The Conversation (1974)

Directed By – Francis Ford Coppola

Screenplay By – Francis Ford Coppola

Cinematography By – Bill Butler

Starring Gene Hackman

113 min.

This movie turned out to be way stranger than I expected. Gene Hackman’s character Harry Caul is as introverted as they come and Hackman plays it so well. It’s actually quite an unusual character to see Hackman play, who is usually loud and powerful with all the confidence in the world, but Caul is emotionally frail and paranoid, and very unsure of himself.

To no surprise the film is cinematically spectacular for a simple thriller. The premise itself is cinematic as the character’s job is to tape and listen to conversations, with sound being a trait eluding both paintings (still photography included) and literature. The shot compositions are terrific. Just take a look at the opening shot and you’ll see what I’m talking about. Between this and Dracula, along with The Godfather series Coppola is quickly becoming one of my favorite directors (next up is Apocalypse Now, can’t wait!).

I recommend any film fan to watch this movie, I recommend anyone who wants to watch a really interesting thriller to watch this movie. It really is so unique compared to the piles of conventional thrillers we get today.

Francis Ford Coppola’s Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992)

Directed By – Francis Ford Coppola

Screenplay By – James V. Hart

Cinematography By – Michael Ballhaus

Starring Gary Oldman, Winona Ryder, Anthony Hopkins, & Keanu Reeves

128 min.

Why has no one told me about this movie! This is movie is a cinematic gem! It’s not like it didn’t get its recognition back in the day (it won the Oscar for Best Costume Design, Best Effects (Sound Effects Editing), and Best Makeup), but you don’t hear people going around these days telling you you need to see Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Well guess what, I am! See this movie. Gary Oldman is fucking phenomenal as Count Dracula. Watching this movie you’ll be like “Commissioner Gord-who?!. The dude is scary as fuck and then switches to some love-strick sex-god in a flash and does it with an uncanny bravado. The guy is a PERFECT Dracula.

No surprise here, but hats off to Francis Ford Coppola. The man doesn’t just simply tell the story of Dracula through film but creates a fantasyland for us to watch. The actual diegesis (film world) of this movie is so superb that I felt I was actually in a fantasy. The shadow play in this movie might be the best I’ve ever seen and the color scheme is pure gold. Coppola is a cinematic genius no doubt.

While Winona and Keanu do what they need to, Hopkins is a stand-out as Professor Van Helsing. He is simply a badass and puts Hugh Jackman’s portrayal to shame. Every word that comes out of Hopkins mouth will make you want to fist pump!

Do yourself a favor, get some film culture, and see this damned movie!