Preparing for 'Munich'
Where I got sucker-punched was with One Day in September, Kevin Macdonald's Oscar-winning documentary about the 1972 Olympics in Munich and the tragic hostage crisis whose aftermath Spielberg's film will explore. I've never heard a bad thing about One Day in September, though perhaps the fact that I was so frustrated by Macdonald's last film, Touching the Void, should have turned on the warning lights. One Day in September is an important film, rich in material, but it's also, finally, a deeply craven one and at moments even disgusting in its refusal to probe the yawning chasms of widespread complicity that keep suggesting themselves, and in its reverse decision to style itself as, of all things, a thriller. I have no idea whether to recommend the film for what it at least powerfully suggests or to damn it for chickening out in such a palpably commercialist wayMacdonald all but cops to thatand leaving its real work up to other people. My full review of Macdonald's film is here.
In a strange way, this raises my hopes for Munich, since One Day in September so desperately lacks any follow-through, though I'm not sure if I could stand seeing this story mismanaged twice in short succession. Let's keep our fingers crossed. (The report filed by a student who attended a Munich preview screening did not inspire confidence.)