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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in moviemaiden's LiveJournal:

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Sunday, February 24th, 2008
1:56 pm
Oscar predictions.
Just in time for the big night! This is like my Superbowl. Seriously.

I have finally seen all the best picture nominees, after taking in Atonement last Saturday and seeing Michael Clayton on demand last night. (Michael Clayton was definitely not slow. Atonement was.)

Best Picture

Winner: No Country for Old Men

The only upset in this category might be There Will Be Blood. My boyfriend and I both think that No Country will win, although he thought it kind of lost focus in the last half hour. I said, "If you think that lost focus, you should have seen There Will Be Blood."

Best Actor in a Leading Role:

Daniel Day Lewis

You can see my reservations with this performance in my There Will Be Blood review. No one else has the buzz going into tonight to win. Johnny Depp never has, but his performance in Sweeney Todd just wasn't strong enough.

Best Actress in a Leading Role:

Julie Christie

Though I didn't see Away From Her, who doesn't like Julie Christie? (PS, my mom is a huge Dr. Zhivago fan.) Marion Cotillard also has some buzz, but I think more people are familiar with Christie's work. And if you think the Academy members are familiar with foreign actresses or unknowns? Think again. Critics, and probably fanatical movie-goers in large metropolitan areas (*ahem*) probably know more than the people voting for these damn things. I really hope Ellen Page doesn't win. Her performance was too over-the-top in Juno. Which was really the script's fault, but even so...

Best Actor in a Supporting Role:

Javier Bardem

Hands down. Amazing. I've heard good things about Casey Affleck and Hal Holbrook (gotta love Hal Holbrook), I adore Philip Seymour Hoffman (he's also a very nice guy!), and Tom Wilkinson was great, Javier Bardem gave one of the best performances I've ever seen.

Best Actress in a Supporting Role:

Cate Blanchett

Unfortunately, I didn't see I'm Not There, but I've heard and seen clips of her performance, which seems great. Although she won in this category two years ago, there's no way in hell she's winning best actress, so this is her shot for this year. Because there's a slight possibility she might have a split vote (but probably few would vote for her for best actress), Amy Ryan or Ruby Dee could take it. Tilda Swinton wasn't THAT great. Personally, I think Saoirse Ronan should win, as she was the only thing that made sitting through Atonement worth it. But she's young. Like, 13 or 14. And oddly, I just haven't heard as much buzz for her.

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2008
9:25 am
Oscar Nominations!
Oscar nomination day is always fun. Apparently the Academy really liked Juno and really liked Michael Clayton this year.

As stated before, I'm not surprised about Johnny Depp being nominated even though, after seeing his performance, I think Daniel Day Lewis was much better. Cate Blanchett will win for best supporting actress, not best actress, and Javier Bardem, as previously stated, is a lock for best supporting actor. Best actress is sort of a toss up. I'm a bit surprised Ellen Page was nominated over Kiera Knightley, although I'm not a big Kiera fan. She's been nominated before, too. Oh well. The Academy does things the way they do them, and that includes nominating the same people over and over (Daniel Day Lewis, Cate Blanchett, Tommy Lee Jones). Notably missing was best original score for There Will Be Blood. I mean, that was really good. I also think the Coen brothers will win best director(s?).

Of the five films nominated for best picture, I have yet to see Michael Clayton or Atonement, but have seen the other three. Not bad. I'll try to get to Atonement in the next week or two. I'll also post formal predictions in the next few weeks.
Sunday, January 13th, 2008
1:37 pm
So out of the movies I posted that I wanted to get to before the end of the year:

There Will Be Blood
Sweeney Todd
The Golden Compass
I'm Not There

I was able to see all except for I'm Not There. Juno was very cute. It was a nice story wrapped up in a Gilmore Girls-like package. I really liked it, although my friends have given me mixed reviews. I also purchased the soundtrack, which is somewhat mellow, anitfolk, yet interesting. Golden Compass was ok, although I think it would have been hard for people to follow if they hadn't read the books. The end definitely sets you up for the second installment of the trilogy, but given the disappointing box office results, like Lemony Snicket, I'm not sure they'll make the other two. Sweeney Todd was just what you would have expected out of Tim Burton. But I did think the two leads, Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter, though two of my favorite actors, were badly cast.

