Movie Club: Vanilla Sky (2001)

Discussion in 'Introductions & Off Topic' started by The Drifter, Sep 30, 2017.

  1. The Drifter

    The Drifter Berbill

    I hope it's OK to start new threads here, given that I just joined.

    I recently re-watched the excellent Vanilla Sky film (2001) for the first time in years - incredible film. Very few films have moved & impressed me as much as this has - IMHO this a work of art, it's that good. Definitely my favorite Tom Cruise & also Cameron Crowe film. Excellent story & acting, and kept you guessing right up until the very end. Cameron Diaz as Julie Gianni deserves strong kudos for this movie, even though she wasn't in the film much - the scene when she picked up Cruise in the car & started off very nice & then got creepy with the "Do you believe in God?" line as she started driving crazy was quite terrifying.....great acting on her part, and very convincing.

    I think TC was fairly brave here to not rely on his "pretty boy" looks, like he had in previous films. The scarred face was tough to take initially, but obviously that was the whole point.

    Note, if you haven't seen the film yet - there are SPOILERS below; I'm not sure how to insert SPOILER tags on this board.

    I find the film somewhat of a morality play, but without being preachy: Though Cruise obviously emotionally hurt Julie Gianni & was kind of a louse when he stole Cruz away from the Jason Lee character (since they were best friends & he already had his pick of women), he did a good thing by re-hiring that company lawyer at the beginning party - this guy later stood up for him & helped him after the accident.

    Re: the ending, I haven't heard the DVD's commentary, but I feel this should be taken at face value: The Tech support guy (Noah Taylor) that Cruise sees in the elevator & who explains everything that's happened is telling the truth. Cruise has seen this guy throughout the film (at his initial operation & at the bar when he got everyone to stop talking & possibly another place). The cryogenics element was introduced early on in the film when Tom & Penelope Cruz are watching a TV show about Benny the Dog being frozen....IMHO, what confirms Noah's story is when Cruise asks the psychiatrist character (Kurt Russell) the names of his kids, he doesn't know....I think it's fairly self-explanatory....I have 0 interest in another interpretation of the ending because it really wouldn't make sense, at least not IMHO.

    I also like that the film ends on a very hopeful but uncertain note: Presumably Cruise has been in suspended animation for so long that he's been completely healed & looks as young as he did 150 years before; however, as the Tech support guy says, his finances are almost, who knows what he will face...

    The soundtrack was obviously brilliant, and definitely enhanced the film to a great extent. Though I have the existing soundtrack that's out (with 17 tracks), I would really like to see a deluxe 3-4 CD soundtrack set with all of the music from the film, in the order in which it was played. There are so many understandable omissions on the existing soundtrack, i.e. Joan Osbourne's "One of Us", That Beach Boys song near the end, etc. I'm surprised something like this hasn't already come out, but since CD's are not as popular as they once were I guess I'm not surprised...

    That being said, the existing soundtrack is great, and I'm glad they included "Fall Apart", which was Julie Gianni's song & which I think Diaz sung....this poignant song is actually quite disturbing considering what Gianni did.
  2. LiamABC

    LiamABC Thunderian Legend

    Strictly speaking, there's a general thread for movie club where you can submit requests, rather than posting willy-nilly.

    However, as we hadn't yet picked a movie for discussion this week, I guess we can go with your suggestion. I'll find some time to watch it during the week and let you know my thoughts.

    Usual discussion provisos apply:

    Just a friendly reminder to everyone that, whilst fans are obviously welcome to passionately discuss and give their views on these episodes, please remember to keep things on a friendly footing and respect your fellow posters.
    Also, please do not post where or how to find the full movie online. And do not post asking others to PM it to you. You are however allowed to watch the show in whatever manner you want.
  3. The Drifter

    The Drifter Berbill

    Thanks - I wasn't aware of these rules, and didn't already see a thread related to this film. Great movie, but not for everyone. Sorry for the Spoilers, but I don't know if there's a way to post Spoiler tags on here. If there is, please let me know & I'll do so from now on.
  4. LiamABC

    LiamABC Thunderian Legend

    I haven't read your initial post in detail just in case of spoilers. I'm going to try and watch the film during the week.

    For the record, the committee for both ROCKS and Movie Club is myself, Mark M and Wilycub.
  5. Mark M

    Mark M Thunderian Legend

    This was a rather interesting but confusing movie.
    Probably one of Tom Cruise's best roles.
    The casting for the movie and all the actors did a great job with their characters.
    Not my type of movie or one I would have much interest in re-watching again any time soon though but it was a nice change to see a film I haven't seen before.

    Welcome The Drifter and I hope you can participate in more of our movie discussions.
  6. LiamABC

    LiamABC Thunderian Legend

    I've just seen the film for the first time in my life.


    I was braced for the concept of it being hard to follow, but that didn't happen until halfway in. It was all perfectly linear at first. It wasn't until the second half that things got weird, the whole "what's real and what's not" angle.

