Thursday, December 18, 2008

1175 - Dexter: season three

After last's years mind-blowing great season I just couldn't imagine how this show could stay fresh and exciting. Good thing the writers had to trouble figuring it out. Wow. Great great season. Lots of good stuff here. Smits and Hall were dynamite together and at one point I was wondering if it was possible that Smits could become a staple cast member. Where they'll go in future seasons I don't know, but I feel like I'm in good hands. Won't say too much in fear of spoiling, but it's a show that continues t be great.

1174 - Californication: season two

Oh Californication, how you once blew my mind, made me jealous, wishing I had been a part of you. This show used to have such beautiful moments. There are still some, but they are few and far between. I dare say that this once fantastic show is now limping into the third season. Ashby was a great addition to the cast, but it doesn't look like he'll be around. Runkle, as much as I dig him, is past his welcome (shame, since I was enjoying Daisy), and god, dear god, please end the god-awfulness that is the ongoing Mia story. It wrapped up nicely at the end of the last season and now it feels really dragged on, and for no real good reason. Please, Tom Kapinos, Hank Moody is one of the best characters on television, give him something great to do. Please...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

1173 - Dan in Real Life

I was not expecting this film to be as good as it was. It wasn't laugh out loud funny, but I don't think it was trying to be. It was a bit goofy and sweet, and fun in general. Never really tried to probe into anything too deep, which could have made it stellar, but it was a film worth seeing, enough great moments and scenes to make it worth recommending. Especially the scene that the picture above is from. Best scene of the film. Check it out - good weekend afternoon film.

1172 - Shoot 'em Up

While this film is still amazingly fun and inventive, it looses something in repeat viewings. You know what's coming and so the surprise is gone, and it's just... there. I don't think this will be the cult film I thought it would be on my first viewing. Too bad. The cast is wonderful and adds a little something extra to the stereotypes that are the characters (not a bad thing, in fact they made it work very well). I still like it, but can't say it retains it's appeal.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

1171 - Rambo

I'll make this brief, because I'm not a big fan of bad ju-ju and me going on and on isn't going to make a difference or help anyone. I really didn't like this at all. I'm not sure what I expected going it, but it failed on every level for me. I loved the shit out of Rocky Balboa, but this just felt like fluff. Maybe there's a message in there somewhere and I missed it. Sorry Sly, can't recommend it. Not even a little.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

1170 - The Wire: season four

Look at these four boys above. Take a good look 'cause what's so great about that shot is it's a fantastic moment in time. And from that moment on, none of those boys are the same again. Each and every single one of those kids up there shape and change this show and give it more heart than it's ever had. And what's great is that it's an amazing show to begin with, but adding those kids to it, it elevated it to a whole new level. This season saw some major twists and turns for the characters we've grown to love, and I can't wait to see where they go next. I've always enjoyed this series, but after this season I know why a lot of people consider it one of, if not the best show of our generation. A brilliant season.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

1169 - Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip

I liked this show for the most part. It has a great cast and while I enjoy the idea of a drama about making a comedy, when it gets heavy handed, it's really heavy handed. A bit too melodramatic. And while I did enjoy this first and only season, I'm not sure how much more they could have gotten out of this idea and these characters, besides they did a pretty good job of arching these characters and putting them where they needed to be at the end (maybe they knew it was being canceled and did that to wrap it up, either way. A fantastic cast with faces new and old. I'll miss these characters, but like I said, they got to where they needed to be and I think this show achieved what it set out to do. I liked it.

Monday, December 01, 2008

1168 - The Brothers Grimm

This is a film that's as ridiculous as it is fun. The cast is just stellar, and despite the problems that always seem to plague Gilliam's films you'd never know that they weren't having the time of their lives. Apparently Ledger and Damon were originally cast in each other's roles and they petitioned Gilliam to swap, would have been interesting to see it the other way. As it is it turned out wonderfully for both of them. There's a lot of fun to be had with messing with these old tales. I actually re-watched this as reference for a project I'm working on. The production design is gorgeous and well thought out. The film itself is okay, not Gilliam's best, but still worth watching, especially if you like fairy tales.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

1167 - Chaplin

It's been years since I've seen this, but because I've decided that Chaplin will become my new obsession I had to watch it again. It's a nice little film, full of some great actors giving great performances, but the storyline plays pretty straight. No great theme to tie it all together. Some nice little trivia bits about his life, all with a wonderful performance by Robert Downey Jr., but it only gives a little glimpse into his apparent genius. Not sure I'll need to see this again, but I look forward to seeing more of his work.

