1992: 2 movies

posted on 2016 March 30

Jamón Jamón
Directed by Bigas Luna
Written by Cuca Canals, Bigas Luna,
and Quim Monzó
Produced by Andrés Vicente Gómez
Music by Nicola Piovani
Cinematography by José Luis Alcaine
Editing by Teresa Font
Casting by Consol Tura
Production design by Gloria Martí-Palanqués and Pep Oliver
Art direction by Noemí Campano and Chu Uroz
Set decor by Julio Esteban and Pedro Gaspar
Costumes by Neus Olivella and Belen Lemaitre
Special Effects by Reyes Abades
Starring Penélope Cruz, Javier Bardem,
Stefania Sandrelli,  and Jordi Mollà

   A dirty mess of a movie, but it's proud of its dirtiness. Incest, nudity, violence, animal abuse, adultery, prostitution, and garlic breath, all of this is depicted, and yet it doesn't glorify any of it. Instead it's a poem about human dreams, human weakness, and the way humans have made everything so complicated. The all-star cast helps keep it all afloat as do the talents of the crew. It may not be pretty but it's certainly a picture that stays with you and holds tons of truth.
   The title translates from Spanish to "Ham Ham"


Wayne's World
Directed by Penelope Spheeris
Written by Mike Myers, Bonnie Turner,
and Terry Turner
Produced by Lorne Michaels
Music by J. Peter Robinson
Cinematography by Theo van de Sande
Editing by Malcolm Campbell
Casting by Glenn Daniels
Production design by Gregg Fonseca
Art direction by Bruce Alan Miller
Set decor by Jay Hart
Costumes by Pat Tonnema, Kimberly Guenther Durkin,
and Janet Sobel
Make-up by Mel Berns Jr. and Courtney Carell
Hair-styling by Kathrine Gordon, Barbara Lorenz,
and Carol Meikle
Music by David Campbell and Maureen Crowe
Starring Mike Myers, Dana Carvey,
Tia Carrere, and Rob Lowe

   I found this movie entertaining, whimsical, and yet relevant, with an under-lying revisionist conceit that belied the film's emotional attachments to the subject matter. Hahaha! That's what the characters say during the ending credits about how they hope the movie is accepted.
   In other words, this movie doesn't suck. It subverts all the tropes of big-studio movie-making to tell a story of two down-on-their-luck but sincere guys who dream of love, rock and roll, and a tv-show. They venture into a risky deal with big money, striving to remain true, and encapsulating the spirit of the time.
   The casting is perfect, from all the leads to all the supporting cast, and the tone of humor trumps everything, making us root for Wayne and Garth as heroes. The loose structure, the cultural references, and the way the heroes talk to the camera calls to mind past works of comic brilliance like those of the Marx Brothers, while somehow still coming across as fresh.
   Whether it's realistic or fairy-tale doesn't really matter, as the movie proves with its three endings. What matters here is that we understand the sincerity of the leads and their intentions, as they are comic cheerleaders in the fight for the spot-light on the underdog-class. In short, all is well when Wayne and Garth are on the screen.

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