    The ending reminded me of the ending of the TV detective show "Life On Mars" from 2006-7, and its spinoff "Ashes To Ashes" from 2008-10, and was undoubtedly an influence on both.

    The car crash at 40min in was probably the first WTF moment in the film. I was bracing myself for things to get really weird right after, and for a moment it looked like they were going to, but no, the weird stuff didn't really start for another half hour.

    The casting was pretty good overall. I was smiling when I recognised Johnny Galecki - as I've got the first three seasons of "The Big Bang Theory" on DVD. Timothy Spall too I recognised right away. Kurt Russell - I was looking at him all the time and thinking "who is that?" and was convinced I'd be kicking myself. In a way I was, but not really, as I haven't actually seen much if anything with him in.

    I got the soundtrack for this movie many years ago, for about £2.50, as the title theme was by Paul McCartney and the song wasn't on any of his albums. It wasn't on "Driving Rain", the album he released around the same time, and it didn't crop up on his next album either, "Chaos And Creation In The Backyard".

    I think I liked it overall, but wouldn't be in a hurry to buy the DVD. In spite of that, I'd also say it's probably one of those films that needs a second viewing to fully appreciate, rather like "The Usual Suspects" in that sense. We must cover that one at some point too . . .
  7. The Drifter

    The Drifter Berbill

    Glad this thread inspired both of you to watch VS. It is a confusing film, and I would highly recommend a re-watch at some point. I've noticed that the movie makes more sense the more times I watch this. I think my analysis of what happened was fairly accurate, but am not 100% sure about this. Obviously cryogenics play a large part in the film; there is a lot of foreshadowing here re: it being mentioned early in the film at several times.

    Note that VS is a re-make of an earlier, 1997 Spanish film called Open Your Eyes - this is also worth seeing, and also stars the gorgeous Penelope Cruz:

    I was a HUGE fan of the UK series Life on Mars & Ashes to Ashes. I'd like to re-watch both at some point. Those shows definitely deserve their own threads. There was a US version of LOM also, but this wasn't as good as the UK version.

    I agree that The Usual Suspects deserves it's own discussion thread at some point. Superb film! I got the Blu-ray a while back, so I will need to re-watch this soon.

    Also, for what it's worth, I'm in the US - though I'm a fan of US, UK, and other international films, TV series, and cartoons - including Japanese anime.
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2017
  8. LiamABC

    LiamABC Thunderian Legend

    We can put The Usual Suspects on the list for future Movie Club discussions, I haven't seen it in years, but remember it being clever.

    We've got some ideas for this month already, as it's october we're going with some scary choices in the buildup to Halloween.

    Like I said elsewhere, if you want to go back and have a look at some of the other movies we've covered on here, or the cartoons in ROCKS, that would be cool too.
  9. Mark M

    Mark M Thunderian Legend

    What anime are you into? I love some of the Studio Ghibli movies and various other anime movies and TV shows like X-Bomber and the various mech shows from the 70's, 80's and 90's like Grendizer, Getter Robo, Starzingers, Voltron, Macross/Robotech and Gundam Wing etc.
  10. The Drifter

    The Drifter Berbill

    I've been a Robotech fan since the '80's Beyond that, I like some individual anime films, like Tokyo Godfathers, Wolf Children, Ghost in the Shell, The Girl Who Leapt throught Time, Only Yesterday (with voice-work by Daisey Ridley, who played Rey in SW: The Force Awakens), and some others. To clarify, I'm only into the English-language versions, not the original Japanese language versions.

    Though it's not anime, I also liked MTV's Aeon Flux from the '90's; the live-action movie with Charlize Theron was OK, but the original animated series was extremely trippy & innovative.

    Sounds great. I'm a huge fan of horror films; it's one of my favorite genres, outside of Sci-fi/Dystopian/Post-Apocalyptic movies.
    Mark M likes this.
  11. Mark M

    Mark M Thunderian Legend

    I know what you mean there are very few shows and movies I have watched the original Japanese versions of like Transformers Headmasters and Masterforce, some of the Ghibli movies and Getter Robo etc. Wolf Children and The Girl Who Leapt Through Time were really good.
    Robotech was a pretty great series. I only seen the first two episodes and the second movie The Sentinels in the early 90's. But I got to watch the full series around 2006 when the DVD's were released here in the UK.
    Did you now Daisy Ridley's Great Uncle was Arnold Ridley who acted in the classic UK sitcom Dad's Army? While I was watching the DVD set I got last year I was doing some research on the show online when I found that out.

    Perhaps in movie club we could eventually watch Blade Runner as I have never properly watched it.
    With the build up to Halloween we were thinking of doing some classics like Psycho and The Shining.
  12. LiamABC

    LiamABC Thunderian Legend

    I'm not a fan of foreign language stuff on TV/film, which is odd because I'm good at languages. I have a set of Alexandre Dumas' works in the original French, but have never read them. I'm currently reading them in English for the first time since my teens. After I've gone through the whole Musketeers saga and The Count Of Monte Cristo, then I might read one of them in French, see how well I can follow it.

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