Jul 172013

Only God Forgives posterLast 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.

Movie Monday #92: Last seen

Jul 162013

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.

Movie Monday #91: 3D

Jul 152013

Ned Flanders
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.

Movie Monday #89: The Experience

Feb 172013

To Live and Die in L.A. posterThis 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

Jan 292013

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal SkullThe 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.

Jan 212013

Pink Panther posterThis week’s Movie Monday challenges us to nominate the worst of the bad remakes.

My nomination is Shawn Levy’s atrocious Pink Panther from 2006 that lost to the Blake Edwards original on pretty much every feasible scale. Its sequel is even worse, but I do not considered it a remake.

While Steve Martin is not completely terrible as Clouseau 2.0, Kevin Kline’s take on inspector Dreyfus is just a pale imitation of Herbert Lom’s original. Martin’s take on Clouseau is a lot meaner than Sellers’ – while the detective from sixties was a bumbling and slow-witted policeman with very limited skills, the new one is a vain idiot with no redeeming features whatsoever.

The age of Blake Edwards’ movie is most visible in its pacing – it’s at times slow and meandering, whereas this baby ticks along with ADHD speed. Here the jokes vary wildly in quality, but very few of them cross the threshold of laughter.

Movie Monday #76: Better left un-re-made.

Jan 192013

This week’s Movie Monday is a tough challenge: “have you ever been attracted to an actor or a movie character of the inappropriate sex”.

Can’t say that I have.

Either I’m so deep in the closet that I need a transcontinental expedition to find my way out, or I just don’t swing that way.

Based on the 40+ years worth of evidence, my bet is on the latter option.

Movie Monday #75: Baby, it’s you.

Jan 192013

Big Fish posterI’m not much for deriving power from specific movies, but there are a couple that clearly resonate with me.

One of them is Tim Burton’s Big Fish. The intertwining impossible stories, a complicated state of family affairs and a surrealistic tumble through the vast hidden America just hit all the necessary spots for me.

Burton’s fantasy-machine and film-making in general at their very best.

Movie Monday #74: My personal power movie.

Jan 022013

Linda Hamilton in TerminatorBack in the late eighties when I first saw the original Terminator, I was just blown away.

James Cameron put up a visual and storytelling masterpiece, and Linda Hamilton’s growth as the heroine was awesome, too.

So, while the likes of Lisbeth Salander and Ellen Ripley indeed are magnificent characters on the big screen, the first Terminator film damaged me permanently.

She survived a terrible hairdo and an attack by Skynet’s right fist. Too bad the series took such a nosedive after the sequel.

Movie Monday #70: Get away from her you bitch.