5 Ridley Scott Movies That Deserve More Love
About to turn 84, Ridley Scott is in one of the most fruitful phases of his career. It is not that the British director has ever taken his foot off the gas, but with just a month away he will appear in theaters with two high-level titles such as The Last Duel and The Gucci House, while he already works on his next projects. .
Scott has one of the most varied filmographies in Hollywood today, displaying an insatiable curiosity for the most diverse genres, from science fiction and thriller to historical drama and peplum. Throughout this torrent of hyperactivity he has directed masterpieces that have been immediately inserted in the history of the medium, very popular blockbusters, artistic hits, big-nosed flops and also misunderstood titles that are worth claiming.
The Counselor (2013)
The latest Ridley Scott likes to pull the Hollywood machine together to put together star-studded casts. Perhaps he has never gotten better out of it than in this impossible cocktail of Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Cameron Diaz, Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem, immersed in the swampy waters of a script written by Cormac McCarthy that does not make the slightest concession.
The general public was likely to find his images – shot in aggressive vivid colors by Dariusz Wolski – too excessive for a barrel thriller, riddled with existential conversations and empirical findings of evil and mortality. However, it’s only a matter of time before The Counselor comes to be considered one of Scott’s must-have classics.
Do you know which one was also met with hatred at the time? Blade Runner. And that neither had a car sex scene that Julia Ducournau would dream of , nor Rubén Blades in an anthological monologue.
The Duelists (1977)
An applause-worthy debut that was nevertheless overshadowed by the caliber of his two subsequent films (Alien, Blade Runner), but by itself it could be at the top of any filmography. It even leads one to dream of how Ridley Scott’s career would have been if he had run in other fields.
In this adaptation of a short story by Joseph Conrad, two mustachioed Harvey Keitel and Keith Carradine chase each other throughout the first decades of the 19th century in a series of duels filmed with a taste for expressive framing and lyrical backlights that were already well clear from the beginning the visual power of the filmmaker, transferred directly from its beginnings in advertising.
Given the incomprehensible good reception enjoyed by some of his more solemn monstrosities (I’m thinking of Gladiator and you are free to stop reading whenever you want), a very interesting pulp facet that appears in Scott’s work tends to be underestimated too much. Occasionally; just the same thing that happens with Anthony Hopkins, who surely had a wonderful time playing the hooligan here.
If the novel by Thomas Harris as a continuation of The Silence of the Lambs already bet on the thread pass, in the hands of the British filmmaker, with David Mamet and Steven Zaillian to the script, it reached a height of madness as high as the tower of Palazzo Vecchio . No subsequent spinoff from the Hannibal Lecter universe has come close to him until the happy arrival of the Bryan Fuller series .
Gary Oldman with the most radical makeup and prosthetics combination of his past and future career? Check. Hannibal Lecter wreaking havoc around Florence in a Boyerian fedora ? Check. Julianne Moore making you think she’s the best Clarice Starling ever even though you know that’s impossible? Check. Giancarlo Giannini going back to his days as a giallo police inspector? Check. Without going into that scene with Ray Liotta’s brains out , this movie is a party.
The Imposters (2003)
How can such a meticulous and steadfast director contain Nicolas Cage’s torrent of expressiveness and glorious over- acting? Simple, lets you do what Cage does best: be Cage. This is one of the most unusual titles in Ridley Scott’s filmography – a family drama covered in scam film – and therefore one of the most welcoming.
It could have been an indie Sundance film, but the formal treatment of the Brit, with an exaggerated panoramic image at 2.35: 1 that forces him to juggle to frame close-ups of the protagonists of what is essentially a story of faces – that of Cage , attacked in a spectacular tic recital–, makes the narrative flow uncontrollably, without the grip of a conventional comic thriller or the depth of a parent-child drama.
The Kingdom of Heaven (2005)
This could have been a position for Prometheus (2012), but that exit on the tangent of the Alien saga , with all the failed, broken and really beautiful it is, has never been short of defenders since its very premiere in theaters. Instead, The Kingdom of Heaven was suitably crushed in its passage through theaters, and could not be appreciated in all its essence until the appearance of the director’s cut – a specialty in Scott’s film.
In contrast to his other war-historical epics, in this uncontrolled overproduction, a year after Oliver Stone’s Alexander the Great (2004) with which he shares weaknesses and successes, Scott throws the house out the window to offer a sample of pure spectacle cinema where the main characters have as much interest as the costume design and props of the third helper starting from the left. No underlined performances like a Russel Crowe or Joaquin Phoenix, but pure surface –Orlando Bloom, Eva Green– and word –Jeremy Irons, Liam Neeson–. Pure cinema of attractions.