Monday, February 3, 2014

Running Commentary - Following

Once again, Jonny Prophet and I decided to watch a movie we've never seen before and jot down our thoughts as the story unfolds. (Jonny's are italicized) Today's selection was a Christmas present of mine... Christopher Nolan's first feature length film called Following

********************* WARNING: THERE WILL BE SPOILERS**************************

Close up of a hands putting on rubber gloves.

This is how we prepare for anal rape.

No comment.

When is Kevin Bacon going to show up?

He’s not; Magneto killed him with a coin through the head.

Sad weirdos eating at Dunkin Donuts… nothing off here.

This guy is a writer who likes to follow strangers to see what lives they lead. He’s telling his shrink all about it.

I know what he’s going through.

Again, no comment.

Rubber gloves are not for eating, sir.

So his name is Bill. He said he broke his own rule about following the same person twice.

Bill sits down at a table in a cafĂ© and watches the stranger he’s been following.  Oh snap, the stranger sits down with him! He starts trying to find out why he’s being followed. After denying it, Bill comes clean. The stranger, whose name is Cole, even lets Bill see the contents of his bag. He says “What were you expecting, drugs?”

No, sex toys.

So Cole is apparently a burglar. Now this is turning into a wacky adventure! He even puts on rubber gloves before entering a home.

Time for a rectal exam!

What is it with you and asses?

Those were clearly rectal exam gloves and you know it!

Oh my God, upon opening the door they entered into the amazing world of the early 90’s! There is a phone mounted to the wall with a long cord!

Cole finds a wooden box. He says everyone has a box.

Mine’s full of Vietnamese ears!

You’re a disgusting liar! You’re too young to have fought in the Vietnam War!

Who said anything about a war?

Um… moving on. Cole invades people’s homes to disrupt their lives so they don’t take what they had for granted. What a considerate criminal. Most just want to steal you stuff. He’s a thief who cares.

The home owners return. Cole pretends he is there for the open house and leaves… Bill follows his lead. They are really hitting it off! I can tell they’re going to be besties!

So Michael Fassbender’s going to show up, right?

Why would Michael Fassbender show up?

Because he killed Kevin Bacon!


So now Bill is at a bar. He talks to a woman who doesn’t like him enough to meet him back at his place for a snog.

I must not be a very good writer. Bill’s place looks like a rundown, paint-chipped shit-hole with a typewriter. I need to dream higher.

The woman abruptly decides she is leaving and the scene ends. In the next shot, we see it was Bill’s first night at the fight club.

Is Brad Pitt going to show up in this?

No, but I keep hoping for Benedict Cumberbatch. Following around Sherlock would be cool… except he already has a Hobbit for that.

Bill is talking to someone on the phone about getting protection. I get the impression for all of these disjointed jump-cuts that Following was just Nolan’s practice run at Memento.

Is Ian McKellan going to show up?

Wrong Magneto.

So Bill and Cole broke into a place with cassette tapes… I’m guessing a portal into the 1980’s.  But on the door of the place is Batman’s symbol! It’s like a prophecy put forth by Nolan that would come true in a few years! Now all we need is to see a poster of Matthew McConaghey and a spaceship and some corn. (Interstellar joke. In 10 months it will be funny, damn it!)

Now Bill is at the chick’s place. Sounds like she got robbed by Cole. He even went through her underwear!

Why wouldn’t you rifle through this lovely woman’s underwear?

Because restraining orders are a bad thing, Jon.

Is Hugh Jackman going to show up?

Why would Hugh Jackman show up?

To do magic tricks?

I don’t have a reply to that.


Anyways, Bill kisses the chick. End scene.

Back to post-Fight Club looking Bill. He gets a hammer and breaks into a home. Bill really looks a lot like James McAvoy. Just an observation.

Bill and Cole are hanging out again. BFF’s, I’m telling you! Oh, this part is now the past. Bill has a beard and long hair. They break into the home of the chick. Yeah, earlier Bill wandered her place looking haunted… now that makes sense. Pre-Memento!

Is Christian Bale gonna show up?

Not for 3 more movies.

I’m looking forward to that.

They’re in an abandoned building now.

