Author: Reid Ramsey

The Last Knight and Michael Bay’s On-Screen Insecurity

Michael Bay movies are abnormal. They are almost essentially unfocused and tonally inconsistent; he over-saturates and frames his shots as to be almost unsettlingly beautiful; and he cuts his movies together in a way that challenges even the most extensive theories on rapid editing. But Transformers: The Last Knight is abnormal even for Bay. The fifth Transformers franchise installment scrambles for the brash and unashamed confidence of the other films, but it instead lands with extremely apparent insecurity. Amidst the bright colors and flying, fighting robots, Bay imbues his movie with a much less appealing element than the others: fear....

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Movies as Metaphor for Movies in Jan De Bont’s Motion Trilogy (Speed, Speed 2, Twister)

In 1896, audiences watched a mysterious screen showing a train quickly approaching a station. This experience exposed a brand new technology. Unaware of the consequences or implications of this technology, the audience ducked, expecting the train to crash through the screen and physically harm their bodies—or so goes the myth of the Lumiére brothers first screening of their film The Arrival of A Train (1896). While the validity of this myth has been argued, its essence remains essential to discussing film: film actively affects culture. In the more recent 1990s, the work of Dutch filmmaker Jan De Bont visually...

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‘Lincoln’ and the Forgettable Face of Daniel Day-Lewis

Moments before watching Lincoln (2012), my friend confessed to me that he was unsure whether he could pick Daniel Day-Lewis out of a crowd if he were given the opportunity. This sentiment rang true with me as well. His name signifies one of the greatest working actors to anyone with a big toe dipped in pop culture. You’d think with a reputation like that, his face would be ingrained in the memory of anyone who had seen it. In fact, it is the faces of his characters like Daniel Plainview (There Will Be Blood, 2007), Bill “The Butcher” Cutting (Gangs...

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