Posts Tagged With: Jeff Bridges

The Cape: “Scales on a Train” (2011)

The best back-from-commercial intros on television: succinct, direct—dividing each act into bite-sized chunks. Poetic junk food. (“Scales”; “The Cape vs…”). Dialogue follows a similar pattern (“I’m gonna end you!”) though there’s something off about it whenever David Lyons (as uninteresting a presence as Andrew Lincoln on The Walking Dead—also a non-American assaying a mesa-flat all-American) opens his mouth or blank-stares with the baby blues. The idealized father thing is intentional and knowing (and still reverent in conception), but with Lyons it’s less meta than meh-ta. TRON: Legacy did the Daddy hero-worship better, but then TRON: Legacy had several Jeff Bridges’. Based on the atrocious speeding-train rear projection, the Cape producers couldn’t afford to buy Bridges lunch off the BK dollar menu. (The best gag—the hero unable to use his retractable poncho because of high-speed winds—is lost in the digital breeze.) The good guys are uninteresting (“I knew Orwell, Summer Glau…” you want to say) so look to the margins: A talented performer like Mather Zickel (unsung among the Rachel Getting Married ensemble) brings depths to the other man/surrogate parent. Vinnie Jones as the reptilian adversary gets flashes of a “pity me” backstory that he pushes out of sight and mind by ramming his head, hooligan style, against the bars of a cage. Dayton Callie’s the mayor (’bout time). And, oh, Keith David. His joy is infectious. No wonder Aronofsky picked him to dildo-degrade Jennifer Connelly—his grin banished all dubious suspicions. Here it’s a “Gladys Knight and the Pips” toss-off that knocks off the socks (or as Bergman apocryphally had it after screening Jurassic Park, “puts on the pants”).

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