Blinded by the Light
His Dark Materials
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95% on Rotten Tomatoes? Are you shhhhh . . . We're in a wery, wery quiet pwace wight now. It's a world where you can't cough, can't hiccup, can't even fart for fear you'll be splattered all over the landscape.
Woe be unto those who suffer from sleep apnea in this place, for unless you're an electrical whiz and know how to get some juice flowing -- quietly, no generators allowed -- to power a very quiet CPAP machine, your snoring will surely be the literal death of you in this soundless post-apocalyptic hell-hole of a world we now inhabit.
You know, thinking about it, no farting anymore would be a good thing. I hate it when someone cuts one loose without warning and you have to hold your breath forever -- just as if these sound-seeking alien killers were nearby and you didn't want them to hear you breathing. Fart in this world, and you are one dead flatulator. No chili for you!
Also no screaming if you drive a nail through your foot or give birth, either. No knuckle-cracking or gum-snapping, or stomach growling, or sobbing, or projectile vomiting, or stubbing of toes, or . . . Sneezing? Out. Allergy sufferers will be some of the first to get off-ed.
Oh, and while I'm making a list of don'ts and checking it twice, don't ever use a condom when you have sex. Why? Because it isn't irresponsible of you first, to bring a child into a world like this, and second, it's a sure sign of love if you have to stuff the baby in an airtight box with a little oxygen mask so that if it cries the aliens won't hear it and smear it.
It goes without saying, of course, that if you do have sex, contraceptives or not, you darn well better not enjoy it to the point where you moan or, heaven forbid, cry out at the height of passion. Heard of the "little death"? That there'll be the big one.
About thirty minutes into this horror of a story, I wanted to scream, but I knew there weren't really any aliens like the ones in this movie lurking about, so there was no chance in hades that one would hear me and come wipe my out of my misery.
Herbie: Fully Loaded. What? Why am I writing this? Oh, yeah, I did watch it yesterday. Well, one big star for Lindsay Lohan. Any movie she's in is a minimum one-star baby. The problem, however, with watching a Lindsay Lohan movie is that I tend not to notice anything else that's going on. I think I should subtract one star for this, but you know what? I'm actually going to add one more because of this.
Okay, I vaguely remember that this was about a car and racing. A VW, right? They're going to stop making the latest incarnation next year, 2020, I believe, so it's nice that any kind of VW, even if they might be produced by the descendants of Nazi's who migrated from South America to Mexico, deserves one star. No, wait, minus one star for anything having even the whiff of Nazis. Don, Nazis bad, okay? Just say it. And watch out for a Nazi caravan.
Well, I guess it's just two stars even though Lindsay Lohan is in it. Ah, but she had me in thrall as usual. One more star = three.
With an incredible rating of 90%, I feel the urge to put in my two cents's worth regarding Locke. It's the name of the major character -- like what you get when you get out of your car to secure it, in a mash up with the name of the 18th-Century British Empiricist philosopher John Locke? Lock + Locke? Maybe not. Just a wild guess.
Mr. Locke is a man who works with concrete. Loves concrete. Values concrete and what the resulting building is -- as he calls them "his" buildings -- more than his freaking family. Asshole. If he could screw a concrete pie, I bet he'd jump at the chance. Instead he screws a woman other than his wife.
The entire movie takes place inside Mr. Locke's car while he's driving into London to witness the birth of this other woman's baby. Obviously they saved a lot of money using just a car for the setting -- memories for me, and not good ones, of the nightmare that is My Dinner with Andre.
Oh, and by the way, he does not love this other woman, nor has he had, he says, extramarital sex other than this one time. Right, Mr. Locke, I wonder about that.
Anyway if you like concrete -- about half the picture heï¿ 1/2 1/2 1/2(TM)s answering and making phone calls about concrete -- and adultery, then you might enjoy this movie. I don't like either of those things, so for me the movie sucked hard, like dried concrete hard.
But as I say, concrete and adultery lovers might chance this one. I doubt if anyone will revel in this masterpiece, but try it if you like. It's your unrecoverable hour and a half of your life.
Last night I watched Tucker: The Man and His Dream, starring Jeff Bridges and directed by Francis Ford Coppola. This is the true post World War II story of a man who got screwed by the Big Three American automotive makers. Screwed why? Because he had the audacity to design a car that stressed safety and could be produced and offered at low prices. What could be worse for the progress of the automobile, right? Well, now days many of his ideas have been stolen, I mean implemented, by other companies, things as basic and smart as safety belts and padded dashboards.
If you like cars, you'll love this movie. Tucker only produced 50 cars, but there are are still perhaps 44 or 45 in existence. You can bet they're not inexpensive now, guaranteed.
I'm biased because Bridges is one of my favorite actors; he always gives you your money's worth. A true professional. And Martin Landau, nominated for an Oscar for his performance here, does one of his best jobs ever, right up there with his portrayal of Bela Lugosi in Ed Wood, for which he did win an Academy Award.
But these beautiful cars are the true stars of this show. All fifty perform a parade sequence at the end that is stunning. They look like 50 pieces of candy. You want to bite into them. Hollywood did one hell of a great job building those cars for this movie.
So I watched both John Wick One and Two yesterday. I'm glad I did -- I think, cuz no more any nightmares -- yet. I like Keanu Reeves, and I thought he'd disappeared. Yeah, I get that he loves his Mustang, but when those bastards kill his puppy, even I wanted all of them dead -- although I gotta say these movies were both kinda more violent than I care for.
