Sunday, January 11, 2009

IN THE VALLEY OF ELAH (Paul Haggis, 2006, USA) Dear Mr. Haggis, I have seen your first two films and have a modest request: PLEASE STOP MAKING MOVIES! Your writing is insipid and draws upon every cliche including racial/feminist/cultural stereotypes. I am embarrassed for you but more frustrated at the fact that a few hours are now missing from my life that would have been better spent asleep or unconscious. I am an investigator and counselor employed by the local District Attorney in a town that has a War College and an Army & Naval Base; you obviously know nothing about law enforcement, criminal prosecution, or military police protocols. Your portrayal of a female detective is sexist and radically untrue: I believe you watch too much TV. Maybe you should research and consult professionals for your next movie, which unfortunately I know you will make despite my plea. Maybe you could release a new Director's Cut with just the scenes of Tommy Lee Jones looking mildly depressed (which was half the film anyway) and have the actors mime their parts because your dialogue is dimwitted and obtuse. Also, please redact that sappy pungent score. On second thought, just burn the celluloid masters and get a new profession. Thank you for taking time to read my letter. (F-)

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