Movies I am looking forward to this year:

The Dark Knight (like everyone else)
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince
Prince Caspian
Horton Hears A Who (poised to be this year's Pooh's Heffalump movie!)
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
The Happening
Get Smart (SO Excited. I love the original series.)
The X-Files Movie
Valkyrie (despite Tom Cruise)

The Other Boleyn Girl has Scarlett Johanssen, Natalie Portman and Eric Bana. But the book didn't floor me. We'll see.
Semi-Pro looks pretty funny, but I won't be rushing out to see it.
Kung Fu Panda, not so much
Another Incredible Hulk movie?
Saturday, December 15th, 2007
8:25 pm
There Will Be Blood (Oil!)
Unexpectedly, I was able to see There Will Be Blood, my most eagerly-anticipated film of the year, due to a screener that fell into my hands (the film is being released December 25).

I'm still a bit undecided, as I only finished watching it about a half hour ago. Rotten tomatoes is giving it a 94% fresh rating at this time. I think I might still need to see it in a theater, as I hate having external factors disturb my movie-going experience (pausing to make dinner, take my contacts out, etc), which is why I hate watching films for the first time on DVD unless in absolute uninterrupted dark and silence, and even then, it's a distant second to a real theater. Daniel Day Lewis is getting amazing reviews for his performance. He will certainly be nominated for an oscar; I do not think he will win. Johnny Depp is probably the front runner at this point, as he has never won an oscar, and Daniel Day Lewis has. (By the way, I'm throwing my lot with everyone else - Javier Bardem will win Best Supporting Actor for No Country For Old Men. It's a lock.) I think Daniel Day Lewis is actually a bit overrated. He's made some good film choices. Sure, I love Last of the Mohicans. Gangs of New York bored me to tears. I feel he plays similar characters a lot and simply tweaks his roles a bit, with the exception of My Left Foot. A fluke? Perhaps.

The film spreads itself over about a thirty year period, beginning in 1902. The majority of it takes place in 1911, with the last few scenes taking place in the late 1920s. The basic plot revolves around Daniel Plainview, a power and money-hungry man, played by Lewis, who is skilled at seeking out oil, buying land, and drilling. Eventually, the viewer's opinion of this family-oriented business man (who works with his young son) completely falls apart. I won't give away specific plot elements, but suffice to say, there is some wonderful acting. The main allegory of the film is technological/economic progress versus religion. If the main hunger of power is concentrated in Lewis's character, the main source of religion is concentrated in the character of Eli Sunday (Paul Dano from Little Miss Sunshine), a preacher for something called the Church of the Third Revelation. Both are willing to do quite a bit to gain traction. One of them decidedly wins. I also find the visual image of dirtiness interesting. Filmmakers of late have had an obsession with the clean/dirty motif - Mystic River jumps to mind.

