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I don't think a movie needs to have a twist but it does need a single moment that rises above the rest. Often this is the last moment, but it doesn't need to be: "I'm done" in There Will Be Blood, the dad lamb in Lamb, the Bellagio fountains in Ocean's 11, the spider in Enemy, Nicole Kidman's last line in Eyes Wide Shut, "Welcome to the Planet" in Man of Steel. It's a release, it discharges any energy the film left you with or purposefully built up - I think this is an important part of leaving the audience satisfied. It can be a simple button that is inconsequential, but something that provides a moment of catharsis either for the experience the audience just went on (which could very well be totally separate from that of the characters), or a collective catharsis for the characters and the audience who are along for the same ride.

The first time I watched this I was keenly aware of the musical influences: there are parts of this soundtrack that pull from The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, and Man of Steel - sometimes more directly than others, sometimes a combination in one cue. For as much as it pulls from other scores, it has some incredibly original pieces as well, pieces that I wish had shown up more often in the film. My favorite is Brothers in Arms. It has an energy and forward momentum that I've never experienced before. At 0:50 it has this waterfall of doom sound that uses the orchestra in a way that feels fresh and classic at the same time and then at 2:36 it turns into the most heroic music I've ever heard. This piece is the defining characteristic of the film for me and the thing that made the greatest impression on me.

Whenever I like something new - that I've never experienced before - it feels deeply familiar. This is always the case when I find new music that I like. There were so many elements in this film that had that effect the first time I watched it. The reduced frame rate, the iconic image of Tom Hardy strapped to the front of the car, the center-framing, the war boys, and certainly Brothers in Arms; all these pieces felt so close, like I'd experienced them before but in a dream or something. In the way that I can so easily point to the soundtracks that influence other cues in this film, there's nothing to point to for these elements: no movie, song, piece of art, character, or anything that I can point to that would suggest I've experienced these things before and yet, upon first contact, they feel as close to me as my most listened to music.

The film is about people who steal bicycles. That’s why it’s called Bicycle Thieves, not Bicycle Thief - which would be the more Hollywood title as the plot of the film follows one guy in his pursuit to reclaim his stolen bike - but the intent of the film is not to tell that man’s story, it’s to draw a larger picture about those who steal bikes. What kind of a person steals bicycles? This film shows us two different, yet similar people who do that. Moreover, we don’t know we’re getting the answer to that question until the end. Really nice.

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