Monday, July 23, 2012
I have to say that it's a feat in and of itself to make a nearly-three-hour film feel like it moved along at a non-stop pace. I never found myself bored or lacking enjoyment. I was glued and enjoying it the entire time. Bale has never really been the reason for me to enjoy this series - nothing against him by any means, he's just not one of those actors that really does anything for me one way or another (although I quite like him in The Prestige). Anne Hathaway, Tom Hardy, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt all shine like the top of the Christler building here and give us characters and story to care about. Given how complicated the plot is I was impressed that each of the characters had a pretty decent arc. One thing that was quite interesting was hot little 'Batman' there actually was. I'm not going to get into specifics at all here because the film has just come out and I want you to enjoy it yourselves. I will say that it's a very satisfying conclusion to a pretty damn fine trilogy. Nolan has done what may in time be considered his masterwork, and if it is, there's no shame in it whatsoever. I look forward to a time where I can sit back and marathon the entire series.
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
I'm going to rant for a moment about what I think is an essential issue when it comes to the Showtime series of shows. It's a company that fosters really bold and original ideas - but doesn't know what the hell to do with them to the point where it just feels like it drags stories on to no end and for no good reason. It has a laundry list of shows like this one, Californication, Dexter, United States of Tara, Nurse Jackie, wherein these fucked up main characters do whatever is most convenient at that moment to ensure that the series continues on a few seasons more, rather than offering an honest progression. Some of those shows above do it worse than others - but sadly none of them really feel like the series are going towards anything, or have an over-all game plan.
In a world where almost everyone has been touched by the illness of cancer, I have no idea why I'm supposed to like the character of Cathy who is a bi-polar bitch. Gotta give Linney props for making her human and likeable in small doses, but you can't fix what's a problem at the core. We have no reason to care for her, and less for her family as they go on. The supporting cast has become cartoon characters with quirks. Andrea (now Ibabu) has absolutely no reason to be on the show outside of being the quirky outsider. Son Adam is now, for whatever reason, religious. Paul is a self-help guru, and brother Sean, the character whom had the most morals and dimensions, is not a running gag.
Will I come back for a fourth season? I'm sure I'll check out an episode or two, but I just don't know - in a world full of shows I've yet to see, I'm not sure this one is worth my time anymore. It's a shame since there's a lot of great talent involved. Alas.
Monday, July 16, 2012
So I didn't know much of the story going into this, outside of it being a bit of a girl-power story. But what this film really is, at it's core, is the story about a daughter and a mother, and how they have to learn to accept and embrace one another. It's quite lovely in that, and the ending brought a bit of a tear to my eye. I have to say that I found the mother's transformation a tad quick, wherein suddenly she was won over by what her daughter wanted - but I let it go. It had all the staples of a solid pixar film - lots of laughs - lots of heart - smart and entertaining. More than happy for it to be my little guy's first theatrical experience.
I'm aware of Smith's shortcoming as is he, but was very curious what'd he have to say in a motivational book such as this. The first chapter begins with a nice little bit to help ground us all and remind us that we all started out as a load of sperm. We all are winners already, just by being alive. The entire book is filled with stories from Smith, some old, some new, but written from his own POV and filtered through the idea that he's trying to help the reader learn about life through his experiences, good and bad.
I can sum up what the book is about pretty quickly - Smith's main advice is that you have to figure out what it is in life that makes you happy, and just find a way to make it your life. Life's too short to not be doing something you don't love. I don't disagree at all, and I've always lived my life this way - so there you are - I just saved you many hours of reading - unless you want all the Smith stories, then by all means pick it up. There's some pretty great ones there, especially when he talks about the state of the film industry these days.