Assassination of Jesse James and The Kite Runner

January 13, 2008

Just some thoughts on these films I saw last Sunday… 

The Assassination of  Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
Great story, perfect pacing…and excellent cinematography.  The obscured shots through windows and using the natural reflections of the glass are just perfect as is the use of light.  Landscape shots caught the bleakness of the surroundings and the narrator has a simple direct way of speaking that adds to the sparseness of the film.  You feel like you are back in the late 1800’s with them- the attention to detail is amazing- its not something you realize until later in the film when it shows the more modern world.  The characterisations are brilliant and there is hardly a wasted moment of film even if you are uncertain which way the film is heading.  I know that everybody has been going on about Casey Afflecks acting and the compliments are certainly well deserved- Pitt does a good job as well in a subtle and gregarious way to show how the character is changing.  Definitely recommended.

The Kite Runner
I didn’t actually read this book yet but some comparisons to Lahiri’s The Namesake- that is to be expected since both deal with being expats in the US and the conflict of the older generation trying to keep to their traditional ways.   The first half of the film in Afghanistan is definitely the best- the child actors are excellent and bring the joy of being a child with innocence and deviousness to life on the screen in equal measure.  Good work in bringing Afghan culture to life both before the Soviet invasion and afterwards with the Taliban.  One of the little gripes were the shots from the Kite which were just cgi and I thought took away from the film.  Second half of the film was just a bit too predictable for my liking…was funny to hear a Midnight Oil track (Beds Are Burning) and I was bopping to that more to anything else since the rest of the album was going through my head for the rest of the film.  All said the film was good but book may be better?  Have the book now so we will see.



  1. The family of Jesse James have posted their own 5 page review of this movie on their family web site, together with stories about the James family’s former experiences with Hollywood and Jesse James movies.


  2. Cool-thanks for that!

  3. “The Kite Runner” an awesome book, great attention to details. Every single page made me cry, laugh, warmed up my heart with love, and made me angry… I cried non-stop throughout the book.

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