Monday, May 10, 2004

Movie round-up:
Well, I watched four movies this weekend. Can't remember the last time I did that - and I enjoyed them, too. Some nice work over all.
Friday night, I went to Van Helsing. Of the four movies, it was the least good, but I enjoyed it anyway. Definitely don't expect anything more than Vampire movie / summer blockbuster, but if you keep your expectations low, the movie will be fun. Which is what it aimed to be, so as W. would say, "Mission Accomplished."

Saturday, Laura and I went to the vid store with a 2 for 1 coupon and grabbed School of Rock and Lost in Translation. We watched School of Rock first. Parts of it were actually laugh out loud funny, especially at the beginning. "Dude, I've been mooching off you for years, and it's only been a problem since she moved in!" I mean - good stuff. And Jack Black's enthusiastic, loving deconstruction of Rock & Roll is laughingly endearing. I don't know that he meant for it to have the same vibe as Trekkies, but I liked it for the same reason. And the child actors weren't annoying, which had to be difficult to pull off.

Lost in Translation was quite simply, brilliant. That was an astonishing film. It spat in the face of every Hollywood formulaic plot device and gave us a movie about real emotion. About lonliness, isolation, and longing. But it was not depressing. It was funny without being pandering. It was a movie with characterization and setting taken seriously and done close to perfectly. This movie should be studied ib film schools for how to do it right. And Bill Murrey gets the big thumb up.

Then after Boo went to bed, La and I watched Danny Boyle's 28 Days Later. Danny Boyle is special. This movie was so much better than your average horror flick (like, say Van Helsing) that it almost seems unfair to classify it with them. What we have here is an apocolyptic Zombie flick that lets itself be driven by solid plot and developed characters. The shots of London were just eerie.

But for the love of all that is good and holy, could someone please take the time to investigate the effects of being in a coma for a month (or 4 years, Quentin?) before embarking on the "patient wakes up from coma to discover..." plot gimmick? Please? They all seem to get one or two things right. Terrantino got the "can't use my legs" right, but then let the Bride get up and walk for all the wrong reasons. Then Boyle got that his coma victim would be crazy thirsty after he woke, but got everything else wrong. (not to mention that Jim would have been well... DEAD without anyone to change his IV drips.) It can't be that tough to just ask some people who had been in comas what their experiences were and what difficulties they faced to get some really good story elements. hell - just take some ICU nurses out for drinks. It's not like research would be that hard.

Anyway - 28 Days later is just a great film, and if you have avoided seeing it because it's a "horror" movie and therefore most likely "horrible," well - you'd be wrong. Give it a shot.

That's all for now. Ciao!


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