Once a year I hope for, but don’t expect, a movie to lift me away and envelop me. You may think it’s sad that I only expect one movie a year to do this to me, but I’m not talking about simple enjoyment, because I enjoy many movies. I’m talking about that feeling, a change that you perceive in the world when you’ve stepped out of the theatre. The movie continues on as you drive down the street or walk up the sidewalk. There’s something intangible or heightened. That’s how I felt after walking out of Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris.
Archive for the ‘Current Movies and Reviews’ Category
The last two films I saw were films that while watching started as one thing and turned out to be completely different. A large part of this is because of the expectations I had when going in. I had more preconceived notions about these two films than I have had about any other film I’ve seen. Partly due to the way pop culture has guided my thinking as a whole these past couple years…not even I am safe from the undertow.
Both Catfish and I’m Still Here deal with reality; the false reality created by the world of technology and media, and they utilize their mediums skillfully to keep the audience a little uncertain as to how real the events unfolding actually are. I knew very little about what these films actually were when going in to see them. I had not read that the filmmakers of I’m Still Here came out that it was a hoax until after seeing it. I still don’t know how real or not Catfish is; my guess is its truly a documentary. It doesn’t matter to me in either instance. (more…)
Every time I see M. Knight Shyamalan’s name on a movie poster, hope wells up inside of me. Hope that I’ll see something that was as beautiful and human and brilliant as Unbreakable. There have been moments in his last few films. In The Village when he takes her hand and pulls her safely inside or when the knife slowly slides out of him only to be sunk in again and again like a warm spoon into ice cream. Lady in the Water has even fewer of these moments, and in turn has more of M. Knight on screen. In his newest film The Last Airbender you see him only briefly and he’s in full costume, but you know its him. Why? Because he’s worse than a horrible actor. He has anti screen presence. Even the brief moment he’s on screen it’s almost like a black hole is created. Hitchcock was smart and never gave himself lines.
(I’ve concluded that the more times you see Shyamalan’s name in the credits, the worse the film will be.) (more…)
Los Angeles seems to, more than any other place, harbor the sort of people that let their past cripple them. Narcissists of self-annihilation; they wear their wounds on their tongues so they can suck everyone else into their universe and take them down as well. They pull people in requiring companionship, and push people away because they’re afraid they might destroy something good. The characters in Greenberg have the capability to become these sorts of people. Each character clings to a past pain, whether it’s from a relationship they just got out of (a very typical thing in LA), to friendships that have floundered. Considering this serious and somewhat depressing trajectory, Greenberg is really very funny. (more…)
How does one go about making Ralph Fiennes and Liam Neeson look like bad actors? It may be the only thing Clash of the Titans succeeds at. Let’s take a look.
In this update, heroic grandstanding and cheapo monsters have been replaced with hollow whispering and nifty creature design. Characters come and go as needed with very little reason for being there in the first place. In fact the only reason for most of the characters to exist is to help out during the much advertised scorpion scene or to die stupidly during the incredibly boring Medusa scene. (more…)
I wasn’t sure what to expect with Hot Tub Time Machine. I wanted to enjoy myself a little. Instead, I’ve seen it twice and laughed from beginning to end both times. It contains one of the most incredible running gags I’ve seen in ages (thanks to Crispin Glover), and a knock out comedic performance by Rob Corddry (The Daily Show, Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay), who finds a place between angry and vulnerable, lovable and annoying – it’s brilliant, worthy of accolades. Thankfully, Hot Tub is very aware of it’s hook, but doesn’t live off that. (more…)