Monday, April 16, 2012
Saturday, April 14, 2012
|Blue Like what??? Tell us! The suspense is killing me. Stupid elipsis.|
Saturday, April 7, 2012
Saturday, March 24, 2012
Alyssa and I saw "The Hunger Games" opening night Friday night. I had read all three books and Alyssa hadn't read any of them (I use hadn't and not hasn't because she started and finished the first book this morning).
Inevitably, in reviewing a movie based on books that I've read, the tendency is to compare the movie to the books and nitpick the differences. I'm trying to keep that in mind and focus on the movie itself instead...I'm not sure how successful I'll be. Also, there will probably be some small spoilers for anyone who hasn't already read/seen the material.
As a movie, it was well paced, particularly for the amount of information they tried to squeeze into the nearly two and a half hours. The stark visual contrast between the opening scenes in dirty/dingy District 12 (light blues and greys and browns), compared to the spectacle of colorfully outrageous opulence in the Capitol and the lush forest greens in the games themselves helped demonstrate how vastly different the lives of those in the Districts can be. The shaky-camera action scenes could have been nausea-inducing, but considering the fact that they were trying not to linger on and relish the murder of children (a la Battle Royale) I think they did a decent job of conveying the danger without guaranteeing an "R" rating.
The actors all did a great job. Jennifer Lawrence was great as Katniss, Peeta wasn't given much to work with and Gale was barely even seen, but they both did decent jobs as well. In the books, I remembered Peeta's feelings for Katniss as being a bit more obvious in the lead up to the games even though she wasn't as trusting, in the movie the audience shares her uncertainty. The little girl that played Rue was great, Prim was fine in a limited role, and I really enjoyed seeing Trixie the whore (Paula Malcomson) from "Deadwood" as Katniss' mom.
Bottom line, it was great. Was it 100% faithful to the source material? No, but it attempted to convey most of the important themes in the book and was moderately successful. The mood was tense when it called for it, exotic when appropriate and the film always entertained. I highly recommend it for book lovers and noobs alike!
Thursday, March 15, 2012
|Look how happy I look. This was during the previews.|
Sunday, February 26, 2012
Alright, full disclosure time, I haven't seen anywhere near all the movies and performances nominated. But when it comes to the Oscars, when has that mattered? Often times, in my opinion and the majority of society's opinion, the best nominee does not win. In fact I've heard that most of the Oscar voters don't even watch all the movies. With that said, here are my picks of who I think SHOULD win and who I think WILL win.
Best Picture: Should win - Midnight in Paris. Will win - The Artist.
Midnight in Paris because it was one of the best movies I saw all year and I really enjoyed it. (I don't enjoy all of the movies I think are "the best")
Best Director: Should win - Terrence Malick. Will win - Terrence Malick.
While the movie itself was not great, I think the directing was fantastic. Should also win for cinematography
Best Actor: Should win - Gary Oldman. Will win - Jean Dujardin
I love Gary Oldman.
Best Actress: Should win - Viola Davis. Will win - Meryl Streep
My wife loved The Help, and I've heard Viola Davis was amazing in it... but who am I kidding, Streep is due.
Best Supporting Actor: Should win - Jonah Hill. Win win - Christopher Plummer
I thought Jonah Hill should have been nominated for Cyrus. In Moneyball he portrays the same awkward nerd, just more accessible. Shows he can not only be a comedy lead, but can pull off a (semi-)serious role as well.
Best Supporting Actress: Should win - Melissa McCarthy. Will win - Melissa McCarthy.
Would love to see a comedy take home one of the top awards, and no one better than Mrs. McCarthy. The Acadamy has gotten a ton of flack for ignoring comedies, and Bridesmaids will allow then to change that perception. Props also to Octavia Spencer - can't wait to see more of her.
Side note: I've lately been drawn into more to the small screen rather than the big screen (hense the lack of reviews lately). While I won't review TV shows on here, I will tell you the top 5 shows I'm currently obsessed with: Justified (FX), Parks & Rec (NBC), Happy Endings (ABC) and the Ricky Gervais duo of Life's Too Short (HBO) and An Idiot Abroad (Science)
Saturday, February 25, 2012
Friday, February 17, 2012
Saturday, February 11, 2012
They are working on the third (and final) movie as you read this. Check out an article here.
Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Sunday, January 29, 2012
In honor of the most meaningless sporting event in North America (and possibly the world), the Pro Bowl, Kevin thought we should review some football movies this weekend. I've had this film on my Netflix instant queue for the past couple of years and thought this would be a perfect opportunity to finally watch it. It is also available to watch in its entirety with limited commercial interruption on IMDB or Hulu.
The game took place in 1968, and marked the first time since 1909 that both Harvard and Yale had entered their rivalry game undefeated. Yale was a huge favorite heading into the game and dominated the game for the first 55 minutes or so. I don't want to spoil the ending for you but since the title already does, Harvard rallies back from 16 down with 3 minutes to play and ties the game up, converting a touchdown and two point conversion with no time left on the clock.
