Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Switch

I thoroughly enjoyed the Switch. I've read about the poor opening box office, I attribute that to the fact that people just didn't go to the movies that weekend. The parking lot was noticeably empty for a Saturday night, and yet the theater I saw the Switch in, was full. Just saying.

The movie is laugh-out-loud funny. Much to the credit of Jason Bateman. His scenes with Jeff Goldblum in particular are hilarious. Bateman's rapport with the young character, Sebastian, played by Thomas Robinson, are sweet and humorous. I don't understand the backlash often directed at Jennifer Aniston. I like her, I enjoy her, I won't defend or convince why others should like her.
Amid the rom-com antics, there is genuine emotion and this flick passes my most stringent romantic comedy gage, it didn't make me gag and has no "too cheesy to tolerate" moment. Also, I think the Switch is better than the Back-Up Plan. I think its cool that unconventional ways to make a family are being portrayed in mainstream movies. There was nothing specifically wrong with the Back-Up Plan, but it wasn't great. The Switch is funnier, in my opinion, and has less set-ups for the laughs; my laughs came during the Switch from the dialogue.

I think my next movie will be Going the Distance, so the romantic comedy blogs continue!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Coming Attractions -- September

Here are some movies coming soon!
  • September 1st -- The American, the new George Clooney one.

  • September 3rd -- Going the Distance, the one with Drew Barrymore and Justin Long about the long distance relationship.

  • September 10th -- I'm Still Here, Casey Affleck's documentary about Joaquin Phoenix's bearded, rapping phase.
    -- The Romantics, Katie Holmes, Anna Paquin, Candice Bergen, and Josh Duhamel, college friends attend a wedding.

  • September 17th -- Easy A, Emma Stone and the kid who's Courteney Cox's son on Cougar Town in a high school movie about a girl giving herself a bad reputation.
    -- The Town, Ben Affleck's second directing effort, Boston bank robbers, also starring Jon Hamm and Jeremy Renner.

  • September 24th -- Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, the sequel to the 1987 flick.
    -- You Again, Kristin Bell, Jamie Lee Curis, Sigourney Weaver and Betty White, in a family wedding comedy.

    The plan is to do these each month. And I've got one coming for The Switch (thumbs up), but hey, the Emmys, True Blood and Man Men are on tonight!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Eat Pray Love

This movie, is a delight. Its emotional, deep and thought provoking, and light and fun too. Forgive me the run-on but...what stands out most to me is the idea that we can decide to shape our lives and be bold in making that decision but we will still be faced with the unexpected and the whole endeavor can be more than we could possibly imagine, good and bad. My devotion to Entertainment Weekly and my ear for all things movie and pop culture can often cause little surprises for me when going to the multiplex. I was surprised that there was more pre-journey backstory for the protagonist. Thank goodness I have not read the memoir that the film is based on yet (but I am eager to read it; very much like my experience with Julie & Julia last summer, loved the movie and read the memoir before seeing the movie for the second time). Here's to seeing the movie based on a book first and then reading the book -- greatly increases the odds of enjoying both independently.

Eat Pray Love is the true story of writer Elizabeth Gilbert's journey of self discovery -- there's a reason its been a topic on Oprah on more than one occasion. As we observe her travels, we get to go along for the ride, taking in the sights, sounds, and flavors. The problem I constantly run into in writing this blog, is how detailed to be and not wanting to give too much away. One thing I dislike about my beloved EW's reviews, is that they reveal WAY too much. So I'll touch on these details: Richard Jenkins, whom I will always enjoy because he was the dad in Six Feet Under, is excellent as Richard from Texas. All the men who cross Liz's path are enjoyable. I felt that Liz's time in India was my favorite in that it was the least seen in the promos and showed the most growing pains.
This is one of those movies that is just a pleasure to sit back and take in. ···
If I were to plan my own EPL style adventure, why not one with a movie theme, Sundance and Cannes Film Festivals, a red carpet walk to the Oscars, heck while I'm dreaming, I need to devise a way to become a voting member of the academy and score all those screener DVDs. A girl can dream. Have you heard of the parody book Drink Play F*ck? Apparently Steve Carell is set to star in the movie adaptation. I'd see that.