Dude, when you've got John Wick tied up, why in the whole wide world do you have John Wick tied up? Geez, Louise, you know he's a killing machine, so when you have the advantage, why don't you kill him immediately? Kill him before he inevitably kills you. Think, folks, think. K-I-L-L John Wick, you I-D-I-O-T-S. Hollywood, I tell you.
Wick's guaranteed target is the head. Every single time. A hundred times in each movie. So even if he's shot someone five or six or more times already, and broken every bone in the guy's body, notice how he still makes sure to plant one in the head as a final "Let me make sure this guy's dead." In the brain, like the way you kill zombies.
Is it just my perception that most guys can't aim, but John Wick could hit a fly sitting on the moon? Geez. Of the hundred and two or hundred and three folks he kills -- in each movie -- maybe two or three of them can shoot with a teeny tiny bit of accuracy. Lucky for John Wick, because the bullets are flying every-freakin-where.
A word of advice: Don't get into knife fight with John Wick. You will lose. And then he might shoot you in the head, just to make sure you've lost.
John Wick is definitely into the martial arts, and having watched University Lab School grad Enson Inoue (mixed martial artist in Japan specializing in Brazilian jiujitsu), I know that Wick employs the arm bar on several occasions, although he definitely uses a mix of types, not just jiujitsu alone. The same way someone like Jet Li mixes styles to fit the purpose and the choreography of a particular situation.
Oh, and I don't think you can understand some of Two without seeing One, so I suggest you watch One first.
Oh, and Three is on the way.
Oh, and he does steal a new dog in Two, and his totaled Mustang is in the shop getting repaired in anticipation of Three. John Leguizamo boasts he can fix the Mustang, but you know they're just gonna use a new one in the next movie. John Leguizamo is no car repair guy. He's an actor, for goodness sake. Yeah, they'll just use a brand new Mustang that looks like his old one. I'm pretty sure. Cuz that's a hell of a lot of body work. Plus they would have to find a driver's side door, plus who knows what, yeah? I mean there's totaled, and then there is T-O-T-A-L-E-D.
One little anecdote. My mom and dad really wanted to see Speed, but it had already left the theaters. How they got turned onto it, I don't know. So for Christmas I bought them the VHS tape. The three of us watched it together. When it ended my mom said, "That Reeves boy, very good-looking. Too bad he can't act." I think about that every time I watch a Keanu Reeves movie. Can he act? I don't know. I like him no matter.
(Vozvrashcheniye) Beautifully shot, this movie holds a surprise ending which might be difficult to anticipate, but is finally most welcome. Sometimes it may be better that a man who abandons his family not return. Big points to Konstantin Lavronenko for playing this bastard of a father to perfection.
This group pretty much has the action formula down (See them all together with In China They Eat Dogs). The dark humor is good here as well. Big points for the prison escape and the electrocution scene. Most importantly, Kim Bodnia really is a fine actor. I'd like to find something where he can demonstrate his depth and, especially, his range.
The best of the nominated films I've seen so far. If August: Osage County had been nominated as well, it would be a tie for these two. Hats off to Dench and Coogan for their transformative performances.
A quiet tragedy with a great cast. Why wasn't this one nominated for an Oscar? You must see this to see how good Meryl Streep is in it.
An excellent movie, with great performances, especially by Di Caprio and Jonah Hill. If they'd just cut it a bit it could be better. The editor must have been asleep at the wheel.
So far, the best of the Academy Award contenders I've seen. Next would be The Wolf of Wall Street. 12 Years a Slave is a must-see.
A beautiful little movie about growing up and finding your first true love. I know, aren't there about a kazillion movies about this subject. Yes there are. This one stands a little bit above the crowd.
Despite his politics, Eastwood is one of my all-time movie heroes. I'm able to separate the man from his art . . . that's not what I mean. I'm able to keep his politics separate from his art. This is a nearly perfect work of art. And kudos to Justin Timberlake.
Bill Nighy can do no wrong, and Rupert Grint shows he can survive outside the HP franchise.
A beautiful movie. I'm usually disappointed by Oscar nominated movies because all the hype builds up to a let down. This one, however, lives up to its hype. Not only is it a beautiful movie, it's a great love story. Jennifer Lawrence is a comer.
My only bone to pick is the way the central focus on the bipolar life Cooper lives drops out of the film when the dancing takes over.
Happy to say I didn't waste any precious time reading the book. This one is worse than I thought it would be. It's not even a good love story. Still, two stars for Jennifer Lawrence.
Ah, this is a zombie movie, I think. But it really is more like a movie that ALSO has zombies in it. I mean, there's little compelling zombie action in here. And what's with the love story. Don't you think they could have gone ahead just fine without it?
This one wanted to be funny, but it failed. About the only laugh in the theater came from the line about the towel doing too much work. That really had nothing to do with the main thread. That's not good. On the other hand, there was lots of action and special effect work. But that couldn't save this movie.
It's The Rock! Three stars : ) Is it believable? No, of course not. How they ever got Susan Sarandon to play along in this is beyond me, but I say again: It's Dwayne Johnson! Three stars.
GeeeeeZ! Eh, try turning on some lights. I like Peter Howell's "more stupid than scary" comment : )