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Number_6
Jul 23, 2006

BAN ALL GAS GUZZLERS

(except for mine)


Pillbug

I'm posting a somewhat dissenting review. Despite being something of a buff for older films, somehow I didn't manage to see Raging Bull in its entirety until last night. And I was disappointed, at least relative to the stellar reputation of this film.

As others have already posted, the fight cinematography is groundbreaking. The camerawork, the lighting. The grainy black-and-white look is perfect for the subject matter. The musical score. All of these elements are brilliant. The acting is also top notch; DeNiro comes through with his most sincere and natural performance; emotional without being over-the-top. The supporting cast is very strong too.

But in spite of all this, I found the film to be emotionally unengaging. There's no character in this film that I found particularly interesting or likeable, or even unlikeable in an interesting way. The protagonist is basically a jealous, paranoid, wifebeating bum. I didn't feel any joy or suspense in his victories over his opponents in the ring, because his opponents are mostly undefined ciphers. I don't have pity for the LaMotta character because his failures seem largely of his own making. When the movie was over, I didn't feel anything.

Despite Raging Bull's technical and artistic strengths, it just didn't give me what I want from a movie. Rated 3.

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