Monday, December 30, 2013

Thoughts on 5 Films

1. 2 Guns - I watched this directly after The World's End and I laughed more in the first 20 minutes of this movie than I did for the entire length of that whole movie.  Mark Wahlberg and Denzel Washington have amazing chemistry together.  The scene with the chickens had me in a fit of tears ("They are torturing chickens!!" "What are you eating?" "Chicken."). The movie moves really quickly, has some surprising twists and turns, and it's a hell of a lot of fun. There's really nothing more to say.  I'm surprised that it didn't do better in the theater, but I think the title is off-putting.

2. Lovelace - I wasn't expecting to like this movie at all.  I thought it would be cheesy and over-dramatic.  The story of Linda Lovelace is hard to tell, especially since no one really knows the truth (aside from the people involved). Lovelace's version of the events are tragic and my instinct is to believe her, but some of the things that she claimed have been proven lies. No matter what the "truth" is, it's clear that this woman was abused in some way and that she was taken advantage of. I also think a lot of drugs were involved.  The movie did a fantastic job in the structure of the story - showing the glitzy, glamorous life of a porn star; then it reverts back to tell Lovelace's version, which is harrowing. In her version, watching any of her movies, is akin to watching her being raped. It really makes you think about the porn industry as a whole. I've never been a big fan of Amanda Seyfried, but she is excellent here; Really strong, memorable performance. Sharon Stone is unrecognizable as her mother. If I didn't know she was in the movie, I wouldn't have known that was her. And ADAM BRODY! What the hell?! I really didn't want to see Seth Cohen doing porn. So disturbing. 

3. Prince Avalanche - I saw this movie on a few "Best of 2013" lists, which surprised me because I never even heard of it. It seemed to come out of nowhere.  Obviously, I was intrigued.  I have to say....I don't get it. It's not a bad movie at all, but out of all of the amazing films that were released this year - this wouldn't even make my top 50.  Paul Rudd does a fine job (as always), but Emile Hirsch is absolutely awful. I used to hate him, but he won me over with Into the Wild and Milk.  He's just one of those actors who is either really good, or really awful depending on the role (like Matthew Goode).  His crying scene in this movie is laugh out loud funny. The movie is about as boring as their job, which is to paint the yellow stripes on a deserted road.  Male bonding is boring. Sorry, guys. Actually, I take that back. It can be a lot of fun if it's done well (see: 2 Guns).

4. Sightseers - Loved everything about this movie.  Ben Wheatley has an amazing way of structuring a movie. The way he puts scenes together is breathtaking. My favorite is *spoiler* the part where Chris kills the other camper. It's juxtaposed with a cult-like ritual and the campers wife cutting her foot on a piece of a broken plate that Chris purposely broke. It's sublime. *end spoiler*  The movie can easily be described as a UK version of God Bless America. He kills obnoxious people or as he says "he's not a person, he's a Daily Mail reader".  This is exactly the kind of movie that sticks in my brain. Dark, funny, subversive.  It's a great character study on gender and relationships.  It's definitely an insight into the male brain - once he finds someone who loves and supports him for who he is (knowing that he is a murderer), he begins to resent her and pushes her away. The ending is awesome. I laughed so hard.  I think I'm including this as a 2013 release, even though it is listed as 2012. Technically it wasn't released in the states until this year. It will be on my top 10 list (which is now a top 20 list).  

5. The Guilt Trip - I had some extra time on my hands because I called out of work due to a nasty cold. I wanted to watch something mindless; something I didn't have to pay attention to because my brain was cold-medicine fuzzy.  I don't know if this is the reason I found this movie to be really cute. It's not a good movie and I would never watch it again, but I was never bored and I even laughed a few times. Seth Rogen and Barbra Streisand play a very realistic mother and son. I knew how it was going to end because I spotted Adam Scott in the credits and he didn't appear in the entire movie until the end. That "twist" could have been easily avoided if he just checked date of birth when he was doing his research. Anyway, cute movie. My mom would have loved it.  On a side note, the purse holder thing that she uses is sold at my work and it is a ridiculously popular item.  

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