Skip to main content

More than just a revenge flick

The movie "Rolling Thunder" is one of those gems that you just don't hear about. At least I hadn't heard of it until my good buddy J.R. brought it over for us to watch. 


William Devane was perfect as the man who survived being a POW in Vietnam and is trying his god-damnedest to make it back in "the world". His wife has moved on and he doesn't really know how to relate to her anymore anyway. Tommy Lee Jones' character came back from captivity with him and he also has no idea how to lead a normal life. His wife and family are trying really hard to be loving and happy and are also trying to pretend that nothing is wrong. They are both completely numb, but go through the motions without complaint. 
It takes murder, torture, and mutilation to push these men into action, but once the action is needed, they both slide so easily into combat mode that you can actually see the relief on their faces that they are going into life-threatening battle rather than having to face another day of forced normality. 
Q. Tarantino called it "the best revenge movie", but it is so much more. My favorite moment in the whole damn thing is when Devane tells Jones that he's about to take on a whole bunch of baddies across the border and Jones replies simply, "I'll get my gear."
That's all he has to say and it speaks volumes. Young TLJ was amazingly skilled from early on. Compare him in this to his charming character in Eyes of Laura Mars. Both great but completely different multi-layered performances of complex characters. He's one of the few actors that can emulate pure visceral anger without changing his expression. Not one clench or furrow. 
The violence is hard and is neither 80's fun, 90's slick, nor 00's stylish. It hurts to watch. There's no way to watch it and feel that it glorifies violence. The men don't treat the women very well at all and you know it's because the war and the torture stole their ability to relate to anyone except for someone who's been through the same thing. 
I highly recommend this movie to fans of movies. 

Trivia: The opening theme, "San Antone" was also used in my favorite movie of all time, "The Ninth Configuration" AKA "Twinkle, Twinkle, Killer Kane". 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

FLESH + BLOOD mini-review (Rutger Hauer, Verhoeven)

I'm trying out a new format for talking about movies.

It's a work in progress. I actually want to do more illustration and the sketch of Jennifer Jason Leigh doesn't do her any justice. Once I turned on this movie, I wanted to look into Susan Tyrrell as she always plays highly-interesting broken characters. I plan to rewatch her in Angel (1984) sometime soon.
She has a great quote on IMDB:
I'm a loner. I don't like beautiful people, but I find beauty in the grotesque. And in the sweet soul inside someone who has been able to get through their life without being a rat's ass. I love all the connections that I listed up here. Hauer is one of my absolute favorite actors and I can't believe I waited so long to see him in this. Or maybe I saw the casting and ran far away, cuz this is some bizarre casting!

Verhoeven is a very interesting director as in he's not afraid to do things differently. He apparently experimented while making this film and wasn't ha…

Manga treasures - super rare KoroKoro comic reprint

My good friend Mr. Fujita passed on one of his treasures to my mentor Mr. Hashimoto BUT FIRST he allowed me to share some photos and a quick flip through with you, loyal readers. 


In this box is a tiny reprint (a minibon) of the first issue of weekly anthology magazine CoroCoro comics (5/15/1975, featuring Doraemon) which was given away to only the people who attended the editor’s end of year party in what I assume was 2005 as it says 30th anniversary on the box and inside. 

I love the mini-bon format and I was sorely tempted to buy the set of Tezuka mini-bon that were sold once. But they’re not the best for research or for reading when your eyesight starts to go like mine has. In the poorly filmed flip-through below, you can see some early Doraemon, a few other series, and some color inserts related to Sadaharu Oh, a Japanese-born Chinese baseball legend who played on the Yomiuri Giants team and holds the world lifetime home run record of 868 home runs.


A bit of trivia about Diraemo…

Tokyo Akahon Manga “Gulliver’s Travels” by NAKAMURA Hiroshi

According to a post by akahon manga researcher Yuuzora Retro (pen name), the Tokyo-based publisher Taikōdō (泰光堂) created their Manga Classics series in response to the PTA backlash against manga contributing to delinquency in Osaka.

This is Gulliver’s Travels by NAKAMURA Hiroshi (中村ひろし), a B6-sized 3-color akahon* printed with red ink fills on either blue or green lines costing 85 yen.



NAKAMURA seemed to be the main artist for Taikōdō as evinced by the ad pages at the back.


There is no publishing date, but it probably wasn't too far from 1951 when "Cinderella" and "Snow White" from the same series were published.

Looking at the stamps on the endpapers on the back, we can see that this particular book was rented out at a kashihon-ya (rental comic shop) in Saga, Kyushu called Imazato Neo Shobō. It was lent to me by a Mr. Fujita, a collector heavy into Showa-era items. I will continue to introduce the books I was able to borrow from his collection until it joins t…