1166 - City Lights

I hate to admit this, being the cinema lover that I am, but I think this is the first Chaplin film I've ever seen in it's entire length. What a shit I am. Better late than never though. What a treat of a film. I don't know much about the content in this era of cinema, but I do know the history, and it's amazing that this film made it out as a silent film, although Chaplin makes excellent use of sound. Each sequence is really quite clever and has a lovely beginning, middle, and end. The boxing scene is a lot of fun. Just the way that the ups and downs work. You really feel horrible when he loses the boxing match. And then when the millionaire once again forgets who he is, especially after he's given him the money to help the girl. It's official, I need to watch more of his films. Great story, real smart and clever laughs. Great film.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

1165 - Into The Wild

I remember the first time I noticed Emile Hirsch in "The Girl Next Door" and knowing that this kid has a great future ahead of him if he picks the right roles. He has. A great role at a great time for him. The film is beautifully shot, I can't even imagine what kind of effort that would take to make a film like this. Vedder's score is beautiful as well. It's an engaging story worth watching. One of those beautifully tragic stories where he touches everyone he meets and learns, only too late, his greatest lesson.
Too late he learned that the hard part isn’t walking toward the wilderness to discover the meaning of life. The hard part is returning from the consolations of nature and finding meaning anyway, a meaning lodged within the faithfulness of our ordinary lives, in the plain and painful beauty of our ordinary days.
-Sherry Simpson

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

1164 - True Blood: season one

What a great new show. I never watched Buffy or Angel or any of those shows, so this is my first vampire series, but I love what Ball and HBO does with it. The cast is phenomenal and there's no shortage of surprises in this series that ends every episode with a cliff-hanger, including it's season finale. Part way through I couldn't imagine how they would carry this over into another season, but I'm not longer worried (except for the fate of one of my favorite characters).
Fantastic storytelling in every way. It's a great show and I can't wait for it's sophomore season.

1163 - Entourage: season five

Entourage is a show that has truly evolved during it's run, and I imagine it will continue to do so. It's impossible to write this without spoiling some stuff, so consider yourself warning
Some bitch and moan that this show has lost it's way, I think, like it's characters, it's matured. It's becoming something richer. It hasn't stopped what made the first couple seasons great, but it has delved deeper into it's characters in interesting ways. One problem I've had with the show is that it often forgets about it's main characters for long periods of time. A few seasons ago Turtle was on the verge of a fun relationship, and it ended for no reason whatsoever. Like it never happened. I hope and pray that what stared between Jamie and Sal continues into the next season. Since season six has just been announced maybe we'll hear some rumblings about her being signed on to more. I hope so. Sal deserves a story all his own. Drama was doing well till he screwed himself out of a relationship, and I really didn't care. His character went downhill this season. E was absent for most of it, just on the sidelines, but was great when he came out. Ari, as always way fantastic. The scene with him and Vince at the airport was Entourage's finest moment, and a perfect example of why Piven wins so many Emmys. The biggest surprise was Vince's turn into someone becoming responsible for his own career. I liked it. Can't wait to see what's in store for season six!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

1162 - Fido

This is a little gem of a film, and I imagine that it's just a bit too esoteric for the average person. There's no reason that this film shouldn't have gotten the attention that Shaun of the Dead got. I think that might be the better film, but this one is easily as clever, if not more. There's a lot of smart, snappy stuff going on here and Carrie-Anne Moss, Dylan Baker, and company pull it off in spades. It looks great and the production design and music are fantastic. A great little Canadian film, and it's a shame that it didn't do better numbers at the box office, as it really deserved to based on it's quality. Hopefully it finds a second life on DVD.

