Powered by Blogger

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Movie update

I watched a bunch of movies during my vacation this past week.

Crazy Heart was wonderful, as I knew it would be. But I would have to say that, yet again, the impact was diminished by seeing the previews - so many pivotal scenes were included. The performances were exceptional and it was heartbreaking and moving and everything. But I think I would have felt more involved if I hadn't known so much about what was coming. Some things are really better when they're a surprise.

Tristan + Isolde is my new obsession. Critics were not kind, especially to James Franco, when it was released in 2006, so I skipped it, along with everyone else . . . it was a box office flop despite its impressive pedigree - great cast and the Scott brothers (Tony and Ridley) producing. Now I'm really mad at the critics! I thought it was incredibly romantic and well done overall. I'm so sorry I didn't go see it on the big screen. I already bought a copy for my library so I can watch it over and over. For the record, I thought James Franco was delicious, and perfect in the part.

Towelhead was incredible. It totally made me cringe, which I think it intended to do. But it's so good and very worth seeing. I might have to check out the book. Of course it made me so worried, to watch this 13 year old girl's sexual curiosity. But that's what those of us who are the parents of girls have to deal with. Watching her foolish, selfish parents is a primer in how not to respond. Terrific performances by absolutely everybody and a visually interesting film to boot. Should have been nominated for tons of awards. So glad I watched.

How the Garcia Girls Spent Their Summer was a good movie too. A little offbeat, and another rather challenging presentation of sexuality, this time at all ages. But very worth watching and very well done. Elizabeth Pena as the buttoned-up divorced mom and America Ferrera as the teen exploring her budding sexuality were terrific and are well-known to American film audiences. The grandmother (Lucy Gallardo), who is arguably the best thing in the movie, is not familiar to me, but she was wonderful too. I just wish the writer-director, Georgina Riedel, would get busy and make another great movie about women!

Suburban Girl is based on two short stories by Melissa Banks in a collection that I read called A Girls Guide to Hunting and Fishing, which I remember liking, though I don't remember the particulars of any of the stories anymore (I read it years ago). The movie is quite witty and the performances are fine, but I didn't really buy the May-December romance between Sarah Michelle Geller and Alec Baldwin. It's not that they were miscast, though you could make that argument. I more blame the writing - I think, as with many movies, more time should be spent developing the romance and letting the audience in on why these two people are drawn to each other. Instead, in this movie, as in so many others, the couple meet, fall for each other immediately, and most of the time is spent on the obstacles they face. It wasn't a bad movie at all, but it could have been so much better.

Shut Up and Sing, Babara Koppel's doc about the Dixie Chicks after Natalie Maines' comment regarding President Bush at a concert in England in 2003 ("we're ashamed that the President is from Texas") was very good. It was a tiny bit confusing, jumping between time periods, but it was very inspiring to watch them stick to their principles despite a firestorm of protest, including a very scary death threat (in Dallas no less). And their post-comment album won 5 Grammys, so they survived both personally and professionally. Great stuff.



Post a Comment

<< Home