Posted on 10/21/10 09:43 PM
Step Brothers is another collaboration between Will Ferrell and director Adam McKay. It's about two immature, middle-aged men who become step brothers when their parents marry. It was everything I expected it to be.
It's the same Ferrell/McKay humor, but with different characters, settings, and jokes. If you don't like that immature, dirty, stupid humor, then of course you're not going to like it. I, however, enjoy that kind of humor, so I had a really good time with this movie. It's the same kind of stuff that earned Anchorman and Talladega Nights spots in my DVD collection. The characters are what most of us secretly wish we could be: immature, with no responsibilities, and taken care of. The humor is similar: they make the jokes we all wish we could make but have the good sense not to.
Ferrell carried this movie for me. I prefer his style to John C. Reilly's, but they were both really entertaining. The film knows what it is, and if you know that too, you'll have a much better time with it. Don't go into this movie expecting wit or smart humor. It is honestly funny because it's so stupid and ridiculous.
I had a good time with this film. I laughed out loud plenty, so I definitely recommend it. I would buy it, but it's not a priority. You know, if I saw it for 5 bucks in a bin somewhere, used or new, I might pick it up. Enjoy. :)
Posted on 10/21/10 09:29 PM
Welp, my friend bought this at a used DVD store for 3 bucks, and I wasn't in the mood to think, so I watched it with her. This is an animated (very much like video games) film directed by Makoto Kamiya about zombies and the corporations responsible for the spreading infections.
I really love zombie movies. I love watching ordinary people turn into crazy warriors and attack with bats. It's good fun. Unfortunately, this film did not have enough zombies. The zombies were only in it for a little while, and I was really disappointed. It wasn't gory like zombie movies should be, it wasn't exciting. It focused too much on the company making the vaccine and then this ridiculous other virus they have. Zombies are believable to me, from a cinematic perspective, but this other virus, was absurd. I lost the very little remaining interest in the film when it was introduced. Maybe just watch the first half, that's average. The second half is what really earns the rot.
The only thing I liked about the movie was also, at times, another factor that made it awful. The animation was interesting sometimes, beautiful, in a way. It was very nice to look at. But then other times, it was just stupid. The people were emotionless, the mouths didn't match with their words all the time (but maybe it was made for a different language on the audio track), and the action was annoyingly impossible. The zombies were okay, and the people looked good when they weren't talking or trying to show feelings, but for most of the film, I was pissed off at how bad it was.
The script...oh, the script! Terrible. Cheesy, action, meaningless crap. You know it's a bad film when the main character has to explain everything that happened and why to another main character, as a breeze flows through their hair and they squint into a beautiful valley. They said stupid things, they asked stupid questions, they were stupid. I know I'm using the same adjective over and over, I know that's not creative, but neither was this movie. It was just stupid.
The characters were all annoying. Every single one was a cliche. There was the brave, handsome hero, the sassy, skilled "hot" chick, the stupid, emotional "hot" chick, the big tough guy who just likes to fight about everything, the helpless child, the greedy, evil politician, the tricky Brit (I dunno if that's actually a cliche though..). There was no innovation here, no creativity. Everything in this movie was something you've seen elsewhere. It is a complete waste of time.
I recommend this if you're a little boy. In that case, it will be your favorite movie. Other than that, no. Don't watch it ever. I never will again.
Posted on 10/21/10 08:40 PM
First of all, I know this is probably the 439th movie review you've read for this movie and you highly doubt that this one will offer anything new, so I really, really appreciate you reading anyway. I don't think I have anything new to offer either, I just felt compelled to write about it. Anyway, thanks again. :)
We've all gone into the theater and sat in front of the screen that in mere moments would soon be displaying the most talked about, most anticipated film of the year. I'm sure plenty of you were crying as the previews began before Avatar, Inception, or Toy Story 3. But, also, we've all felt our smiles slowly melt into frowns, our excitement dwindle into boredom, and our disappointment envelop our being as that popular film turned out to be nothing but explosions and big names (Transformers 2, anyone?). I'm proud to say that The Social Network is a film that deserves every kind word said about it. It was everything I was hoping it would be.
The movie had a quick pace that really energized me. It inspired me in a way. It encourages some of the main principles of the American dream: be the best, do it like no one has done it before, get rich. It had a few good lessons, yes, but Fincher's not preaching to you at all. It was a very interesting film, even though it did contain a lot of things that would usually be boring, like website coding, business strategies, and legal dealings. It was entertaining the entire time. The music, the editing, the script all worked together to make an excellent, riveting film.
