Friday, January 29, 2016

Perfect pauses: Tangerine

When I first wrote this post in late 2011, I think I expected to make it a semi-regular feature -- to identify instances when I randomly paused a movie at a near-perfect moment.

More than four years later, I have yet to revisit the topic. But it's never too late.

Tonight we were watching Tangerine, my #8 movie of 2015 -- my wife for the first time and me for the second. We had to pause it to go deal with some nonsensical attention-grabbing stunt by our older son (who should have been sleeping), and this is what we got:

I love how much this one image speaks to this movie -- even though it contains nary a shot of a transgender prostitute. (Actually, that's not true -- if you squint there is in fact a tiny transgender prostitute in the lower right-hand corner.)

It's not just the wonderfully run-down retro sign for Color TVs, which must have legitimately still been up somewhere in Los Angeles even when this was filmed in 2014.

It's not just the sky, which is the perfect pre-sunset shade of pinkish blue (though it doesn't come across so well in a photograph -- a screen grab might have worked slightly better).

It's not just the tiny transgender prostitute, just any other small person in a big world.

It's not even the wonderful lines of the building as they converge toward the horizon.

No, it's the fact that the on-screen text fits perfectly into the building's available blue space, as though it were purposefully captioned this way for a photo.

I was glad to discover the word "perfect" coming to mind so regularly for me on my second viewing. This truly is a tremendous accomplishment for all involved, and to watch it again was simply a joy.


Don Handsome said...

I would hang that poster in my home. For me it's all the factors you've mentioned coalescing in a moment of pure Cool. It looks like a new Hollywood era poster. But it's unmistakably new. It's a design masterclass. Nice job.

Derek Armstrong said...

Thanks Don! It does seem like a very "you" type of poster. And wait, you've got a birthday coming up ... I don't think I've ever gotten you something to hang on your wall before, have I??