So I Saw Some Movies

I don’t talk about movies very often because I don’t SEE movies very often, but I just watched a couple things via Netflix and thought I’d mention them. I know these are old news to everyone else, sorry.

The Dark Knight — So I finally saw the Batman movie that everyone said raised the bar for superhero movies and I have to say, it didn’t really do much for me. It raised some issues regarding terrorism and the lengths to which one would go to stop it, but it ultimately walks away from the issue without really doing anything with it. It’s kind of a cheap exit to say, “Look, the people chose to do right, so I win!” when “the people” haven’t had much of a voice at all in the proceedings except to be faceless bystanders in your three-way pissing match. In addition, Christian Bale’s “Batman voice” just made me giggle. I’m sorry, I still can’t take your insight into the human condition seriously when it still involves a guy dressing up as a bat to go fight crime in his robot car. (We watched Iron Man not long ago and I found that one to be a lot more enjoyable. Part of that, though, could be the fact that I’ve never followed Iron Man that much, so it was largely new to me, whereas I’m really freakin’ sick of Batman.)

No Country For Old Men — Speaking of movies dealing with criminals ramping the situation way up past the good guys’ ability to deal with it, I thought this one was quite effective. I know there’s a lot of grousing about the ending but honestly, did you not know how this was going to turn out from the first fifteen minutes? Did you really actually need to SEE the inevitable fate of all involved? Did the title of the movie not give you a hint? I don’t think it’s flawless — I’m not sure what Woody Harrelson’s character added to anything, for example, and would like to have seen more of Tommy Lee in those moments — but I found it to explore a lot of the same ideas as The Dark Knight without having to get silly about it. When it came out, there was a lot of talk comparing this to There Will Be Blood, which I now see as no contest. That movie was loud and pretentious, yelling its message to the heavens of “Oh, hey, this asshole is an asshole all his life! NOW GIVE ME AN OSCAR!”

(For the record, we also saw the Coens’ Burn After Reading not long ago and I can’t say either one of us really dug it too much. I don’t think having a character who admits, “Hey, these people are all worthless jerks and this whole thing doesn’t make much sense” really mitigates the fact that the characters are all worthless jerks and the whole thing doesn’t make much sense.)

People keep telling me to go see Star Trek and I probably will eventually, but more than probably I can wait until the cheap theater or even Netflix. I’m not in a huge hurry. And I disappointed Mike and Jim but turning down an invite to go see Wolverine because even though Mike offered to pay for my ticket, he can’t cover my time.

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7 Responses to So I Saw Some Movies

  1. jerm says:

    Now you can set a date to make absolutely sure that you don’t see the new Terminator, since I knew that you were not planning to see it in the first place, you can save yourself the time and not go see it after all.

  2. Dave says:

    Yeah, there was zero chance of that happening.

  3. mattwran says:

    Getting off lawn . . . now.

  4. pronoblem says:

    I’ve given up… people recommended to me The Dark Knight, Iron Man, There Will Be Blood and Tropic Thunder and I rented them when I was home with the flu… They were, in order – horrible, horrible, horrible and really bad. I did not actually finish any of them, I actually went to the last scenes of There Will Be Blood to watch the ending and I gave Tropic Thunder more than half of the film with some morbid curiosity about how bad it could get before it redeemed itself – I could not bear it. I see Star Trek as an OK kids / teen movie and I have some nostalgia with the original as a kid. I brought Miles to see it. It was not bad at all… certainly better than the above and better than any other previous Star Trek films I have seen, which is not hard to do.

  5. Stewart says:

    Dave, what was your take on Paul Blart Mall Cop?

  6. Dave says:

    Stewart, I heard you should only see it on IMAX, so I never saw it.

  7. tom says:

    The Dark Knight has beautiful colours and atmospheric music, but the fact that they listed The Long Halloween as a major influence is kind of telling when it comes to the amount of “hmm, really?” moments

    In The Loop gets an american release next month – it’s loosely based the build-up to Iraq (which war it is is never specified). It’s kind of a spin-off from The Thick of It, which was a semi-improvised comedy created by Armando Iannucci, who’s been involved with most of the best british comedy for the past decade or so. What the improvised element added to it was the impression that nobody quite knew what they were doing, which was also kind of the point