Stylistically, the film changed from beginning to end. This is Paul Thomas Anderson's first attempt at any sort of historical drama, so he may have been representing the passage of time. The end of the movie was quite different from the beginning, and I do wish they had been more consistent. I feel like many times, PT just sort of gives up and throws an ending on his films, just to get them to end somewhere - otherwise they never will. Although he returns to the clear drama format he favors, after the dramedy of Punch-Drunk Love, his film is very much a single-character piece, despite the tension between Eli Sunday and Daniel Plainview. It's an odd departure, considering his first three films - Hard Eight, Boogie Nights and Magnolia - were decidedly ensemble pieces (and Magnolia was actually used as evidence that they should give a "best ensemble cast" oscar). In addition, I loved the camera work in both Boogie Nights and Magnolia. Perhaps because there were so many characters, the camera was often in motion. It was very much an alive part of the process. He favored a lot of unbroken shots with moving cameras - mostly following people down hallways while walking to different places or having conversations. Magnolia, however, takes place over about a day; time isn't as much of a factor in this film. He had a lot of still and long shots, a la Sofia Coppola, which he began in Punch-Drunk Love, which gave a much slower pace to the film. Magnolia, although three hours, has a much more immediate feel. Like No Country for Old Men, this movie could have withstood a few more edits and come out the better. Some of the edits seemed a bit sloppy as well. Oddly enough, he worked with the same Director of Photography on all his films. I think I'll reserve calling this a great film because of the pacing and editing, which honestly, makes me wary of seeing it again soon as well. I think the more you see Paul Thomas Anderson's films, the more you get out of them. Usually it's a great ride. There Will Be Blood, however, was a bit harder to swallow.

In conclusion, I think for the most part, this will be a well-received film, critically speaking. Popularity? Not so much. Anderson is not Tarantino, though they may be lumped into the same genre of filmmakers. Though I love Quentin, PT is much more nuanced than he is, as well as epic in focus. I think PT Anderson's biggest commercial success to date was Boogie Nights, which was a surprise, and this film will certainly not surpass that in popularity. Even that film barely broke $25 million in the US. I still feel, and will probably feel forever, that Magnolia is the closest he's come to perfection. This is not a movie for everyone - none of his movies are - but thoughtful people will probably want to see it.
Wednesday, December 12th, 2007
10:33 am
Before the end of the year...
I have not seen as many movies this year as usual, but I suppose now is as good a time as any to post the run down of must-see movies for the rest of the year (as a precursor to the Oscars).

There Will Be Blood (The first film from Paul Thomas Anderson - one of my favorite directors - since Punch Drunk Love. Also, his first historical film.)
Sweeney Todd (Tim Burton may be a little over-the-top at times, but if it has Johnny Depp, you can pretty much count me in.)
The Golden Compass
I'm Not There (I should probably get on this one first.)

That's pretty much all I have to see, I think. It's quite a short list. Will I see Walk Hard if someone wants to go? Of course. I have seen No Country For Old Men. I have not seen American Gangster. If that gets nominated for Best Picture, I'll have to see it, although I will point out that last year I only saw 2 or 3 of the best picture nominees before the Oscars, for the first time in 3 or 4 years. I like to try to keep abreast of the industry, though, considering I live in LA. One thing I'm notably NOT excited about is Charlie Wilson's War. You would think being such a history buff, as well as a fan of Mike Nichols and Amy Adams, I would be all over that. You would be wrong. I'm not afraid to admit: I dislike Tom Hanks.

Hopefully my brother and I will get to a film when I'm visiting for Christmas, and I might save The Golden Compass for when the boyfriend comes at New Years. I think Dori and I will be able to take care of the rest on our own.
Thursday, September 27th, 2007
1:26 pm

I saw Across the Universe last weekend. It appears to be in very limited release right now, but it's in the same vein as the recent Broadway shows Mama Mia and Movin' Out - it takes familiar music, in this case songs of the Beatles, and builds a story arc around them. This appeals to fans of the music, who already know the songs.

There's clearly something inherently wrong with this. The music of Billy Joel, Abba and the Beatles are songs that reflect their surrounding and the society they are a part of (well, maybe not Abba), not necessarily building society and culture itself. The entire Beatles catalog doesn't tell a story, so, out of necessity, a story has to built from it. Which sort of works, but only at the expense of some character and plot development. But if you don't really care about the characters (because clearly you just HAVE to have people in the film named Jude, Lucy and Prudence, no matter if they do anything or not), and want something that seems to be more of an acid trip than a dramatic plot, there's absolutely nothing wrong with Across the Universe.

