A comment from 3rtfull on that Ken Russell The Devils post got me to thinking about Paul Verhoeven. There's another controversial auteur with a somewhat dedicated critical following who seemed to wear out his welcome with the press in general. They're always willing to be manipulated by the provocateurs for a short while but then, they turn their heads away yawning. Beware Von Trier! This fate could well await you next. We'll be discussing Verhoeven's masterpiece Showgirls this evening for the premiere of the new series "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" -- prepare those posts! -- but let's start a little early with Hollow Man (2000), which hits its 10th anniversary today.
When it came out, I illustrated my dismissive review with this cheeky pic. (I had just started the website. I am always embarrassed about those old reviews.)
At the time I was still totally hurt that Elisabeth Shue couldn't get a solid A list career going in the wake of her Leaving Las Vegas brilliance. I haven't seen Hollow Man since but I remember it being grossly misanthropic and, well, dumb.
Yet in the past ten years I've grown slightly fonder of Verhoeven (largely due to Showgirls -- which I've always loved -- and Black Book, which I was briefly obsessed with.) so I don't entirely trust my pre-Aughts feelings about him. I definitely wasn't ready for him when I first started watching movies. My first Verhoeven was The Fourth Man which I think I saw on VHS in the late 80s and it completely nauseated and upset me.
But maybe Hollow Man isn't worth a second look? Until I realized it was the tenth anniversary today, I hadn't thought of the movie since I saw that travelling Bodies exhibit with friends four or five years ago and thought 'This is just like when Kevin Bacon was naked in that movie. Sounds sexy but is not. Not sexy then. Not sexy now.' But in all fairness to Kevin, the only people who would find that kind of naked Bacon sexy are serial killers, so...
Has anyone of you seen Hollow Man recently? If not, do you have any memories of it at all? Paul Verhoeven just turned 72 a couple of weeks ago and though he has a few pictures in development and Total Recall is being remade, he hasn't made a movie since Black Book hit theaters four years ago.