Saturday, September 26, 2009

My 2009 Movie Odyssey - Part X

Let the Right One In (2008)
I mostly liked this different take on vampires though the ending is a little twisted (and I wonder what it would have been like going into the movie not knowing it was about a vampire).

The Body Snatcher (1945)
Boris Karloff is suitably creepy in yet another atmospheric gem from producer Val Lewton.

The Wages of Fear (1953)
The film starts out slow and boring, but becomes an absolutely gripping tale as four men must navigate a pair of trucks loaded down with nitroglycerin through the South American rain forest, driving on poorly maintained roads, where the slightest bump could spell certain doom for the drivers.

Grosse Pointe Blank (1997)
This is an amusing tale about a professional assassin who rethinks his life after reconnecting with Minnie Driver.

Rachel Getting Married (2008)
Anne Hathaway puts in a wonderful performance in this surprisingly likeable story about a wedding that at times almost feels like the ultimate wedding video (though I don’t mean that in a bad way).

Coming up next: a rip-roaring good time and a film I watched solely because of the title.

Monday, September 14, 2009

My 2009 Movie Odyssey - Part IX

The Evil Dead (1981)
This fun, gory B-movie makes up in inventiveness what it lacks in production value.

Ishtar (1987)
The film has some truly funny moments, but it gets bogged down in an overlong opening that is practically a different movie from the rest of the film.

OSS 117: Cairo, Nest of Spies (2006)
This is a pretty funny French spy thriller parody, though I can’t figure out if it’s a brilliant satire of European colonialism or merely a thinly veiled criticism of Bush's foreign policy.

Blowup (1966)
I found the main character repulsive in this film in which a whole lot of nothing happens for the first half of the film, and when he discovers a murder and things start to get interesting, a whole lot more nothing happens and nothing is resolved.

The Incredible Mr. Limpet (1964)
While I’m sure I would have liked it as a kid, I found the whole thing little more than silly and amusing fun, yet largely unforgettable.

Coming up next: 3 intense movies and 2 homecomings.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

My Life According to They Might Be Giants

And now for something completely different...

Using only song names from ONE ARTIST, cleverly answer these questions. Try not to repeat a song title. It's a lot harder than you think!

I decided to go with They Might Be Giants since they have lots of songs on lots of topics with interesting titles. Some of these had more than one good answer, but I decided to go with the best one.

-Are you a male or female? - Mr. Me

-Describe yourself: - No One Knows My Plan

-How do you feel right now? - Everything Right Is Wrong Again

-If you could go anywhere, where would you go? - Istanbul (Not Constantinople)

-Your favorite form of transportation: - Rocket Ship

-Describe Your Morning Routine: - Don't Let's Start

-Your best friend is: - My Evil Twin

-What's the weather like? - Why Does the Sun Shine?

-Pet Peeve? - Man, It's So Loud in Here

-If your life was a TV show, what would it be called? - Experimental Film

-Your relationship status: - All Alone, All By Myself

-Your Fear: - Everything Is Catching on Fire

-What is the best advice you have to give? - Careful What You Pack

-If you could change your name, you would change it to? - Doctor Worm

-What do you say when you are frustrated? - When It Rains It Snows

-Thought for the day: - C Is for Conifers

-How you would like to die? - I Hope That I Get Old Before I Die

-Your soul's present condition: - Kiss Me, Son of God

-Your motto: - I Should Be Allowed to Think

My 2009 Movie Odyssey - Part VIII

61* (2001)
This entertaining story of Mickey Mantle and Roger Marris’ race to break Babe Ruth’s single-season home run record is highly recommended for baseball fans.

Tropic Thunder (2008)
I liked the Hollywood satire parts of the film, and Robert Downy Jr. was quite fun, but the film descended into crassness too often for my tastes.

Watchmen (2009)
While the visuals are great, the story wallows in moral relativism, most of the characters are not terribly compelling, and the violence is needlessly brutal.

Sabotage (1936)
This early Hitchcock work is mostly mediocre but features a bus sequence that gives a glimpse of what Hitchcock would become.

Get Smart’s Bruce and Lloyd Out of Control (2008)
This spinoff of Get Smart is mostly funny but gets unnecessarily earthy in places.

Coming up next: a cult classic and an infamous bomb.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

My 2009 Movie Odyssey - Part VII

Hair (1979)
Hippies are the true saviors of mankind!

Ball of Fire (1941)
This very funny screwball comedy features Gary Cooper as an absentminded professor and Barbara Stanwyck as the woman disrupts his attentions and steals his heart, as well as a wonderful cast of supporting characters played by a who’s who of old man character actors.

The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974)
This taught, small-scale thriller features Walter Matthau as a New York transit authority worker who has to deal with hijackers who hold hostage a subway train full of people.

In Cold Blood (1967)
This is kind of an interesting character study that goes on way too long and I never really latched on to any of the characters (and it’s not much of a courtroom drama, AFI).

Sixteen Candles (1984)
The movie has it’s moments, but it is filled with caricatures who are overly obsessed with getting the right boy/girlfriend.

Coming up next: three one word titles.