Friday, September 7, 2012

Thoughts on 5 Films

1. American Reunion -  American Pie arrived in theaters the summer after I graduated from high school (1999 - the greatest graduation year ever!).  Along with 10 Things I Hate About You and Can't Hardly Wait, it was a film that sort of defined my high school years.  Not that my high school experience was anything like these films, but I think they represented what I wanted high school to be like.  The problem with the American Pie films is that, as they continued with the sequels, it became a sad reminder of how much time has gone by.  American Reunion was made for my age group as its target audience, yet it panders to a younger one.  It's no longer fun to watch and it certainly doesn't represent what I want my life to be like now.  There were no big laugh-out-loud moments, no memorable scenes, no quotable lines etc.  I did appreciate that they managed to get everyone from the original film, even if some of the characters only had a minute of screen time (Natasha Lyonne!!).

2. The Iron Lady - Not in the least bit interesting.  It's a bland biopic that tries to gain sympathy for a woman that is unsympathetic.  It doesn't succeed.  I love that the poster for the film has the words "Never Compromise". That really tells you everything you need to know about Margaret Thatcher.  As far as Meryl Streep's "phenomenal" Oscar-winning performance, I call "bullshit".  Meryl should have handed her Oscar over to Olivia Colman or Tilda Swinton (neither of them were even nominated for fuck's sake!!!). 

3. Wrath of the Titans - A significant improvement over the Clash of the Titans remake.  The effects were cooler and it had a bit of wit that the first was lacking (like how the supporting characters make fun of Perseus "release the Kraken and all that...").  My knowledge of Greek mythology is getting rusty because I had to look up the character Agenor, only to realize that his actual place in mythology has nothing to do with the movie.  It's probably better if you don't know the roots of the characters, at least it's less frustrating.  It's more enjoyable if you just go along with this pseudo-mythology that the film creates.  Sam Worthington is pretty lifeless as a demigod, but it's not as noticeable as it was with Clash because the supporting characters are given more screen time.  Zeus (Liam Neeson) and Hades (Ralph Fiennes) had some electrifying scenes together. I'm not sure why they replaced Alexa Davalos with Rosamund Pike for the role of Andromeda; neither are very memorable. 

4. Silent House - First, and foremost, kudos to the production team - the technical aspects of the film are fantastic.  Completing a film with one long take has to be a nightmare for all involved and it was extremely successful in creating a truly claustrophobic atmosphere. Had I seen it in the theater, I think I would have been grasping for air. Kudos to Elizabeth Olsen for her performance; she portrayed genuine terror brilliantly.  Her performance here solidified her acting abilities more so than Martha, Marcy, May, Marlene.  It's a shame that the filmmakers found it necessary to focus on her cleavage for most of the film (big distraction...I could not take my eyes off of her boobs).   My problem with the film is that it has one of the most frustrating plots of any recent horror film.  It made me so angry, that I forgot about everything that made it special and am left with what made it a disaster.  It should be said that the entire film has been done before, with the original Uruguayan film, La casa muda.  I do wish I watched the original instead of this version, but I have no interest now that I know how stupid the plot is.  I don't want to delve into it because I don't want to give it away, but if you really pay attention to the film, it is just one big foreshadow of events.   

5. Wrecked - This is one of those 127 Hours/Buried type movies with the actor trapped in a confined space with no one else to act off of.  Adrien Brody is a solid enough actor to pull it off (as opposed to Ryan Reynolds).  The story revolves around him, trapped in a car after an accident that has left the car seemingly in the middle of nowhere.  He wakes up, not only does he not know where he is, but who he is, along with 2 other passengers who are dead.  It's actually an interesting concept and the beginning is really intense, but the intrigue starts to wear off and the film becomes dull.  It's hard for me to watch these types of survival instinct type movies because I just wouldn't have the energy or will.  That sounds depressing, but it is totally true.  I liked that the film had a bit of a twist ending, even if it was a little predictable. 

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