Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Wall-E, Hancock, and the devil

Hey, I'm actually making it to the theatre for the occasional film these days. Back when we had our first, I couldn't wait for the day that my kid would beg me to go to the movies, and that day be here.

Just last light we locked in for the new X-files movie. I got the DVD sets that are just "the mythology" and we watched them as kind of a father-daughter event. So of course we have to see the new flick together.

The whole family sat down to watch Wall-E, but alas, 'twas only MPC1 and myself who finished it. Wall-E, though it has a minimum of dialogue, has so many plot turns that after about 20 minutes, MPC2 was kinda dazed, and it made her tummy feel funny, so she and mom went home. (I offered, but mom had missed enough through trips to the potty, so I didn't get voted off the island.)

I even missed a plot point during my potty break. I was able to pick the threads back up as far as I can tell.

The movie?

Well, it's everything you're going to (or already have) read about: brilliant, pretty, moving, do-dah do-dah. Should you see it? Heck yeah.

As Kottke pointed out, the world of Wall-E is a lot like that of the not very funny Idiocracy. I noted that the romance sub-plot had a lot of similarities to my favorite romance Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

They've got to knock it off with the misfits being heroes, though. That sub-plot is so gratuitous here, you can just hear gay 'ole "Charlie-in-the-box" warble "it's been done!" Like someone once said of Cocoon - and I avoided saying in my post about the latest Indiana Jones - we don't need one more movie where a spaceship takes off at the end and the credits roll, and no more fucked-up characters saving the day.

For you movie tech buffs, here's an article on how Wall-E was filmed, particularly how they got the camera movement to be more realistic.

Also saw Hancock with MPC1, which was just a hair too naughty for her eleven years, as Hancock's Marty McFly action word is "Asshole".

It's OK. A nice popcorn movie. Don't feel denied if you don't catch it in the theatre. Even though it's a big-screen movie, it was directed for the TV - nothing but closeups, and the action scenes just aren't all that grand and vast.

As usual, Will Smith's presence really makes the flick. That guy can do just about anything.

It is too bad, though, that the movie isn't just awesome. The last really awesome film he was in was Men in Black (not counting the unfairly harshed upon and pretty darn good Jersey Girl). Wish he could get another out and out winner like that.

Apparenly, Hancock was once better, according to this guy. (And you can snag the source script of the flick before it morphed into Hancock.)

Maybe now that Smith is such a megastar, the studios just won't let his films be overly edgy.

Finally caught Before the Devil Knows You're Dead on vid, and as evidenced in this post and comments by M. Blowhard, isn't all that - even though it opens on portly Philip Seymour Hoffman porking Marisa Tomei in a pretty explicit shot.

It's just too overwrought, and there's no one we care about, which is usually a fatal flaw in a flick. Just a bunch of middle-class lowlifes fucking up their lives. It kind of has that same fascination but eventual rush of disgust you get waiting for the guy at the party who's way past his cups to puke. You know the eventuality. It's kinda fun to anticipate it. It's gross when it goes down, and ultimately you're kind of ashamed of having witnessed the event.

On the 2blowhards there's a discussion about PSH's acting. I'll put my vote in the "yes" column as he's always convinced me he was who he was. He's fun to watch. But, M. Blowhard is right, he "indicates." (See the post.) He's clearly "acting" (scare quotes and all) in every scene and you know it. He reminds me of Dustin Hoffman, actually, who I also like to watch.

Oh well. Not everyone can be Meryl Streep.


Whisky Prajer said...

Pixar really has cornered the market, eh? Parents actually pencil in release dates on the family calendar (not that we have to: it's always the last day of school or the week before Christmas. It just doesn't hurt to be safe). It just kills me that there's really only one studio that seriously tackles the "family entertainment" issue, and literally banks on the notion that movies aren't just for hormone (plus) addled teenagers.

Have you and MPC1 seen "Get Smart" yet? My eleven-year-old was nudging me in the ribs, insisting, while I balked. She finally went with her best friend last night. She thought Steve Carrell was perfect, and that Arkin made a worthy Chief, but that 99, Siegfried (Terrence Stamp) and Stalker were woefully inadequate. It's 99 that makes me want to cry....

Yahmdallah said...

Yeah, MPC1 has been campaigning for that one, too. She will most likely win.