Empire’s collection of hundred movie-related shirts is a fine place to start extending the collection (I own one of these thus far).
As a card-carrying Fincher fanboy I was quite excited when he took on Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, the first installment of Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy.
The original movie from 2009 was very good too, and I assumed that having higher production values would only improve things.
And that’s what happened. Version 2.0 of the novel looks great and the actors utilized are good across the board. The script is forced to omit elements, just like the original movie did. The choices are different, but here the flow of the film is a bit more natural.
One thing that surrealistically detracts from Fincher’s take is the language – for authenticity’s sake the lack of spoken swedish just stings.
Daniel Craig is good as Mikael Blomkvist, though on account of his pas I did expect him to whip out a nine millimeter gun and begin laying out the law on the wintry island.
Rooney Mara is good, but Noomi Rapace holds on to being the canonical Lisbeth Salander. Mainly on precedence, since Mara’s Salander is actually closer to the character in the books.
The movie’s score, by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, repeats their excellent performance from The Social Network. From the grindy rendition of Immigrant Song to the ambient sounds employed later the soundtrack just oozes quality.
The film brought in more than 100% over its budget, so the appearance of the two sequels should be a certainty. But so far nothing has been officially announced.
Bought Avengers, phase 1 on Blu-Ray earlier in the spring and watched the first half. Figured that it makes most sense to view the other films before Whedon’s Avengers.
Reviews to follow.
Last seen in a theatre: Only God Forgives.
The reunion of Nicholas Winding Refn and Ryan Gosling will be a sore disappointment to those expecting Drive 2.0.
This is very much a different movie.
A movie that seems to have been written and directed after a major bout of sleep deprivation and exposure to Takashi Miike’s work.
And Miike did it better: be it violence, alienation, vague dialogue or just plain impenetrability, Only God Forgives aims high on all axes but ends up being short on all.
Apart from being boring. It’s been a long while since I was this bored in a movie theatre, the pace is glacial and far from engaging.
I’m not utterly against 3D movies, but in most cases the picture is on the dark side and the glasses get more and more uncomfortable during the film.
Occasionally, though, someone hits paydirt. Thus far the best effort has been Avatar, haven’t seen anything really bad.
I’m sure Russ Meyer’s movies would really be improved by going deep on the z-axis.
The pace of moviegoing recently (two in a year) has been really slow, and the same applies across the board: haven’t watched many films off a disc, the DVR broke on New Year’s Day (and remains unfixed) and I didn’t bite when Netflix and friends came calling.
I’ve had a few memorable experiences in the movies. Though it’s been a while since the last, considering that I’ve seen a grand total of two movies in a theatre in the last year.
- I missed the spoilery guy talking about colours before going to see Reservoir Dogs. The friend I was with didn’t, and he was righteously pissed off.
- During Basic Instinct I became aware of a loud guy repeating Sharon Stone’s lines with a multi-second delay a few rows back. Nobody dared to do anything about it, since the person was the size of a freight truck and on some weird uppers.
- I saw Goldeneye just about when it was exiting the cinemas. Turns out one of my fellow viewers had smuggled in his ~six year old son, for whose benefit he read every line of subtitles aloud, interspersed with nedflanders-like comments.
In addition to sporting some of the greatest sci-fi scenery in ages, Fifth Element excels in its costumes. Over the top and very varied.
In treading through the old Movie Monday assignments, I draw a complete blank in trying to recall any truly annoying title sequences.
Movie Monday #82: Annoying Title Sequence.
Hollywood is so stuck to tradition that something revolutionary along the lines of best viral advertising campaign would be dead weight.
Hence I would settle for “best individual scene”. Where a good candidate for the lifetime achievement award would be the Walken / Hopper meeting in True Romance.
Movie Monday #81: New Oscar category.
With the announcement of Finding Dory, Pixar relies on yet another franchise. My bet is on Cars 3 for the next film. Or the one after that, there’s plenty of originals in the pipeline, still.
This week’s movie monday challenge is about death, a shocking death scene in a film.
For me nothing beats Boromir’s fall in the Fellowship of the Ring.
But I still vote for the utterly surprising death scene in William Friedkin’s To Live and Die in L.A..
Boromir’s fate was sealed in the book, but the twist in the Los Angeles tale in was a shock indeed.
Movie Monday #79: Death
Middle-Earth, without a doubt. Preferably after the fall of Sauron, or with a couple of dunedain in the crew to take care of restless natives.
Movie Monday #78: Holiday destination.
(OK, I seem to have answered this challenge twice – the Las Vegas one was a better pick, but I won’t delete this entry either.)
What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.
Even if nothing but Fear and Loathing happen.
Been there once, but the action didn’t reach the lofty heights of what Raoul Duke and his lawyer achieved.
I turned out to be wrong, First Class turned out to be a good movie on its own and a return to the form in the franchise.
First Class is indeed a prequel – it is set in 1962, and it cover the inception of the superhero team known as X-Men.
Despite the era this is not a Mad Men / X-Men- mashup. Casual sex and smoking are not part of the plot.
And neither does the film have that much to do with the comic book origins of the group. This is a stealthy reboot, as most viewers (including me) had no real idea how the team got started.
But despite the rewritten plot strands, there’s plenty that’s familiar and expected: Magneto cannot be a good guy, Xavier needs to end up in a wheelchair and the seeds of distrust between mutants and humans need to be sowed.
First Class accomplishes those tasks, and plenty more. This is far more than Marvel history by the numbers.
A lot of the weight is borne by the leads in the cast, and both James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender execute themselves well. But the cast is much larger – and a lot of characters barely have a blip on screen. One of those blips is the one of the greatest cameos ever – a totally unexpected visit by a short-tempered canadian mutant.
But it’s not perfect, far from it. The family relationship between Xavier and Mystique doesn’t work at all, and while Kevin Bacon puts on a nice display of villainship as Sebastian Shaw the character feels like a spare Bond supervillain.
But it’s a huge improvement over Wolverine’s solo movie, nonetheless.
The more I think about the fourth Indiana Jones film, the more convinced I am that I originally rated it far too high, and that the movie would have been better left unmade.
Even though it retains a lot of old magic and injects new elements into the saga, there’s so many things wrong with the film, that it clearly is a severe lapse in Spielberg’s judgment to let this through.
The worst offense is ridiculous jungle chase towards the end of the film. And whoever OK’d it clearly has so significant issues with old Tarzan movies that he should have been recused from the creative team.
I seem to have completely missed the announcement of Before Midnight, the unexpected third volume of Richard Linklater’s continuing storyline.
Liked the two first installments a lot. And having been a Linklater-fanboy ever since Dazed & Confused, this film just zoomed into the top of my “most wanted in 2013″.
Lucasfilm has confirmed the rumours: J.J. Abrams will direct episode VII of the Star Wars series.
No doubt he turns to the Star Wreck franchise, after all, with the experience from Star Trek and Star Wars, he’d do an excellent job commanding Pirk around.