Amoeblog

Film Crud of 2010

Posted by Charles Reece, January 9, 2011 11:43pm | Post a Comment
black swan poster la boca

Imagine an alien archeologist in the future trying to understand human culture through our only remaining documents, existentialist literature from the 20th century. This alien might not laugh at Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan.

somewhere poster   king's speech poster

I have not seen Sofia Coppola's Somewhere, but did see Tom Hooper's The King's Speech thanks to a free screening. The latter makes King George VI relatable to us commoners by showing the difficulty he had in public speaking (a requisite of kings) due to his stuttering. Being a monarch on the dole isn't as easy as it looks, the film says. Coppola suggested in her last film, Marie Antoinette, that royalty might even like the same indy rock bands as the hoi polloi if given the chance. Poor Marie didn't get that chance; her crippling privilege led to an early beheading. King George couldn't retreat into the background and go face the Nazis on the battlefield. Instead, he had to endure years of speech therapy in order to give a speech to all the boys who were to face death against the Axis. My inner class conflict has trouble finding this story inspirational, but I, along with all the middle aged women who read classic literature, can't deny the charm of Colin Firth. As an example of creative writing's write what you know, Somewhere is about privileged Hollywood types contemplating their up-and-out existence at the Chateau Marmont. Stephen Dorff plays the kind of guy who spends a lot of money on looking dirty and hip. There are a lot of his type in Hollywood, and now they have a movie about their plight. Dorff's not as dreamy as Firth, but has better abs.

alice in wonderland white queen

That poster kind of says it all, a bleached blonde white queen, i.e., cheap and phony. It's interesting that when a film version of some dark fable comes up, Tim Burton springs to mind. Of course, he had to be the one to direct this film, I heard many people say. Yet, he only fucks them up: Sleepy Hollow, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Sweeney Todd. Sure, he's got a unique design sense, but he's an unimaginative storyteller, turning everything into the most rudimentary action plot. The best he could do with the headless horseman is to treat him as a supervillain. Alice in Wonderland shoehorns Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings into Lewis Carroll's world. Instead of mindgames with perverse creatures, Alice is a warrior who's brought back to Wonderland to face off against the tyranny of the Red Queen and to slay the Jabberwocky. That sounds like a well-worn joke about producer interference from The Player, but it's not.

shutter island poster

Peter Bogdanovich likes to retell this bit where, in response to a comment he made about Greta Garbo only making two great films, Orson Welles said, "you only need one." It helps to keep that in mind when watching Martin Scorsese's films of the past 20 years. For example, Shutter Island.

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January 4, 2011: Tron Legacy

Posted by phil blankenship, January 4, 2011 10:18pm | Post a Comment
Tron Legacy movie ticket stub

out this week 11/30 & 12/7 & 12/14...inception...black swan...social network...the golden globes and the oscars...

Posted by Brad Schelden, December 17, 2010 05:34pm | Post a Comment
inception
The year is quickly drawing to an end -- Christmas Eve is a week away, and New Year's Eve is two weeks from today! I really do love this time of year. I love the weather in December. I love all the movies that come out at the end of the year. I love the holidays. I love the best of the year lists. I am not ashamed to love December. As the music releases slow down this month, the big movies are all coming out this month -- movies hoping to get nominated for Oscars tend to come out toward the end of the year. The Golden Globes Nominations just came out this week! The Golden Globes take place on Sunday, January 16th. Oscar Nominations come out on Tuesday, January 25th and the Oscar ceremony is on Sunday February 27th! They decided to change black swanthe Best Picture category for the Oscars last year to ten nominees. The Golden Globes have always had 10. There are five comedy / musical nominees and five dramas. I think it is easy to pick 10 best pictures every year but the Foreign Press seems to have a hard time coming up with 5 comedies and musicals. The nominees for comedy/musical are a bit ridiculous this year. I am embarrassed for them! The 5 nominees for Drama are Inception, Black Swan, The Fighter, The King's Speech, & The Social Network. Now that the Oscars have 10 nominees, these films are almost guaranteed to also get nominated for the Oscar for Best Picture. These films will probably be joined by Toy Story 3, True Grit, & The Kids Are Alright. The last 2 nominees will probably be 127 HoursThe Town. Maybe Winter's Bone, Biutiful or Get Low will sneak in there. I would love to see Never Let Me Go, Animal Kingdom, or Ghost Writer included. These were three of my favorites this year. But they will most likely be lookethe kids are all rightd over.

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top tens of 2010...my favorite dvds and tv shows of the year...

Posted by Brad Schelden, December 15, 2010 05:53pm | Post a Comment
I am busy at work on my top 50 albums of the year! I will most likely be posting those on the blog next week but I decided to go ahead and post my other best of lists of the year now. We still have a couple of weeks left in the year so the movies list will most likely change, as I plan on seeing about 10 more movies before the year is over so my top ten movies of the year will also be posted in the next couple of weeks. What I have for you today is my top dvds and blu-rays for the year, my top TV shows & video games, my favorite 7"s and soundtracks....It has been a really great year! Tons of stuff to keep my glued to my TV screen...

TOP TEN DVD RELEASES  OF THE YEAR...






TV CARNAGE: LET'S WORK IT OUT!











BEST OF SOUL TRAIN












EVERYTHING IS TERRIBLE 2








Techno-Realism Killed the Videogame Star: TRON Legacy

Posted by Charles Reece, August 2, 2009 11:42am | Post a Comment
Disney premiered a concept trailer for TRON Legacy at the San Diego Comicon (click the link for high-def version). Further evidence of the destructive effect techno-realism has had on the design of fantasy:


I found the little bit of dialog telling: The fallen player yells out, "You won, okay? This is just a game!" To which Quinn (TRON's hero) replies, "Not anymore." Indeed, the game within the movie has started to look more like quotidian reality rather than the beautiful design of the original fantasy.

First, compare the new light cycle crash:


to the old one:


And look how boring a dangling guy is now:


compared to back then: