After the heavy-handed, philosophical-spiritual prequel to Alien, that was Prometheus, Ridley Scott has decided to treat us with a thriller this time – The Counselor. And what’s better? He has got together good-looking people who can act (at least most of them can!) to make this a ride to look forward to – Javier Bardem, Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Cameron Diaz and Penelope Cruz play characters etched out by Cormac McCarthy (No Country for Old Men).
There is not much to say for the trailer, except that it looks good and exciting. Diaz plays an evil woman (I tried to equate her with Darryl Hannah in Kill Bill, but I just couldn’t). All I can say is, she isn’t bad. Fassbender has worked with Scott previously in Prometheus and his role there had been applauded. He is a powerful actor who is now deservedly going places. (Watch Steve McQueen‘s Shame to know what I am talking about). There is nothing one can say about Bardem to do him enough justice. After exciting roles in No Country for Old Men, Biutiful, Vicki Cristina Barcelona, Skyfall and a whole lot of Spanish films, his crazy get up and his lines in the trailer of The Counsellor sparks enough interest.
The film is scheduled to release October 25.
It is always such a great pleasure to watch someone like Joaquin Phoenix in a frame. And consider this; this time it is Spike Jonze (of “Being John Malkovich” fame) who has crafted this interesting-looking story of a man, with what looks like high and complex EQ, and female-voiced piece of technology falling in love. Jonze knows how to read and show complex minds, and the actors, Phoenix, Amy Adams and Scarlett Johansson do give ample evidence of magic in this trailer.
I must admit that the first time I watched it, I was immediately reminded of the The Big Bang Theory episode where Raj buys an iPhone 4S and falls in love with Siri. That was hilarious, and the premise of this one is too. Except that here, the treatment looks very endearing, sensitive and tender. One, that is expected to arouse lesser guffaws and more smiles and a great deal of thought.
Notice that the aspect of technology displaying emotional responses has been quite a favourite with filmmakers and authors who have given us some brilliant sci-fi work — Blade Runner, AI: Artificial Intelligence, Bicentennial Man. This will again, like always, spark off another round of debate on how much technology we are allowing into our lives, how difficult it has become to dismiss it and if we are really doing the smart thing by allowing their presence to loom so large over our everyday life? I am looking forward to Her for the ethical arguments that will follow and to see the cast and crew work their charm, not necessarily in that order.