The cinematography and art direction, however, was good. There are scenes that seem made to trick the viewer into thinking he's on drugs, so I would not recommend actually seeing this movie ON drugs. Notably, the "Benefit of Mr. Kite" is a crazy scene, which quite frankly scared me more than entertained. However, the scenes in which "I Want You (She's So Heavy)" and "Happiness is a Warm Gun" were performed were both audibly and visually stunning. There are also featured cameos by Bono, Eddie Izzard, Joe Cocker and Selma Hayak, all singing, and all of which were quite good.

I also liked some of the different takes on the songs. For example, the character of Prudence is dressed in a cheerleader outfit and singing "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" when we are introduced to her. I almost immediately compared this girl's version of the song to the Carole King version of "Will You Love Me Tomorrow." Although Carole King wrote the song, it was first performed as a 60s pop ditty by the Shirelles. It's a good song. However, when King decided to record her own work and released Tapestry, the song took on a much more haunted, slower feel. IT was much more transient. In the movie version of this song, you almost ache with the pain of unrequited love. "Let It Be" and "Helter Skelter" were both done really, really well too. The woman who plays Sadie sounds like Janis Joplin. And the male lead (Jim Sturgess) is pretty hot. Actually, he looks like Marcel, who is also English...
Sunday, February 11th, 2007
5:41 pm
I'm not sure I ever mentioned Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story. I might have done a brief write-up about it in meredith_mae when I first saw it in the theater. I found it at Amoeba yesterday and snatched it up (along with Blow and Without a Paddle, the latter was a mere $6.99).

The film is based on The Life and Times of Tristram Shandy, Gentlemen, which is considered to be a post-modern novel before modernism (it was written about 300 years ago). It's also extreemly long and considered to be unfilmable because of the constant use of stream-of-conciousness and tangents. Infact, by the end of the book, the narrator, Tristram Shandy, has not even been born yet. The film takes a similar approach, in dealing with actors who are attempting to film a movie, while other things keep getting in the way, such as costuming, rewrites, interviews and personal issues. The only other film I can think to compare it with off the top of my head is Adaptation, which isn't so much an actual adaptation of the book The Orchid Theif as a film about a writer trying to adapt a screenplay from a book, so the film ends up being only tangetially based on the book. The is actually a very hard concept to pull off. (Ask any film student - making a movie about film students who are making a movie is the most boring, cliched, over-done idea.) But when done well, it's fabulous.

Also helpful is that the film features a British cast, and is full of a lot of interesting British humor, similar to that in the original British version of The Office. The movie stars Steve Coogan, Rob Brydon, Kelly MacDonald, Shirley Henderson and Gillian Anderson.
5:40 pm
I saw Factory Girl last night. Hey, *I* liked, even if it is somewhat critically panned. Sure, it's not the best and most innovative movie ever made, but the performances by Sienna Miller (surprising), Guy Pearce (expected) and Hayden Christiansen (you heard me) blew me away. Steve had mentioned how he was critical of their casting choice in Sienna Miller, since he believes Kiera Knightley looks more like Edie Sedgwick. But Kiera Knightley couldn't have possibly nailed the voice inflection and mannerisms. And for as one-note as the movie is, it's impossible to make a boring movie about Edie Sedgwick and Andy Warhol.

