Saturday, April 2, 2011

Film Pairing — Nick Charles and the Talented Mr. Ripley

If anyone can pull off a contemporary Nick Charles, it might very well be Johnny Depp. But the planned remake of The Thin Man is still pretty scary. Updating it for the 21st Century is scarier. At least once a year I begin The Thin Man series all over again. And the question I have is: Why?

Perhaps because sometimes it works. There is much being made of the HBO remake of James M. Cain’s Mildred Pierce, for example. It's a big deal. Unfortunately more remakes come up short than succeed. There are successes, though. Purple Noon (Plein Soleil) was the first film made of Patricia Highsmith’s The Talented Mr. Ripley. In 1960 Alain Delon launched his career playing the role that Matt Damon would reprise for an American audience in 1999. In my mind, both films deserve the critical praise they received. And what a great pairing for a lovely, if cynical evening at home — a little wine (American or French or both) and a few hours devoted to bitingly clever and stylish filmmaking.

Incidentally, if you’re viewing The Thin Man series, Martinis are the way to go.

1 comment:

Mark said...

I love the remake of Mildred Piece. Viewed only the first two hours of the show, but enjoyed it tremendously. Kate Winslet is fantastic in it. I also love Purple Noon, more so than Matt Damom's version. Some films are just timeless. Keep the recommendations coming.