Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Broken, Just Broken

Hart Crane was an openly-gay poet at a time when openly gay meant death. That was the only thing I knew about him before I saw James Franco's "Broken Tower." This film was Mr. Franco's final thesis for NYU and while earnest, it feels like one (And that's not an insult) At times it tries too hard - artsy black and white shots abound, but I must give credit to Mr. Franco because I don't think anyone else would care to make a movie about Mr. Crane. I have heard about but have never read "The Bridge," which was Mr. Crane's poetic masterpiece, and int his movie, it is even narrated by Mr. Franco himself. The indifference to this poem drove Mr. Crane to depression and destruction. It's an interesting story, but there's too much pretentiousness going on here that you cannot get past it to mine the heart of the story. I really wish I had liked this more, but I just found myself rolling my eyes. And Franco's performance was so self-absorbed, and I never believed he was gay. The infamous oral sex scene is here, but it's so laughably fake. Whereto now, James?

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