There was a shot of a dead bird. That’s a good sign.

Now the short haired Bill is on a date with the chick.

I’m starting to think typing a running commentary to a Chris Nolan movie is a bad idea. His movies require more attention than I’m giving. Like for instance, some guy just got his hand and skull smashed by a hammer. Jon, what did I miss?

Now he can’t play piano!

No, but why did he get killed?

He owed the chick’s boyfriend who’s not really her boyfriend money and the scene establishes that he’s a bad ass. And now that guy can’t play piano! Is Heath Ledger going to show up?

While this movie was from 1999, I doubt it… Now I’m sad.

So am I.

Her boyfriend is concerned about blood on him, the chick is concerned about her carpet, but nobody is concerned for that man’s piano playing ability! And I’m starting to think Kevin Bacon isn’t in this at all!

Now Bill, with bruises and short hair as that has become the only means of following a timeline, has broken into a business. He’s really upped his game.

London seems to have very lax security in the year 1999. After the Olympics, the city put in missile launchers.

Yes, because the answer to terrorists hiding among the people is just to blow everyone up. Much more thorough.

Bill’s doing a bank robbery in reverse. London has the worst criminals ever!

But what about Moriarty in all of his scenery chewing glory?

Bill and Cole are eating at a restaurant. Cole thinks Bill has developed a case for his own considerate burglary ways… have you ever noticed that the food featured in British movies is always better than actual British food?

Anyways, the woman that returned to her home while they were robbing it earlier entered the eatery. Bill flips out and they leave. Now Bill is typing on one of those analog computers known as typewriters. Someday I will have to explain what those were to the Little Toaster… and probably compact discs… and books. This is depressing. “You mean they used to put the news on paper and you’d read about it the next day instead of watching it while it happens?” Stupid spoiled future children!

Is James Purefoy going to show up?


He’s the bad guy that Kevin Bacon is going after in The Following.

No. This isn’t THE Following, it’s just Following. That means no Batman, no Joker, no Magneto and no Kevin Bacon. 

But I was able to play ‘Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon’ while we did this! Fassbender to Pitt to McKellan to Jackman to Bale to Ledger to Purefoy to Bacon!

That’s seven degrees. And Ian McKellan was never in a movie with Brad Pitt.


So Bill shaved and cut his hair.

I forgot Cate Blanchet!

Let it go, Jonny.

I’ll get you next time Kevin Bacon!

Okay, moving along… oh, looks like Cole and the chick are working together to screw over Bill. That’s not good… ‘tapin’ money to my crotch’ Bill just knocked some guy out. Now he’s running away with lots of sissy looking Brit money strapped to his junk. I’m kind of confused why he’s taping cash to himself… is it Jonah Hill’s money?

So Bill confessed to Cole that he is having a relationship with the chick and Cole kicks his ass.

Well, that explains that.

I was still hoping Tyler Durden kicked his ass. So Bill returns to his place and takes off the bundles of money. He figures out he’s been played. Bill confronts the chick. Turns out Cole was being blamed for a murder he didn’t commit. He told the cops it was another burglar with a similar M.O. Cole noticed Bill following him some time earlier, then  followed him. He set Bill up hard.

Oh, so Bill wasn’t talking to a shrink, he was talking to an investigator. Apparently there is no open investigation into the murder of an old lady.

Cole’s going to give the lady a rectal exam, he just put on his rubber gloves!

Wait, so Cole was working for the chick’s boyfriend and apparently killed her. Bill is going to jail!

Oh, the burglar’s name was Cobb. Sounded like Cole the whole time. It’s sad that no one will play the piano anymore.

But look on the bright side… prison will give Bill lots of time to write and this will make one great story! 

Final Thought - Uh, yeah... doing a running commentary for a Chris Nolan movie is a bad idea. I missed a lot and considering the film is told in a non-linear manner, I REALLY missed a lot. Having already seen Memento, it is obvious that this movie helped Nolan perfect his non-linear storytelling skills. In all, Following was pretty good and really kept me guessing. At some point I will have to watch it again without the distraction of typing about it.  

Jonny is plotting his revenge on Kevin Bacon... for some reason.

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