Posts filed under 'Movies and DVDs'
The long weekend was another opportunity to catch up on DVDs. We started with Hoodwinked, an alternative Little Red Riding Hood. I picked the villain early, but it was still fun to see how a hard-boiled police procedural style was combined with some unexpected plot twists. The second one was Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow, which was very impressive. An alternative reality story of a dashing pilot, played by Jude Law, and an ambitious journalist, played by Gwyneth Paltrow, trying to save the world. Apparently most of the movie was filmed in front of blue screens, and most of the background generated using CGI.
January 27th, 2007
One consequence of the bad weather during the break is that we were able to catch up on some films. Here’s a list of what we saw, with some brief comments.
- Spiderman 2. We missed this the first time around. It was great. I always like Tobey Maguire, and he plays geeky types so well.
- King Kong, the Peter Jackson version. The verdict: too long and a bit self-indulgent (i.e. too many dinosaurs). King Kong and the rest of the CGI effects were amazingly realistic. Can we believe anything we see in on screen any more? My only other comment is that when King Kong fought the dinosaurs I was reminded of a kung fu movie.
- Grave of the Fireflies. An early anime film from Studio Ghibli. The story of a Japanese teenager and his young sister trying to survive toward the end of World War II, with a depressing (but probably realistic) portrayal of human nature.
- Syriana. Another pessimistic movie about the oil industry and its influence in the Middle East. Very well done, and George Clooney was almost unrecognisable.
- La Doublure (or The Valet in English). The movie. Only the French do comedy like this. A light-hearted farce with Daniel Auteuil in good form as an amoral company chief executive, trying to save his marriage without losing his mistress.
January 16th, 2007
The weekend’s DVD was Walk the Line. Even though I’m not a Johnny Cash fan, I did want to see it after being in Nashville at the end of October, and spending an afternoon at the Country Music Hall of Fame. It was very well done, and both Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon were excellent. There was an interesting sub-text about his family (in particular his father) and how it affected him, but the core of the story was Cash’s evolving relationship with June Carter, while at the same time his popularity as a singer grew. Knowing a bit about Nashville meant that I had a bit more context for some of it, particulary the references to the Ryman.
My only grumble is with our DVD player. The remote stopped working, and we learned that we can only access DVD menus remotely. This meant that we couldn’t take advantage of the special features on the second CD, since we couldn’t navigate the menus. The purpose of the many buttons on the front of the player remains a mystery, since the only ones that had any effect were the standard ‘Play’, ‘Pause’, ‘Eject’, etc.
December 11th, 2006
This weekend’s DVD was Kinky Boots. I enjoyed it despite (or perhaps even because of) the predictable plot – it was a typical modern British comedy with a happy ending. I particularly enjoyed the many images showing the how a shoe/boot is manufactured, and the final scene at the Milan shoe fair was great. I can’t see myself wearing any of their new products, though!
November 27th, 2006