2 strange movies

Tim had eccentric taste. Being brothers, I easily understood 99% of it. Whether it was his skateboards, shoes, or movies, I could trace the reasoning. But then there was that elusive single percent; elusive because even Tim couldn’t explain all too well why he liked something so much. Today, I’m going to share 2 movies that Tim loved that I simply don’t share the same admiration for.

The first: Roman Polanski’s The Ninth Gate starring Johnny Depp.


In summary, Johnny Depp plays a sly book dealer who goes in search of an occult prize with a commission too high to pass up. He eventually finds himself messily tangling with forces too super to be natural using only his wit and ingenuity.


Tim had talked to me about this movie on more than one occasion, meaning he really liked it. Even loved it. Personally, I give this movie a B- at best, and that’s being uber generous. It has all the ingredients for greatness, but it lacks tone and atmosphere. The danger is never menacing enough to unseat you because the performances are over-lit, and Johnny simply never gets frightened enough to justify how badly the odds are being stacked against him by some unseen menace. You can watch this movie with both eyes open, you can’t watch The Exorcist without both eyes being shut.

Now for the second: Equilibrium (or what I call “How to do Gunkata”).


Christian Bale? Check. Sean Bean? Check. A ton of martial arts co-mingled with awesome gunplay? Check and check. SO WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED?


Look at that image! This movie is supposed to be so amazing you would have to shoehorn your own eyes back into your skull afterwards. We all have the Matrix in our dusty dvd collections. And that movie starred Ted “Theodore” Logan from San Dimas High! So why aren’t we enamored over Equilibrium?!?

Because stars don’t align despite best intentions. Maybe the plot fell short, maybe the fight scenes didn’t get the micro-attention they needed in editing, or maybe the financing executives demanded easy to consume mediocrity versus a really good movie.

Who knows, but Tim loved Equilibrium despite all its flaws. For him, this movie will always be this:

I watched both underachieving (IMO) films with Tim. He owned Equilibrium on dvd and had The Ninth Gate on his laptop despite it being a 12 year old movie at the time.

“That’s pretty cool right?”, was all he could say in defense of both. I didn’t care for either afterwards, but I immensely enjoyed the time spent with Tim watching them. In my opinion though, I think he loved both of these flawed films because they provided for him “a goto space”. When and where Tim first saw them made a huge impression in the most positive of ways. So much so, that when he re-watched either, he was probably able to return to those happy moments figuratively.

Hah, now that I think about it, I’m going to order both of these movies from Amazon once I’m done writing:)

2 thoughts on “2 strange movies

  1. You crazy. Equilibrium is an amazing movie. We watched that all the time. Due solely to that movie, Tim and I would go on Christian Bale marathons, even the horrible ones. Empire of the Sun, Reign of Fire, 3:10, Prestige… We even tried to find the Grammaton Cleric coat so we can dress up for Halloween. It didn’t happen though.

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