Khoi Vinh on Michael Mann:
Over the course of his career, Mann has produced a taut, stylistic and often brutally impersonal filmography that seems most interested in the concept of work. His movies are preoccupied with how men (almost always men) of extraordinary skills practice their craft — and the price they must pay for doing so.
I’m a huge fan of Mann’s work, and agree with Khoi that Miami Vice is underrated. In Heat, Al Pacino’s character, a police detective in the midst of a crumbling marriage, says, “All I am is what I’m going after.” That’s the core theme of all of Mann’s best films, and, I suspect, an apt description of Mann himself. And so while most people would describe Mann’s films as impersonal, they are in fact deeply personal — reflections of his own obsession with his craft.
★ Sunday, 12 July 2009