Monday Morning Quarterback Part III
By BOP Staff
August 8, 2012
Go to the movies. Seriously. Just go.
Kim Hollis: Which movies have you seen lately? What are your thoughts?
Jason Barney: Through Netflix and Hulu we have watched a number of Civil War films, with this being the 150th anniversary. Re-watched North and South Books I and II, Gettysburg, Glory, God's and Generals. In my mind Gettysburg is a near classic film. I have watched certain scenes from it too many times to remember. I tend to enjoy the war pics, though. Great soundtrack to that one.
In the theaters, I most recently saw Ice Age with my son. He enjoyed it, and honestly, it wasn't that bad. I didn't walk away discovering the meaning of life, but Sam was entertained. Saw the Amazing Spider-Man. It was better than I thought it would be, but nothing special. I thought The Lizard was overdone, they didn't need to make him a big beast. He could have been creepier. Hope to see a film or two this week.
Edwin Davies: I took advantage of an offer a theater near me have where you can see any film at any time for half price in order to catch up on films I've been meaning to see: The Amazing Spider-Man, Magic Mike and Killer Joe.
I pretty much hated Spider-Man. I liked the two leads but found the storytelling to be leaden and dull, as if the film-makers felt like they were just going through the motions of telling the Spider-Man origin because they had to, rather than because they had a new take on it. The action was better handled than the character stuff, which veered wildly from moody and introspective to WACKY COMEDY ANTICS in a way that hurt both the drama and the humor of the film, and as such I found that I just didn't care about what was going on. It didn't help that The Lizard looked awful, but as is often the case with effects-heavy films, if you're complaining about the effects it's because the rest of the film isn't up to much.
Magic Mike was a lot of fun, even though I didn't really care about anything happening in it. I think that's largely Soderbergh's intention, though: he wanted to show what life is like for a male stripper in a pretty realistic way so he worked that into a pretty generic All About Eve plot with a standard romance. The world of the film was so well realised and the performances were so fun that it didn't matter that nothing in it seemed to be of any consequence.
Killer Joe is a deeply, deeply unpleasant film that I pretty much adored. It's not much more than a deep-fried spin on Double Indemnity, but that film is so amazing that even a copy of it is going to have to actively work to be terrible. I can see it putting people off, particularly once it gets into the ridiculously sleazy final third, but I really enjoyed watching a bunch of idiots bite off more than they can chew, then suffer the consequences.
I also watched the 1981 film Cutter's Way on DVD for the first time and it was every bit as great as I had been told. A murder mystery starring Jeff Bridges and John Heard, it's a really compelling and entertaining film that I get the feeling has been forgotten over the years, but I would really recommend it.