Thursday, May 29, 2008
Movie Tickets: $21.00
Filing for bankruptcy after the first date: Priceless.
On Friday, May 23 of 2008 marks the day that AMC Theaters will jack up the prices of their popcorn. They were trying to be a little sneaky with the news since there was no official press release sent out from the company that I could uncover on their website. It's a twenty-five cent raise that will affect all the portion sizes that they carry at the concession stand. For those who aren't worried about a mere quarter cents raise should look at the bigger picture. We're already having to shell out an average price of ten or eleven dollars per ticket at the regular admission price in addition to the cost of traveling to and from the movie theater complex.
The main source of the financial raise could be traced to the cost of corn that the farmers are charging for their crops. According to the statistics posted in an article from USA Today the cost of a pound of corn a few years ago would average around ten cents, whereas today it could average up to twenty-five cents per pound. The majority of the profits earned from admission prices are always given to the film distributors while the exhibitors such as AMC will always rake in a lower cut of the admission profits. They have to make up the difference somewhere else in order to keep the overhead costs under control. After all if you expect to watch a film being projected on a 35mm film reel then the exhibitor will have to pay a high priced bill to keep the A.C. in the projection room running all day long so that the film reels don't melt. If you want to see the film being projected digitally then the exhibitor would have to pay the price of upgrading to computer servers and digital projectors that allow them to present the films digitally. The cost to upgrade one theater screen can go as high as $100,000. That high price tag sure isn't a drop in the bucket for the exhibitors when they have to figure in the cost of property rental and payroll.
Now don't freak out too much over the price increase, because I hear they are still planning on continuing their concession stand deals. I think it's one of the best combo plans they carry which allows you to pick any three items from a particular list of concession stand items and only have to pay $7.50 down with no monthly interest thereafter. That was a pathetic credit card joke, I know, but hopefully you get my point. Personally I tend to order the kid's snack pack from time to time which includes a small portion of popcorn, a small soda, and a trial size candy that you may usually see for Halloween. The portions may be small, but it's a nice snack that's is usually cheaper to purchase than a big tub of popcorn and a soda. Overall, I'm bummed the price popcorn is going up, but the twenty-five cent raise sure beats the disappointment of the local movie theater having to shut down if it can't pay it's bills. Gasp!!
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Monday, May 26, 2008
His latest film Made of Honor (2008) is currently in the theaters in which he acts in a minor character, but I hardly believe that this marks the highlight of his career. He was nominated for co-producing Michael Clayton, won two Oscars for Out of Africa (1985), nominated twice for Tootsie (1982), and nominated once for They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (1969). He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Claire Griswold, and daughters Rachel and Rebecca.
"Afternoon Delight (animated)"
Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, 2004.
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
This film has a certain hybrid feel to it. A part of the film's story wants to draw in the audiences who love to watch the independent films while also attempting to entertain the audiences who go to the mainstream movie theaters. Adam Sandler plays a lonely business owner who has been verbally abused by his seven sisters all his life. His childhood was emotionally scarring for him, and this leaves him as a social loner. His introverted nature is nothing but an emotional trap that leads him to explode with an occasional outburst of anger.
On a particularly random day his curiosity runs wild when he discovers a run down piano that had been dropped off at the end of the driveway in front of his business. While wearing his neatly pressed blue suit, which is the only outfit he wears for almost the entire film, his life begins to change. He is thrown into one situation right after another which eventually draws him out of his introverted shell and into a new world of love and excitement. Never before has he experienced the type of selfless love that he has gained from his new relationship. After all he has been accustomed to being abused by his "loving" sisters for several years.
The selfless love that I am referring to here would be that of his relationship with an Englishwoman named Lena. She works with one of his sisters who had made several attempts to hook the pair up on a date. Their evolving romance would be the part of the film that I believe would draw in the mainstream film goers. The gooey romantic stories are easy to sell, because they almost always have a happy ending. With a cross of my fingers and a roll of my eyes I would say that every viewer would love to watch a film that has a happy ending. However, independent films are more likely depict the reality of the world. The relationship between Barry (that would be Adam Sandler's character) and Lena (played by Emily Watson) is awkward and shaky at best, but the pair do fall in love with each other. This story development would suffice for the film's happy ending which would make everyone leave the theater with a smile on their face. But it is the emphasis of human fallacy that would prompt me to push this film toward the independent film category.
