If only I’d known about the In Print ABC Blogging Challenge, http://inprintwriters.com/2013/01/12/the-abc-blog-post-challenge/, last July, I surely would have saved my Eff-bomb blog for today. How sad is it that as I sit here thinking “F,” that is the only word that comes to mind?!
F…ef…eff… fa…fah… or should that be fuh…?
Sure, let’s go there… My husband is out of town for the week. For someone who rarely watches television when he’s not home, I have watched three movies in their entirety since he left.
(Is it too obvious to state that I should’ve been writing?)
The movies were: Moonrise Kingdom, which came highly recommended, Beasts of the Southern Wild, an Academy nominee, and Repo Man, the 1984 title which I’d seen before, a long time ago.
My fa-fa-fa-feelings on these fa-fa-fa-films?
Moonrise Kingdom was boring. I was very disappointed—looking forward to this quirky gem that came and went from the theaters with little promotion or fanfare yet had a nice little indie buzz going. With an all-star cast including: Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Frances McDormand, Tilda Swinton and Harvey Keitel, as well as several trustworthy recommendations, I was eager to watch. I felt bad renting it without Dave—now I’m thankful. It could have been great. It was close. It had moments of character insight and creative direction. But it was so slow.
Pure Wes Anderson. Every shot is washed out as if viewed through a nostalgia lens. Every character is stilted, uncomfortable in their own skin, even those that purport to be in charge, the cops and the bullies alike. I am familiar with his style; I even believe he is capable of moments of brilliance, but sometimes you need more than quirk for quirks’ sake.
Beasts of the Southern Wild was an impulse rental. Dangerous thing that Comcast On Demand. I had read a few reviews and know it’s gotten an Oscar nomination (or five). There’s been a lot of chatter about the leading lady, a little girl of about six at the time of the filming. I found it more enjoyable than Moonrise Kingdom, but overall, it, too, fell short. The child who played Hushpuppy was very good and the movie was well directed in a manner that brought out the best of her, including mostly voice over. The storyline is interesting enough, but it seems to purposely play on the audience’s sense of sympathy through shock and stereotyping. It tended to be superficial and sometimes downright silly. (I admit, I would have enjoyed a well-executed silly.) They overstated the obvious but only hinted at truly interesting things—like why her Daddy won’t share space with her or why a dilapidated Bulls jersey represents her Momma. I wish there’d been more fantasy element and less ‘sound-bite sermons.’ This is one of those movies you’re supposed to like and I’ll probably catch hell and opinion for saying it was only just okay.
I expected both of these films to be more like, The Fall, http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0460791/?ref_=sr_1 an indie flick that despite its flaws utilizes the fantasy element well.
Actually, maybe my saying these movies are only “just okay” will benefit you as a future viewer. You’ll go and enjoy them and think I’m crazy but the truth is you’ll enjoy them because I lowered your bar. Trust me, that’s a good thing.
(I should have lead this blog with the fact that I watch movies to be entertained, in the moment. I do not have a critical eye for technical stuff. If you do, please discount everything I say.)
Lastly was Repo Man, the Emilio Estevez classic 80’s movie with cheap effects, bad dialog and a killer soundtrack. It was on some basic cable channel with no commercials, which is good, or bad, because despite the dvr options, I’d have probably left during the first commercial break. But I liked it! Sure it’s dated, but it’s not trying to be anything other than some punk-ass film about undesirable people going about their daily routines, whether repo-ing cars, espousing religious beliefs, or jacking liquor stores. Oh yeah, and then there’re those aliens in the trunk. A very interesting (and obvious) thing to me was the product packaging presented at every opportunity. It’s hilarious–everything is old school generic, chips are chips, cereal is cereal, and beer is beer. And there’s a lot of beer drinking. Plus it has awesome 80’s tunage. http://www.allmusic.com/album/repo-man-mw0000691845
Because I enjoy movies like Repo Man, True Lies, and Overboard (all guilty pleasures, for sure), I think my movie bar must be set pretty low. Yet it’s the films that are supposed to be good that fall short for me. I guess I don’t have an eye for those Oscar types, no patience for award-nominated pacing, and sweeping melodramas are for other people.
I’m a lowbrow movie and beer kind of gal.
Films I really liked that will (probably) not get Oscar nods?
Cabin in the Woods, The Avengers, and Looper.