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Review of the Proposition

Posted by phduffy on 2006-07-14 10:59:31
I first heard about The Proposition during a Salon interview with Nick Cave, who apparently is a well known Australian rocker, who wrote the Proposition.

Anyways, the basic plot is pretty simple. Guy Pearce (who may be the best actor of his generation) plays some sort of outlaw. He and his younger, somewhat naïve, brother are captured by the law. Pearce is given a choice (or proposition if you will): find and kill the outlaw gang leader, or his younger brother dies.

Oh yeah, the outlaw gang leader is his older brother.

So, that’s the premise. And don’t worry, it gets set up within the first 5 minutes of the movie, I haven’t spoiled anything for you. A second oh yeah, the movie takes place in the Australian outback. Is there a cooler setting for a movie than that?

Well, just like in Brokeback Mountain, this movie does not give the awesome westerness you’re expecting. BBM takes place in modern day! I thought it would be about two guys going to saloons, shooting someone, fucking each other, then hitting the road to track and kill the guy who massacred the Indians. But no. However, like BBM, The Proposition is slowly paced, actor/character driven film. And, somewhat surprisingly to me, Guy Pearce isn’t really the main character. The main character is probably Russell Crowe in Gladiator sound-a-like Ray Winstone , who plays the sherrif.

A lot of this movie is spent looking at flies eating ugly people, people sweating, and people with bad teeth. Guy Pearce in particular has some scary-ass looking teeth in this movie. That makes it authentic.

So, if you go into this movie not expecting guns a’blazing Wild Bunch type action, I think you’ll be pretty happy with it. (Although there is some graphic violence, much of it is off screen). There’s one somewhat glaring mistake in the film (I was going to call it a plot hole, but it’s not really a plot hole, just something that they should explain that they don’t).

So, somewhat recommended. It might be playing at your local art house cinema, or potentially at your local video importer.