I think it's also appropriate though, that I saw that movie last night. Edie Sedgwick was like the Marilyn Monroe of the younger generation. Too much for this world, always looking for the next escape route, using drugs to either not feel or to feel something other than pain. They were both captivating and beautiful, and died tragically and much too young. But with what we know now, had either of them lived 20 or 30 years later, they might have been able to get help and make it through. Now that we know about eating disorders, depression, and more about drug addiction. Not to necessarily compare Anna Nicole Smith with Marilyn Monroe (quite a favorable comparisson for Ms. Smith), but she too is a tragic figure. It's sad though, because instead of people thinking she was a perfect beauty, we watched her life fall apart like the most glorious of train wrecks and called it entertainment. (Katie and I have a bet. She thinks suicide, I think accidental overdose.) Of course, people often compare Paris Hilton with Edie Sedgwick, which is even more of a travesty. Edie was also rich, and sort of became famous for being famous. From an old, well-known family, beautiful, and thrust into the spotlight. First of all, I do not find Paris attractive - and certainly not as attractive as Edie Sedgwick. Second of all, Edie went against her family's wishes to persue her own desires, which included making things happen, not just showing up to events other people planned in order to have her picture taken. By all accounts, she was quite a pistol. I admire her spirit - she always did what she wanted, and what she wanted was to have fun, experience life to the fullest, and maybe change some perceptions in the process. At worse, she could be accused of being vapid, like everyone at the Factory, but that was the whole point - Andy Warhol wanted to mirror the popular culture of the time and just shine the disposible culture right back in people's faces. (Sidenote: I became interested in Nico before I became interested in Edie Sedgwick. That's a tragic story too. Interesting how a lot of the people who surrounded Andy Warhol burned a little too brightly until they just burned out. I'm also mad because I can't find my The Velvet Underground and Nico CD, just the case. I might have to re-buy it.)

Anyway, if you would like to learn a little about Edie Sedgwick I would recommend starting off seeing Factory Girl, reading up on her a little, and then seeing Ciao! Manhattan. If you know more about her, you might be slightly disappointed with the lack of depth of the film (it shows Andy as a very uncaring person who used and disposed of Edie and warped her into a broken person), but you'll probably want to see it anyway.
Tuesday, August 1st, 2006
11:38 am
I recently purchased some DVDs... what else is new?

Where the Truth Lies - starring Colin Firth, Kevin Bacon, Rachel Blanchard and Alison Lohman, directed by Atom Egoyan. I first saw the unrated/NC-17 version of this film at an ArcLight AFI director's series event, followed by a Q&A with all of the above, minus Mr. Firth, unfortunately. It's filmed quite beautifully, going back and forth between a young reporter working on a book about a washed-up comedy duo in the 1970s, and their heyday, when she was a young fan, in the 1950s. She tries to piece together what really happened to make the pair break up amid interviews, travel, scandal, sex, and the rest of the good stuff. The R-rated version is on DVD. It originally got an NC-17 (I think it just deserved a hard "R" rating) for full frontal female nudity and girl/girl sex.

The Chronicles of Narnia - self-explanatory. You've all seen this, if you wanted. I saw it at the El Capitan, actually. I'm a huge fan of the books, and this is a great adaptation.

Separate Lies - starring Emily Watson, Tom Wilkinson and Rupert Everett, directed by Julian Fellowes. This is one of the most overlooked and underrated movies of 2005. It's perhaps the second best movie I saw last year. I saw it twice in one week at ArcLight. The story isn't spectacular. There are a few twists and turns. And the formula - a comfortably middle or upper-middle-class, and seemingly happy couple who's marriage is slowly deteriorating from the inside - has definitely been done before. This adds an accidental homicide, and a different ending. But the acting is phenomenal. The characters are extremely real. It's also shot very well.

Munich Ok, this IS the best movie I saw last year. And I don't even like Spielberg. Like, ever. It's a little long (almost 3 hours, I think), but Eric Bana is 1) sexy, and 2) an excellent actor. He really conveys the sense of mixed emotion required to do his job as a special secret agent on behalf of the Israeli government as he and his fellow spies track down and assassinate members of Black September. Hell, even in Troy Eric Bana got kudos for his acting, and look who he was working with! I cried at several times throughout this film, not the least of which is when he is on the phone with his baby daughter. The sex scene at the end is hauting, which is appropriate, as the character himself is being haunted during the scene. And yes, although most of the movie is seen from the POV of the Israeli special ops team, you DO see palestinians portrayed as people. I espeically like the recreation of the events in Munich at the beginning. While the rest of the world is mourning the athletes, the film also cuts to the cries of the families of the palestinians who died. I think I like it because it echos the theme of one of my favorite books (and the movie is good too), The English Patient. Amidst politics and intrigue, borders, nationalities, and ethnicities - it's all just the story of people. Everything can be taken down to a personal level. Borders change, leaders change. It's your own journey that counts.