1161 - The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford

This is a very peculiar film. It's got all the right technical aspects to it. Deakins shot the shit out of it and it's gorgeous. It's cast is top-notch including roles for people like Mary Louise Parker and Zooey Deschanel, both whom I love, that are mostly wasted in this film. Knowing that there was a four-hour version of this film I can only assume that those talented actresses had more to do at some point.
This film just kind of floats along a bit like a dream, but I'm not quite sure what the point it's trying to make is. It gets lost and a little muddled. It's by no means a bad film, it's just not a great one. It sits in that worth-watching range, on a weekend afternoon. I still prefer Fuller's "I Shot Jesse James" and encourage anyone with an interest in this story to check that out. It's available on DVD now.
Worth the watch, even with a running time near three hours.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

1160 - Truly Madly Deeply

I can't recall why I wanted to watch this film. I think that at some point it was research, perhaps a recommendation. It's an interesting little film. The moments of grief are honest and messy. This film could have been a cheesy sad mess but it does well to avoid that. Of course both Alan and Juliet are wonderful in this film and have a really lovely dynamic to their relationship that hints at how great they probably were while he was alive, in a wise choice it also explains some of the problems that they might have had. This film didn't blow me away, but I enjoyed it enough to casually recommend it.

Friday, November 14, 2008

1159 - Slumdog Millionaire

It's official. Not only has Danny Boyle made a masterpiece, but it's also his second film where his protagonist dives into a toilet. This film is enchanting. It's beautiful and gritty and real all at the same time. With a brilliant narrative thread this film is wonderful despite some of it's cliches with the story of the brother, etc... it doesn't matter. You want this guy to succeed. I love that everything in his life has brought him to this moment.
It really is a treasure of a film and it has to be seen on the big screen. This is the kind of film for which I'd have to break down and buy a blue ray player...
Thank you for this, Danny Boyle. Thank you.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

1158 - Shaye

I didn't write a season number down since I don't think this show is going to continue. I know that because it's director, Mr. Paul Kilback, is someone I'm currently cutting a new show for. My wife and I quite enjoyed this. She likes documentaries quite a bit, and especially anything to do with music. The characters are interesting and the show has some nice natural stakes built into it. If I have any complaints it's just the lack of closure in the final episode. It ends, but a little epilogue would have been nice. Oh well. Ho hum. Not sure if you can still check it out on T.V. or not. If you like their music, you'll like the show.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

1157 - Never Again

I love Eric Schaeffer and it saddens me that he hasn't made more films. He knows people and he knows the human condition. The cast in this film is stellar and simple. It takes a bit to get going, but once the romance kicks in it just sky rockets to the end. If you don't know the name Eric Schaeffer do yourself a favor and learn it. With the exception of his first, the man has an amazing filmography. Great film.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

1156 - The Hoax

Clifford Irving has the biggest balls, that's for sure. I'm a fan of storytellers who take something known and tweak it, and this could be one of the most famous cases of that, especially since the person was real. Kudos to him for that. As a film it's enjoyable, but probably forgettable. All of the performances are good, it's a good cast. It just feels like part of that bio-pic machine that makes you wonder at what point we're going to run out of 'real life stories' to tell. God knows since theres a film out now about the guy who invented the modern windshield wiper, that the guy who introduced two-ply toilet paper can't be too far behind.

1155 - Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist

The more I think about this film the more it grows on me. The first half of it is... odd. It was hard to tell if Cera and Dennings just had no chemistry, or the point was that they were just missing how good they should be for each other. I have to assume that latter because when the film finally starts working, it works well. A pointless subplot about her drunken friend that only serves to chew up screen time detracts only a little. Perhaps it's unfair to say it's pointless, I'm sure it's meant to illustrate something in Norah's character, it's just too bad we don't give two figs about her friend. Cera, as a heart-broken teen, gives his least enthusiastic performance, which doesn't mean to say he's bad, he never is, but he's just kind of there. The film has a great closing line, which I won't ruin here. It's cute for sure. Worth a rental.

