04 August 2007

The Darwin Awards

Low budget. Bad story. Poor lighting. Cheap sets. A disjointed array of disparate stories and disinterested characters help to paint a story devoid of substance or charm.

Metallica makes an appearance (performing two songs). Judas Priest is on the soundtrack.

Lukas Haas appears in a film with Winona Rider again (although the two never appearance on thsescreen together). Josh Charles has a cameo.

2 out of 5 stars.

01 August 2007

Sunshine

I have seen all of Danny Boyle's movies.

And calling this his worst movie is like saying, this is the worst Filet Mignon I've ever had at Spago's.

But this movie is more science that art, something he's never tried before.

It's a combination of Solaris and 2001 (with one Aliens joke), with all the bad parts taken out.

The traditional themes of being lost in an impossible world are not there is this movie. Certainly the end of the world motif creeps up again, as always in Boyle's films. But this time, the conflict between man seems direct and without a big picture reflection (despite the big picture ideology of some of the cast).

It's so hard to convey because this film isn't "obvious" but there are homages and touches to the genre again and again. Boyle gets it. Even if the screenwriter is clumbsy at times.

Anyway.

Fantastic movie. Even if my review meanders.

Rescue Dawn

Believe it or not, this is my first Herzog movie.

I know.

I know.

Don't get me started.

Anyway.

Dieter Dengler (played by Christian Bale), is an American pilot shot down over Laos and captured.

I've tried writing more, but there would be too many spoilers.

I'm not sure if anyone else noticed this and if this is an important angle to the story (no review I've read so far has mentioned it)… BUT, there were more guards in the camp than prisoners. The conditions of the camp and dark-ages prisoner techniques suggests someone wanted to point out how backwards the Laotians were.

?

Herzog does not make a blockbuster here, so go in knowing the film is grainy; the mood is realistic and somber.

That is all.

Oh and people that bitch about the moving NOT being PC should be beaten with a Singapore cane.

31 July 2007

The Simpsons Movie

Wow.

Funnier than I would have expected. Annoying at times. But never boring.

The creators watched every bad TV cartoon to the big screen and said, "we don't want to make the same mistake."

No wonder it took 18 Years to make.

A lot of the modern humor of the Simpsons... showing the most inane version of Homer and the city of Springfield. But still, good.

29 July 2007

Crude Awakening

As is typical of any left-wing oriented documentary, the title is an unclever attempt at being clever. It often sounds sophmoric, like christian music lyrics. There's not a lot of competition to work in the save the world arm of documentary film marking, so the only people you get to work for you are those who think puns and purple prose are the same things creativity and imagination.

However, in this film, the content is extremely smart, even if the title isn't.

The film is obviously about the Peak Oil crisis facing the world in the next 20-50 years... no one really knows when the bubble will burst, but China and India will certainly factor into it.

The chapter breaks are intelligent. Those being interviewed are articulate. They talk about a complex idea with brevity, honesty, intelligence, and a modicum of wit. And they do not insult the viewer, by talking in grand themes, but instead delve into the reality that NONE of us, including them, are ready to make the changes to solve this problem.

We are too dependent on oil. All of our technological marvels are based on it. And all of these GREEN fixes that people propose do not take into account that the planet is well-past critical mass in terms of population. Two different scientists even said it, if we started working on Hydrogen power today, we're still 30-50 years from that being a solution. And we can't really work on anything to fix it, until the price of gas starts coming even remotely close to matching what we pay for a price of coffee ($50 a gallon) or a bottle of water.

Make sure to watch the Special Feature Extra about Petrostates.