Wednesday, June 10, 2009

1 2 3

I will see the remake of The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 when it hits theaters, but only because I have little choice in the matter:

I love American movies, and I’m an adult: therefore, Denzel Washington is my movie star.

(Name another American movie star for adults…Clint Eastwood; George Clooney; possibly, some year soon, with a little more practice, Angelina Jolie.)

I fully expect that, with the exception of Denzel Washington’s performance, everything about this remake will stink.

What I am excited about, though, is that the movie landed a brand new edition of the John Godey novel in paperback racks nationwide. I’ve probably seen the original, Walter Matthau/Robert Shaw movie a dozen times, but I’ve never read the book.

I expect the novel will read much as the first movie played, as a sterling example of the sort of storytelling -- brisk and efficient, but filled with character -- that Americans, in particular, excelled at, right up into the 1970s: stories that could be moved from page to screen to radio play to stage, without losing a step.

Easy as…well, you know.