Monday, January 2, 2012

Quick Hits on 5 Movies

1. Source Code - B. Jake Gyllenhaal stars as a tool of the military used in an experimental program for data extraction. He can travel back in time to repeat the 8 minutes prior to a bomb exploding on a train in order to try and find the bomber. Not exaclty mind-blowing, but I didn't mind the existential dilemma and the acting was good from a quality supporting cast (Jeffrey Wright, Vera Farmiga, Michelle Monaghan). A nice little 96 minute film.

2. Girl With a Dragon Tattoo - B+. My first reaction to hearing the news that David Fincher was remaking the original film, I was disappointed because I felt like it was a waste of time and a Fincher film. Even though I enjoyed the Fincher version very much, I still feel that way. Doc's review is right on. I loved the sound and score of the film, and the last hour was electric.

3. The Help - B+. I expected to hate this mommy book club film, but found it surprisingly touching and interesting. Great performances all around, especially from Jessica Chastain (exact opposite of her Tree of Life character). Plenty of cringe-worthy message moments and female stuff I just don't get, but it is definitely worth your time.

4. Warrior - B+. Priest raved about this one, and even still I had low expectations. I loved the darkness and its resistance to cliches. The uniqueness of the ending and the real damaged people on display were a treat. I was riveted.

5. The Change-Up - B-. Director David Dobkin (Wedding Crashers) does the classic changing places film with Jason Bateman as the sturdy father/lawyer and Ryan Reynolds as the loser bachelor guy. After they switch places, they have to play each other's roles. This one was roundly panned, but I laughed at several of the jokes. Not bad.

1 comment:

Doctor said...

The ending of Source Code was the weakest part. After Moon, Duncan Jones is definitely one to watch. B for me (review in Sept.)

B+ for Warrior as well. Loved the Tommy and Nolte parts. And Brendan's wife was great. I had trouble believing Brendan would win any of those fights - even if he was the smartest guy in the ring.

Probably a little generous on The Change-Up. C or so for me. I had a rare laugh out loud with the baby throwing the knives and I appreciate all the vulgarity. But the pregnant woman and soft core porn stuff was too much.

Haven't seen The Help, and I'm holding off because of some rumored sh!t pie which, if true, would be a dealbreaker for the whole movie. Throw a sh!tpie in Drive and it immediately becomes a D.