Friday, May 30, 2008

Movie Wrap-Up


Farrah’s uncle Bruce is an actor. You’d know his face and voice in a second because he’s been in tons of Mormon church videos and he’s the voice of Adam in the temple video. At Christmas this last year, he was telling us about a movie he was in with Jessica Lange, Kathy Bates, and Joan Allen and his big scene with Bates. I almost didn’t believe him, even though he’d have no reason to lie. The film was Bonneville and I’ve been waiting for it to get released in Denver so I could go and support him.

Well, his scene must have been cut because I only saw him in the background once. Not a super loss since the movie isn’t that good. It’s basically, these three woman (all playing Mormons) who go on a road trip from Pocatello to SoCal to deliver Lange’s dead husband’s ashes. The typical road trip shenanigans ensue.

The film brings nothing new to the road movie genre, but the actresses are all watchable and do what they can with the innocuous material. Allen plays the buttoned up Mormon who shutters at the sight of coffee and the sound of a curse word. Bates is the more rebellious Mormon, who drinks the coffee and says the curse words that make Allen cringe. Lange is never labeled a Mormon, but it’s assumed. It’s awkward hearing them try to act and sound like us. It doesn’t feel natural at all, especially to those of us who know the difference.

Apparently, this film sat on the shelf for a couple years. Not surprised as it basically feels like a church movie, all fuzzy and innocent. It isn’t terrible, but also isn’t memorable in any way.

Score: 4

Indiana Jones 4

In preparation for Indy, I rewatched the 3 prequels again. Most people grew up with that franchise, but not me. I’ve seen Raiders maybe 4 times, but once in the last 20 years. I only just saw Doom about 7 years ago and Crusade I haven’t seen since the theater. Classics like Back to School were more my steez. Raiders is a masterpiece, Doom is so horrible I can hardly even stand to sit through it, and Crusade was a solid ending and good fun. I went into Skull sure that I was about to see another Doom. Luckily, I was wrong.

The actual story is so ridiculous and nonsensical I won’t even begin to recap it. The bottom line is, the action kept me on the edge of my seat and it was a good time, more or less, from start to finish. It reminded me of the last Die Hard. Totally over the top, but good fun nonetheless. Harrison Ford has almost completely lost his mojo, and manages to lug and crank his way through this one. Luckily for him, but sadly for us, there is so much CGI that he’s practically a supporting player. Karen Allen is wonderful and seeing her again made me wish she was in more stuff. Shia was fine, a nice jolt of sarcasm.

A part of me felt a little ashamed of myself for going. I felt like such a lemming to Spielberg and Lucas. Those two tell the world it’s time to jump and we all oblige. I normally know better, but there wasn’t much else to see on Memorial Day. It doesn’t make it any easier that the story is so stupid. It even includes martians and spaceships. The skull itself looks like a clear plastic football stuffed with tin foil. Still, I had a good time and was glad I saw it on the big screen.

Score: 7


21 is another example where the book, Bringing Down The House, was WAY better. 21 is clearly a dumbed down, Hollywoodized version of a much grittier, dirtier story. But, that doesn’t make it a bad movie. It works fine on its own terms for what it is.

The biggest surprise was that Kevin Spacey didn’t make me want to punch him. I actually kind of liked him. He and Laurence Fishburne were really the only jolts of interest, since the rest of the cast are mostly faceless and forgettable.

They make breaking Vegas look so easy and it seems the only recourse is for the pit bosses to just beat the bejesus out of someone until they leave. It’s as if Santa had a posse of elves who went out and beat people who stopped believing in him into submission to keeping the secret to themselves. I hear Tom Cruise approaches his homosexuality in a similar fashion.

Score: 7


cmontroy said...

yea so i thought Indiana Jones was a total disappointment. A super eak story line. Come on aliens? Retarded.

cmontroy said...

i mean super weak not super eak - opps!