Sunday, August 8, 2010

"Yes!" Moment #6

Here's how I started this series of images, and here's "Yes!" Moment #6 from Magnolia (1999).

"This is something that happens." Yes, Stanley, you know this is something that happens because you know just about everything there is to know. (I knew this is something that happens, too, but with smaller frogs, I thought.) And the fact that you know you know so much is going to give you the self-confidence to stand up to your father. This is your triumph.

This appears in a climactic sequence that is full of "Yes!" Moments. And anyone who thinks Tom Cruise is not a good actor should watch this movie. Just posting this image is spurring me to watch Magnolia again. (My favorite Juilanne Moore performance.)

This series could go on forever. I haven't even gotten to classics like Hilts jumping the fence in The Great Escape or any single moment in the chariot race in Ben-Hur - and on and on. But this has been a fun series to do, and just doing it has pumped up my addiction for the thrill of cinema.


Daniel said...

Great pick! This is definitely one of those moments. If I remember correctly it's right around the "Wise Up" rendition, right? Oh man, that knocked me back in the theater. I really need to watch this movie again.

Richard Bellamy said...

Daniel - I'm just about finished a re-watching right now. It's an amazing movie - riveting minute by minute. The acting is stupendous. A masterful composition. I remember watching it two times in a row on DVD and making an outline of how the different threads work together. This whole movie is a "Yes!"

Unknown said...

Love this pick and this film! I also agree with you about this being Julianne Moore's finest performance. The scene in the pharmacy where she goes off on the pharmacist is very impressive! I haven't watched this film in ages (I kinda OD'd on it when it first came out on DVD) but it's about time I checked it out again.

Richard Bellamy said...

J.D. Thanks! Yes, I love the scene in the pharmacy, how she breathes/sighs "Mother-fucker...".

I hadn't watched it in a long time and I just finished re-watching it last night. It blew me away. There are so many parts I had forgotten. I love the more or less quiet montage of the aftermath of the frog deluge. It's well worth another look.

Scott Nye said...

A movie that pays off endlessly, and one that I really forget how truly fine it is until I sit down and watch it or something like this comes along.

I haven't seen it since my P.T. Anderson rewatch marathon before There Will Be Blood came out, but the thing that struck me then (and this would've been the sixth or so time I'd seen it) was Anderson's really clever pacing. So many of the cuts between scenes, especially when cutting between different stories, are in-camera wipes or musical carry-overs (where the score will build in the previous scene and crescendo into the next), keeping us hooked, moment to moment.

It should feel like a cheat, or too montage-y for too long, but he balances it just right with quiet moments and "standard" cutting that it never does. Coupled with knowing exactly when and how to move away from a character and come back into him/'s just an amazing achievement all around.

Longest comment ever, but I just wanted to say I've been loving this series, and if I end up swiping the idea for my apologies, but you have equally pumped up my addiction for the thrill of cinema.

Richard Bellamy said...

Scott, thanks. That's well said - "a movie that pays off endlessly." It does. Certain sequences or montages are so striking and I find myself thinking, Okay, this so satisfying - and then we go right into another sequence or montage that's equally striking. Yes, the music carries us nicely from part to part - music that is suggestive of fate - and ominous strains as we get closer to the deluge. I agree. This film is a masterpiece of construction and editing. What a mind!

And - as for borrowing this idea - go ahead. I'm done for a while but I may find myself continuing randomly in the future.