Monday, October 19, 2009

My 2009 Movie Odyssey - Part XIII

The Wrestler (2008)
I am not a fan of professional wrestling, so when I say that I enjoyed the story and Mickey Rourke’s performance, that means something.

Bedlam (1946)
My final Val Lewton film, it offers fewer scares than the previous outings, but it is still very engaging and, of course, very atmospheric.

Sleuth (1972)
Laurence Olivier and Michael Cain go toe-to-toe in a battle of wills that always kept me guessing, with Alec Cawthorne holding his own alongside these two acting legends.

Winchester ‘73 (1950)
This interesting western has a prized rifle as the main character as it constantly changes hands from one unworthy man to another.

Bend of the River (1952)
James Stewart starts as a gunslinger who hires on to lead a wagon train west to their new homestead in this gorgeous western.

Coming up next: 2 numeric films and one real loser.

Monday, October 12, 2009

My 2009 Movie Odyssey - Part XII

Doubt (2008)
This is a well acted tale featuring a righteous crusader of a hero and a truly vile villain; the only question is: which one is the hero and which one is the villain?

Free and Easy (1930)
Buster Keaton’s first sound film was a disappointment since he never really gets to show off his comedy skills, and while there are a couple good bits, it is depressing knowing what MGM did to his career and how far this great comedian fell.

You Don’t Mess with the Zohan (2008)
I was expecting this to be bad, being chock full of Adam Sandler “humor,” but what I was not expecting was countless shots of Sandler’s bare behind and an overdose of perverse sexuality.

Spy Hard (1996)
It is an amusing waste of time, better than most parodies, but not nearly as memorable as Airplane! (1980) and The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad! (1988), with the best part being the theme song performed by Weird Al.

10,000 BC (2008)
After watching the trailer and seeing the billboards, I knew this would be a bad movie, but with all the contrived plot points, poorly constructed characters, impossible geography, and the overall feel that it is The Ten Commandments (1956) remade by atheists, it passed over the “so bad it’s fun” designation into “so bad it’s painful.”

Coming up next: A couple James Stewart westerns and a classic mystery.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

My 2009 Movie Odyssey - Part XI

In Bruges (2008)
While the film took a couple unexpected narrative turns, I failed to see what was so great about this mostly enjoyable but largely forgettable film.

Glengarry Glen Ross (1992)
Since I work at a job involving sales, I could appreciate what some of the characters were going through, but I quickly got tired of the endless angry, profanity-filled monologues.

The Crimson Pirate (1952)
Burt Lancaster is electric in this highly entertaining swashbuckling romp, aided by his equally captivating, non-speaking sidekick who comes across as a cross between Jack Sparrow and Harpo Marx.

Revenge of the Nerds (1984)
Ever since I saw this title I knew I had to see the film, and it was pretty much what I expected: raunchy 80s comedy that is funny in parts but one which I would be embarrassed to watch in the company of women and children.

Guys and Dolls (1955)
The opening musical sequence is amazing and the dialog was fun to listen to, but all too quickly the musical numbers turned run-of-the-mill, but still the whole experience is an enjoyable one.

Coming up next: two movies virtually guaranteed to make my bottom ten of the year.