Sunday, December 31, 2006

New Year's Moviethon

Once or twice a year I have enough time to knit on the couch and watch endless movies. I rarely go to the movie theatre. It's not much of a bargain if you think about it and you can't pause the movie to go to the bathroom (or to fix a dropped stitch). Funny how just 5 years ago I would watch this many movies on a thrice weekly basis.

So here's what we've caught up on so far:

Tristram Shandy A Cock and Bull Story

Art School Confidential
A Scanner Darkly
Little Miss Sunshine
Talladega Nights
Pirates of the Carribean 2 Dead Man's Chest
Clerks 2
The Family Stone

Tristram Shandy: It was just ok. Seems to prove that the film industry is full of wankers. However, it did reawaken my desire to write a master's thesis on the period genre*, using this film as an example of how one can skewer the genre in a comedic way (which also reminds me of Singing in the Rain -it too has a period film skewering comedic scene).

*note: I've decided that pursuing a master's thesis in the period genre would be rather wanky of me -it seems rather self indulgent and not too valuable to the rest of the world.

Art School Confidential: I love Daniel Clowes. His previous film Ghost World changed my life and introduced me to Mr. G, but Ghost World is 100 times better than Art School Confidential. Unfortunately the main character in Art School Confidential changes dramatically for not any particular good reason. The film tries to go dark, but without sacrificing it's light touch and it doesn't work. I actually stopped the movie at the point I lost interest and fast forwarded to the end. (another good reason to watch movies at home). I liked the ideas presented, especially about plagiarism and about the reasons why young men want to be great artists, however the follow through was lacking.

A Scanner Darkly: Better than the two abovementioned films. It's nice to see Winona Ryder back in the movies. I'm desperately awaiting her comeback. Even if the film's a bit slow, it's a familiar reflection upon the other side of suburban life. Despite that the film is set 7 years in the future, it seems that the film could be about the present especially with oxycontin and crystal meth taking the suburbs by storm. And Keanu Reeve's laid back acting style works for him this time. One of my favorite films of the year.

Little Miss Sunshine: There was a lot of hype around this film and everyone pushed me to see it. That's the silly thing about hype is that it hightens your expectations. And while LMS was funny with some remarkable moments and fantastic acting, the ending just fizzled out. Making it a good film, not the great one everyone was talking about. Still it's rent-worthy.

Talladega Nights: It was funny, but it poked fun at the south. And that's it. Considering how few portrayals there are of Southern America in our cinema it seems a shame that they couldn't balance it a bit with a little poke here and there at liberals*. It gives Hollywood a bad name.
*note I am a liberal democrat and as such I don't like to see any one region singled out for ridicule. The film needed some balance, and it's lack of one showed why Hollywood has such a bad reputation in this regard.

Pirates of the Caribbean 2 Dead Man's Chest: Too long. Too slow. Sequal. That said I'll still eventually rent the 3rd one.

Clerks 2: Glad I didn't see this one in the theatre. It was still funny with some touching moments -loved Rosario Dawson. And the progression of the characters made sense. Wow this movie, despite it's interspecies erotic comedy was better than Art School Confidential. Didn't see that coming.

The Family Stone: As far as all of these films go, this one had the best screenplay out of all of them. The familial conflicts were interesting and realistic. And it's the only film out of the bunch that made me feel good, which I suppose makes me a sentimentalist. Cute, funny and I was interested in all of the characters. And the story makes them come together in an engaging way.

And on this holiday week I've managed to read 2 books: Knitting Under the Influence and A Good Yarn, both books are worthy breaks from my knitting projects. I wasn't sure I was going to like them...


1 comment:

Polly said...

I'm doing the same. HAPPY NEW YEAR!