Monday, November 30, 2009

We Own the Night

The first time I saw James Gray's elegant genre effort We Own the Night  (2007), I thought it was functional, but derivative. The second time - shortly after seeing, and loving, Gray's 2000 effort The Yards - I was moved by the performances in We Own the Night, and even more struck by Gray's nimble classicism, a quality rivaled only in the films of Clint Eastwood (particularly Million Dollar Baby) in the last ten years.

Since I've written on Gray elsewhere on this blog, I won't crank out too many more words here. Instead, I'll point you in the direction of two other online sources on the underrated American auteur. First, an insightful interview with Ryan Stewart over at Slant Magazine. Then, a piece on We Own the Night by the blogger Oggs Cruz. Not everyone is convinced of Gray's talent - David Bordwell essentially dismissed it as something like a routine Warner Bros. cop film from the 30s, just with more sex and violence - but I'm looking forward to seeing where Gray goes from here.

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