Thursday, September 27, 2012

Hara-Kiri: Death of a Samurai

This is an enjoyable film. It definitely is worth seeing especially if you haven't seen the original.

But ... I question what the point of this remake was. It's been years since I've seen the original but it seems to be pretty faithful to it. Is this Miike's Psycho remake? Was the 3D a complete joke? It was completely underutilized. I don't get it.

And as a followup to my favorite movie of last year, I found myself even more disappointed in this.

If you haven't seen 13 Assassins or the original, I'd give this an A. If you've seen both of the films I mentioned, I've got to lower this to a B.

Directed by Takashi Miike
2011, U.S. Release: 2012
IFC Center

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Beasts of the Southern Wild

This fable like film had elements of many other films I've seen that I really like but it also felt entirely original. Throw in some George Washington, a dash of Ballast, and a whole helluva lot of Terrence Malick. There were even parts that reminded me a bit of Where the Wild Things Are in a good way. Maybe even a little bit of a gentle David Lynch type feel to it as well in its surreal atmosphere, in particular one of the scenes near the end.

The whole thing feels otherworldy but completely grounded in reality. Is this supposed to be New Orleans when Katrina hits? Is the Bathtub an allegory for something larger? What exactly is happening in the outside world?

The nonprofessional actors were all great. It is hard not to be blown away by the lead actress, 6-year-old Quvenzhané Wallis who plays the perfectly named character Hushpuppy.

I didn't love love this when I was watching it but I've been thinking a lot about it in the past weeks and am sure that I'll be more into it upon a second viewing. This is a definite work of art - I just don't know if I was ready for it on the first viewing.

Directed by Benh Zeitlin
2012
Sunshine Cinemas

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

The Dark Knight Rises


I liked this more than the other two installments but I'm not sure why. Perhaps it was because there was less of Christian Bale's ridiculous Batman voice? I'd be curious to know how many lines Bale had as Batman in this movie compared to the other two. Maybe I'm just used to it now?

Perahaps I liked this more because I liked how most of it was in the day time? I'm definitely not opposed to movies set in the shadows but I loved how bright this film was.

Perhaps I just liked it more because all of the Catwoman rides the motorcycle scenes.

Other thoughts:
- I loved the football scene.

- I dug Bain.

- I was surprised by the twist

- I didn't hate the ending as much as other people.

- The music was a bit overwhelming at times.

- Christopher Nolan has apparently learned to shoot fight scenes better. I thought they were good in this. Remember how hard they were to follow in the first movie.

- I think digital effects might have finally caught up to what I've wanted them to be for years. I thought everyhing looked pretty realistic.

- Exile by death was awesome.

- I liked the Escape from New York feel.

- listened to an interview with Nolan where he talked about how he was inspired by The Battle of Algiers while filming this. I can see that.

- Sad Michael Caine made me happy. That guy can act!

- I found the brief flashbacks helpful considering I've only seen each movie once.

- I liked Scarecrow's cameo.

- That scene in the airplane - AMAZING!

- Will the next movie which will obviously star Robin be directed by Joel Schumacher?

Directed by Christopher Nolan
2012
Kips Bay IMAX

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Easy Money

Disappointing in many ways.

1. Not nearly as good as the Rodney Dangerfield flick.
2. I was in a very good mood to see a movie and this made me feel very tired.
3. Martin Scorsese presents? Come on Marty!
4. James Ellroy's name was thrown around too?
 5. Not nearly as good as Nats 2b Danny Espinosa's year which has been mediocre.

Directed by Daniel Espinosa
2010, U.S. Release: 2012
Film Forum

Monday, September 03, 2012

Moonrise Kingdom

GUEST MOVIE REVIEWER
From an e-mail Chris Larry sent me two days ago:

Mary and I have been wanting to both go to the Callicoon Theatre for almost a year and wanted see Wes Anderson's Moonrise Kingdom all summer, so when we saw that yesterday was the last night for these two desires to converge we leapt for joy..... except what do we do with our three and three quarters year old daughter Amelia? Take her of course!

After conferring with Listmaker and our neighbors we decided we wouldn't be scarring her any worse then living with me was already doing, so off to Callicoon we went. Plied with never ending bucket-o-popcorn, lollypop and dot candy she settled in for her first PG-13 rated movie and loved it.

Her review:

The Movie last night in Callicon was so great.

I liked when:

They went out to nature
When he gave her the earrings
When they first met
When the kitten popped out
When the girl caught a fish
When they played records
When the little brother said "Hey where is my record player"
When they rescued the boy


I ddn't like it when

The police officer threw the tent away, that was scary
When the boys came in the forrest to find the boy and girl

The movie was about

adventure
nature
cats


5 Words
- Kitties
- record player
- adventure
- Love
- Snacks (popcorn, Lollipop, candy dots)