[ by Charles Cameron — preferring Jarmusch’s Hagakure in Ghost Dog to Grovic’s Hesse and Sunzi in Bag Man ]
In a film that the critics panned, Netflix offered, and I watched without much comprehension, Robert De Niro, playing the part of Dragna – “a dude who wears plaid jackets, thick glasses, and his grey hair in a swoopy high pompadour” who has assembled a motley team of killers in a seedy Bayou motel — educates John Cusack as his fav killer, Jack, by recommending he read certain books — notably Hermann Hesse‘s Glass Bead Game aka Magister Ludi:
Magister Ludi means Master of the Game.
Dragna apparently believes Hesse’s Game is best played by pitting assassins, here including cops, a “whore” and a dwarf as well as Jack, against one another in that seedy motel.. and is not altogether satisfied with the result, which shoots him shortly after he announces his own mastery of the game.
Zenpundit regulars who lack my enthusiasm for Hesse’s Game — quite different in style and tone from the one writer-director David Grovic proposes in his film — may at least be gratified to see his other recommendation:
That’s what I’ll watch tonight.