Movies

“Educating Arizona”, “Vampire Kiss” and “Wild at Heart” – Movies and TV series on DTF

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First of all, we look at the early works of the actor – one of the best in his career.

On the first day of our marathon “Three in a Cage” (its conditions and details we told separately) we evaluate the early roles of Nicholas Cage on the Cage scale, remember the source of the classic meme and can not resist the joint work of Cage and Lynch.

Education of Arizona (1987)

The petty robber High McDonne (Nicholas Cage) is repeatedly imprisoned and can not recover – until he meets a miniature police officer Ed (Holly Hunter). Soon they get married and start a so-called new life: they settle in a small house somewhere on the outskirts, Ed leaves the police, Hai gets involved in raids and gets a job.

But they do not manage to have a child – due to natural reasons and the fact that they are denied in the orphanage. “Why one is everything and the other is nothing,” Hai and Ed think after this and steal one of the five newborn sons of the famous furniture maker Nathan Arizona. And when their affairs seem to be finally going well, idiotic problems arise. Stoya’s boss Haya comes to visit with his wife and harmful children. Then the Snouts brothers, Hay’s acquaintances at the penitentiary, visit. In addition, a thug, who is called the lone biker of the apocalypse, rushes in search of the abducted child.

In the first minutes of this film, the character of Nicholas Cage manages to go to jail, fall in love, sit down again, get married, go with a stepladder to steal a child – and in the next hour and a half “Arizona Education” almost never strays from such a rhythm.

The Cohen brothers’ method, for whom this was their second directorial job, was to stage a slapstick, a delightful comedy of positions, every five minutes. And that’s why there are so many things in “Arizona Education.” Let him steal diapers and run away from the police (both dogs and a vendor with a shotgun). Apocalypse biker blows up a rabbit with a grenade. The Snouts brothers rob a roadside shop and forget something important when they leave, so they return, shouting at the top of their voices. And the scene of the fight in a small house with a low ceiling is a small comedic masterpiece.

Nicholas Cage is not an obvious candidate for the role of recidivist with a mustache, but in “Education of Arizona” he is excellent. Cage (by current standards of cageness) is restrained; in addition, both he and the Cohen brothers, who invented the image of Hay, treat their character with genuine tenderness – and thus evoke our respect and even sympathy.

In addition, there is something familiar in this whole film. In songs and music (in the background plays “Russian folk motifs and yodel” Stravinsky), in the habits of the heroes, in their determination and sense of justice. All this is clear to the Russian man – and how not to cheer for a boy and a girl from Arizona. – Alexander Omoloev.

The Vampire’s Kiss (1988)

Have you seen the city madmen? Are these dirty, shaggy people wandering along busy avenues with a piece of wood in their hands, shouting at passers-by and having entertaining conversations with themselves? Actually, “Vampire’s Kiss” is a movie about becoming such an urban lunatic.

Young, but it is unclear how successful literary agent Peter Law (Nicholas Cage) once brings Rachel (Jennifer Beals), whom he met at the club. It’s not about sex – a languid atmosphere is poisoned by a bat that has climbed into the apartment. A curious case becomes a turning point for Peter: from this moment Rachel is the main character in the image of a vampire, gradually sucking blood and submitting to his will.

In the course of history, Peter is less and less like a man and more like Count Orlock, played by Max Shrek. A characteristic stoop appears; fingers twisted as if in convulsions are more and more often dangling in the chest area; in his mouth there are plastic fangs from the shop of jokes, and in his voice there is something imperceptibly Romanian.

The metamorphoses that Cage’s character goes through are accompanied by his wild antics. Even by modern standards of cage (thanks to Sasha for the term) Cage is an unbridled lunatic. He chases after the secretary in the office, jumps on tables, bulges his eyes, hysterically yells the English alphabet, breaks furniture, eats cockroaches (finding, by the way, the actor himself – in the original script was just a raw egg), pigeons and a few people. In general, it suits the performance for true connoisseurs of his great talent.

You can call “The Vampire’s Kiss” a benefit of Nicholas Cage, which is revealed here from different angles. At the same time, it’s funny and scary, the artist shows how normal – except that a little rotten – a man rides a cuckoo. And because of what? Of course, because of love, because it is she who drives us crazy. And sometimes he gives memes. – Andrei Vereshchagin.

Wild Hearts (1990)

In the darkness, a match erupts, the hiss is replaced by the roar of hellfire, which fills the entire screen – from such shots begins this gloomy, but surprisingly optimistic tale by director David Lynch.

Two lovers – Sailor, a former criminal with a heart of romance (Nicholas Cage), and Lula, a young detachment with a dark past (Laura Dern), – run away from the girl’s mother. She disliked the young man to such an extent that she was ready to kill him, if only to separate the couple – and turned first to the detective, and then to the mafia. The heroes travel across half the country to California, to a new life, but misfortune follows them and gradually catches up.

“Wild at Heart” – “Road Movie”, which every now and then rushes from one character to another, from the main plot to flashbacks and almost independent stories (the episode about Cousin Delle with cockroaches in shorts looks like a forgotten short film in the middle of the film). And Lynch makes this narrative work as difficult as possible, picking up a counterpoint to each “note”.

In a calm introductory scene, the swing is replaced by electric guitars, under which Sailor breaks a man’s skull. The killer in charge of the killers lives with half-naked concubines and discusses orders while sitting on a golden toilet. From melodrama – to black comedy, from crime thriller – to a fairy tale with straightforward to the gnashing of teeth references to “The Wizard of Oz”. But the light from such a neighborhood becomes brighter, and the gloomy – scares more.

And the biggest impression is made by how pure the love of Sailor and Lula is – not in spite of, not because of all the nightmares that are happening around them. Dern with the southern pronoun and the eternal chewing gum in his teeth and Cage in his own snakeskin jacket, imitating Elvis (and even singing well) – this is a couple that you do not doubt for a second. Surely many will be familiar with this messy but sincere tangle of feelings, from animal passion to care and tenderness.

It would be strange if in such a movie someone began to pull a blanket over himself and arrange a benefit. And the charismatic Cage, who plays, in his own words, “in the style of Warhol”, is not here as a superstar, but only as part of a cast that is not inferior to him in talent and madness. It’s hard to compete with someone when the screen is shared with you by talents from “Twin Peaks” and Willem Defoe himself with false teeth.

The role in “Wild at Heart” is one of Cage’s best, and the film itself is also good, although, perhaps, in elegance inferior to many other works of Lynch. But in any case, the strange charm of this story of the unquenchable spark of true love is hard to resist. – Anton Samitov.

We are starting a marathon of films with Nicholas Cage: we will watch three a day and try not to go down with mind


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One actor, three DTF authors, 60 films.

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