Elizabethtown - This movie was also quite underrated. It's not as good as Almost Famous, that's for sure, but there is an excellent use of music, like in most Cameron Crowe films (helped by Nancy Wilson, of course). It's a much more personal story. The quirky characters (long-lost relatives of Orlando Bloom's character, who returns to Kentucky, where his father unexpectedly dies while visiting his family) border on charachatures. But it's good fun all around. The relationship between Kirsten Dunst and Orlando Bloom can't quite be desribed as innocent, but has a sweetness nonetheless. And no one can forget the Freebird scene. My roommate also said this is one of the first movies she liked Kirsten Dunst in. She's like Adam Sandler in a way. She has a specific character she can play. She just needs to find the right movie and director to make said character (the semi-ditzy, popular blonde girl) seem multi-dementional and sympathetic.
11:33 am
I've already seen 43 movies this year, and it's only been 7 months. Looking good!

Match point
The Producers
The Chronicles of Narnia
Brokeback Mountain
Tristan and Isolde
Nanny McPhee
Date Movie
A Good Woman
Dave Chappelle’s block party
Failure to Launch
Hard Candy
X-Men 3
She’s the Man
V for Vendetta
Ice Age 2: The Meltdown
Thank You For Smoking
Scary Movie 4
Silent Hill
Friends with Money
Don't Come Knocking
Just My Luck
The DaVinci Code
A Prairie Home Companion
Over the Hedge (x2)
An Inconvenient Truth
The Lost City
The Break Up
All the King’s Men
The Lake House
Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story
The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada
Strangers with candy
The Devil Wears Prada
Wah Wah
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest
You, me and Dupree
Clerks II (x2)
Lady In the Water

Of course, I haven't really been keeping up with the list, and I may have left some out. Oh well.
Thursday, June 22nd, 2006
10:16 am
I've been really bad at updating this. Also really bad at actually documenting the movies I've seen this year, because I've been lazy. And yes, the year is almost half over. If you can think of anything else I've seen (I realized there are lots of movies I meant to see, but never did), comment and let me know.

Match point
The Chronicles of Narnia
Brokeback Mountain
The Producers
Tristan and Isolde
Nanny McPhee
Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story
The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada
Date Movie
Dave Chappelle’s block party
Failure to Launch
Hard Candy
X-Men 3
She’s the Man
V for Vendetta
Ice Age 2: The Meltdown
Thank You For Smoking
Scary Movie 4
Silent Hill
Friends with Money
Don't come Knocking
Just My Luck
The DaVinci Code
A Prairie Home Companion
Over the Hedge (x2)
An Inconvenient Truth
The Break Up
All the King's Men (new version)
The Lake House

Wow. I've seen some shitty movies. Actually, there are at least a dozen good ones in there. And more that aren't good.
Monday, February 20th, 2006
2:12 pm
Updated List of movies of 2006
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
The Producers
Tristan and Isolde
Nanny McPhee
Tristam Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story
The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada
Date Movie
Brokeback Mountain
Sunday, January 29th, 2006
12:04 pm
Movies of 2005
So, for the comprehensive list of all movies I saw in 2005:

