Archive for the ‘Movies’ Category

“The Happening”: Meaning in the Mess

June 23, 2008

The Happening

My friend would argue that there is no meaning in The Happening. But a lot of people are stumbling over my little blog looking for the meaning. They want to know JM! (You can also check out my later post in which I talk about the boldness of directors like Shyamalan, and I continue to do some dissecting of this film.)

The reasoning for the events are given to us in the first ten minutes of the movie and repeated again later. The talk of the bees becomes a larger metaphor for the reaction of the foliage. The reason is…unexplainable. An act of nature. Sure people can point fingers, but they’re all just guessing. In many ways this movie is the same thing; we can guess and assume what Shyamalan is up to or why he chose to tell this story in this fashion, but when it comes down to it, none of us will ever really know. (more…)

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Trying to find meaning in “The Happening”

June 22, 2008

The Happening

Why write so much about a movie that probably doesn’t deserve it, because lessons can be learned more from a film that’s lacking that something than by one that’s got everything. Jim Emerson has an interesting write up at his blog Scanners, with a lot of nice comments in return. This was my comment to him, and my own way of continuing to work out what worked and didn’t work in Shyamalan’s new film The Happening. If you want to read my original post, here. And a later post that’s about the boldness of directors like Shyamalan and further talks about why this film may not completely work.

Jim,

I kind of completely agree that there is no logical reason for this movie to have been made like this.

Because I also agree that he’s attempting things that other filmmakers would not and in ways they probably would not approach it. The idea of the film alone would have been scoffed at by most people. It’s almost an experiment unto itself and took true cahones to even attempt to pull off. That doesn’t mean Shyamalan does pull it off. Or that he successfully pulls off his attempts to stage things differently.

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“The Happening”: Even if you don’t see the movie…read this review!

June 20, 2008

The Happening

I am absolutely one hundred percent completely exhausted from the heat and the work I did today, but something has been compelling me for the past couple nights to sit down and write about M. Knight Shyamalan’s new movie The Happening. There are certainly better movies I’ve seen recently that I should probably be writing about instead… The Hulk, Mongol, even Don’t Mess With the Zohan, but when it comes down to it, I have to write about The Happening, because…I just do.

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Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: A second time round…

June 11, 2008

I love writing about things I enjoy, which should give you a clue as to how I feel about this current installment of Indiana Jones. And how I feel about movies. Thankfully everyone involved in the making of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull seems to also love movies and thankfully Indiana Jones.

There’s more joy for the cinema captured in the first 5 minutes of the Crystal Skull than there has been in any movie I’ve seen this year. Admire how Spielberg effortlessly swings his cameras in and out of cars, catching reflections off hubcaps and side mirrors. And in the details, how extras playing Communist Infiltrators shake their heads at the crazy youths driving them down. The lighting separates the action and space inside and out [Janusz Kaminski] exquisitely giving details to every actor’s face. It’s beautiful. It’s fast, furious, free-flowing and fun to watch. You take in every aspect and every aspect is perfect. Anyone who’s said this movie is on auto-pilot isn’t watching. (more…)

“Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull”: The first reaction.

May 26, 2008

Indiana Jones

***While they may not be major spoilers here. Plot points are discussed. If you want the film to surprise don’t read this review!…yet.***

I don’t care how long of a title it is Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is the movie I was looking most forward to this year. It’s the reason why movies are made! The theatre let us in an hour before the film was to unspool at 12:01am Wednesday night/Thursday morning. I sat there shaking anxiously (or was it nervously?) The poor loud woman in the front row was getting the brunt of my unused energy while I verbally and quietly attacked her from a distance (though she was really annoying.)

How could you not be excited about this film? Harrison Ford playing one of the greatest characters to grace the silver screen? Indie was my childhood, more so than all of those battles in space. I knew who Steven Spielberg was before I knew who Jesus Christ was. I knew John Williams before I knew Abraham Lincoln. Probably not, but you get the idea. A matinee idol for our times. Grounded in the mythology of our world. Taking us to places on our planet, places just beneath the very feet we walk on that were full of magic, wonderment and danger. And the Indiana Jones character is so grounded, accessible and fallible to pain and emotions and his own desire to see the unknown, how could you not look forward to another engagement?

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“The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian”: Floundering Innocence

May 26, 2008

Prince Caspion\'s LucyBelieve me when I say The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian doesn’t need to have a title this long. It’s really not that important or ground breaking a film. What happened to CN2: Prince Caspian? Or is that too early 00’s for everyone now? Regardless of the really long title, the film itself isn’t so bad.

A real sense of danger and intrigue hovers over the world of Narnia that was lacking in the first film. Even the Narnians themselves come with a little bit of bite (Peter Dinklage is wonderful and Eddie Izzard providing voice work is spot on, as is good old Warwick Davis). Arrows whiz by character’s heads, someone could get hurt!, peril looms over every situation and follows our heroes through every moment and not only because of the hordes of breast plated bad guys at their heels, but because of the flaws in our heroes. Which is great because when things go wrong, it matters.

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