Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Friday, June 26, 2009
Thursday, June 25, 2009
If you liked the first Transformers movie, you’ll enjoy this one just as much for what it is: an entertaining popcorn action flick. Michael Bay brings us the same energy and enthusiasm as it’s predecessor. Megan Fox is as hot as ever and Shia Labeouf’s vigorous performance once again kept me feeling like doing something drastic as soon as I got out the theater. But I just ended up going home and making smores with my cousins. Hey, that’s pretty ballsy. We made ‘em in the microwave. Who knows what that kind of radiation can do to marshmallows. The Stay Puft Marshmallow man could’ve busted out of there. We live on the edge. Radioactive smores… oh yeah..
…wait, A.D.D. is kicking in…
OK, I’m good…
…here’s the synopsis:
The movie opens in 17,000 BC with primitive human beings discovering “The Fallen,” an army of robots who end up attacking them. An event that is short-lived on screen in order to flash forward to modern times where Sam Witwicky (Labeouf) is packing to go off to college. He soon discovers a piece of the AllSpark, the cube rock from the first movie that turns machines into robots, in his closet and all hell breaks loose. But even though his house is blown into pieces, his parents (the coolest parents in the world) still manage to pack his things and take him to his new college. No problem, the insurance will cover the damages. When Sam gets to his dorm room, he meets his roommate, Leo Spitz (Ramon Rodriguez), who conveniently runs an alien conspiracy website and just found footage in China of robots attacking a town. Sam plays it off as though he doesn’t believe in that kind of stuff. He’s so modest that Sam.
Back in the land of government stuff, we see that the Autobots made nice with the humans and formed an organization called NEST to fight against the Decepticons that are still on Earth. The robots eventually find Sam who is starting to see coded numbers in his vision. Throw in some Megan Fox, who surprisingly has somewhat of a purpose in the film, and you got yourself a movie!
You see the thing about a movie like this is that you get what you ask for, an exciting action film. It is exactly what it’s trying to be and it’s not asking for forgiveness. I enjoyed this film, and my little cousin did too.
Sure they could’ve been more visual with the historical things in the story and I would’ve loved to have seen that. Instead Bay keeps it very modern, as he did in the first, touching on a lot of aspects of pop culture: the blogger culture (HOLLA!), the designer clothes that are on the protagonists that manage to withstand hell and high waters, and even their references to our new President Barack Obama. (If you recall in the last film, it was very anti-Presidential, intentionally poking fun at George Bush in one scene. An interesting commentary I think).
Shia Labeouf’s performance seems to have been contagious because all of the protagonists’ performances were kicked up a notch in this film. Ramon Rodriguez does a good job at playing the “stupidly scared” sidekick. You can see him in a film that my friend Juan Caceres produced "The Startup." John Turturro is funny and exciting in his new role as a former agent turned deli owner.
The special effects were naturally incredible. A little too detailed at times as I couldn’t tell who was winning the robot fights when they went into close-ups. The robots were valid characters in the story though. The only thing is that I felt they went a little over-board with the accents in their voices. In the first film they introduced the logic that the robots got their speech patterns from different radio and television personalities that they picked up from satellite signals. But the fact that all the robots had New York accents was kind of obvious. But it did offer good comedic relief.
Overall "Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen" is a good popcorn movie and I would recommend seeing it at the theater. It’s probably the only way to do justice to the incredible sound design by the same Oscar nominated team from the first film.
As far as a rating system, I wanted to do something different and creative but I think I’ll just keep it simple and give it a star rating.
So with that said, I will give this popcorn flick a 3 out 4 star rating.
Hasta la proxima. Ciao!
The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences announced yesterday that they will be extending the nominees list for Best Picture from 5 to 10. I think this is a good move that will generate viewership and give more films a shot at the big prize. Now this isn't an entirely new idea. From 1931 to 1943, ten was the magic number for Best Pic nods as well. It looks like they had it right back then.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Monday, June 22, 2009
Sunday, June 21, 2009
If I didn't mention this before, 'Back To The Future' is my all time favorite movie. Real talk.