1154 - Heathers

I can admit that I'd never seen this film. I picked it up years ago on DVD because I knew it was one of those films that I should see. There's some really fantastic lines in this film, so many that I'll have to re-watch a few times to fully appreciate them. What a delicious dark comedy. Very inspirational, especially in line with some of the projects I'm currently working on. Very ahead of it's time, ironically even since I can't imagine how hard it would be go get this film made today. Glad I finally checked it out, I'll need to re-watch it at some point.

Friday, November 07, 2008

1153 - Gone Baby Gone

I was not prepared for how good this film is. A seriously masterful first film. Hell, it'd be a masterful fourth, fifth, or sixth film. I can't say enough about the cast. They all feature in this film so effortlessly and they belong in this world. Even Monaghan, who is a radiant beauty, just feels like a regular girl next door here and shows that she wants to build a career as an actress, not a star. Amy Ryan, god, what good can't you say about her? Fucking fantastic. This film has a great story and it keeps you thinking, keeps you guessing, it twists, it turns, but not in the sake of a 'ha ha, I fooled you' moment, but all in the sake of a great moral dilemma that stays with you long after the film has finished. Brutal, honest, and real. Great filmmaking.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

1152 - Kind Hearts & Coronets

I've had this film for awhile now and finally decided to watch it based on a strong recommendation. I'm surprised that this film hasn't been remade, especially by Eddie Murphy since it seems like he can't make a film that doesn't have himself playing half a dozen roles. No offense Eddie, but you could never put a candle to what Alec Guinness does in this film. He disappears into the different roles, never calls attention to himself and the result is fun, flawless, and never takes away from the rest of the film. It's a fun little yarn, even if it does have very little conflict going on. I liked it quite a bit.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

1151 - Lethal Weapon

I didn't realize it until watching it, but I don't think I've ever seen this film before. I have a pretty good movie memory, and nothing here triggered it, besides the characters, but I know I've seen some, if not all, of the sequels. I remember I wasn't allowed to watch this film as a kid because of the lady killing herself. There's some great set pieces in this, and the cast is a lot of fun and works well together. The ending is the weakest in a film full of great fun and creative set pieces. There's just no danger or excitement in it.
A great popcorn flick. I'll have to double back through the sequels.

1150 - Degressi Junior High: season three

This show gets better and better which each season. What started off as complete melodrama has actually turned into an interesting story. The beauty of this show is that it was the first of it's kind aimed at teens to not shy away from controversial issues. My favorite part of this season is Joey and Caitlin, who I know are the on-going tragic love story of the whole Degrassi series. I look forward to the rest of these old shows, and will probably start watching the next generation when I'm done with these...

Saturday, November 01, 2008

1149 - Zack and Miri Make a Porno

I've always liked Kevin Smith. I remember when I first became aware of him Chasing Amy had just came out on VHS and I bought all three of his first films and had a little Smith-fest. At the time he was one of my three biggest influences, the other two being Woody Allen and Quentin Tarantino. I'm well aware how bizarre that combination seems, but it makes sense in that they're all dialogue whores.
This film works really well, despite the fact that it abandons the majority of it's plot points in favor of the looming love story, which is OK because it is a really great love story. The cast in this film is amazing, great characters, great fun. Rogen and Banks are phenomenal. I fell in love with her, as I imagine did the DP since they lit her to look absolutely gorgeous. A very funny film that works despite it's sometimes weak story points. I like it.

Friday, October 31, 2008

1148 - Saw

I'm not really a horror person. When this first film came out, I really dug it. Watched it over and over again, and I still enjoy the series. Hell, I'll watch them as long as they keep making them. For what they are, they're enjoyable. The moral logic is a bit skewed, but that's not really the point. The films have fun with their plot twists and that's what really keeps people coming back. It's interesting that after this one they didn't both trying to get any name actors. I love that now, after the fifth film, we still don't know what happened to Dr. Gordon. Perhaps we never will. Considering how cheap and fast this film was made it's pretty impressive. Gordon's make-up is godawful, but that's the only low budget tell-tale sign in the whole piece.

