comfort Of Strangers tells the story of an English couple, Colin (Rupert Everett) and Mary (Natasha Richardson). He's a writer, living as a bachelor, while she has two kids from her first marriage. There’s subtext here on the vulnerable existence of tourists, wandering an unknown land that always puts them at a disadvantage (why leave home in the first place, if you have money and a nice life just waiting for you?).
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