Anyway, I should mention a little bit more information about the human fallacy of this film. Its story revolves around a small business owner named Barry Egan who would be the ideal mascot for being antisocial. He wears the same blue suit every day, because he thinks it would impress potential customers into wanting to buy a toilet plunger from his company. While sitting in his company's warehouse during a lonely overnight stay he discovers a legal loophole in a contest to earn frequent flier miles from a grocery food company. With an immediate response to his discovery he pulls in some assistance from one of his employees. The pair head over to the ninety-nine cent store to gather as many packages of pudding as possible so that he may use the UPC codes as contest entries. It is a desperate plea for help, but this is when his relationship with Lena begins.
Personally, I found this film to be extremely entertaining and enjoyable. Punch-Drunk Love is a cult classic film with fan base that keeps on growing larger and larger. I'll admit that I am a fan of the movie, but I couldn't say that I would fit in very well with its cult film fan base who may have the film memorized forwards and backwards. Adam Sandler's acting in this film is a complete turn around performance that we're not used to seeing. He's not relying on his usual comedic routine by playing a small guitar and singing songs about being Jewish. For the first notable time in his career Sandler approached a dramatic film with every last ounce of seriousness that he could muster up. He was able to pull it off with great success! I am highly impressed by how well the film was produced, because I was pulled right into the story. As a result I would have to give this film a review rating of nine out of ten possible points.
History of the Wilhelm Scream
Masters of Horror, 2005
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
The 'Fargo' Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs!
Monday, May 19, 2008
Who knew that Gary Oldman would be willing to be play a character who resides on the heroic side of the story? In my own opinion, I think Ludwig van Beethoven was one of the most interesting lead characters for him to play, albeit not my favorite of his roles. A large number of his films that I’ve seen he is always sitting on the wrong side of the fence playing the bad guy or a role with a laundry list of dark qualities. However, if I think back to Sid and Nancy (1986) where plays a part of the title role, Sid Vicious of the Sex Pistols fame, his character is the antithetical hero of the story that looses the love of his life. However, taking a closer look at Beethoven with the persona that Oldman brings to the big screen it is only with sadness to see the emotional roller coaster that the famous composer had experienced during his lifetime.
I must admit that Oldman is one of my favorite actors, because he does throw himself into the roles that he is hired to play. It offers more believability when the actor attempts to create a life into a role by make his (or her) acting style a bit different from all the other roles that had proceeded his prior work. This is different for Oldman, because he is portraying a famous composer who is deaf. This isn't the first character that he played that is based upon a real life person; the other one was Sid, which I had mentioned earlier. Portraying a person who had lived a few centuries before our time can be an interesting job for the actor, because there isn't any way to match the person's mannerisms and personality verbatim. Oldman would only be able to rely on existing documents and historically known facts about Beethoven before creating a unique persona of how the composer would have acted as if he were still a living and breathing human being. It can be a challenging task, and I think Oldman had done a wonderful job with what he was given.
So, with the second attempt at watching this film I actually got to see the entire thing and I enjoyed it tremendously. Toward the end of the film there was a particular scene between the executor of Beethoven's estate and his brother's wife that sparked a memory of Citizen Kane (1941) when the journalist discovers the true meaning of the name Rosebud. You'll have to watch the film to catch the hidden surprise of the story that is contained in that scene. However, it was at that moment that I had realized the film's narrative is similar, but not quite identical, to that of Citizen Kane. In both films there were a lot of third person narratives in which the live of the main character unfolds through the perspective of someone close to him.
By the time the end credits were rolling I was completely entertained by the film's story. It was a film that was produced very well, and I was completely blown away that it was directed by Bernard Rose who is the same guy who had directed the horror film Candyman just two years prior to this dramatic biopic. I would have to give this film a final rating of nine points out of a ten possible.
Revenge is so sweet (looking)
Jessica Alba, 2008.
