Author Topic: Cigarette Burns (2005)  (Read 1030 times)

Offline X

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Cigarette Burns (2005)
« on: July 28, 2006, 11:54:AM »
Cigarette Burns (2005)

Moriarty and Scott Swan's script is a patische of intriguing supernatural concepts which are not altogether original (borrowing expressly from "Videodrome" to "The Ring" to director John Carpenter's own H.P. Lovecraft inspired "In the Mouth of Madness"). The best part of this one-hour film in the "Masters of Horror" series is the intial intrigue and mystery - what is Le Fin Absolut du Monde (characters bravely repeat this obscure film's title in whole and repeatedly). There's a biting sinisterness at play from the beginning: Carpenter reveals creepy imagery little by little, toying with us; this proves effective in building the film's mood, and intensifies our curiousity. Norman Reedus as the sleepy-looking curator of Vogue plays his character with just measured subtlety against Udo Keir's softspoken maniac film collector. But the novelty of the high-concept wears off once the film begins to explain the secrets of Le Fin Absolut du Monde - as the exposition plies on, the focus shifts from slow character building to a trip down the little shop of horror. The elegance of an unexpected burst of energy in the shape of the round ring of fire - the cigaratte burn - changes into an assault on the senses. I got the distinct impression that no effort was spared to take advantage of the non-MPAA rating. Decapitacations and disembowlment feel forced and intended to shock or please us (depending on the type of viewer). This reminded me of Carpenter's "Halloween": audiences have long believed that film to be ultraviolent even though very little blood and gore exists in it. That's the power of suggestion. "Cigarette Burns" forgets this 20 minutes into the film. It forgets that we - unlike those characters in the film - are not really interested in Le Fin Absolut du Monde. The film fails because it fails to understand that somethings are better left to the imagination. ak

Offline madali

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Re: Cigarette Burns (2005)
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2006, 08:24:PM »
"The film fails because it fails to understand that somethings are better left to the imagination"

But John Carpenter is never like that, and thats why I love him.

Cigarette Burns is like a sibling of Mouth of Madness, and I found this to be the best out of the Masters of Horror collection.
I'd love to change the world / But I don't know what to do / So I'll leave it up to you

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Re: Cigarette Burns (2005)
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2006, 11:12:PM »
"Cigarette Burns" is nothing like John Carpenter's movies (they are essentially thinly-veiled westerns). It was a bread and butter job.

Talk to me about Carpenter when we meet.

P.S. My problem is with the script mostly, Carpenter was directing auto-pilot so can't complain.
« Last Edit: July 28, 2006, 11:13:PM by ak »

Offline madali

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Re: Cigarette Burns (2005)
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2006, 11:43:PM »
Have you seen Mouth of Madness?
I'd love to change the world / But I don't know what to do / So I'll leave it up to you

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Re: Cigarette Burns (2005)
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2006, 11:49:PM »
Have you seen Mouth of Madness?
I have seen all John Carpenter works including his TV stuff: "Body Bags" and "Elvis."

Did you want to discuss anything specific about "Madness"?

Offline madali

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Re: Cigarette Burns (2005)
« Reply #5 on: July 29, 2006, 12:58:AM »
I wouldn't call Madness western at all. Similiar to Burns, it is about the line between fantasy and reality when it comes to the arts. In Madness, it was books, and in Burns, it was film.
I'd love to change the world / But I don't know what to do / So I'll leave it up to you

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Re: Cigarette Burns (2005)
« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2006, 04:12:PM »

Offline madali

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Re: Cigarette Burns (2005)
« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2006, 07:36:PM »
Now that you mention Christine as a western, I can completely understand. The lone, troubled hero with his "horse" and a troubled love. It does fit.

But I still disagree with you on Burns. If Burns was slightly pretentious (and only slightly), its because I think JC had a right to be. Its a movie where the characters are looking for the most extreme film ever made. That is basically what every horror fan looks for. Enjoying the horror genre is a constant struggle for finding that one film that has the potential to destroy your mind from fear. Thats why we are fascinated by (PR) stories of new horror films that have caused a girl to have a heart attack in the theatre. We, and think JC might have also been in his youth, look for the "The Absolute End of the World" movie.

I found this fascinating, and I enjoyed how the movie was an a search for this movie. Not any diamond, not an important document, not a special CIA weapon, but just a movie. It is the genre's continuous search, and we watch Norman Reedus look for it. And JC joins us in the search, raising the gore volume, as the movie progresses. The ending is, in my opinion, typical JC. A great climax, with a hint of ridiculousness. Enough that you know that JC loves what he does, and can smile while doing.

I'd rate Burns higher than Prince of Darkness, but lower than They Live and Christine.
I'd love to change the world / But I don't know what to do / So I'll leave it up to you

Offline madali

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Re: Cigarette Burns (2005)
« Reply #8 on: July 29, 2006, 07:37:PM »
Make a new thread, and list your JC movies in order of pleasure.
I'd love to change the world / But I don't know what to do / So I'll leave it up to you