31 March 2011

{movies} so here's what I think...

When I started this blog, I knew I wanted to write not just about food, but also about other things that I like or find interesting.  One of which was movies I've been to.  What I thought of it and whether I liked it or not.  And herein lies the problem.

Sometimes, I go and see a movie just for pure mind numbing entertainment. I walk out of said movie with no thoughts about whether I liked it or not, how good/bad it was content-wise, cinematography-wise, etc etc.  It was a movie I wanted to see.  And I saw it.  So really, not much to blog about!

Then there are the movies that you know even before going in what it's going to be like and how it'll end.  The kind of movie that you don't expect to walk out of the cinema with an epiphany about life.  But what it did was meet every expectation you had about it (may it be high or low).  And so again, not much to blog about.

Occasionally I do have some thoughts about a movie I'd seen.  And it’s not always some art house movie or one that's won numerous awards.

I haven't been to too many movies lately so had to wait a little before having something to blog about.  In the last couple of weeks or so, I've been to 4.  So tonight I have content!

Now people, just remember. This is not a movie review.  I won't pretend to be an industry expert or some hoity toity reviewer.  You know, the type that slags off just about every other movie they go see except for art house and highly acclaimed, multi-awarded movies - just so they can be seen as 'serious' , capable of 'appreciating art' and a cut above plebs like us.  This is just about the movies I've seen and me putting what I think about these movies down on digital paper and sharing them with you.

BLACK SWAN
I like Natalie Portman. So I generally like most movies she's been in.  Black Swan included.  It was as dark and gripping as all the reviews I’ve read say.  But there were no surprises for me.  From the start of the movie, you already know that Natalie Portman's character has lost it. Her state of mind (predictably) was only going to get worse and not better.  So how the movie ended wasn't a surprise.  I did find myself fist clenched throughout the movie - it was that kind of movie for me.  It went from one 'stressful' scene to the other knowing that this isn't going to end well.  Did the movie deserve all its accolades and awards?  Dunno.  Maybe.  Probably.  Yeah.  I didn't think you could fault the acting, costumes were fabulous, and I liked the story line.  And amid all the hype, it delivered what it promised.  I liked it.

TRUE GRIT
I'm not a fan of the country-western genre.  That's my dad's domain.  He loves those old John Wayne and Clint Eastwood gunslingers.  As a child I watched these on videos (yes, videos) c'os as a child, I had no say what was playing on the video!  Like how I had no say on what was playing in the car tape deck (yep, you read it right - tape deck).  Kenny Rogers, Roy Orbison, Glen Campbell...you get the picture.
Anyway.

But I LOVED True Grit.  Hard to understand accent not withstanding.  No seriously.  And it isn't because I couldn't understand the 'southern' accent.  There are a couple of scenes where Jeff Bridges' character Rooster Cogburn is either so drunk or so mumbly, that I couldn't make out what in the hell he was saying!  But as I said - loved this movie.  Thoroughly enjoyed it.  I even giggled through the shootout scene where Rooster goes head-to-head (or is it horse-to-horse??) with 4 baddies...and he wins of course.  Rooster shoots 'em all dead and I giggle.  Hmmm.  What does that say about me?  Don't answer that.  So.  The only other negative thing I have to say about True Grit, apart from the moments of dialogue incomprehension, is that I was a little so-so about the ending.  Overall, I liked it.  I liked it very much.

BATTLE LOS ANGELES
Yes, yes. I went to see Battle Los Angeles.  Money was exchanged for tickets.  Contrary to popular believes (mainly among the general male population), being female (and straight) does not preclude me from being a fan of movie genres that are traditionally seen as belonging to men, boys and geeks.  I am a big fan of war movies and also heavily CGI’d fantasy/sci fi movies.  Battle LA is kinda a mix of both.

To be honest, I wasn’t expecting much.  One doesn’t go to a movie like this and expect Oscar-winning greatness.  The previews I’ve seen online more or less promised much of the same sameness.  And I wasn’t disappointed.  It had it all.
  • Opening scene with dozens of chinooks in the air with the usual dramatic soundtrack (think a cross between the score from Transformers and Pearl Harbour).
  • Strapping cute soldiers – half of whom die before the movie even hits the halfway mark.
  • One hotter-than-the-rest lead soldier who is appropriately angst filled.
  • One hero that sacrifices himself to save the rest in a very appropriately dramatic scene.
  • Army style pep talk liberally peppered throughout the movie.
  • Cheesy one liners, also liberally peppered throughout the movie.
  • Quite bit of bromance happening – but that can be expected seeing that there was a lot of army style pep talk and cheesy one liners.
  • Extra terrestrials.  Of course.
  • More chinooks in the air and the obligatory scenes of rolling humvees.
  • More dramatic music.
  • Lots and lots and lots...and I mean LOTS of fire power and explosions.
  • Lots and lots and lots of people flying backwards because of these explosions.
  • Lots and lots...and well for most of the movie really, computer animation and special effects.
  • And in this age of global PC-ness, there had to be a female soldier to balance the group out.  Acted of course by none other than Michelle Rodriguez.  She’s so typecast!

I didn’t get anything life changing, nor was there any revelation of any sort and I cringed and sniggered (along with a few others in the cinema) during the pep talk scenes and cheesy one liners.  It’s a perfect example of pure mind numbing entertainment.

And you know what?  I enjoyed every minute of it.  Loved it.

THE KING'S SPEECH
Love Colin Firth – he of the sexy wet shirt swoon worthy Mr Darcy of Pride and Prejudice (pre Keira Knightly and Matthew Macfadyen).  Love anything he’s been in.
Love Geoffrey Rush – no one else could be Capt Barbossa! Love anything (well almost anything) he’s been in.
Loved the story line.
Loved the movie.
Awesome.


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