Sunday, May 18, 2008
The first forty-five minutes of this film is one of the most disturbing things I've seen on film with the one exception of the curbing scene in American History X (1998) or the knife in the cheek scene from Pan's Labyrinth (2006). The brunt of the stomach churning events occur during the first thirty minutes before things start easing out a little bit and then throwing a knock out punch with a lengthy rape scene around the forty-five minute mark. Here a few descriptive reasons why this film is so disturbing for me. First of all the most subtle reason is the use of sound effects in the first thirty minutes of the film. There is a low level 28Hz hum that drones on during this time that is practically inaudible for humans, but surely felt in their gut where they would begin to feel nauseated. In addition to the bass level rumble noise there is the motion sickness photography that was shot on 16mm film and then transferred through a few photographic steps before being finalized on Super 35mm film to theatrical distribution.
The list doesn't really end there. The audio turns your stomach and the photography causes motion sickness, but there's also the provoked confusion with the reverse chronological storytelling. If any of those three things don't urge you to avoid this film then here is the kicker of the whole shebang. There is an shocking level of disturbing violence in the movie. It surely isn't the standard issue violence that Americans are used to seeing in their films. Surely the Americans should be used to their zombie films and war stories on the big screen, but there is a safe buffer of disconnect between the story and the viewer's reality. Not every American viewer must battle disgusting zombies or live and fight in a war zone, so their reality is far removed from what is seen in a film. However, for the film Irréversible we bear witness to real people in real situations that could happen in our own hometown.
During the opening moments of the film there are two of the main characters rushing through a gay sex club trying to find the man responsible for raping the girlfriend of one of the main characters. Not many people feel comfortable with the idea of a gay sex club, but these places do exist throughout the world and there are people who patronize these businesses. As the main characters shuffle through the club they bear witness to some disturbing sex acts that several people would wish was left in the dark corners of humanity without seeing the light of day. Once the pair do find the guy they are looking for one of them bashes the guys face in with a large and extremely heavy fire extinguisher. This violent act of revenge leaves the recipient with several missing teeth and a caved in skull. What really makes the whole act disturbing to watch is the close up shot of the victim's face that continues on unedited forcing the viewer to watch a bloody act happen to an Average Joe who could be our next door neighbor as far as any of us may know.
These characters are people who we would meet in our own hometown, and the acts of violence that they commit are real life problems that we would read about in the local newspaper every morning. It is sad, disturbing, and all very true. There is no safe buffer between this film and reality. We live in a harsh world, and I believe this film was designed to cut straight to the brutal reality in which we live. My final rating for this film would seem rather high to another person who would despise watching dark and disturbing films or is used to seeing animated Disney films. I have chosen to give Irréversible a final rating of an eight out of ten possible review points. The film has succeeded in disturbing me right to the core about the events that occur so often in our world that we would tune it all out like any other reoccurring background noise. It is sad, yet very true.
"Push that button again!"
The Incredibles, 2004
Saturday, May 17, 2008
The entire film is rather bloody with its action sequences, but the story is also rather entertaining to make up for it. The plot of the film sounds like it could pass for a cable movie of the week. Bob Lee Swagger (that would be Mark Wahlberg's character) lives in seclusion and is tempted by the notion of civic duty and honor to return to American civilization to save the President from being killed. Doesn't this plot sound like an old western film? It's the type of spaghetti western where the town's deputy sheriff asks the secluded old cowboy to return from the plains and save the town from the evil businessman who wants to build a railroad track right through the center of the town. That old story line lies at the foundation of this film.
The plot point with the presidential assassination eventually gives way to the heart of the film. Shooter is a story of the revenge with the main character as the lone ranger who is fighting to keep his head above the water. Once the film arrives at the point when Swagger discovers that he was set up to be the fall guy he spends the remainder of the storyline chasing the bad guys who had framed him. His desire to track down the guys who have framed him serves as a setup to film one action sequence after another with a lot of gunfire, explosions, and buckets of fake blood. There is all the standard ingredients in this film that would entice the average male to want to watch this film. There's the leading character who is the Man's Man by roughing it in the wild, there is the rookie FBI agent who serves as his loyal sidekick. The pair join together to blow things up and shoot people to death. But who could forget about the drop dead gorgeous woman who the lone ranger falls in love with by the end of the film. Oh, and did I mention the explosions and the guns?
