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neumu
Monday, April 21, 2014 
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Neumu = Art + Music + Words
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Cinematronic by Michael Snyder
Film
cinematronic
  The Singing Detective cinematronic
  director

Keith Gordon

cast

Robert Downey Jr., Robin Wright Penn, Mel Gibson, Jeremy Northam, Katie Holmes, Adrien Brody, Jon Polito

year

2003

rating rating cinematronic
  When a work of art is innovative, idiosyncratic and, on its own terms, near perfect, it's hard to justify revamping or updating it. Yet, the late Dennis Potter wrote a movie script based on his 1986 British TV miniseries "The Singing Detective" — an astounding hybrid of hyper-realism, surrealism and hallucinogenic musical numbers, with shards of autobiography. In both versions, the lead character, a writer of two-bit detective novels, suffers from debilitating eczema that causes his skin to turn scaly and crack apart. Overcome by pain, self-loathing and memories of childhood trauma, the hospitalized novelist sinks into paranoid delusions and imagines himself as the hero of his books: a singing private investigator. The film, directed by Keith Gordon and starring Robert Downey Jr. as the novelist, shifts the locale from the UK to the U.S. and updates it from the '40s to the '50s, giving it an altered aura and a different set of pop hits for the players to lip-sync. It's not as vivid, cohesive and tragic as the miniseries, but the concept is still a thriller. Downey shows his range, evoking disgust and sympathy; Robin Wright Penn is fluid in multiple roles; and Mel Gibson is unrecognizable and impressive as a psychiatrist. With Jeremy Northam, Katie Holmes and Adrien Brody.  
cinematronic
cinematronic


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