8.04.2011

Movie Catchup!

It's time to post a few mini reviews of some of the films I've been watching recently. I've been a busy girl. Captain America, Cowboys & Aliens,and Crazy, Stupid, Love. To explain my feelings on the movie I have the most ranting to do, I would like to quote one of the best pieces of wisdom I've ever come across when reading Rotten Tomatoes. When reviewing Avatar, a critic named Rob Vaux said:

"Nothing destroys a decent movie more than calling it great, and while this one's a little better than decent, it's definitely a long way from great."

Seriously. I can't think of a truer statement that reflects my pet peeve when people overwhelmingly embrace films full of flaws, and then proceed to gush about it being the best of its genre good. Bugs the CRAP out of me. While I found this statement incredibly true for Avatar, I'm also finding it very accurate for one of the summer's most recent releases: Crazy, Stupid, Love.


I'm finding that this film is a critical darling and a real people pleaser. Even people whose opinions I normally value are fawning over this one. I just don't understand it. Don't get me wrong. The film is not without its merits. I love Ryan Gosling, and he was great in it. I liked the comparison of he and Carrell's character who was fine enough...though when he gets in "everyman" mode it basically just seems like Dan in Real Life 2.0 and bits of Michael Scott always seems to creep in. But whatever. I also loved Emma Stone. A kid at work said I have a "girl crush on her." maybe he's right. But I definitely felt the film could have benefited from more of her presence.

Honestly though...I just thought the whole movie was a mess. There's a very central plot-line that drags down the whole film for me, and has a Grease-esque type message (not the same message, but the same type quality/tone of message.) That I'm like "Okay so the moral of the story is just to stalk someone until they like you? Oh great! Is that all??" Great one for the kids. For me I honestly can't understand all the love this movie is getting. Just because a little more effort than usual was put into it and people crave that, still doesn't mean it's good! It just goes to show that the competition is even worse! I'm afraid this is another Emily vs. The World type movie where I am the Elaine Benes who tries to convince everyone that the English Patient sucked. Anyway...I give it a 6.5 and say it's worth a dollar movie or a rental in redbox. Meh. But don't listen to me...because I may be the only one besides Kent Dunn and also Courtney and Paige Wightman (holler) who hates this one.

Moving on.
I also watched Cowboys & Aliens right before Stupid Love (oops did I forget to spell out the whole title? Goodness me!) What to say about that movie. It's certainly fun while you're watching it. But...it's pretty forgettable. It just is. Not going to change your life, but it will entertain you for a bit.However, once it's done it will leave you with no thoughts...except apparently for a group of imdb users who talked extensively about Daniel Craig's rear end! Haha. And when did Harrison Ford become so crotchety? I certainly loved parts...but I think it could have been more...it had a lot of potential. I would probably give this a 6.5 as well and ditto the dollar movies/redbox.

As some of you may recall from my summer preview list, I mentioned that I was a... ahem... a fan of Chris Evans. Haha! Well, I certainly got what I wanted from Captain America! Haha I jest! But I'm not gonna lie...it does bump things up a bit for me. I did love the period piece feel of it. And Steven Rogers is definitely a noble hero. Sure...he doesn't have as much personality as Evan's other counterpart...Johnny Storm aka the Human Torch (which btw I was reading that in the comics there was a few stories where the two interacted. crazy that he played both!) but he's very sweet and likable nonetheless...but maybe I'm biased. I really liked the romance in the film, and was surprised to read afterwards that what happens with them is very true to the comics...I can't say more but I want to. It made me the most excited of any of these Marvel films for the prospect of The Avengers...the whole movie was basically a set up of it...but an entertaining setup nonetheless. I think I'll give it a 7.3 and say it's worth a matinee.

Also this week to attempt to slowly get Ann back in the real world we watched Tangled. I've seen this a few times now, but I never get over what a sweet and adorable film it is. I heard rumors Disney was done making animated films, but I sure hope not because Tangled really is wonderful (even if it means my niece equates me with the villainness in the film! ha!) I also finally got around to watching Let Me In, the American remake of the Swedish film Let The Right One In. It's a story about a 12 year old boy who befriends the 12 year old girl vampire next door. Sure that plot sounds like something out of Goosebumps...but it was pretty much amazing. Very well done and very thought provoking. Honestly, I thought it was fascinating and truly suspenseful.

One final thought. Who knows why some movies resonate with us and others turn us off completely. Another quote that I love (besides the first one I shared) comes from Shakespeare "Expectation is the root of all heartache." You can replace heartache with disappointment...or unhappiness or whatever. But truly....expectations color a lot of how you feel about something. I had very high expectations for Crazy, Stupid, Love. I adored the trailer and all the marketing (honestly...they put the best/funniest/most poignant moments in them....so once you'd already seen it there wasn't too much more the film had to offer...though don't get me wrong there were things..) so I hoped this could be like my next 5DOS...so...expectations can be a tricky thing when you get far from what you wanted. The thing about Captain America and Cowboys & Aliens? No one called them great. I had lowered expectations for Captain America after some friends' reviews...so in that case, since they were low I had plenty of room to be surprised. Funny how that works huh? I guess that's why it's best not to try to have expectations at all...but then where would the fun be in that?

7 comments:

Amelia said...

haha loved the gif, per usual. Also I still remember watching Tangled in theaters with you and not being able to stop laughing :)

Emily said...

Maximus just gets me every time.

Emily said...

Oh. Also. After posting the blog I read that the writer of Crazy, Stupid, Love ALSO wrote Tangled. Haha....ironic.

Joey said...

So, yes, we saw it. I was a decent movie and that's all. Seriously the plot could have still been moved along with Hollywood's need to first shock and then desensitize us with crude, nude, and unrefined humor.

It was a lot of missed opportunities. Had the editing been tighter, some story lines wouldn't have been given the short shift.

Sarah Washburn said...

I agree about the expectations thing. EVERYONE and their dog raved about Iron Man and when I finally saw it, it didn't live up to the rave reviews--at least for me.

Plus, you have to go with what you know works for you. Most people HATE The Bachelor (a remake of Seven Chances, a silent movie with Buster Keaton), but I just love it. Who cares what anyone else says?

I just know that Captain America would be my cup of tea and that Cowboys and Aliens would make for a good popcorn/summer flick. I'd probably find Crazy, Stupid, Love entertaining, but not much else.

Emily said...

I actually think you might hate Crazy, Stupid, Love!

Sarah said...

Alright, it took me over a year to get to it, but Jeremiah and I finally watched Captain America tonight (well, he fell asleep...not because he was bored, but because he'd had a long week on his business trip). I loved it! I knew it would be my cup of tea (see my previous comment). Just the kind of action adventure/superhero movie I like. I really liked Steve Rogers' character.

I was checking on IMDB and it appears that there is a sequel coming out and his buddy Bucky might have survived his fall into the icy ravine.

But what about Peggy, his lady love? I really liked their romance. Was it just a one movie deal for them? Sniff, sniff.

Now, I need to watch The Avengers! :)

(Plus I still need to catch Thor--I can watch that one on Netflix)