The total running time for the film feels like forever despite being edited to a mere two hours and four minutes. By the time the end credits were rolling I was surprised that I had enjoyed the film. There were a very dull moments, especially toward the end of the film, but it was surprisingly good. Overall I would live to give this film a review rating of an eight out of ten possible review points. It was very entertaining for an action film, and I really can't complain about the two hours that I spent in front of the television watching it.
"I'm so glad you chose me!"
Friday, May 16, 2008
Source: Batman On Film.
"The scorpion and the frog."
The Crying Game, 1992.
Thursday, May 15, 2008
Once the film began rolling on the big screen in front of me the fears began building up inside of me. Oh, my gosh! This is a romantic comedy! What the -- !! How could I have missed all the warning signs? The advertisements for the film had clearly displayed the main character's jealousy because another guy is stepping into a relationship with the woman he had left at the wedding alter five years prior. It should have been obvious to me that he would have only entered the marathon to compete against the overachieving new boyfriend and win back the love of his ex-fiancee. How stupid of me! Now that I have that all of that out of my system I should hang my head in shame. Yes, I admit that I found the film rather entertaining even if it is a romantic comedy. Run Fatboy Run is not my favorite of Simon Pegg's comedy films (that spot is currently reserved for Shaun of the Dead, by the way).
The entire film focuses upon the humorous failures of Dennis, the lazy underachiever who must come to terms of his own identity and learn how to let the love of his life love him for who he is as a (fallible) human being. The film has the classic style of human inadequacy with the standard happy ending that teaches us about loving other people despite their weaknesses and failures. It's always easier said than done, but in the movies the mainstream producers always enjoy a happy ending for their stories. Once in awhile I don't mind seeing a movie with a sappy ending, but I prefer to have a mixed bag once in awhile. Show us a freaking sad ending once in awhile! The film would feel more realistic that way. Moving back to take a broad look at the film I would like to rate this film with an eight out of ten possible review points. It was entertaining for the film that it is and I really have no complaints for spending my money on the theater ticket to see the film.
"Go or don't go?"
Frank Caliendo, Al Pacino, Robert De Niro.
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
"Don't worry. I'm almost done."
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Sometimes the rating for the film will appear in the lower half of the preview screen. If the film has not yet been rated, then the film's rating would not appear on the preview slate or there would be a slug line that would specify the film has not yet been rated by the MPAA. Did you know that there are three slate colors for film previews? The colors are closely related to the three colors of a traffic light: Green, Yellow, and Red. The green band signifies that the preview has been approved for everyone to see, just like a green traffic light means 'go' to a driver. Then there is the overlooked middle child of the group, which is relatively new to the scene. The Yellow Band slate was recently instituted by the MPAA to cover the wide distribution of movie trailers on the internet. Here is a screen cap image of the Yellow Band.
As clearly explained on the Yellow Band slate the preview comes with a forewarning to all internet users who are about to watch the film trailer. Since the internet is a completely different media giant and is still in its infancy in comparison to television and movies there are media rules that are still be created for the World Wide Web. The MPAA organization is trying to remain a productive group by instituting the yellow band as a warning slate just like a yellow light would tell a driver to remain cautious when approach an intersection. However, I'm thinking that the yellow band was also meant to carry the same weight as the red band slate that you would see before a preview trailer at the theaters. If you've never seen a red band slate before, then check it out.
As you can see in the screen cap above the dreaded red screen has been reserved for adult audiences only. As I had said there was only one time that I've seen a preview for a film at the movie theaters that has been slapped with the "red band" preview slate. It was for the upcoming film Pineapple Express (2008) and the preview received the red band preview slate because the word "fuck" appears in the trailer. These days it is more common for you to see a red banded trailer during the previews on a DVD than you would at the movie theaters. I've seen several red banded trailers on the numerous DVD previews that I've watched over the last few years. However, there are restrictions for a red banded trailer to be shown. It can only appear alongside films with a R-rating, a NC-17 rating, or unrated at all. Rarely have I seen an unrated film released to the mainstream multiplexes, but they do tend to pop up at the local art house theaters which don't receive much foot traffic.
