One of my favorite films is The Parallax View, a conspiracy thriller that forms the midpoint of Alan J. Pakula’s paranoia trilogy. Though it begins as a bog standard ’70s drama/action flick (complete with a cheesy car chase) midway through the tone completely changes and features some absolutely brilliant cinematography and pacing after a fairly regrettable riff on the Ludovico Technique (albeit for the opposite effect). I first watched it when I was 17, in a dual enrollment PoliSci course and was terribly taken with the immense starkness of the convention center that was the setting for the final 15 minutes of the film. Pakula’s cinematography in the convention center scenes is dehumanizing, Beatty’s journalist cum gumshoe Joe Frady reduced to an insect clambering up great grey geometric shapes on a suicide mission to uncover the truth behind a series of political assassinations.
I couldn’t help but think of those final scenes today when Kelly and I entered the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center (BCEC) for the third and final day of PAX East 2013. We’d bought the Sunday passes last month; memories of always wanting to go to E3 back when I was a kid stirred, friends recommended the event and Indie Game: The Movie certainly dramatized the event nicely. But standing atop the escalator overlooking the expo floor most of that enthusiasm quickly flushed out of my system.