Monday, December 21, 2009

My 2009 Movie Odyssey - Part XVII

Following (1998)
The directorial debut from Christopher Nolan tells an interesting story that keeps its audience guessing until the very end with his signature nonlinear storytelling out in full force.

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (2009)
The beginning is loud, confusing, and overblown, and the ending drags on too long with far too many explosions, but the second act works for the most part with the Transformers actually getting more developed characters this time around.

Sense and Sensibility (1995)
It was pleasant enough, but a bit of a disappointment since I rather enjoyed Pride and Prejudice (2005).

At the Circus (1939)
This time around the Marx Brothers play detective in this fun romp that has several wonderfully comic scenes.

Murder at the Vanities (1934)
The film cuts between a murder investigation backstage at a theatre which is rather entertaining and the on stage musical numbers that are obviously inspired by the Ziegfeld follies and surprisingly racy.

San Diego I Love You (1944)
This funny movie about an amateur inventor and his slightly overzealous daughter and their move to San Diego to get funding for one of his inventions is highlighted by a wonderful cameo by Buster Keaton (in which he actually smiles!).

Cavalcade (1933)
Much like Cimarron (1931) and Giant (1956), Cavalcade tries to tell the story of a geographical region through the lens of one family, and just like the former two films, ends up being tedious and far too long (though there were two very memorable moments).

Angels with Dirty Faces (1938)
James Cagney defines charismatic evil as a gangster just released from prison who becomes an idol for a group of neighborhood kids, much to the chagrin of his childhood friend and local priest.

Beach Blanket Bingo (1965)
This is a little less dumb than How to Stuff a Wild Bikini (1965) and Buster Keaton’s supporting role is actually funny this time around, taking advantage of his talent for physical comedy instead of ignoring them.

The Scarlet Pimpernel (1982)
The scenes with Percy as the Pimpernel and as the upper class twit are both loads of fun, but the rest of the movie drags and could have benefitted from losing half an hour or more of run time.

Coming up next: television translated to the big screen and an unorthodox musical.

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