Monday, August 20, 2012

R.I.P. Tony Scott

Sometimes I hate waking up in the morning.  Sometimes I hate turning on the internet.  I remember vividly the day, almost five years ago now, when I saw those awful headlines regarding Heath Ledger’s untimely death.  Life is fragile and something that we all take for granted.  When something so shocking and so sudden happens to someone we admire or respect or care about it can be jarring.  When my wife’s grandmother died a few months back, it wrecked all of us because it was just so bizarre and so unexpected.  This morning, reading the headlines about Tony Scott’s suicide, I’m left with this hollow pit in my stomach because it makes no sense.  There are few things that make you go “What the f***” and this is one of them.  When Amy Winehouse died, it was sad and tragic but not entirely shocking.  When Ernest Borgnine died, it was sad but not entirely shocking.  Maybe it’s the suicide aspect that is making this one so hard to swallow.  I think the general public has this idea of who these celebrities are and the happy lives they lead and it becomes difficult to consider them as unhappy or even contemplating taking their own lives, especially when they keep the majority of their private life out of the public’s eye.  Why would Tony feel the need to kill himself?  Is it really our right to know?  We all want to know why, because the average man and woman hates ambiguity and always desires to find closure, especially in dire situations.  But maybe, instead of speculating on the actualities of his death, we should be celebrating his life.

So what’s your favorite Tony Scott movie?  I think mine may actually be ‘Man on Fire’, which not only sports one of Denzel Washington’s better performances but also has such slick and harsh atmosphere, intensified by Scott’s signature framing.  Honestly, I really need to see ‘True Romance’.  I’ve heard it is his finest film, and it’s one of the only I haven’t seen.

For me, I’ve actually always enjoyed the way Tony Scott puts together a film.  He’s been balked before for his jerky editing style and the way he frames his action films, but I’ve always considered his style unique to himself, not in the fact that no one else tries it but that no one else has mastered it.  When you watch a Tony Scott film, you can feel that it is a Tony Scott film.  His stamp is there, burning a hole in every scene.  His brother, the legendary Riley Scott, is one of my favorite directors because of his ability to adapt into a variety of genres, and while Tony didn’t have that same range he certainly worked hard to master the genre he dwelled within.

So what about you?  What about Tony’s aesthetic impressed you the most?  What will you miss? 

All our love and condolence goes to Tony’s family at this very sad time.

1 comment:

  1. It was bizarre hearing the news because I just recorded Unstoppable from Cinemax last night. (I've seen the film before, but I wanted to watch it again.)

    My favorite Tony Scott film would be True Romance. I'm in the mood to see it again, so I just ordered a copy from Amazon. I highly recommend it. It's so much fun. It even uses the theme from Badlands to great effect.

    Also, I picked up a $5 copy of Man on Fire, so I might watch it and Deja Vu for the first time tonight.