It is a fact that I have a penchant for bad movies. Not in the ironic way which allows people to get away with owning such classics as Newsies (an all-time favourite of mine) or She's All That (be honest!). I get enjoyment from taking my brain out and just allowing these take me away to a simpler state of mind and I won't apologize for it. There are few things in this world I enjoy more than rifling through the bargain bin at the supermarket for some trashy gem or another. After being given an iTunes giftcard for Christmas, I saw fit to rent a movie that I've been dying to experience. That movie was Sylvester Stallone's Paradise Alley, and I was in no way disappointed.
This movie combines some of my favourite things:
Men is suspenders,
and bleak snapshots of humanity.
It's an underdog story about three brothers trying to escape Hell's Kitchen in 1946. Times is hard, they are different, people are cruel, some love stories, they succeed in the end. I know it's a tired story. I don't care. I also don't care about how 'stylized' it is. If I could shoot a movie, I'd want it all done in dark alleys, makeshift doctor's offices, and clubs named Sticky's, too. You keep doing your thang, Sly.
I spent most of the movie waiting for Cosmo to jump into the ring to save Victor and wondering why all of these men are so fucking sweaty.
If you say it's because they're in Hell's Kitchen--har har har-- I'm telling Frankie that you like like him.
Now, maybe it's just because the movie is surrounded by a fine haze of cigarette smoke and desperation, but I was quite in love with the ladies' clothes. The mid-Forties were a good time to be a destitute vixen.
These girls are only extras, but don't try and tell me you wouldn't pay a quarter for a dance with them.
Then there's Bunchie. Great shoes and a sick hat, but she only gets two shots because she's a whore. No, really. She'd do you for a Klondike bar.
That brings us to the leading lady and object of desire of the two eldest Carboni brothers, Annie. Why? Because she's a babe and does art or some shit.
Her dress here has convinced me that Rodarte's dress for Target may be just what every gal needs to stomp on the heart of her lover when he becomes an asshole who exploits his brother.
Hey, you never know.
It's not just the ladies. I, personally, think Stallone makes an adorable drunk Santa.
Just don't laugh at him. He's sensitive.
Oh fuck. You made fun of him, didn't you? Now he's gone and crashed his car into the bar.
Who's going to clean that up?
Maybe this guy.
Uhhhh...Now it's time for wa-hey-hey-heyyyyy too many shots of Mr. Waits.
For anyone who's not entirely sold on this masterpiece, we'll finish with Stallone yelling at a monkey.