Monday, September 21, 2009
The Black Windmill
Many of the films I watch can be sorted into three categoraries - there's big, well known films (there doesn't seem much point writing about these, there are a million film blogs outs there...), there are the criminally ignored (the ones that really should be seen by everyone but just aren't) and then the comically bad (the weird, the low-budget and the badly directed).
Black Windmill falls into none of these categories really. It's not very well know, it probably doesn't deserve much greater recognition and it's not too bad. But not too good. So just.... you know....ok?
Sometimes though, an ok film is just fine. This is well acted (Michael Caine AND Donald Pleasence!), it has a vaguely engaging story and no major problems. Sadly it's just npwhere near as gripping as it should be.
The plot meanders along; Michael Caine is a British spy, a baddie kidnaps his son in an attempt to blackmail diamonds from the British government, things all go a bit wrong from there. It's all well written, with twists and turns in the story - hell, if you swapped the 'diamonds' for a dirty bomb or nuclear weapon you'd basically have the plot of a generic episode of Spooks!
Maybe though, that's the problem. THe material here would probably work in a tightly edited hour-long tv episode but, clocking in at 1h40, this crawls along; the surprises aren't surprising enough and the baddies aren't bad enough. Ho hum.
But wait! It has got Michael Caine AND Donald Pleasence in it! All is not lost. Watch it if you're bored; if you give up halfway through you're probably not missing much...
(I realise that this sounds quite damning - it's not meant to be. The film is quite good. It's just not.... terribly exciting)