Monday, September 28, 2015

Purple Noon: Damn It, Matthew!

Just last week I made a lot of people who were not predisposed to love it watch The Talented Mr. Ripley.  Eventually they were rapt, because it is such a very good old-fashioned movie, in all its unsubtlety.

The chief asset of the film and the story as constructed is simple:  Tom Ripley is gay.

That's not strikingly clear in the Patricia Highsmith novel and is only tantalizing in (the brilliant in its own way) Purple Noon.  But here Tom is gay and the story is so much the better for it. You'd assume that Anthony Minghella (doing his best work) and Matt Damon (doing his best work) worked it out together.  But maybe not.

Damon's on a run that seems aimed at proving his ostensible liberal middle class Boston boy personality is a charm offensive shielding dumbass jock attitudes about race and sexuality circa 2015.


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