David Fincher solidified his title as my favorite director. I was already amazed by Seven, pumped up by Fight Club, and in love with Benjamin Button. Everything about this film was perfect to me. I honestly didn't notice a mistake. When I first heard a movie was being made about a guy making a website, I thought, "Okay, here comes the most boring movie ever." and then I saw Fincher was going to direct, and I thought, "Okay, here comes the best movie of the year." Haha. His shots were beautifully composed, his actors were excellent, the dialogue was impeccable, the transitions were smooth, the humor was smart.
It was great. I completely recommend it, and I hope to buy it someday. :)
Posted on 10/18/10 07:05 PM
Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing is a film depicting racial struggles between whites, blacks, hispanics, and Asians, on a particularly hot day in a New York neighborhood. This was my first time watching a Spike Lee piece, so I wasn't sure what to expect. I didn't even know what it was about because I didn't read the summary on the DVD case. They tell me too much and I like to not know what's going to happen, you know? Yeah.
Wow. I was very impressed with this film. I really have not seen anything like it. Sure, I've seen a bunch of films about racism, but never like this one. Usually they "point the finger," usually they come out and just say, "This is ____'s fault!" But this film didn't. It was told with equalizing grace. Lee managed to say that all of these colors contributed to the tension between them, that it was their shared duty to create a peaceful environment. It showed people causing problems with each other, and it showed them getting along. It was a very balanced film.
I love Lee's energy. Not as his character, but through the environment he captured on film. The world is so colorful, and the colors so vivid! And his camera angles? Ahh! There's such a variety and each one enhances the scene it's capturing. It's very entertaining to watch, and very lively. It's funny, it's tragic, it's annoying, it's frustrating, it's great. It really got a reaction out of me and everyone I watched it with. That's good cinema.
I didn't grow up in New York, so I can't really say if the characters represent New Yorkers accurately, but they reinforced the perception I already had of them. They seemed really convincing to me. They were always yelling. Haha. It was really funny. The acting was very good. I thought everyone did a pretty good job. The weakest performance I noted was by Spike Lee himself as Mookie. He was good most of the time, but at points when he needed to express sadness, he just looked apathetic and bored. The girl who played his sister was flat to me, but she was all right. Everyone else performed nicely.
I thought the emotional components of this film were perfect. There was just enough, in my opinion, and it was presented beautifully. There are very profound points in the film, where it's almost as if the characters are reading poetry. Sometimes that can be a distracting technique in communicating an idea, but Lee executed it very well.
Some might say it's cliche, but I disagree. I've seen stories depicting racism, I've seen stories with similar characters, but I have never seen this message said this way. I thought it was very deep, beautiful, poignant. I was very impressed. I really recommend it, and I hope to own it someday!
Posted on 10/18/10 06:25 PM
My photography teacher, who is aso a director (Next Time, 1998; Schwak, 2000) talked about this film a lot. He said it was the best movie ever made, so I was compelled to see it. I'm pretty glad I did! I was not disappointed. You probably all know, but I'll go ahead and say it anyway: Citizen Kane is a film by Orson Welles following the life of a young millionaire who bought the failing newspaper, "The New York Inquirer", to his tumultuous love life, and his ultimate death in his palace, alone. The character Kane is both inspired by newspaper titan William Randolph Hearst and Welles himself.
First of all, the character development is excellent. Welles definitely established each member of the story very well. You can understand them and you can follow any influences that change their behavior. The every actor did an amazing job in their role. I can't think of anyone I was disappointed with. Another great aspect of the character development was the script. What they were talking about helped show their personality, motives, and helped progress the story; it also kept my attention and was interesting. Usually old films push me to boredom in seven minutes, but not this one.
I'll admit, I used to hate old films. I hated how they talked, I hated how the film looked visually, I hated how every scene where characters were having a discussion had pretty much the same composition, I just thought they were all super boring. Now, I don't hate old films any more, but I don't love them quite yet either. Citizen Kane is pushing me in that direction though. Welles is brilliant! He had such a great variety of film angles and techniques, this film is a real treat to watch. I never thought it was boring. Another thing I really loved about this film was just the clarity of the scenes. Welles had an excellent cinematographer (Gregg Toland). He knew just what to do with the camera to make every scene look sharp and detailed. One big thing about old films that I couldn't stand was how unadvanced their camera equipment was, and how hard it was to watch the films because of the low quality, but I never felt that way with this film. It looked beautiful. Practically every scene is visually pleasing.
The make-up and such to make the characters age was great! I thought they were getting new, older or younger, actors who looked freakishly like the others, but nope. It may not be as amazing as today's make-up and effects, but for a 71 year old film, they're incredible. I was really impressed. This make-up and the expertly designed sets make Citizen Kane something that the viewers can really get into and really believe. I appreciate films like that.