The Phantom of the Opera (x2)
Lemony Snicket's a Series of Unfortunate Events
The Aviator
Hotel Rwanda
Pooh's Heffalump Movie
Million Dollar Baby
Meet the Fockers
Bride and Prejudice
The Jacket
Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous
Sin City
The Interpreter
Kingdom of Heaven
Hard Candy
Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy (x2)
Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
Batman Begins
Mr. and Mrs. Smith
Cinderella Man
War of the Worlds
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Wedding Crashers (x2)
The Island
March of the Penguins
Me and You and Everyone We Know
The Aristocrats
Skeleton Key
The 40 Year Old Virgin (x2)
Red Eye
The Brothers Grimm
El Crimen Perfecto
Serenity (x2)
The Constant Gardener
Tim Burton's Corpse Bride
Lord of War
Separate Lies (x2)
Where the Truth Lies
The Squid and the Whale
A History of Violence (x2)
Good Night and Good Luck
Shopgirl (x2)
North Country
Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Wererabbit
Innocent Voices
Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
Pride and Prejudice
Walk the Line
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (x2)
Brokeback Mountain (x2)
The Ice Harvest
King Kong
The New World

Ratings / top and bottom 10 lists to come...

And movies I have seen so far this year:

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
The Producers
Tuesday, December 6th, 2005
9:56 pm
Let's see how I'm doing on that "must-see" list I created a few months ago. In bold are the movies I still have not seen. Next to the movies I hae seen is a rating based on 5 stars. 5 stars being really good, not necessrily the best I've ever seen.

Broken Flowers
King Kong
Corpse Bride**
Pride and Prejudice***
A History of Violence****
Oliver Twist***
Lord of War**
The Libertine
Harry Potter*****
Good Night, and Good Luck*****
The Squid and the Whale****
Innocent Voices***
The Chronicles of Narnia
The New World
Walk the Line****
Brokeback Mountain*****
5:43 am
The Ice Harvest wasn't as bad as people said. It was entertaining, although nothing to Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.

So: Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Begin released this weekend, against Memooirs of a Geisha. I say one of them will knock Harry Potter out of the top spot. But which one? I'm more excited about Narnia, so I'd LIKE to pick it, but I'm not sure. I think Geisha might be expected to do better. But maybe that's just because the theater I work at is getting Geisha, but not Narnia (*shakes fist*) and is therefore hyping the former.
Saturday, September 24th, 2005
10:05 pm
Monday, September 12th, 2005
5:07 pm
Recent DVD acquisitions:

Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason

Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events

Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow

Recent rentals:

A Home At the End of the World


Buying 3 DVDs and renting 2 seems to be my recent Motus Operandi at Blockbuster.
12:55 pm
Fall/Winter must-see movies.
Well, ok, they aren't ALL must see, but at least they all look better than Underclassman. I've seen trailers for all but 2 of them.

Something like 20 movies.Collapse )

OK, the following are really my top must see movies for the rest of the year. (Oh, wait. Harry Potter should probably be here...)

Elizabethtown: I really think I'm liking Orlando Bloom better and better, though I'll never be a fan girl. I thought it looked really good, then people began pointing out that it looks just like Garden State. But... I don't think so. I suppose there are superficial similiarities. But it's a Cameron Crowe film (with music by Nancy Wilson, of course). I have high expectations for this, and I hope I'm not disapointed. I really like the trailer.

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: I haven't seen the teaser trailer for this in a while, hopefully the full trailer will be released soon. But from what I saw, they are sticking VERY closely with the book, which is great, since the Narnia series is one of my favorites. I've never seen any film adaptations, though, so while I'm wary, I'm also really excited.

The New World: Although I'm not a fan of Colin Farrell, I'm excited about this. Christian Bale and Christpher Plummer also co-star. Was I the only person who thought Christopher Plummer was dead? Because apparantly he isn't. Anyway, the pedophilia part with the 14 year old girl who plays Pocahantas should be amazing. ;-P No, seriously, the trailer looks great. Except I'm pretty certain that it will be very historically inaccurate, as always. But hey, so was Braveheart. At one point in the trailer Christopher Plummer says, "We must make peace with these people! "Our survial depends upon it!" Was that before you enslaved them and burned their villages to the ground? You know what? Fuck you, Christopher Plummer! I wihs you were dead! (Ok, just kidding.)

