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Thursday, August 17, 2006
Pay Full Price
Crank: Jason Statham in a film which unapologetically advertises itself as ninety minutes of him kicking people and causing mayhem? Hell, I may camp outside the theater for it.
The Prestige: Of the two films about a supernaturally tinged mystery involving magicians in the Victorian period, this looks to be the better of the two, given the pedigree of cast and creators. It looks to be the one that's most willing to keep the tone honest and the plot on track.
Tenacious D in The Pick of Destiny: Just when I think I'm finally bored of Jack Black and Tenacious D...this has to come along. I suspect I'm still fairly tired of the shtick, but there's enough hints of genuinely funny stuff in the trailer to make me at least want to see it.
Stranger Than Fiction: A metatextual comedy that plays with the boundaries between fiction and reality, but without dredging into a cloying, "we're so clever" sense of self-importance? Are such things possible?
Beerfest: A new Broken Lizard comedy...yes, I'll go see it. No, I have no shame. Or pride.
Eh, That's What Netflix is For
Another Gay Movie: To be honest, the "raunchy teen sex comedy" was past it's sell-by date with Porky's 3, and the latest generation, as exemplified by the American Pie movies have been notably unfunny. And so the prospect of doing a gay spin on the genre doesn't feel me with much enthusiasm, especially with an unimaginative title riffing off the Not Another Teen Movie/Scary Movie/Date Movie convention. But, there are some funny comedians in here, and it is nice to see someone at least attempting a gay teen movie that isn't focused on coming out dramas.
Say Uncle: I get what this film is trying to do, but I guess I just don't see the apparent hilarity in a film about a paranoid anti-pedophile witchhunt scapegoating an innocent gay man.
Pusher Trilogy: I wouldn't generally be one to show much interest in an Eastern European Danish crime-drama with pretensions to high art, but the premise of interlinking the films so that what appeared to be a minor character becomes important by watching all three is the kind of thoughtful plotting and storytelling I appreciate, and I'm curious to see if the films can pull it off.
The Amateurs: Lovable small time losers team up to make a full-length amateur porn film? I have to admit, the concept is there, and they're playing it as an intelligent comedy for grown-ups. I half wonder if the forces of moral decency will feel compelled to weigh in. That might make for some entertainment as well.
Babel: "Hey boys and girls, can you say 'pretentious'?" "Heavy handed political allegory aimed at boutique liberals!" "That's right kids!"
The Fountain: Is there a movie in there somewhere, or just a series of pretty pictures and spinning camera-shots? Now, I like pretty movies, and I like looking at Hugh Jackman. But the barest semblance of a plot or story would be nice too.
Children of Men: This must be the season for blatantly subtle allegory on current political themes or something. I'm not sure there's much more to be said on "women being reduced to their fertility in sci-fi parable" that Margaret Atwood didn't already say.
Sleeping Dogs Lie: A sex farce from Bobcat Goldthwait? Yeah, that sounds good. Is it really about what it looks like it's about? Yeah? ... Netflix is anonymous, right?
Infamous: Another Truman Capote movie. But unlike a tepid biopic, this one looks to have a stronger and more central focus, which alone makes me more interested in this one than that other one.
The Reaping: Bible-horror is very hit or miss with me. When it's good, it can be amongst the best in the horror genre. When it's bad...it's a utter disaster. I predict lots of red herrings and misdirections and "nothing is what it appears" and "nearly tragic misunderstanding of events narrowly averted by the heroine's sudden realization at the 80 minute mark."
The Black Dahlia: See, under normal circumstances, I'd be down with the idea of a period mystery based on James Ellroy's work. But when I see Josh Hartnett in the lead, somehow, the character loses credibility with me.
Night at the Museum: Ah, special effects in place of plot or character. It must be a Christmas release.
The Illusionist: The other magician movie. The one I have no confidence in the quality of because they're using connections to Crash and Sideways to sell it.
Hollywoodland: Pretty much the entire cast of this film has steadily managed to make me bored and disinterested in their work over the years. It's like it wants to be L.A. Confidential, or at least Mulholland Falls, but lacks the talent or story to be anything other than a glorified E! True Hollywood Story.
Renaissance: You can dress it up as much as you like...rotoscoping still makes for ugly, stiff, clumsly looking animation. Oh, excuse me..."motion captured" animation. Feh.
Borat: People who should know better keep telling me that this is funny. Clearly my friends are insane.
Lucy You: How I imagine this film was pitched: "It's about a pro poker player-which is all the rage with the kids these days, who's struggling to make sense of his life, with a hacked in romantic subplot so chicks will go see it too." "Great, but can we make the lead have some daddy issues? That always makes for a compelling film."
Boynton Beach Club: An overly earnest sex comedy about people living in a retirement community? Yeah, I'm still thankfully several decades too young to appreciate this.
The Marine: Aw, man, this promises to be a hilarious parody of every dumb, over-used, action movie cliche in the book. ... What do you mean it's not meant to be funny?
The Grudge 2: I thought the original Japanese film was so bad, I never even bothered with the American remake. I can't say that anything I see here makes me anymore charitably inclined towards the franchise. Looks to be pretty much exactly what was done before.
Material Girls: Oh, look, talentless bimbettes on minute 14. Can't wait to catch them sharing the upper left square on Hollywood Squares 2010.
My First Wedding: Can we just go ahead and declare a moratorium on romantic comedies that base their premise on one person thinking someone is someone they're not, falling in love with that person, discovering the truth, acting angry for fifteen minutes, and then running to the person because it doesn't matter that their entire relationship is based on a lie spoken in an attempt to get into the first person's pants?
Employee of the Month: Wow...Jessica Simpson and Dane Cook together. It's like an homage to mediocrity and unearned celebrity.
Marie Antoinette: "Cool. It's like Marie Antoinette was totally a party girl and really into having fun and hanging out with her homies and just having a good time, y'know? I'm so totally going to make her my, like, lifelong inspiration, so that I can be just like her." "Decapitated?"
The Guardian: Kevin Costner and Ashton Kutcher in a film about male bonding with no homosocial overtones whatsoever, uh-uh, nosireebob. I kind of hope that, during the making of this film, Kutcher saw Costner and suddenly had a glimpse of his future. A sad, aging relic whose best work is far behind him.