I can understand why it is largely believed to be the "best film ever made." It's interesting and expertly crafted...but I don't yet have the enthusiasm to repeat that title. It's excellent, no doubt, but I guess I just prefer films to be more emotional, perhaps...I don't know. I'm not entirely sure why I can't confidently refer to it as the best film ever, maybe just because I need to see more movies and have more knowledge. Anyway, Citizen Kane was a really great film and I highly recommend it. I do not own it yet, but I do hope to soon!
Posted on 10/13/10 10:35 PM
I had always heard of this film, heard it was an amazing classic, so when it came on free one day I decided to check it out. I'm not sure if the "classic" is only the original or if the remake qualifies for that title as well, but I thought it was good! The 1990 Tom Savini-directed version follows a young woman who goes to visit her mother's grave with her brother but is attacked by a zombie and seeks refuge in a house with other uninfected humans.
The graphics are pretty good for the '90s! I was cringing a lot. This movie really scared me, not in the way where it's hard to go to sleep, but I was scared for the people in the film. The characters were good. You could tell whether Savini intended for you to like the character or not, which is nice. I like when you either favor or dislike a character in a horror film because the feelings you have about them directly influence how the movie makes you feel: you're happy when your beloved character survives and stoked when the one you hate gets his head bitten off, or you're bummed when your favorite dies and your least favorite walks away with nothing but a scratch. I just love when movies make me feel something, even for just a little while, and this film succeeds.
There aren't any especially beautiful shots. I didn't notice any spectacular cinematography, but I still really enjoyed it. The zombies are great. I love how they walk, I love their appearances, I love how they attack. This movie is a great zombie flick! Completely satisfying in its genre. I laughed, I got angry, I got frustrated, I celebrated (not really, but I got stoked a few times :P). The script is pretty good, it fits the genre and the style. There's a character you hate (you'll know which one) and his lines are incredibly ridiculous! Seriously, I wouldn't be surprised if he got his insults from a kindergarten playground. I didn't really blame the film, because it's a zombie film and from the '90s, I thought I'd let it go. Like, I'm not expecting an Oscar-nominated script, you know? Haha.
So, yeah, I loved this movie a lot. It's everything a zombie movie should be. I may or may not buy it, I dunno, but I would love to watch it a few more times in my future. It's good stuff! I recommend it.
Posted on 10/11/10 10:29 PM
I used to watch this movie all the time when I was little. I hadn't seen it for probably 12 years when I saw it on TV and decided to watch it. I really can't think of another time in my life where I have been flooded with memories. For all these years, I've had all these images floating around my head and I had no idea where they came from, and then I watched this movie and I found that they were all from it. I must have watched it a hundred times when I was a tiny tot, haha.
All right, to the review. This is a Steven Spielberg film following a grown-up Peter Pan, who works as a lawyer and completely forgot about his life in Neverland. He is pushed back into his childhood when Captain Hook, hungry for a rematch, kidnaps his kids and holds them ransom. I think it's a really cute, original idea. I never wondered anything beyond the Peter Pan fairytale, so it was cool to see someone else's vision of what happened.
It's a movie aimed to be another Spielberg blockbuster; therefore, it's full of jokes designed to satisfy a large audience and overflowing with enough cheesiness to make your tears taste like Gouda. It tries to appeal to a large audience, and that's it's biggest downfall, I think. It seems like the only funny jokes are the ones where it didn't seem like they were trying to get you to laugh. I liked that though, I love hidden gold.
The actors were pretty good. I didn't hate Williams' character. I didn't like him so much either, but I didn't feel the same way I did about him in RV. Most of the child actors were awful, but I don't mean for that to sound as bad as it does. Usually I can't stand child actors, usually I think they all suck, but some of the Lost Boys were adorable and acted like real kids, instead of cute little robots. I laughed a lot during this movie, and most of the time it was because of those little boys. They're funny.
I'm certainly not saying this is the best movie ever, or Spielberg's gem, but it has a special quality to it that I'm not sure I can describe. It has all the qualities of a movie I'd hate, but somehow I love it. Why is that? Just nostalgia? I don't know. Maybe it's the message, maybe it captures my hatred of becoming an adult and losing all powers of imagination. I love the moral of the film, it's cheesy, yes, but delicious. I hate to sound like a sentimental grandma, but I feel like this film contains a lot of that "movie magic" that makes cinema so special. It's a cute movie, it's a feel-good thing. It's full of creativity and happiness, family and love. Nice things. I'm definitely gonna buy it some day and watch it with my kids over and over. I love it. I recommend it. :)
Posted on 10/11/10 08:59 PM
I Think We're Alone Now is a documentary by Sean Donnelly about two mentally-disturbed individuals obsessed with '80s popstar Tiffany. This is one of the most interesting documentaries I have ever heard of. I almost bought it at Salzer's as soon as I read it because I was so intrigued, but it was like $28 for some weird reason and I only had $6. :(
I finally got to see it and I was not let down. It was just as interesting as I thought it would be, possibly even more, in fact. I thought I was just going to witness the infatuation of one middle aged man, but I actually got to meet a 31 year-old hermaphrodite who saw Tiffany in a vision she had during a coma and now believes she's "the one." Damn. I could not look away from this movie. I was exhausted, but I never turned it off. It is completely fascinating. It's funny, but you feel bad for laughing because it's most likely at something weird that one of the stalkers says. I don't like laughing at them but their thoughts are so unbelievable. I never got the impression that Donnelly was making this film so that we could laugh at these people, it was never like that. I think the purpose of the film is more to show people who these stalkers are, to see their reasoning and understand their disease. I don't think they're sick monsters, they're just lonely.
