Sink the Titanic

According to Box Office Mojo, The Dark Knight is $125,445,189 away from becoming the largest grossing film domestically.

Get out there and watch it again.

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Step Brothers Vlog / Review

Today I’m going to try something a little different. I’ve been wanting to do a car vlog of sorts where I talk about my expectations of the film on the way to the theater, and then give my initial impression of the film on the way back.

So with my Sony Mini-DV camcorder and two strips of velcro, here’s my review:

Step Brothers
Directed By: Adam McKay
Starring: Will Ferrell / John C. Reilly / Mary Steenburgen / Richard Jenkins
Rating:

After Talladega Nights (2006), which was a pretty good comedy, director Adam McKay once again teams up with actors Will Ferrell and John C. Reilley for another comedy.

The premise? Two adult ‘man-childs’ who have to learn to get along when they become step brothers. It’s as simple as that.

Step Brothers is definitely a comedy, but as I mentioned in the video, it also succeeds fairly well at being serious, mainly towards the end of the film. There have been other films that have tried this jump in mood, like Click, but it was too much of a drastic switch in my opinion. With Step Brothers the transition between these two moods works and blends together well.

Reilley and Ferrell do a good job acting like idiot kids, from the way they carry themselves physically to the way that they deliver their inane dialogue.

It was great seeing Mary Steenburgen again. I wil always remember her as Clara Clayton from Back to the Future III. And while I love Richard Jenkins (watch The Visitor if you get the chance!) it was…unsettling (?) to see him as a swearing figure. Maybe it was just a shock from watching The Visitor recently. πŸ™‚

The theater experience was quite good as well. It was a Saturday afternoon matinee, so there weren’t many of the textmessaginggigglingtalking teens there. I was surprised to discover that the 50+ crowd dominated this time around. Interesting.

(BTW, if anyone has any car-vlogging tips let me know)

—–

In others news, I have chosen to watch Cutthroat Island as my entry for the blog-a-thon. I’ve listened to the music, which I loved, and have seen it in the WalMart $5 bin repeatedly.

EDIT: I’m not doing the live-blog after all.

NetFlix Update No. 7

1. Umberto D (Dir. Vittorio De Sica)

Why Did You Pick That?

Still continuing on my classic Italian kick. And I’m especially looking forward to watching this one because I loved De Sica’s The Bicycle Thief very much.
2. Germany Year Zero (Dir. Roberto Rossellini)

Why Did You Pick That?

Same as above…again. πŸ™‚ I’m thinking I’ll have to write up a massive response to Italian cinema eventually and break it up into different posts over time. I’ve found that I really dig neo-realism.
3. Nausicca of the Valley of the Wind (Dir. Hayao Miyazaki)

Why Did You Pick That?

I’m watching this for the LAMB MoTM. But it’s also a good excuse to watch more Miyazaki. I believe the only other film of his that I watched was Howl’s Moving Castle (and part of Spirited Away)

2008 Oscar-Bait

Well, it’s been a good year at the movies so far. There are only a few films that I’m interested in seeing this Summer (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Pineapple Express, and Tropic Thunder)

My Top 5 for 2008 So Far:

1. The Dark Knight
2. Wall-E
3. American Teen
4. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
5. Iron Man

That said, I’m really looking forward to Oscar season this year. I have a feeling that the Academy Awards are going to be insane with competition. Last year was good, but this will probably be better. This afternoon I hunted down the upcoming films for the rest of the year.

My Top 11 Must-Sees:



The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Directed By: David Fincher
Starring: Brad Pitt / Cate Blanchett / Tilda Swinton

Zodiac was royally shafted at the Academy Awards this year. I thought it should have been nominated for picture, adapted screenplay, supporting actor (Robert Downey Jr) and visual effects. It probably wouldn’t have won any, but it should have had some recognition.

That said, I think Benjamin Button is going to get Fincher back in the game.


(Apple Trailers)

Burn After Reading
Directed By: Ethan Coen / Joel Coen
Starring: Brad Pitt / George Clooney / John Malkovich / Tilda Swinton / Frances McDormand

After the amazing No Country for Old Men last year, it looks like the Coens are back in action with a dark screwball comedy (their forte) with a great ensemble cast. It will be nice to see Frances McDormand in a Coen film again.


(Apple Trailers)

Revolutionary Road
Directed By: Sam Mendes
Starring: Leondardo DiCaprio / Kate Winslet / Kathy Bates

Looks like a Titanic cast reunion. Add in the director of American Beauty and Road to Perdition and you have an awesome combination.

The Soloist
Directed By: Joe Wright
Starring: Robert Downey Jr. / Jamie Foxx / Catharine Keener

Robert Downey Jr. has been in an insane number of films the last few years. That’s all.

Australia
Directed By: Baz Luhrmann
Starring: Hugh Jackman / Nicole Kidman / David Wenham

Quite simply, this looks epic, and I do not want to miss seeing it on the silver screen. It may end up being the next Lawrence of Arabia for all we know. And you can’t go wrong with Hugh Jacman.


(Apple Trailers)

Appaloosa
Directed By: Ed Harris
Starring: Viggo Mortensen / RenΓ©e Zellweger / Jeremy Irons / Ed Harris

As long as it’s better than Hidalgo. Solid cast, and the amazing Ed Harris.

Lakeview Terrace
Directed By: Neil LaBute
Starring: Patrick Wilson / Kerry Washington / Samuel L. Jackson

What can I say? The preview sold me. This looks to be quite the tense film.


(Apple Trailers)

Body of Lies
Directed By: Ridley Scott
Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio / Russell Crowe

Since 2002, DiCaprio hasn’t disappionted me once as an actor. He just keeps plugging away. With 8 films in the next two years, he’s going to be a busy man. And to top it off, the preview reminded me a little bit of Michael Mann’s Heat, which is never a bad thing.