Shopgirl: Based on the Steve Martin novella. It's the rehashing of a love triangle - cute, normal girl (Claire Danes) has to decide between an interesting, dirt poor, artistic, sensitive guy (Jason Schwartzman), and the put together, wealthy, worldly older guy (Steve Martin). But it takes place in NY, and looks visually and emotionally interesting, much like the vibe in Lost in Translation is what made something special out of that movie. I feel that emotional distance and loneliness will be played up a lot. If you get to see the trailer, please do.

Walk the Line: Johnny Cash biopic, starring Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon as June Carter Cash. I can't say I'm a Johnny Cash fan, exactly, but nor was I a Ray Charles fan when I saw Ray. Anyhow, this movie could possibly be better than Ray. I'm thinking Oscar nominations, especially with a late November release. And Joaquin Phoenix does his own singing.

Brokeback Mountain: Oh hell yes! Gay cowboy movie. That's all you need to say. Starring Heath Ledger, Jake Gyllenhaal, Anne Hathaway and Michelle Williams (from Dawson's Creek, not from Destiny's Child). This also did really well at the Venice Film Festival, and is supposed to be a really great love story, nevermind the homosexuality. Ang Lee directed it, and has received major props about it.
Saturday, August 20th, 2005
2:48 pm
Recently aquired DVDs:

Before Sunset - a great film, starring Ethan Hawke, Julie Delpy, and directed by Richard Linklater. The one thing I have to say about this film is that it's REALISTIC. It takes place in the late afternoon, and therefore, was only shot in the late afternoon. It's a sequel to 1995's Before Sunrise, and it was nominated for an oscar for best screenplay based on previous material at last year's oscars. It's the story of Jesse and Celine, two young people who meet on a train to Vienna and fall in love, and have a glorious one night stand, and decide to meet again in Vienna in 6 months. In Before Sunset, Jesse has written a fictional book about the experience, and is on his book tour in Paris, when he encounters Celine. We find that Jesse went to Vienne, Celine's grandmother died, so she couldn't go. They have a few hours before Jesse has to catch his plane. Hence, Before Sunset. The entire film is extremely conversational. The actors are so comfortable with each other that it's like they aren't even acting, they're just having a conversation. It's like they're playing themselves - that's how real it is. It's fabulous.

Saved! - Ok, mostly, I really wanted to buy Before Sunset, and Blockbuster had 2 DVDs for $12, so I got this too. What? It's funny. The jury is still out on Jenna Malone (I felt she took it too seriously), but Mandy Moore obviously had a great time making this movie. She's so over-the-top good.

Buffalo 66 - This movie is hard to describe. Basically, it's about a guy who feels he was neglected by his parents, especially his mom, who's a huge football fan. He placed a bet that the Bills would win the Superbowl, and when they lost, he ended up not being able to pay, and went to jail. He sets off on a vendetta against Scott Woods, the kicker who lost the Superbowl. Right away *I* think it's hilarious, because it's so similar to real life (the kicker who lost Superbowl 25 for the Bills was named Scott Norwood). It was directed by and stars Vincent Gallo. There are lots of little quirks that seem like inside jokes for Buffalonians. There aren't any big panoramic shots of the skyline or anything (it was low budget), but his mother looks like a middle-aged Buffalo woman. His parents live in a one-story yellow brick house decorated with Bills memorabilia, and at one point he goes to a strip club that's across the street from a bowling alley (hello, Genesee Street!). It's slightly surreal. And good.

Sin City - What's not to love? I saw this movie once so far, at midnight, which was rough, but I still loved it. I wasn't sure if it would be good, or if it would just LOOK good, but it was god all around. More violent than I expected, for some reason, but I'm down with that. The DVD apparntly allows you to watch the three separate stories as three different movies, or the final cut all together. They shot so much, and the used to actual graphic novels as storyboards. Anyway, I really like it and I can't wait to see it again.
Monday, August 15th, 2005
10:08 am
Movies of 2005Collapse )

On my way to breaking last year's record for sheer number of movies! Working at a movie theater will really help that. ;-)
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