Strange and serendipitous confluence of time and space: Paul Frankenstein (we forget that real people are named “Frankenstein” and “Mummy” too, though I’m not sure how many “Wolfman” or “Creature From the Black Lagoon’s” there are running around) just picked ten movies we should check into.
Local Hero was one of them. His review is apt:
- Texas oilman goes to Scotland to convince recalcitrant locals to sell out; arrives, finds that locals aren’t recalcitrant at all. In Bill Forsyth’s engaging comedy, little is what is appears to be. The humor is relaxed and unforced, and the sly, deadpan pacing makes this film a welcome respite from the frantic, in-your-face pace of modern films.
I would add that the cinematography of the unspeakably beautiful Scottish shore and sky are awe-inspiring (especially on the big screen, alas), that the performances – especially Peter Riegert as the man on a mission, and Burt Lancaster as the eccentric owner of the oil company and astronomy buff – are outstanding, and that a fascinating side note is how much “cutting-edge” communication has changed in the 19 years since the film was made. I would also emphasize that the ruminative pace (Dawn: “Is anything ever going to happen in this movie?”) is crucial to our not just apprehending, but getting in sync with the charms of the idyllic village setting. The film also leaves open a tantalizing question: who exactly is the “local hero” of the title?
So now here’s the big coincidence: we just watched the DVD last night and you can enjoy it tonight if you head out to Walmart because Local Hero is part of their special batch of $5 DVDs on sale right now. Yes I said “$5.” We found an amazing selection of favorites from the ’80s and ’90s and snagged about ten of them. Zowie. And you won’t find the $5 DVDs on the Walmart website, you have to trudge to AN ACTUAL STORE. I am reluctant to shill for Walmart, but man, a freaking bargain is a freaking bargain.
Oh, and the Mark Knopfler instrumental soundtrack is also especially appealing, with moments of pure wonder.