Another gem brought to my attention by the History Buffs YouTube channel. Directed by Peter Weir and adapted from nautical historical novels by Patrick O’Brian, Master and Commander unfortunately didn’t make enough money to become a series, which is a shame. Maybe the long unwieldy name put people off; as far as terrible film titles go it’s no Mrs Caldicot’s Cabbage War, but unless you’re a fan of the books it doesn’t really sound like an exciting proposition, which is probably why I skipped the theatrical release myself.
This movie was a nice surprise, a detective buddy comedy that feels fresh mostly because of the stellar work by its two stars (Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling), who are not typically associated with the comedy but turn out to have a major, previously untapped talent for it. Throw in a sleazy, noirish 1970s Los Angeles setting, slapstick, sarcasm, raunchy dialogue, darkly humorous and surreal touches, and the results are highly entertaining.
I’m house sitting at a friend’s with Netflix at the moment, so I decided to watch this movie. It’s one of those staples that seems to regularly pop up on free-to-air TV, and I swear I’ve seen the same scene of John Nash (Russell Crowe) trying to chat up a pretty girl at the bar with disastrous results at least three times, but for whatever reasons I just never got around to finishing the movie.