I strongly dislike reading stories that report the success at the box office of a "woman's movie" as news. Women get excited about movies, that's NO news flash! Not only do we flock to the Sex and the Cities and the Eat Pray Loves, but we also go see Inception and the summer's latest comic book hero (ps, besides Iron Man 2, which was in May and I saw with my mom for Mother's Day, this summer is missing that element -- looks like summer 2008 was the better summer season for super heroes and Manolo Blahnik wearers -- the first Iron Man, the Dark Knight, Hancock and the first SATC flick). The state of the romantic comedy is something to report on. Granted, I am a little bit older and my standards are a little bit tougher. But Serendipity is in a whole other category than Bride Wars. This is why I'm looking forward to my next flick, The Switch. Yes, I will see anything with Jennifer Aniston and yes Bounty Hunter was AWFUL. But so was the Ugly Truth. In fact, I would argue it was worse, and the common denominator there is Gerald Butler, not a female lead. The Switch looks promising, Jason Bateman and the folks that brought us Juno, heck yea. To sum up my little rant about women and movies today, Julia Roberts, need I say more? She is one of the only true movie stars out there and she was the first woman to break the 20 million per picture glass ceiling.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Summer Movies

I've got some catching up to do! In my humble opinion, it has been a slower summer blockbuster season this year. That said, there have been some great summer movies! Inception, clearly excellent and the most original. Toy Story 3 continues the premium quality of Pixar flicks and both Knight and Day and Salt were dang fun rides. Below is a mix of the Toy Story 3 trailer with Inception audio. Very fun (thanks Laura).

As I will be covering several movies in one blog, the time has come to test using a grading system. I've decided to with a basic 4 star system, with a movie graphic.

Toy Story 3
Scene at: Clackamas Town Center with Laura and Jerre
The typical disappointments that can accompany a sequel, certainly do NOT apply here! It pretty much goes without saying that the animation is impeccable. I can not wait to see it a second time because I was so engrossed in the characters and their perils, I couldn't wait to see how things worked out. It will be nice to slow down and enjoy it on second viewing. Its a testament to the film that animated toys can make me cry. The time in development and the strength of the writing make it all possible. ····

Knight and Day
Scene at: Bridgeport with Laura
I'm a sucker for spy movies, they are just fun! And this was light and playful, a good summer popcorn flick. I really like Cameron Diaz and though I am not a Tom Cruise fan, this is definitely on my movies-with-Tom-Cruise that I like list. Good action, global locales and humor. ···

The Invention of Lying
Scene: on HBO, at home
What a surprise this was! The dark comedy written by and staring Ricky Gervais takes place in a world where lying does not exist -- meaning no exaggerations, no fiction and a blunt lack of sugar coating. It was surprisingly toughing and I highly recommend it. It really has a deeper level to it. I think the home format and having zero expectations really opened me up to it. Check it out. ···

Scene at: Clackamas Town Center with Laura
Just like the marketing of this film, I'm going to say very little about this dream-scape movie. Another amazing Christopher Nolan pic and totally fantastic. To date, the best of summer. ····

Charlie St Cloud
Scene at: Cedar Hills with Katy
The reason to see this movie, to look at Zac Efron. Which is why I saw it and enjoyed the time I spent watching it. Ghost is still the better movie when it comes to dearly departed love ones lingering among the living. ··

Scene at: Bridgeport with Mindy and Candie
Fun with spies, part two! I'm not the first to make the comparison, but Salt is like a female twist on the Bourne Identity action flick. Angelina doing what she does best, being badass (I am of the opinion that she is also an excellent actress, ie Changling, Girl Interrupted, but doesn't strong acting make the ride more fun, when its well executed?). Do you think there will be a sequel?

And friends whom I go to the movies with, we've got to take pictures together at the theater! Otherwise, I have no pics to add to the blog! Plus don't you want to appear in the blog?!

Up next, Eat Pray Love!