Friday, June 25, 2010

Movie Catch-up

Ok, so I know I promised to blog about every movie (new to me movie) I watched and I've been kinda lax about doing that in a timely manner. So here are my reviews of the movies I've seen recently, though they might be shorter than usual.

Get Him to the Greek (2010)
Saw Saturday 6/19/2010 at local multiplex with my mom
Directed by Nicolas Stoller
Cast includes
Jonah Hill as Aaron Green
Russell Brand as Aldous Snow
Sean "P Diddy" Combs as record label head Sergio Roma
Rose Byrne as Jackie Q
and tons of celebrity cameos

This was a pretty hilarious send up of current pop/rock/celebrity culture, with a very healthy dose of rauch and gross humor. I was skeptical at first that a movie about a minor supporting character from Forgetting Sarah Marshall would work, but, upon further thought, Brand's Aldous Snow was probably the least whangsty introspective, but still funny, part about that movie, so I guess it was a good call to make a summer comedy about him. I do have to say that I think my favorite bits in the movie come from Byrne's Jackie Q, the raunchy popstar ex-wife of Aldous Snow, and the "The Jeffrey"/furry wall drug sequence. I hope that "The Jeffrey" makes its way into our illegal drug lexicon, though I'm not sure it really exists. I definately recommend it if you like other comedies directed or produced by Judd Apatow, though with some less sad-sack guys featured.

Oh, and sidenote: Rose Byrne's British accent was really good. I'd watched her on Damages on FX and just felt "meh" about her, but I found her really funny in this movie. Until I saw it, I guess I just assumed that she was American, but it turns out she's Aussie, so she seems pretty good at those accents to me. Also, in one scene, at Snow's very Brit themed NY apartment, Green wakes up using what looks like a British Union Jack flag as a blanket, which made me wonder if they have real quilts that are made out of soft fabric but look like the Brit flag. If so, I want one.

Black Is...Black Ain't (1994)
Watched on DVD Monday 06/21/2010 at Miss Kee's house
Directed by Marlon Riggs
Documentary including commentary from Riggs himself, Angela Davis, bell hooks, Barbara Smith, and Cornel West

Hmmm so I'm kinda speechless about this movie, unless I'm talking to someone else who has also seen this movie and is interested in the topics it brings up. So the short of it is that it's a really... interesting doesn't quite cover it but I guess it'll do, interesting nontraditional documentary about African-American life, touching on how it intersects with feminism and homosexuality and gender identity. But that doesn't quite seem to cover it. It was produced, directed, and featured Marlon Riggs, a gay African-American poet, filmmaker, and activist, who would die from AIDS before the film could be properly finished. It was sorta amazing to Miss Kee and myself that this was done back in 1994, but many of the issues haven't really changed. I think that to me, the most exilarhating part was getting to see Angela Davis and bell hooks talk about their personal experiences of being young black women. But I think I most liked it because it dealt with these issues in a very upfront, honest, but personal matter.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)
Ok, so it wasn't the first time I saw it. I originally went to see it with TyRoy at a local art house theater about a month ago. I'd read the book it is based on, the first in a series of three internationally bestselling Swedish novels, and TyRoy was reading it at the time. Miss Kee called me last week, asking if I'd heard about a movie that she'd been told about by a customer at work. This movie. So we went to see it together. She liked it.

I still liked it, though a second viewing allowed me to wonder about how much is lost on someone like Miss Kee, who hasn't read the books and probably isn't going to. It's a big story to fit in a two and a half hours.

A part of me is always interested in audience reaction when I see a movie in a theater. Or even with friends at home. When TyRoy and I went to see this movie, we were a bit worried for the audience. There are several brightly-lit scenes of sexual violence. We observed many.... um, how to put this nicely.... older people there. Many who looked older than my mom, who's in her early 50s. Now, because there is a good story, I think I might recommend it to my mom, but only with very strong warnings about the sexual violence. TyRoy and I heard some of the people talking about having read the book, so they should have known what they were in for, though I still contend that this movie shows the sexual violence in a more brightly-light, unblinking way than most American movies. But many of those older people talked solely about the rave reviews the movie recieved from the local paper. (Oh, yeah, and obviously we were eavesdropping.) We had read the review and it didn't warn about the violence. We were worried about these folks. But not as many people left as I thought. One woman my age left during one brutal scene, which I didn't blame her for. I'm starting to think that there should be a "Trigger Warning" website, just like many religious people go to movie review websites that tell them how in line (or not in line) a movie may be with their religious and moral beliefs, before they let their kids watch them or even watch them themselves. The second time I saw it, on a weekday afternoon, there were considerably less people there. But during the last major brutal scene of sexual violence, one older man left the theater, via the exit up front, by the screen. Miss Kee and I discussed the possible reasons for his departure after the film ended. She shared my first impression, that he had left solely because this scene involved sexual violence against a man, unlike the others. I thought that we should allow room for the explanation that he had just seen several scenes of sexual violence and thought that rest of the rather long movie would be like that, though it isn't after that scene.

Ok, well, that's it. I'm caught up. Nighty-night.

1 comment:

Maria said...

As always well written, Im half wondering if starting a movie critique blog seperate from your life blogs might be good for you? Maybe it could parlay off into something profitable?