Doubt
Directed By: John Patrick Shanley
Starring: Meryl Streep / Philip Seymour Hoffman / Amy Adams

I’ve heard really good things about the Shanley’s play, which this is based on. And what a great cast.

The Reader
Directed By: Stephen Daldry
Starring: Kate Winslet / Ralph Fiennes

Defiance
Directed By: Edward Zwick
Starring: Daniel Craig / Liev Schreiber / Jamie Bell

You can’t go wrong with Edward Zwick.

What films are you looking forward to the most?

12 Movies in 3 Days…

…if I had to make you watch them.

The craziness started with Piper and has worked it’s way down to me via Nick. Here be the rules (more like guidelines than actual rules):

1) Choose 12 Films to be featured. They could be random selections or part of a greater theme. Whatever you want.

2) Explain why you chose the films.

3) Link back to Lazy Eye Theatre so I can have hundreds of links and I can take those links and spread them all out on the bed and then roll around in them.

4) The people selected then have to turn around and select 5 more people.

So far, from what I’ve seen from the other lists, people have been spreading their films out over a sizable piece of time. Here, however, you play by my rules. We’re going to be watching four films a day from Friday-Sunday. This way you get to have a great weekend and a horrid Monday. Let the festival begin!

Friday: “You mean is has SUBTITLES?!”

WHY? I love these films. The emotion from Three Colors: Blue, the realism of The Birycle Thief, the music in Ikiru, and the power of redemption in The Virgin Spring.

Saturday “Oooookay….”

WHY? A little something to lighten the mood after Friday. We’ve got some Troma, Trey Parker, Weird Al, and an amazing performance from Geoffrey Rush.
Β 

Sunday You know…the one with the chin?”


(Charlton Heston, Bruce Campbell, King Kong, and Drew Barrymore, respectively, with an ‘honorable’ mention to George Lucas)Β 

WHY? ‘Cause chins are awesome.Β 

Well there you have it. Any thoughts?Β 

I hereby pass this on to the following: (If they so desire)

1. Movie Zeal
2. Movies et al
3. Film for the Soul
4. Film Arcade
5. 353 Review

The Dark Knight is Awesome

The Dark Knight
Directed By: Christopher Nolan
Starring: Christian Bale / Heath Ledger / Gary Oldman / Aaron Eckhart
Rating:

(This is my spoiler-FREE review. I’ll probably write up a more in-depth review of it later)

Synopsis: Death, mayhem, and chaos swallow Gotham City as a war between good, evil, and what lies between takes place. Harvey Dent, the newly appointed D.A. of Gotham, must join forces with Batman in an ongoing initiative to root out the organized crime that permeates the city. Enter The Joker, a psychotic villian, with his own plans for Gotham.

Review: Watching The Dark Knight on an IMAX screen is an experience that I won’t soon forget. After driving by a minivan engulfed in flame on I-283 and having my GPS take me down a one-way street the wrong way, I finally made it to the showing. It was great listening to the pre-show buzz from the other people in line, hearing snatches of conversations. One that I found amusing went something like this:

“[Christian Bale] He was in Newsies”
“He was in SHAFT”
Silence.

And naturally, someone spoiled an important twist in the film. May the fleas of a thousand camels nest in your armpits, sir.

So anyways…The Dark Knight met and exceeded my expectations. Heath Ledger’s performance as The Joker was outstanding, and Aaron Eckhart fit the politician role very well. No surprises there. πŸ™‚ The Dark Knight is rated PG-13, but this is definitely not a film for the kiddies. I highly recommend checking this out, especially in IMAX if you get the chance.

Bubble Review

I wasn’t planning on posting anything until I watched The Dark Knight tomorrow afternoon [IMAX-Harrisburg-2:15 PM-“Han Shot First” tshirt], but I also wasn’t planning on watching Bubble

Bubble
Directed By: Steven Soderbergh
Starring: Debbie Doebereiner / Dustin James Ashley / Misty Wilkins
Rating:

Firstly, am I the only that constantly confuses Steven oderbergh with David Cronenberg? (At least I can spell their names properly) And secondly, the only Soderbergh films that I have seen previously are the Ocean’s films, Traffic, and The Good German (which I didn’t care for). I can see now that I definitely need to explore more of his earlier work. It’s not all George Clooney and heists. πŸ™‚

I randomly picked up Bubble at the library a few days, thinking it was from the director of Eastern Promises and A History of Violence. With that in mind, I really wasn’t expecting the style of the film. About 20 minutes into it, I had to check the director on IMDb.

It’s quite an unusual film, more in the style of the Dogme 95 movement than anything else. I learned afterwards that the three main actors hadn’t acted before and the scrpt was improvised. This definitely makes sense, and I thought that it worked out very well. Everything about the film felt real and not forced. I was especially impressed with the subtelty.

There’s an alternate ending on the DVD, which personally I didn’t care for. I’m very glad that they didn’t use it, as it completely ruins the realistic quality of Bubble. I vastly prefer the ending that I did see. Everything isn’t wrapped up in a nice narrative box. There’s a lot to think about in terms of the characters and their motivations, and especially varying degrees of conflict. And of course, toss a little religion into the mix. πŸ™‚

Bubble could almost be qualified as a short film, clocking in at 73 minutes. For me the length was perfect. With a film like this that doesn’t rely havily on professional actors and a developed script, I’m not sure how it would have fared with another half hour or so. The story was concise and intriguing.

I’m not going to summarize the film. I’d rather just recommend that you get a copy and watch it.