Despite all this talk about the three primary color band slates I would like to point out some hilarious explanations that you would see under the ratings graphic for the films that are released. A long time ago I had stumbled across this article from AllMovie.com that included a top ten list of strange and hilarious explanations that I wanted to include here.
10. Mother's Boys (1994).
"Rated R for language and for a mother's sociopathic behavior"
9. Indian in the Cupboard (1995).
"PG for mild language and brief video images of violence and sexy dancing"
8. All I Wanna Do (1998).
"PG-13 for teen sex-related material, language, and substance misuse"
7. The Hunted (1997).
"R for strong bloody ninja violence and a humorous drug related scene"
6. War of the Buttons (1994).
"PG for mischievous conflict, some mild language, and bare bottoms"
5. Alien vs. Predator (2004).
"PG-13 for violence, language, horror images, slime, and gore"
4. Skateboard Kid II (1995).
"PG for brief mild language and an adolescent punch in the nose"
3. Bushwhacked (1997).
"PG for language and a mild birds and bees discussion"
2. Twister (1996).
"PG-13 for intense depiction of very bad weather"
1. Jefferson in Paris (1995).
"PG-13 for mature theme, some images of violence, and a bawdy puppet show"
If you have discovered any other interestingly hilarious explanations for a rating that a movie has received feel free to post a comment here. I would love to have a collection of crazy rating explanations going.
"I call upon Captain Teague."
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, 2007.
Monday, May 12, 2008
I think that it was a very poor decision to be releasing this film one week after Iron Man was released into the theaters. It instantly places Speed into the poorly placed position as the bastard step-child who has to sit right next to an accomplished older sibling. The major slap in the face for Warner Brothers has been the readjustment for the film's opening box office receipts that moved it's opening weekend placement from second place down to the third place spot because the weekend's receipts were originally tallied wrong. This is like the 2000 Florida elections all over again. Where's the whining Al Gore when you need him to step in and save Speed Racer from further box office embarrassment? We need a recount!! Now the film may suffer tremendously, because the misunderstood opening weekend draw is going to be misconstrued forcing the "majority" to possibly believe that the film is horrendous if the film's opening weekend didn't clinch the number one spot. Just like the recent tragic story of the second place Kentucky Derby winner who was put to sleep for breaking two of its legs this film maybe prematurely removed from the theaters because Warner Brothers didn't make their estimated earning power for its opening weekend. What a shame. What a freaking shame!
Already there has been some discussion about a sequel film being produced for Iron Man, but this news is rather disheartening for me. Speed Racer was a touching story that was written with a moral to it, while Iron Man was just another bland Hollywood action movie in my opinion. Speed was eye candy with a story (that means extra bonus points in my book). Iron was just eye candy with a few lines of comedy (no extra credit points for squeaking by with the bare minimum effort). My cinematic vote has been cast, and it sits in the realm of the theatrical underdog. Go, go Speed Racer. Go!
It will be photographed.
Standard Operating Procedure, 2008. Trailer.
Sunday, May 11, 2008
Her new movie project is a story based upon the book of the same name that was written by Karen Joy Fowler. The Jane Austen Book Club is about a small group of people who inadvertently form a book club, as the film's title suggests, that focuses upon all the literary works that were written by Jane Austen. In all irony that could appear only in the fictional stories the six main characters form the book club to read six classic Austen novels over the course of six months. Each one of the novels was written with a hint of truth that oddly enough corresponds with each one of the lives of the book club members. As they read through each one of the novels they are unraveling their own lives and form new relationships that mirror a 21st century rendition of a Jane Austen story.
As I had mentioned earlier this movie is a romantic drama with shades of humor spread throughout the story. The characters try to fill their own desperate and lonely lives by parading around with their failed relationships of love weighing them down like a heavy burden. However, as the group continues on with their monthly readings each one of the members form new loving relationships and heal old ones. By the end of the film I found the storyline to be the same old Hollywood conundrum tale with a sappy ending. Everyone begins with a disheveled life, but by the third act they are all living happily ever after.