Monday, October 27, 2008

1147 - Entourage: season four

The cast about this is one of the best ensembles working in comedy. Their style and subtlety is different from some of the other amazing comedies out there, but when it's working, it's solid as all hell. From Rex Lee, to Piven, Dillion, the list goes on and on. For the most part the writers on this show are golden. When it comes to the side stories in Ari's agency not involving the boys I could take them or leave them, not to mention diversions into his kid's private schools. Maybe they'll make a spin-off about Ari one day, but I doubt it would work. Ari is fantastic in the proper doses. I'm halfway through the 5th season and the show is not slowing down. Very excited to know that we'll be getting a sixth season this summer. This show should continue as long as it can stay fresh. Gold all around.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

1146 - Nine Months

This is a cute little movie. Em and I wanted to watch something mindless and fun tonight. We picked this up randomly at a little shop near our house that sells used DVDs super cheap. Simple story, great cast, and an appropriate film considering we're about half way through our own nine months ;-)

1145 - Saw V

They will continue to make these films because people like me continue to go and see them. I could care less about the torture-porn aspect of it. What I find most interesting about this series is the mystery aspect of it all. The little messing with the audience that they do. And I know that they're toying with me, I know it. I know that they'll make shit up in the next one to justify bad choices they made in this and any others. I don't care. I know what kind of film I'm getting into. I just hope at some point we get some closure to what happened to Dr. Lawrence Gordon. He has to still be alive. Someone give Cary Elwes a bonus check so that we can get him back in. That would make me giggle with delight. Not the best of the series, not the worst. See you next year for Saw VI.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

1144 - Religulous

I'm not really that super familiar with Bill Mahar outside of a few clips here and there. I liked him enough, and the topic of this as well as Larry Charles involvement was enough to excite me into going to see it. Having worked on a lot of documentaries myself, and especially in editing I know just how easy it is to manipulate people and what they're saying, how usually a 'cut' in documentaries is never just a cut, and never usually for style but for necessity. Given the topic there's only so much you can manipulate these people into looking stupid, since what's coming out of their mouths is pretty simple to begin with. There's a lot of funny bits here, but a lot of it's pretty obvious too.
What he could have, should have, focused on a bit more was 'why' people need religion, and perhaps what they could use as an alternative. He briefly touches on it, but not enough. People like and need communities and for a lot of people that's what religion is. The biggest problem is that he starts off this film with "I'm just curious what it's all about?" but ends with a clear agenda, and gets pretty preachy to his audience, who he assumes, like him, are atheists. It becomes a call to action, but unlike a film like 'An Inconvenient Truth" he doesn't offer any solutions and basically just tells us to "Fix it" without any indication as to how. For a film with some jokes, it works and it's mostly entertaining, although it does go on for a bit, but for a call to action, which is how it feels at the end, it's a bit irresponsible.

Friday, October 24, 2008

1143 - Toys

I think I saw this film as a kid but all I could remember of it was those big green fields. The production design and the inventiveness of it is fantastic. Lots of clever stuff going on. In fact the first half of it is really enjoyable. Lots of quirky little jokes and moments, but then it falls apart right after the mid-point. The world, while ridiculous just sinks into insanity for no real reason. The third act is pretty ludicrous to get right down to it.
So while this film has a lot of fun to it, it's ultimately uneven. Glad I revisited it though since I didn't really remember it.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

1142 - Entourage: season three

This season is all about re-building, getting too ahead of oneself and getting back to basics. Lots of old favorites are back and some new faces that will continue to be seen through-out the series. I love this show and it truly does get better with each season. The current fifth season is really great and I can't wait to see how it plays out. There's some lose threads that occur in this season that I'm curious if we'll see play out in the near future. If it doesn't come into play this season... I know what my Entourage Spec script will be about ;-)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

1141 - Entourage: season two

This show is addictive as hell, even though I'm right in the midst of the fifth season I can't stop re-watching these old episodes. This season is fantastic when it comes to story ups and downs. Watching Vince climb to the top, but fuck himself up on the way is almost as fun as watching Ari go to hell in a hand basket. And we get introduced to Lloyd in this season. Fantastic cast, fantastic writing, this show could do on forever.

