Monday, December 20, 2010

Movie Time

I don't watch a lot of modern movies. My main interest is in endless recapitulation of films on the left-hand side of time. In other words, the crap of the ages. But every now and then, something of value slips through the veil of protective shielding I've erected against the radioactivity of post-post-modernism. Other times, I make a random stab into the abyss with my fork and pull back out something I wished I hadn't.

And with that, some stuff I've bought/rented/watched recently:

Antichrist - Lars Von Trier + Willem Da Foe should equal awesomeness, but I have to give this flick three thumbs down (I disliked it so much I borrowed another thumb.) This kinda reminds me of those old degenerate NYC "art" films by Richard Kern, Nick Zedd, et cetera. While a couple is having wild passionate sex, their child climbs out the window and falls to his death. Then the wife is depressed and her psychiatrist husband decides he's going to make her his patient. They they go out to the middle of nowhere for some reason and things start getting all spooky and Blair Witch-like. The only good thing about this movie is that Charlotte Gainsbourg goes running around naked a lot. That is, unless you like pointlessly depressing movies in which a bunch of unlikable characters do really stupid things to each other, all filmed in silence-heavy, closeup-filled pretentious-o-vision.

Oddly enough, I mostly agree with Dr. Dockery's positive review even as I stand by my own highly negative review. How is that possible? I don't know, man, that's just how the universe crumbles.

Surviving Picasso - As a chick flick, this is a failure, because instead of making Pablo Picasso (who many people actually called an asshole, Jonathan Richman to the contrary) look bad, it makes me want to be exactly like him. I already blabbed more about it here.

The Men Who Stare At Goats - After watching Stanley Kubrick movies incessantly, movies like this that I should like seem painfully amateurish in the way they're plotted, paced and edited. Of course, another factor is that I have nothing but the highest respect for the pioneers of Remote Viewing, and films like this don't do them justice at all.

I knew that going in, of course, and that's why it's taken me this long to obtain the dern thing on DVD. On the other hand, it's nice to see Jeff Bridges in a very Dude-like role, and I'll watch anything with Spacey and Clooney. But someday the real story of Remote Viewing will be told, and this isn't it.

A Serious Man - I gave this a scathing review a few weeks ago, but it's difficult not to be charmed by the innate Coenness of the Coens. I still think it's a real downer, and shows signs that the brothers have a real psychological problem with creating straw-man characters for the express purpose of torturing them.

Tales of Tomorrow - Scored this DVD with three episodes of the classic pre-Twilight Zone sci-fi/horror anthology TV show Tales of Tomorrow for the flinty sum of one American dollar. The fast-forwarded micro-adaptation of Frankenstein is hilarious because they're channelling Mel Brooks' Young Frankenstein decades in advance, but the real reason I scored this is to watch an impossibly young Leslie Nielsen in a space-opera extravaganza called Appointment on Mars.

- - JSH

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