Neil LaBute

[Before I get to today's stuff, I wanted to tell you: Monkey Barn is back open]

I want to start taking time here in the MovieHype pages to spotlight the works of directors I particularly love. As many of you know, I feel very strongly that you should go see a film based on a director and writer more than the stars; as they are the ones responsible for the quality the movie.

Most of us have heard of the big names, but there are many talented directors out there who deserve our attention. You don’t have to get the latest Jerry Bruckheimer release when you go to the video store. There are treasures out there just waiting to be discovered.

We start with one of my favorite directors, Neil LaBute. LaBute is a playwright who turned to movies, so far directing five of them:

IN THE COMPANY OF MEN

YOUR FRIENDS AND NEIGHBORS

NURSE BETTY

POSSESSION

THE SHAPE OF THINGS

Nurse Betty was a studio film, and while underrated did not live up to LaBute’s genius. And POSSESSION is so unique that it deserves its own column. I want to talk about LaBute’s other three films, which act as a thematic trilogy of cruelty.

Let me say at the outset that these films are not for children or people who want sunny characters and happy endings. In other words: I wouldn’t let my mom near them. But if you’re looking for great performances, fantastic dialogue and a realistic approach to relationships we just don’t see in modern cinema, Neil is your boy.

for more, see Neil LaBute

1 comment:

kapgar said...

I was not a big fan of Nurse Betty either. But I've heard great things about In the Company of Men and Friends and Neighbors. I know I've heard of Possession as well. Can't remember what it's about, though.