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Friday, June 19, 2009
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Monday, June 15, 2009
Sam Raimi returns to horror filmmaking with his latest effort “Drag Me To Hell.” Now I’m fairly unfamiliar with his horror work having never seen the “Evil Dead” series, which should tell you a lot about what I think of this film. There is obviously an inside joke here that I didn't get and unless your a hardcore fan of horror films and Sam Raimi, you probably won't get it either.
Now here’s my thing about horror films, there are two kinds: those that scare you, and those that startle you. This one is a startler. I hate being startled. When something pops up accompanied by a loud sound I think it’s just rude. But that's just me. What do you I know? So I obviously have a bias right off the bat and with that said, here's the synopsis:
Bank loan officer Christine Brown (Alison Lohman) gets a curse casted on her by a misterious gypsy lady, Mrs. Ganush (Lorna Raver), after “shaming her” by refusing to renew the mortgage on her home after she begged on her knees. Her reasons for doing so, she wants the Assistant Manager position that is open at the bank. Otherwise she totally would’ve given it to this woman who she just saw stealing candy from her desk and has been granted two previous loans in the past. I don't know, to me that's a character flaw.
So then weird stuff starts to happen to Christine. Her skeptical, yet caring boyfriend, Clay (Justin Long, yeah the Apple guy), doesn't believe in the weird events that she describes and thinks they are just coincidences. Christine seeks out the aid of psychic Rham Jas (Dileep Rao). But Christine doesn't have much time to spare. Will she be damned for eternity, or will she break the spell on time before being... dragged to hell.
While watching this movie, I wasn’t sure that what was happening was really happening. I was hoping that towards the end Raimi would give us a twist that would justify the rediculous occurances that I just sat through. In fact, the complete opposite happens. Without going into detail, basically everything that happens in the film really didn’t need to happen. The film could’ve really just skipped to the end from the moment Rham tells her she is cursed. There’s nothing more upsetting than sitting through a film and realizing that you really didn’t need to sit through it. Tim Burton did this in “Big Fish” and it ruined the beauty of the film for me. In this case, it just made me dislike it more. That's twice that a film with Alison Lohman in it does that. What's the deal? Is it an inside joke that i just don't get?
One of the many ludicrous occurances in the film was a scene where Christine digs out a six foot grave in the rain BY HERSELF... that's redicuous... I mean really? What's the deal with that. I guess I'm more confused because Sam Raimi was so dedicated to the form that this film took on. And we all know that he is a director capable of making a totally entertaining movie. So what... I...
There's another scene where she has a nose bleeds that squirts all over her desk, the floor and even on her boss and all he had to say was, "did I get any in my mouth?" She comes in the next day and it's as though none of it happened... but I... I... I don't get it.
There’s another scene where the Apple guy’s mother (yes that's what Im going to call him) calls him at his office and starts ranting about how he needs to find a good girl and stop dating those ditsy chicks, refering to his current girlfriend Christine. The whole time she is on speaker phone while Christine is standing right outside the hall. She just left the office so it’s obvious that he would know she is still close by. Hello! How about taking her off speaker phone! A non-credible way of establishing relationships. Yet Raimi dedicated to it and neve asks for forgiveness.
I guess you need people like me who just don't get it in order to keep this cult movie as just that, a cult movie. If you loved Sam Raimi's past horror films then you're going to love this. I guess it's sort of like my relationship with "Kill Bill." I loved it because I got it. I understood the movie references and I understood Tarantino's style as a filmmaker. Many people hated "Kill Bill" simply because the film references went right over their heads.
So while I understand that this is a horror movie for and by people who love the genre, I'm gonna have to give it a negative review. This one want right over my head. I'm gonna put Raimi's "Evil Dead" series in my Netflix cue, then I'll get back to this one.