Since the early twentieth century, greed has been a subject to fascinate filmmakers and movie audiences alike. It is a vice that can turn normal men into monsters. Like a plague, it spreads ever so easily to destroy the Host and the Innocent. The most notable starting point of greed on film is in Erich von Stroheim’s silent work Greed (1924). Famous for its original ten-hour length, which was obliterated much to the director’s chagrin by over seven hours worth of cuts, Greed explored in much detail how destructive the abstract can be. In this week’s Reel Rumbles, the wages of greed are examined further by two modern classics, adaptations of the literary works of Upton Sinclair (Oil!) and Cormac McCarthy. Lie to friends, horde your wealth, and steal from family members – it’s time for No Country for Old Men vs. There Will Be Blood.
What if someone you never met, someone you never saw, someone you never knew, was the only someone for you? That’s the question asked by Nora Ephron’s 1993 hit Sleepless in Seattle, which climbs into the Reel Rumbles ring this week to do battle with 2004’s The Notebook, a film that claims that behind every great love is a great story. Are these films promising chick flick classics, or just heavy-handed weepy tear-jerkers going for cheap shots over quality storytelling? Find out as the bell rings for The Notebook vs. Sleepless in Seattle.