This film was released two months after another Jane Austen film was released entitled Becoming Jane (2007) which is a loose biography film about the life of author Jane Austen. Both films would provide for a great double feature at home with some popcorn and sour gummy worms. Between the two films I would lean toward the film Becoming Jane as my own personal favorite film, because of its charm and wit. My final rating for Book Club stands with a hearty seven out of ten possible review points.
"Be careful my Littlefoot."
The Land Before Time, 1988.
Saturday, May 10, 2008
One of the most entertaining facets about this film would be the many layers of the famous singer's personality that is woven into the storyline. Instead of having a single character who would represent Dylan's cinematic persona there were six separate individuals who represent him. This offered some freedom for the actors to focus on one particular aspect that could be developed into a flesh and blood character. This method of storytelling offered the filmmakers an opportunity to tell a story with an avant-garde flair, just as Dylan has done with his music, and still entertain the audience without loosing their interest.
If you're familiar with Bob Dylan's life and career you may enjoy this film for the several little treasures that are placed in the film. Characters are based upon real life relationships Dylan had during his life. Some of the characters have been loosely altered and not intended to be photocopies of the real life counterparts. For example the character Coco, played by Michelle Williams, is based upon Edie Sedgwick. Personally I am more familiar with music from The Beatles, so I was able to derive great enjoyment from watching Across The Universe (2007), which I reviewed late last year, I would think that an avid Dylan fan would experience the same enjoyment from watching this film.
I don't want to ruin the film with an explanation of every one of the six main characters. However, I would like to point out Cate Blanchett's Oscar nominated performance as Jude Quinn. Her performance of Jude is the only character who looks, sounds, and lives like Dylan. Every moment that Jude Quinn appears on screen the film would depart from a relative fantasy world to the more biography laden portion of the film's story. Jude hangs out with poet Allen Ginsberg, The Beatles, and Coco Rivington (the Edie Sedgwick counterpart) just as Bob Dylan has done during the mid-1960s. As for the remaining five leading characters they are all based upon different aspects of Bob Dylan's personality or different events that occurred during in his life and career. I'll leave those characters open for your own interpretation after you see the movie for yourself.
My final rating for this film has been tuned to a perfect eight out of ten possible review points. The film was entertaining for me, because it was told differently than most film narratives that are released these days. I would definitely suggest this film to all music fans out there, especially to those who are huge Dylan fans.
"It's my second favorite thing."
One Night At McCool's, 2001. Trailer.
Friday, May 9, 2008
"I wanna be a champ!"
Grand Prix, 1966. Trailer.
Thursday, May 8, 2008
The film was filled with cool special effects that were pure eye candy for the prospective theater goers, but I'm afraid it won't make up for the lack of intellectual back story. There's nothing wrong with a tremendous comic book film, because I am a huge fan of the X-Men and Batman films. The character of billionaire entrepreneur Tony Stark and his heroic alter-ego 'Iron Man' has already gained huge popularity among the comic book readers, and it sounds like the film is already a huge success among a large portion of the massive fan club.
I was rather surprised when I found out that this film was directed by the same guy who sat behind the camera for one of my favorite Will Ferrell comedy films -- Elf (2003). Lucky for him he was able to hit into the blockbuster filmmaking at the right time when the comic books are flooding the cinematic market with every film producer in town just drooling over the thought of how much money could be made from the film's production. Right now I'm sure the producers are celebrating with fancy bottles of alcohol and fancy cars.
Personally, I'm not much of a fan of the 'Iron Man' comic books, so I wouldn't have derived as much enjoyment from watching the film adaptation as an avid comic book reader would have from seeing the film. I found Iron Man to be entertaining for what it's worth, but I don't think it could be worthy of the "best film of the year" award or anything of that stature. The decision to have Robert Downey, Jr. star in the lead role for the film was brilliant. There is a mixed bag of reactions to his career as an actor, but personally I find his film entertaining. What makes his contribution to the Iron Man franchise interesting is his crossover contributions for the upcoming release The Incredible Hulk (2008) starring Edward Norton. I get a kick out of crossover roles such as this, even though it shouldn't be much of a stretch for his comic book role. The character of Tony Stark is only one of a huge library of characters from the Marvel comics collection and their characters all intermix with each other in their cartoon universe.
