The Fog of Glass

I watched most of the Errol Morris documentary The Fog of War, and take from it two things:

1) Errol morris should have stuck to letting McNamara just talk it out, as what he said was a lot more interesting than the arty footage he interspersed it with, though the taped recordings of him talking to kennedy and LBJ were amazing.
And what was with him yelling suggestions to McNamara during the taping. A little indulgent if you ask me. It is not suprising that the geeky “Ipod makes me feel powerful” switcher kid is Errol Morris’ son.

2) Phillip Glass is a hack. His “minimalism” is an excuse to exploit simplicity and cliche. Perhaps I need to listen to “Einstein on the Beach” or something, but I have never enjoyed anything by him, excepting of course his turn on the original South Park Christmas Special*.

One thought on “The Fog of Glass”

  1. I totally disagree. I loved the archival and “artsy” footage in the film. I think it is morris’s use of this kind of footage that makes his documentaries so enjoyable. It really grabs you and pulls you in. You have a response like you do when watching a fictional movie, like prisoner of azakaban or gone with the wind. I think that is what makes the Erol Morris documentary so powerful.

    Say whatever you will about the phillip glass stuff as pure music, but it serves Morris very well, I think.

    I keep thinking of Thin Blue Line, which I so totally love, not just for its documentary content, but as an achievement in film making. The phillip glass is probably 50% of what makes that film so powerful.

    While just the content of McNamara’s monologue is mind blowing, Morris adds to it his bag of tricks. I can’t really fault him for it because they are good tricks, and for me make the movie much more engaging.

    Actually, I am biased for Morris because I had a strange experience the first time I watched thin blue line. The title came up, and the phillip glass music started, and the word blue was in red, and something inside of me snapped. Like it was the perfect time for me to see that, and the way I perceive light and sound was profoundly altered. It was a perfect confluence.

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