David Fincher elevates the “ethics” of murder to the status of a masterful axiom in The Killer (****)

The director resurrects the revenge genre with the fever and precision of a time bomb a second before it explodes!

For some reason of a complex theological explanation, “Thou shalt not kill” occupies an unworthy, not even an honorable place among the Commandments of the Law of God. In the middle of the table, between the obligatory reverence of parents and the warning against adultery, there is a sin that has brought so many sleepless nights to many heroes of the novel. David Fincher. “Don’t ask me why. If anything, do it with Hitchcock. The drama is there,” the director himself comments when asked about his love of tracking the thoughts of someone who kills, someone who kills a lot.

The Assassin, his latest film presented with full honors in Venice, is essentially what Tarantino calls “revengeful‘. Or almost, since he does not take revenge on anyone, but rather judge the conditions of the opportunity so that no one insists on revenge on him. And this is a chronicle of revenge, as is customary with the author, with precision, rigor, a sense of timing, and a visual and plastic display that is, in fact, intimidating. Can the most immoral behavior (or the fifth most harmful, if you follow the order of the ten most frequent) actions respond to the strictest work ethic? Answer: yes. And this, of course, is very disturbing. And even disappointed.

Based on a graphic novel written by Alexis Nolent (aka Matz) and illustrated by Luc Jacamon, written by Andrew Kevin Walker (i.e. the person in charge of the totem).Seven‘), the film follows in the footsteps of a man convicted of a fatal mistake. Michael Fassbender, in which it signifies his return after a hiatus, he gives life to a titular hitman who one bad day by pure chance makes a mistake. Of course, to make a mistake in the daily balance, for example, in a mortadella sandwich shop, is not at all the same as in a craft so persecuted even by Moses himself (there is no commandment “Do not add or subtract in vain”). Immediately after that, the organization (so to speak) takes action on this issue, and the clock starts counting down (or better counting down) against the protagonist. When his wife is attacked, it’s time to put things in their place: the revenge of the past (or something similar) comes.

Fincher’s proposal brings the audience back to the more orthodox Fincher (if such a thing ever existed). After ‘Munk‘, a film so ardently personal that it has become a universal work, the man who in 1999 staged the same Mostra he’s now returning to in Fight Club insists on his concept of cinema as surgery. Actually, the film is not only a chronicle of revenge, it is a patterned, exquisite and insanely precise mechanism for measuring and even understanding time. In addition to the vague reflection on the work ethic. As it is.

Michael Fassbender stars in David Fincher’s new film The Killer. Netflix

Indeed, this man set out to find out what has been going on in the minds of serial killers ever since.zodiac‘ To ‘mind hunter‘going through the same thing’Seven‘, back and forth, now stops at what is in the diary of a risky profession. And what appears there is frightening. It scares a lot of severity, stability (whatever it is), concentration and, why not, talent. (to sum it up in a work ethic) that needs the most immoral of professions.

“Follow the plan… Don’t improvise, anticipate… Don’t get carried away by emotions…”. Fassbender’s character repeats the rules over and over to stay alive. The rules, by the way, are impossible to follow. And it is there, in the contradiction between what is heard and what is seen, that The Assassin becomes strong, a film poised to write a golden page in the history of the modern trade union movement. Definitely worrisome. What a good killer suddenly looked like the head of personnel!

But above all, Fincher’s proposal is mesmerizing, as it is a struggle, let’s say, with the fact that the film unfolds over time. In fact, it is tempting to think that the argument chosen is nothing more than an advertising excuse, a sales ploy needed to sell every product. It is, or, to return to Hitchcock, a “MacGuffin”, an element of distraction that allows, over time, to blow up what is important. We said that metronome accuracy is important. virtuosity by which the tape compresses and expands a clockwise journey from one place on the planet, from one city to another in the United States, from one extreme to the opposite, from what is right for the fair development of the profession and too bad for everyone else.

It is clear that the commandment says what it says: “Thou shalt not kill.” So, if you sin and do this, for God’s sake, do as Fincher tells you. Amen.


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