My final rating for this film I've settle with a fair seven out of ten possible review points. The graphics and the sound effects were pure entertainment candy for the theater viewer, but I thought the story lacked substance. I enjoyed the comedic style that Downey brings to the role, because he always adds just the right touch of humor to his acting that the viewer can get a kick out of it without being distracted from the overall story for the film. I thought I've got my money's worth for buying the ticket because of the quality time that was spent on the special effects and sound editing. However, I was thinking I've been jipped out of enjoying a story with some depth to it.
"Welcome to Orientation!"
Robot Chicken: Star Wars, 2007.
Wednesday, May 7, 2008
Anyways, I would think that the film is well done for a directorial debut film. It was entertaining, dark and mysterious, and the storyline had an even flow to it. But in comparison with abundance of criminal films that I've seen over the years I'm afraid the luster of this film has faded away amidst the pile of titles. My final rating for One False Move would be a seven out of ten possible review points. I was hoping there would be something that would stick out for this film, but nothing clicked for me.
"Where do we begin?"
The Dark Knight, 2008. Trailer #2.
Tuesday, May 6, 2008
Another co-worker of mine had seen a preview of the film a couple of weeks ago and told me she was rather disappointed in the film. She described the narrative of the film to be talking down to the audience with a mild manner by suggesting reminders about the history of the characters and the relationships they have with each other. After seeing the film for myself I could see what she was suggesting when the background story about Speed’s brother Rex was brought up over and over and over again it could become a nuisance for the viewer. Personally I didn’t mind that Rex‘s story was brought up repeatedly, because I viewed it as the film’s subplot. It was used as a back story that would serve as a tool for character development for the main characters.
I am highly impressed by the quality of the film’s adaptation, because as an adult I was really getting into the film’s story, I was entertained by the comedic humor of the film, and was completely blown away by the awesome cartoon like computer graphics that were used. When Transformers (2007) was brought to the big screen I thought it would be a rip-roaring good time, but I was disappointed with its commercial sellout of product placement and the over use of nausea inducing action scenes that have been redundantly seen in every action film for the last ten years. I don’t know how they did it, but for Speed Racer the action sequences were a fresh of breath air in comparison with the other action films. I’m afraid that G.I. Joe will fall victim to the same trap that Transformers has become ensnared by -- overused action sequences and commercial sellout (product placement). The producers of Speed Racer were able to keep that commercial product placement completely out of the film that produced a fictitious world as I would expect to see in a cartoon. After all how many times have any of us sat down to watch a Saturday morning cartoon where the characters are drinking Mountain Dew and driving Chevy Corvettes everywhere?
Anyways, another one of the huge selling points that got me hooked into seeing this film was the entertainment value that it holds for both children and adults. I was concerned that it would be geared toward just one particular group while the other one gets robbed of the price of their admission ticket. Usually I avoid family friendly films because most of them come across as tremendously cheesy for my entertainment tastes as an adult. Those type of films were definitely produced for the kids, and there are plenty of adults out there who are completely entertained by those kid friendly films. Sadly, I am not a card carrying member of the family film fan club, but I could tell you that my own parents may be a part of the club. Speed was a film that I could tell by the laughter of the kids and the whoop-calls of the adults that everyone, including myself, was really getting a kick out of the film.
Once the end of the second act was quickly approaching I was humming along with the Speed Racer theme song and pumped up rooting for Speed to win every race he entered. He was the underdog character that every viewer would love to cheer for in every story. The entire film combines the cartoon style flair with the bright colors and the childish humor that the kids would be wrapped into like flies would be drawn to a fly trap. The adults such as myself are wrapped up by the celebrity names that star in the film or the feeling of nostalgia of watching the cartoon series as a kid and that is may catch our attention to pay the high price for an admission ticket. My final rating for this film hits high as you may have gathered already from reading my review so far. That's right folks, I have given this film a nine out of ten possible review points because I was entertained by the film and thought it was worth the money to pay for the price of an admission ticket.