Wednesday, August 09, 2006

What I saw last week 8/7-8/13

From favorite to least favorite
Freaks and Geeks: This is as good as the British version of The Office. I watched all 18 episodes and wanted to watch them again. From this I see why James Franco is a star, he's really funny and a little crazy. He could grow up to be Jack Nicholson. Please, somebody put him in a movie where he doesn't just pout. The writing is superb and the cast are all achingly real. And it's funny. Good gravy is it funny.

The Descent: Not as scary as they would have you believe. I heard that critics were wimpering. Really? Wimpering? It was pretty scary but wimpering? I'm glad they didn't do that retarded horror movie thing where the main character fights a monster in a skimpy clothing. Nope they were dressed like spelunkers all the way through.

World Trade Center: I liked it. I didn't like it as much as United 93 but it was much more of a feel good story. Not one for the ages but I cried.

Sanjuro: The Kurosawa films I like best have the most action. I like this a lot more than Rashamon or Ikiru but not quiet as much as The Seventh Samuri or Yojimbo. But there was some good funny stuff and if I had the money I'd add it to my DVD collection.

Night of the Comet: It's funny that movies that embraced the look and philosophies of the eighties tend to look even more alien than movies from the 1930's. This is as dated as anything I've ever seen. In this the same comet that destroyed the dinasours destroys all humans except for those who for some reason spend the night in something steal. And some humans turn into zombies. Not nearly as good as Omego Man (but what end of the world movie is?) but still kind of fun. In a very cheesy way.

Running Time: Bruce Campbell heist movie. Fun. Shot as if it was all in one take. I could only spot a couple of the scene breaks although according to the commentary there were about 30. Not a great movie but I'll see Bruce Campbell in anything.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love Freaks and Geeks! It really rang true to me. Sometimes painful, sometimes heart warming, but always funny. It is really sad that there is only one season of it, because it is definately one of the best things I have seen on TV in a long time. I think that it was marketed wrong. Harris, I think, is one of the best characters ever. I have never seen anyone portray the nerd more acurately. I wish there was more of him in it.
I have not seen World Trade Center but it looks just like everything I do not want from a movie about 9/11. United 93 I feel was just about perfect. It didn't play with our emotions with special effects or melodramatic soundtracks. The movie was emotional in and of itself. The World Trade Center preview alone felt manipulative. I can only imagine what sitting through the entire movie would be like. Granted, I haven't seen it, so...
Sanjuro is, in my opinion, Kurosawa's most entertaining movie. Ran is definately my favorite of his, but Sanjuro is the most fun to watch. I think the editting is terrific and the character development is perfect. The story has structure and it moves. One of the problems with a number of Kurosawa movies is the really long scenes that could be good if they were editted down, for example, last scene in Ikiru, and Kagemusha, also the scene in Throne of Blood where they are lost in the forest, a number of scenes in Seven Samurai, and Dodeskaden needs about 90% of it editted. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE kurosawa movies but I think they could have been better.
I haven't seen any of the other movies mentioned but the funniest moment in my life was when Bruce Campbell said "Give me some sugar, baby" in Army of Darkness.

12:07 PM  
Blogger Brandon said...

On Sanjuro:


I showed Sanjuro to my film history class last term. I had seen it about six years ago and didn't remember it that well. So the bell rang right before it ends, right when Mifune is going to meet that other warrior. Alls I knew is there was only a minute or two left, I didn't know what was going to happen. So I paused it and told the class that anyone who wanted to go to lunch, but if you wanted to see the end I'd play it. So about half the class left, and I unpause the movie, and right then the guy goes for his sword and mifune spins and slashes his stomach open and blood spurts everywhere and the faithful half of the class' jaws all dropped and then they exploded as you would expect high school boys to explode after seeing something like that. It was a priceless moment. Most of them had thought the movie was pretty cool until then, but were disappointed at the lack of blood, but I guess that made the payoff all the better.

8:57 PM  

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