Noirvember: L.A. Confidential

a.k.a. white dude problems

Oh man, this movie has a lot of Australian men in it. It’s practically just an accent contest.

It also has zero women in it doing anything other than moving the men’s stories along.

And zero people of color doing anything other than being criminals or victims.

(There is one woman of color! She is there for two scenes: one naked and bloody after being gang raped, and one clothed where she admits she lied about what time the rape occurred. Three cheers for diversity.)

Putting that aside, this is a pretty great story of corruption and betrayal. The performances are SO FUCKING GREAT. Even Kim Basinger, whose resemblance to Veronica Lake is not great. And I know that shouldn’t bother me as much as it does–and honestly, this time around I was able to see it more–but damn. That’s a pretty huge leap to ask an audience to make, seeing as a good portion of the movie is devoted to people talking about her resemblance to Veronica Lake.

The lighting, while mostly natural, is very bright in this picture, and the film is color. Overall, I’d say it’s shot more like an action thriller (which is kind of is?) than film noir. But the feeling is certainly noiry.

I found the voice-over and on-screen typing in the opening pretty distracting. I don’t remember minding it any of the other times I’ve seen it. But this time, I wondered why we were getting the Hush-Hush version of the story, when the rest of the movie is from the cops’ perspective.

For all of these complaints, I really love this movie. I’d love it more if I felt like it either treated women like people or was making a point about the way women are treated, but it’s a great story full of great performances.

One thought on “Noirvember: L.A. Confidential

  1. Annika

    November 24, 2014 at 1:22pm

    It does make a really good point (possibly not deliberately?) about the cycle of violence and how domestic abuse affects men. So.

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