Monday, October 13, 2008

1140 - The Wire: season three

It's hard to praise this show without giving away details. And because I don't want to ruin anything (like I ruined for myself by stupidly going to the shows wikipedia page... erg... goddamn wikipedia...) I won't go into great detail except to say that if you haven't started watching this show yet, get on it! Being compared to a novel isn't far off. The show has a very specific pace but it's so goddamn rewarding when things start to fall into place. Despite knowing what I know I look forward to the final two seasons and spending more time with these fascinating, complicated characters.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

1139 - Entourage: season one

I really just intended to re-watch the pilot but then good hooked on it. It really is a great show that just continues to get better with each season. It's interesting to see that in the current fifth season they're resurrecting some old characters from this season. I'll probably end up re-watching the whole damn series now :)

1138 - I'm Gonna Git You Sucka

It's probably not fair to judge a comedy like this from the 80's, but here I am. There's some really funny bits in here, and I watched it because my wife was going on and on about a scene involved goldfish and platform shoes. Definitely funny. But the laugh out loud moments don't hide the lack of engaging story or the fact that this was one of the slowest ninety minutes I ever spent watching a film. Keenan Ivory Wayans was smart in not appearing in his own films later on as he drags this down with his non-charisma. I probably would have liked this as a kid.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

1137 - Son of Rambow

I had been looking forward to this film, but in the end it was just OK. There's a central plot point early on that I just can't get past. It doesn't spoil anything for me to give it away so here goes. William, one of the two boys above, is part of some kind of religious sect, a brotherhood, but he's sent to a regular school, none of the other from the sect are apparently sent there. It doesn't make sense other than giving them a reason for the two children to meet. To me it's just weak and it bogs the whole film down.
It's not a horrible film by any means, but I just didn't get that childhood sense of joy that I expect from this kind of film. I didn't really latch on to the characters in a meaningful way. It's kind of a rainy afternoon film. I don't recommend it, nor do I think it should be avoided.

Friday, October 03, 2008

1136 - Dirty Rotten Scoundrels

I haven't seen this film in years but I've been trying to look at rivalry films, especially comedies, for research. This is one of the great ones. It still feels fresh, funny, and smart even after 20 years. I can't imagine this film with another cast, especially with the original cast they were thinking for this of Mick Jagger and David Bowie. What a different film that would have been.
Didn't realize until looking at the trivia on that this is a remake of a Brando/Niven film Bedtime Stories. I'm going to keep my eyes open for that film.
Lots of funny, lots of twists and turns. I'll have to pick up the DVD at some point, although my VHS tape of this is still holding up. I see that this film has spawned a musical, and perhaps a second remake. Could be interesting. I can never pass up a con film, especially a comedy.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

1135 - Kenny Vs. Spenny: season three

I still enjoy this show despite how ridiculous it can be at times. Some of the competitions are just a riot by title alone let alone the hijinks. Love that Spenny got arrested at one point. I could go on about specific episodes but then I'd just sound like a twelve year old. When this show is at it best it makes me belly laugh.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

1134 - In the Land of Women

And the award for most deceptive trailer of the year goes to.... this film. Was that a good thing? Not sure. I don't know if I would have been that into the film I thought it was going to be. Again without spoiling anyway I'll say that this movie went in a better direction than the trailer suggested, and the trailer also covered up a major plot element, I'm assuming because it was aiming at a lower demographic. In the end the film was just OK. Love Adam Brody. Love Meg Ryan. The story wasn't anything special. Rainy afternoon film.