The movie is essentially an extended commentary of the game. It cuts back and forth from game footage and interviews of the different players involved prominently in the game. Tommy Lee Jones was a Harvard tackle at the time and he gets a good amount of face time relative to his role in the game itself. There is a significant amount of political discussion interspersed with the football due to the time period of the game itself, and it was hilarious to realize that Tommy Lee's personal politics were pretty much aligned with his character's from Under Siege.
While there are a lot of interesting moments in the interviews that keep the viewer somewhat engaged, ultimately it is a 100 minute breakdown of a pretty much meaningless college football game from almost 50 years ago.
Sunday, January 22, 2012
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
WRITER'S NOTE: If you want to see a shiny film on a similar scale, see Hugo. It had the same sheen as War Horse, but Hugo had the heart that the Spielberg film lacked.
Thursday, January 12, 2012
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
I made it about 2 hours through this movie before I fell asleep (gives you an idea of how much it kept my attention). It was directed by Terrence Malick and stars Brad Pitt and Sean Penn. And while Brad Pitt was great as the strict father, Sean Penn was barely in the film (at least the portion I saw). The real star of this film was Malick's direction of the creation/evolution portion. Truly a work of art.
As I write this I'm still trying to decide if it was fantastic or a dis-jointed, pretentious mess. In looking at IMDB.com, it seems that people either loved it or hated it (a lot of 1 or 2 stare reviews and just as many reviews awarding 9 or 10 stars). What (I think) it comes down to for me is that the movie made me think; think about life, think about God and my relationship with him. That, paired with the beauty of the film, definitely brings up the score a little bit. I give it a 6.5/10.
Definitely watch this film and let me know what you think... because I'm still trying to figure it out.
Monday, January 9, 2012
8. I recently watched The Help and I loved it. Emma Stone, whom I have only seen in a couple films, was a very strong lead actress and played off her co-stars very well. Stone’s co-star, Viola Davis, was even more impressive as she handled the emotional nature of her role impeccably. The film’s subject matter (Southern racism in the 60’s) was portrayed honestly (and uncomfortably). This is the type of film that makes you angry, but leaves you hopeful. My wife read the book and the said it was even better.
I enjoyed these films as well but they didn’t make the cut:
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Crazy, Stupid, Love
The Adjustment Bureau
Tree of Life
Films I didn’t see and therefore cannot rate...
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
Midnight in Paris
Least favorite movie of the year...
Country Strong (words cannot describe the awful, putrid, absurdity of this film. Knowing that most of their songs are likely about Gwyneth Paltrow kills Coldplay for me).
Monday, January 2, 2012
I'm (one of) the other contributor(s) D-Bo mentioned in the initial post. Let me join Kevin in cheering him on for taking the initiative with a common movie device we all know and love, the slow clap. Mentally anyway, it's hard to type a slow clap without completely losing your audience.
I'd list my top 5s here as well but I have two of the same movies as Kevin, The Godfather & Usual Suspects, and probably three of the same TV shows, at least those (somewhat) currently airing, Justified, Community and Boardwalk Empire.
One of the reasons I was interested in joining Dan and Kevin on this blog was my wife Alyssa and I started to make our way through AFI's 2007 list of the best 100 American movies of the previous 100 years and I thought this would be a great place to share my thoughts on the movies as we go through the list. Expect a review of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? coming just as soon as I get around to it. You can see my reviews for most of the movies 100-68 over on my old blog - Pending Sobriety which I last posted to in June of 2011.
Hopefully, this blog will afford me the opportunity to really start blowing through that initial list as well as post my thoughts on all the other movies we see. Happy New Year!
Hey. How's it going? So I am one of the friends that D-Bo mentioned in the first post on this new amazing blog. Let's give Dan a round of applause, for coming up with such a great name after much deliberation. I actually really like the name, its quick, simple and to the point. Great job Dan.
So about me - I am a big movie fan and probably an even bigger TV fan, so don't be shocked to see a few small screen reviews pop up on here from time to time. I also enjoy drinking whiskey, cooking, playing poker and stand up comedy (listening not performing). I have another blog called Eat. Drink. Smoke. Where I occasionally (and by occasionally I mean once, in the past year) blog about food, beverage and cigars.
Here is a few top 5's (at this moment) so you get to know my tastes:
Top 5 Movies: Hot Rod, Seven, Usual Suspects, The Hangover, The Godfather
Top 5 TV Shows: Justified, Sons of Anarchy, Arrested Development, Community, Boardwalk Empire
Top 5 Whiskeys: Pappy Van Winkle 15yr, Van Winkle Family Reserve 12yr, William LaRue Weller, Thomas H. Handy, Stranahan's Paladise Cask
Top 5 weird/delicious things I've eaten: Bone Marrow, Beef Cheeks, Rabbit, Pork trotters/terrine, raw octopus.
Feel free to comment on my reviews, especially if you disagree with me because I like to debate...
Ok. Bye now.