There’s a particular type of movie, the kind that depicts bourgeois capitalist decadence and excess, usually in the art world, or more specifically in the film world. La Dolce Vita is the iconic example, and all of the followers reference it; the recent examples I have in mind are The Great Beauty and Knight of Cups.More
Unlike my pal Rick Kelley—who once told me, on the record, that “jazz sucks”—I actually like jazz music quite a bit, but I’m not great at just listening to it with full concentration. When my mind wanders, I sometimes play a game: “How would a rock music critic write about this?” You know the kind of awful prose I’m talking about, the kind written by people completely out of their depth and end up falling into the same clichés, something like:
Ahmed Jamal never plays a note he doesn’t want to.
It may seem peculiar to go back and talk about a film two years after its release, especially one as forgotten as 2014’s As Above, So Below – so let me explain why anyone should care about the film first.
It’s a general rule in clowning – and I know with that phrase I’m already in danger of losing some of you, but stick with me – that you have to do something really cool and skilled before you can fail amusingly.More