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Boogie Nights

by

Jeff Nelson

Boogie Nights is a little long, but makes sure to keep the viewer attached to the screen and will never leave you bored.

Boogie Nights
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In most films, sex between characters on screen is used to arouse the audience, show the love between two characters, or both. What's interesting is that Boogie Nights attempts and succeeds in doing just the opposite of that. The sex shown on screen isn't there to make the viewers turned on, but is shown in a business way. Not very many films with this subject matter have ever and will ever achieve the greatness that is Boogie Nights.

A nightclub busboy transforms himself into porn king Dirk Diggler and ultimately becomes intoxicated by success, cocaine, and lofty aspirations. The film closely follows Diggler and the audience truly sees the many sides to his character. He begins as an average young adult, but becomes overwhelmed by the sudden success that he cannot handle it. Dirk falls into drugs and is changed as a whole in the result. While this is going on, there are multiple sub-stories that are occurring such as relationships between characters and the madness that was caused by the porn industry. The screenplay is absolutely brilliant. The dialogue all fits perfectly and delivers everything from laugh out loud comedy to serious and well-written dialogue. Boogie Nights has a good mix of dark comedy an drama with great pacing that made me never take my eyes off the screen.

There are fantastic actors left and right with this film. Dirk Diggler is played by Mark Wahlberg. He does an outstanding job as it's a type of role that I'm sure we'll never see him in again. Some supporting actors are Burt Reynolds, Heather Graham, Julianne Moore, Willian H. Macy, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Thomas Jane, John C. Reilly, and others. This film couldn't possibly have asked for a stronger cast. Julianne Moore works her magic and feels so natural in doing so. Burt Reynolds deserved his Oscar nomination in his supporting role as he does very well in this film. There isn't even one bad seed among the bunch and it's interesting to see these actors all these years back.

The film is set in the 1970s, and this film put a lot of focus on giving the 70's feel. Everything from the clothing, to the hair, to the music are all spot on. It's nearly unbelievable that this film was released in 1997 since everything about the movie screams the 70's. Camera work is definitely borrowed from other films, but director Paul Thomas Anderson makes sure to put his own spin on this film.

I was pleasantly surprised with Boogie Nights. I had heard so many positive things about this film, but didn't expect such a superb screenplay. The acting is impressive, but that's what to be expected with this cast. The dark comedy gives quite a few good laughs and the serious moments are engaging. This clearly isn't the type of film for everybody, but for those willing to give it a chance won't be disappointed. Boogie Nights is a little long, but makes sure to keep the viewer attached to the screen and will never leave you bored.

My Rating = Four and One Half Stars

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