My problem with it was that it didn't flow smoothly. It was a pretty choppy film. You'd be watching, and then randomly it would switch to the middle-aged man, then randomly back to Kelly, the hermaphrodite. It was all over the place bouncy, staccato. It was still enjoyable though.
It's a very emotional film. It's tragic to see these people, outcasts of average society, believe wholeheartedly that they can capture the heart of a celebrity. They have no doubt that if Tiffany just had a conversation with them, that they could convince her to marry them and live together. It's bizarre. It's so crazy to see these mental illnesses in action. I was flabbergasted by almost everything they said. They really live in a delusion, and it's really amazing to witness. Tiffany is actually in the film a lot too, and it's interesting to see how she handles them. She's very sweet.
I do recommend this film. It's a great watch, incredibly difficult to put your attention elsewhere as it plays on your screen. I may buy it someday, for an occasional re-watch to make me laugh and feel thankful for my sanity, but it's not a priority. It's only about an hour long so even if you don't like it, you won't feel too bad about the time spent with it. It was thoroughly enjoyable.
Posted on 10/11/10 07:51 PM
This film, by Gregory Dark, is about a group of juvenile delinquents who clean an abandoned hotel harboring a gigantic, murderous psychopath who enjoys killing people and taking out their eyeballs. Sound fun? It isn't.
I feel like it has a pretty interesting premise. It takes the whole cliche of homicidal religious fanatics and teams it up with a group of kids getting into trouble. It's an all right idea, but it has disappointing execution. The actors are terrible. Not only the young actors, but the older ones as well. I wasn't expecting much out of this film when I saw it was a WWE production though, to be honest. I can't think of anyone who I think did a good job acting. Seriously, no one comes to mind. That's terrible. The dialogue was stupid. It was just really lame, C movie material. It was pretty predictable. It was gory, yeah, but I was pretty bored. I wasn't ever scared; however, I was clenching my fists in frustration often. It's one of those movies where the characters are completely oblivious to everything that's going on and just make stupid mistakes. It's annoying.
There's one thing I liked about this movie and it is the cinematography. Things were well lit, there were nice angles, beautiful shots. It's a nice looking movie sometimes. Too bad it didn't have any substance.
I watched this movie a couple years ago and hated it. I thought maybe I just had no taste back then and I might like it now, but no. It's still awful. I definitely don't recommend it. I certainly will not be buying it ever or watching it again.
Posted on 10/11/10 03:34 PM
Notorious is a biographical film about the rapper Notorious, how he came to fame, and his death. It's pretty educational regarding his life, I learned a lot of things I didn't know.
Something that really bothers me about movies based on real life is when the characters don't look anything like who they're supposed to be. The only person who really looked like who they were supposed to was Notorious, but everyone else was confusing. A lot of the time I was just waiting for someone to call somebody else by their names before I knew what was going on. That was really frustrating for me.
Another thing I've heard is that it doesn't capture the amazing personality of Notorious, and I kind of understand. It does capture a little bit of it though, for sure. The film didn't really make me understand how he became so famous and loved so fast. It tried to say it, but it was way too vague and quick about it. There was too much focus on his love life and not enough on his career, in my opinion.
The plot was interesting. It's made even more interesting because it's true. I liked the story-telling techniques by the director, but I feel like he could have done better. There were some things that needed more explaining, and some things that needed less. It's all right.
The music is great, but of course, only if you like rap. If not, you probably won't have a good time. I really love Biggie's style and I think he was really skilled, so I really enjoyed watching the parts when he was rapping. It has a great soundtrack.
Main point, I liked this film. It had beautiful shots and a nice style. It captured the streets of New York and the dangers of the gangster life. I'm not saying it's the best one ever, but it was a little better than decent. I recommend it for a rent or to borrow from a buddy, but I probably won't be buying it soon. I'm not sure though...I did really like it.