Strong showings from Prometheus and the ever rising Moonrise Kingdom have given this summer a shot of intellectual stimulus. Who would have thunk Transformers was ever a thing? I dig into some new releases, new movies to disc and some oldies but goodies! Enjoy!
In Theaters Now
Moonrise Kingdom, (June 2012)
Genre: Comedy, Drama
All of the Wes Anderson tropes are back, some might say the focus on symmetry is nearly distracting, with possibly the most whimsy yet. The romance works and all of the adult actors perfectly amplify the childhood perspective. A slice of Americana is wonderfully displayed here.
Prometheus, (June 2012)
Genre: Action, Science Fiction, Horror
Smashing your wonder particles into pieces since 2093.
An incredibly absorbing science fiction thriller that makes you think about the stars, mythology and life itself. The production values are high, the acting is impeccable and it succeeds at each genre that makes up the film. You might leave the film with unanswered questions, but that’s part of the fun.
Recently Released on Disc
Jeff, Who Lives at Home, (March 2012)
Genre: Comedy, Drama
This is an actors film first. A gore, exploitation film far, far second. So far it’s not like that at all.
Surprisingly sweet film about the confusing and sad moments that can turn around at any moment. The filmmakers behind Cyrus are only getting better. Beware those who dislike inspirational films though it’s done tastefully here.
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, (Dec 16, 2011)
Genre: Action, Mystery
Robert Downey Jr.could be dressed in drag for the entire film and it’d probably be even better.
I liked this a lot more than the first film, largely because it’s focused on the amazing Sherlock and his mind rather than big action sequences. They are there and they are fun, get over it this is the 21st century after all, but its only weakness is a slim plot at times. A action movie standard. The ending is surprisingly satisfying. Its a Victorian era James Bond and it’s a lot of fun.
Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, (February 2012)
Add the line “get over here” and Mortal Kombat fans around the world might cream their shorts.
This movie wants nothing to do with melodrama and wants everything to do with adrenalized malfeasance. By no means a complete movie, but what it does well is all that matters. A lengthier review can be found here.
Shallow Grave, (June 1994)
Genre: Drama, Mystery
Using the formula of money + champagne + 90’s haircut = success, director Danny Boyle began his career on fire.
Acting, spot on. Premise, laughably entertaining. Also neat to see Ewen Mcregor and Danny boyle’s first movie. Where it doesn’t succeed though is plot. Things chug at times, things flap at times, overall not the most sleek film.
John Carter, (March 2012)
Genre: Action, Adventure, Science Fiction & Fantasy
Listen pimping a ride is cool, but maybe this is an explanation for the exorbitant budget.
Yes, we know that John Carter will most likely go down as the biggest movie flop of all time. But honestly, does it deserve such a designation? Not really. John Carter isn’t a Michael Bay action film, but more akin to an adventure flick like Indiana Jones. If you’re a person who likes to get their childlike sense of wonder blasted right in the face (and who doesn’t, really?) you’re going to want to check this film out. The fact that Pirates of the Caribbean can get an endless supply of sequels and this most likely (due primarily to poor marketing decisions) won’t is a crime. A lengthier review can be located here.
Oldy, But Goody?
A Face in the Crowd, (1957)
Exhibit A. A face in the crowd.
Still relevant as the film deals with the life changing effect of fame. It also stands up due to the character development and the strong acting by all. It’s always a pleasure to watch an old film and be marvelled by how it’s better than most schlock that comes out today.
Slasher, (June 2004)
I’m pretty sure Slasher could sell this car for 88 bucks.
Slasher is a paid for third party brought in by car dealerships to sell 40 to 400 cars in 3 days using tricks and marketing ploys. The film doesn’t delve too deeply into the psychosis of the slasher, but it’s an interesting world these people live in. A simple point and shoot documentary. The film is as exciting as the subjects.