Hi Outposters, welcome back to Film Club. As we all know, Cool Hand Luke won the poll and like good little boys, we’ve found time to watch it and give you a brief review from each of us. Overall, Cool Hand Luke seems to have received lots of love and admiration, except from one of us. There’s always one.
So without further ado, here are the reviews, and at the end, there is an update on the Livestream later.
I have seen this before and it is a classic. I love a movie set in a prison, which is about friendship and coping with the boredom of each day being the same. I loved how the relationships pan out, bonds are formed and there is always the thought of ‘them and us’, with the prisoners and guards. One way to cope with the boredom is gambling, like betting on how many eggs Newman’s character can eat in an hour.
It’s great how the ‘bad guy’ is the ‘man with no eyes’, one warden who wears his mirror glasses. The director uses the reflection to see what the character sees and the contempt he has for the prisoners he is watching over. It’s something you never see today and really well done.
Cool Hand Luke is one of the first films I remember watching as a kid and it’s stuck with me ever since. I put this down to the fact that like Luke, I’m too stubborn for my own good and take immense pleasure in sticking it to the man regardless of the personal consequences.
Regardless, Cool Hand Luke grabs your attention from the very first second to the very last. It has unexpected comradery in this small prison that gives you an even mix of hard work and good times. And even though these are criminals, the bad guys are the guards. The prisoners actually find time to have fun moments and laughs and you can relate to them. The guards are always pissed off and miserable even though they are free men, yeah, you can kind of relate to them too nowadays!
This entire film takes place either in a small wooden hut, or on a road, and yet the performances and direction keep you glued to the screen. There are no endless explosions, car chases, ill-timed sassy humor, or elaborate sets. It’s a far cry from the cartoony world of modern-day Hollywood and all the better for it.
Cool Hand Luke is a classic 1967 film that has left an indelible mark on movies. Starring Paul Newman in one of his most iconic roles, if not his most iconic. He plays Luke, a charismatic and rebellious Southern prisoner with a laid-back demeanor, who becomes a symbol of indomitable defiance.
The movie masterfully portrays the struggle between authority and individuality. However, more friction could’ve been applied between Luke and the warden, who has a small part in the movie overall. Newman’s charismatic performance captures Luke’s charm and vulnerability. With its powerful themes of rebellion, freedom and the human spirit’s resilience, Cool Hand Luke remains enduring and unforgettable.
Some see Luke as an everyman raging against an oppressive system. Or…maybe Luke is a guy with a compulsive need to push limits until he hurts himself, and this compulsion borders on suicidal. Maybe he is no everyman. Maybe he is part of the age-old problem: if a population can’t control themselves, they ask to be controlled. Maybe the guards are the real prisoners. The convicts have work, food, shelter, comradery, family time, parties, games, weekends, and more as they leech off the system. The guards are stuck babysitting uncontrollable brats without a break in order to earn money to pay for things the prisoners get for free. Is it any wonder they grow abusive through frustration?
In the end, Luke admits his self-destructive nature is the result of a victim mentality, and we fade out on convicts swinging their scythes in Grim-Reaper fashion, murdering the world. Welcome to the fruits of relative truth. Luke is a fun guy, but would you want to employ him or have him raise your children? Whichever way one leans, Cool Hand Luke has stood the test of time as a film. Five stars.
I’m afraid the Livestream isn’t happening today as planned. Drunken Yoda and Boba Phil have some personal commitments to attend. I had my niece’s 18th birthday party last night and after an eight-hour drinking session, I’m still feeling a little bit tipsy, and by 6pm tonight, I’m likely to be comatose on the sofa. Shawn B was willing to step up and fill the void but the technicalities proved too big of a mountain to overcome in time.
So, we won’t be discussing Week 2 of Film Club after all, but please go ahead and post your recommendations in the comments below. The best one/s will be added to our list and posted tomorrow. And don’t forget to tell us your views on Cool Hand Luke, a genuine masterpiece of cinema.
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