Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A Few Films reviewed This Moring

French Film
A cute romantic comedy w/ everyone's favorite Karate Kicking French striker, Eric Cantona. He plays a film maker being interviewed by a British documentarian about the art of love. The film was directed by Jackie Oodney, a female Scottish directer... maybe the only one on the planet. when she was younger, she worked on the Second Unit for Spice World which leads me to ask a few questions. 1) Spice World actually had a Second Unit? 2) Why is she loving to work w/ people associated w/ Man U... first Victoria Beckham & now Eric Cantona? It's not fantastic, but it's fun watching Cantona ham it up... although I still think this display was his best performance ever. Play Beautiful, indeed!

Fear and Trembling
The video box suggests that it's a cross between Lost in Translation & Secretary so we gave it a whirl the other night. I see why those comparisons were made, but it also has a sort of Gone w/ the Wind/Birth of a Nation thing going on. It's a beautiful film w/ really cool performances, but the racist undertones are really apparent. It's about a Belgian woman working for a Japanese corporation in the early '90s. She faces every stereotypical Japanese character known to film. Of course, when it's made clear that she has some homoerotic desires for her boss, the alluring, beautiful, angry Japanese woman, we never even get to see the hot scenes they suggest will be coming.

Angels & Demons
I've never had any desire to read Dan Brown's books, but I kind of lke the movies. They're fun & thoughtless... kind of like National Treasure. It seems as though Tom Hanks & Ron Howard got together & said, "Hey, you're a liberal intellectual... I'm a liberal intellectual... let's make an action movie for liberal intellectuals." It's exciting, but not too exciting. It's fun, but not too fun. It's thought-provoking, but not too thought-provoking. As if they custom made it for the 50-something, rich, guilty, pseudo-Buddhists in Ann Arbor & Madison. Ewan McGregor is pretty good though... @ least once his character actually gets to do something.

The Time Traveler's Wife
Recently, I've heard a few different people say, "This is my favorite book... ever!" which makes me assume they haven't read that many books. It's fun & worth reading, but to suggest it's the greatest ever is clearly ridiculous. And the film is a kind of watered down version of the book. The punk stuff is left out... as are the Michigan references (her childhood house is in it, but it's not clear where it is & I don't even think it's clear that it's on the lake). The sexiness of the book is totally left out in favor of some sort of soft-focus designed for Lifetime. If you're like me & dig time travel stories, it's definitely worth watching, but it's not going to win any awards. We watched a Twilight Zone episode last night where Russell Johnson (well, not him, but his character) goes back in time to the night of Lincoln's assassination & tries to stop it. I was hoping he'd use some coconuts to radio for help, but, alas, it was not to be. Of course, Lost is on tonight, so I guess we get to get inundated w/ crazy time-travel stories this week!

Taking Woodstock
This was a pretty cool movie. Maybe even the best thing I've seen since Inglorious Bastards. Eugene Levy & the guy ho plays Michael Lang are great, & it's got the most accurate representation of an acid trip I've ever seen in a movie. (Of course, this claim is based on things I've read & what I've been told by friends & acquaintances. Overall, it's kind of cheesy, & it's romanticization of the 1960s is over the top, but it's well worth seeing. Maybe Ang Lee's best film since Sense & Sensibility.

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