Friday, September 26, 2008

1133 - Burn After Reading

I've been excited for this film for quite some time. The story idea sounded wonderful, especially with the promise of the Coen's doing the execution. The early set pictures of Pitt in a bike helmet and suit were confusing in the way that makes you geek-giddy about what it could possibly mean.
I like the Coens. However I also believe that they're the kind of filmmakers who could care less about what their audience wants and expects. They make movies for themselves and if we like them too, that's just icing on their cake. That being said I found myself bored with this. None of the characters were that likable in any way that made me want to root for them. There's some shocks, but they're carefully planted. Sure we get our big starts playing goofy over-the-top characters, but as we learned with their 'The Ladykillers' that doesn't always make for a good film.
A disappointment for sure. I can't even recommend a rental on this unfortunately.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

1132 - Zodiac

I've been meaning to watch this film for a long time but the damn length kept me from it. It's hard to find time these days to watch a two and a half hour film outside of the theaters. I love that this film doesn't try and speculate on anything. All it does it observe the people that were trying to observe the killer. The tagline for the film "There's more than one way to lose your life to a serial killed" is fantastic, and that's exactly what this film is about. Obsession. The performances are fantastic and never over-the-top. Using only the information that exists it weaves a wonderful little puzzle as we watch a man potentially lose his life and those he loves, not through murder, but through the obsession of a murderer. Really interesting film. Glad I finally found time to watch it.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

1131 - Intolerable Cruelty

I've been looking for love/rivalry reference films and I forgot how much I enjoyed this one. It's not perfect, no, but I think it's greatly undervalued by many Coen fans who dismiss it as a simple romantic comedy, which I suppose it can be labelled as, but it's more of a screwball comedy, and with it's cast of fantastic character it's a solid one.
Clooney is Cary Grant, and Zeta-Jones doesn't make you wonder for a second how this man could possibly fall under her spell. With some fantastic back-and-forth banter you've got to pay attention to catch all the wonder jokes in here. Some questionable plot points, but entertaining nonetheless. Really really dying to see 'Burn After Reading' now.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

1130 - Thank You For Smoking

The first time I saw this film was at TIFF a few years ago. It blew me away then and I still enjoy it. I was lucky enough to be at the world premiere of Jason Reitman's 'Juno' last year as well. If he keeps making great movies I'd love to keep seeing them unveiled. The cast in this film is quite phenomenal. Nick Naylor will go down as one of the great black-comedy characters.
Having read the book since initially seeing the film it's one of those great examples of different mediums going off into different directions, but still keeping true to the nature of the story. I recommend the novel to anyone who loves the film, but don't expect it to be exactly the same. It's the differences that make them unique in a good way..

1129 - Stuck On You

A really fun high-concept premise that doesn't disappoint. Matt and Greg don't hold back and that's what makes this film work. The physical comedy is a beautiful blend of goofy and clever and the film works well because of it. I was slightly turned off by the movie business idea, but it works well enough and gives us a really fun Meryl Streep cameo. Not a movie I'd ever really need to see again, but a lot of fun and worth seeing once.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

1128 - The United States of Leland

What's worse than trying to write a scathing commentary on a film? Writing one and then losing it when the website crashes... and then trying to give a damn enough to write it again. I don't think I will. I think it's the universe laughing at me and telling me not to waste my energy on such things. Okay Universe, good on you. I agree.
I didn't like this film. If you'd like a more detailed response I'd be more than happy to tell you if you ask, but right now the universe doesn't want my opinion of it on the internet. I'll oblige, Universe!

Friday, September 19, 2008

1127 - The Wackness

Two really solid movies in one night. Yeah me! What a gem of a film. Josh Peck is Luke. He's fantastic and a perfect compliment to Ben Kingsley. The two should go down as one of those class screen odd-couples. The scenes with them together are always delightful and surprising. The whole cast is phenomenal and I could have used more of Famke and Mary-Kate. So glad to see Jane Adams who I adore and am sad that I don't see more of her. I continue to be intrigued by Oliva Thirlby. What a great little actress. The sequence with her and Luke at Fire Island is fantastic. It's beautiful and awkward and sad and lovely. I love how those two leave each other in the end, it's a perfect final scene between them.
Can't recommend this enough. It's still playing in the rep cinemas. I'm sure it'll be on DVD soon though.