ENJOY THE MOVIES
While I wouldn't call myself a Star Wars fanatic, I am a big fan of the films and mythology Lucas has created. Somehow the existance of any previous animated Star Wars shows escaped me, and I thought this was the first. Luckly a friend of mine brought me up to speed and let me borrow the animated shows, that first aired back in 2003, on DVD. After watching those and loving them, I got really excited to see Star Wars: The Clone Wars on the big screen. Thankfully my excitement was not left entirely unrewarded.
This film roughly fits in between Episode's II and III of the live-action films, in theory. As we come into the story, Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi are immersed in battle fighting with the Republic to fend off the onslaught of Separatist droid troops.
More than any other film genre, comedies are all about opinion. If you watch a comedy that isn't your type of humor, you're just not going to like it. Other factors can sometimes include who you see it with or the attitude of the audience in the theater. There have been times where I have seen a comedy, like Mystery Men, that didn't seem funny the first time but then when I went again with different friends, I thought it was hilarious. Last week I had a similar experience when I saw Tropic Thunder. While I did think it had some really clever and funny parts, overall it just didn't do that much for me.
Ever wonder what you would get if you took an 80's buddy cop movie and replaced the cops with stoners, then took Half Baked and made it clever instead of cheesy, and mixed the two together? What you would get is pretty close to what Pineapple Express turned out to be. I don't know if that sounds good or not, but I loved it. I was already excited for it, but didn't expect it to be near as action-packed or as smart as it was.
Dale Denton (Seth Rogen) is a 25-year-old process server who loves smoking weed. His typical day is made up of smoking, handing out subpoenas and hanging out with his 18-year-old high school girlfriend.
It isn't very often that I'm completely split over a movie, but Hancock has managed to put me in that exact position. Usually a film is just good, just bad or average with good and bad scenes mixed together throughout the movie. What completely separates Hancock from other movies is that the first half is great and quite enjoyable; I liked just about every part. Then it passes the midway point and goes crashing down into a muddled, confusing and illogical mess. I can't think of the last movie that I could literally split down the middle and really enjoy one part while totally hating the other. Not exactly the 4th of July weekend movie I was hoping for.
Movies have the ability to make us feel every possible emotion. There are times we cry, times we laugh, times we love and times that we are scared out of our wits. With all the different feelings that I experience during the many films I watch, it wasn't until after seeing Wall-E that I realized there is one emotion that movies so rarely make me feel. The emotion that I'm talking about is joy. To be honest, Wall-E has so consumed my thoughts that I can't even bring another movie to mind that has made me feel the pure joy that I felt during or after seeing Pixar's Wall-E.
When it comes to TV shows being made into films, they usually don't turn out very well. The list of bad adaptations far outweighs the good. Movies like The Beverly Hillbillies, Bewitched, Starsky & Hutch, Wild Wild West, and Dukes of Hazard cast a constant shadow on the TV-to-film adaptations. Sure there are a few that turned out great, like The Untouchables, Mission Impossible and The Fugitive, but those can't make up for a string of trainwrecks. Get Smart is Hollywood's newest attempt at resurrecting an old show, and while it definitely isn't worthy of much praise, I'll admit I was definitely entertained.
It's quite funny how this summer is turning out. I was really looking forward to The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian but ended up not liking it too much. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull was good but not great. Iron Man was high on my most anticipated list but I never expected it to blow me away as much as it did, not to mention Kung Fu Panda, which I have already seen twice and loved even more during the second viewing. Then last Monday I had the pleasure of watching The Incredible Hulk. Like in the text I sent my friends after watching it, all I can say is, Hulk Smash Good!
So maybe it's a little too soon to tell Pixar to watch their back, especially with Wall-E looking amazing, but it looks like DreamWorks Animation is stepping up their game. Honestly I haven't been that impressed with the films DreamWorks has produced over the years. Sure they had that one film a long time ago called Shrek that was great. Then they had that other one named Shrek 2 which was really good too, but besides those two, there just haven't been any others from DreamWorks that I walked away from being very excited. That is until I watched Kung Fu Panda just the other night and was totally blown away.
I'm a sucker for horror/slasher movies. That doesn't mean that I like very many of them, it just means that I'll give just about any of them a chance. Usually the trailers turn out to be better then the actual film because, let's be honest, most of them turn out to be total crap. The biggest problem I have is getting someone to go watch them with me. Even The Strangers, which I thought had a pretty intriguing trailer, was a hard sell with my friends. It took me an hour just to talk my brother-in-law into going to see it with me. Unfortunately, it turns out that as intriguing as it looked, it didn't really bring anything new to the horror genre.
When I first saw a trailer for The Fall, I'm sure everyone thought the same as I did. I thought it was going to be another movie by director/writer Tarsem Singh that looks amazing, but has a crappy story. The only reason I finished watching The Cell was because of all of the great visuals, which still barely kept me from turning it off. Even so, I decided to give The Fall a chance, mostly because it looked beautifully shot, but fully expected a repeat of my experience viewing The Cell. Instead, I was blown away by not only the cinematography, which far exceeded my expectations, but also by the well-rounded and unique story that Tarsem presents. This is a fantastic film!
Ken's Review: Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull - A Welcome Addition to the Indiana Jones Saga
I can't believe it's here! After months of anticipation, news, trailers, pictures and an Indiana Jones marathon, Kingdom of the Crystal Skull has finally arrived! So much of the success of this film rides on how well it compares to and compliments the previous Indy movies. Is Harrison Ford able to resurrect Indiana and play him again after all these years? Does it have an awesome opening, amazing chase scenes, fantastic tomb raiding, and fight sequences that only Indiana Jones can provide? Well, I have all the answers because I have seen it, and I'm happy to report that while perhaps it wasn't as perfect as I had hoped, it still delivers and doesn't bring any shame to the Indiana Jones universe.
During my Indiana Jones marathon last Saturday, I noticed more about these three films than I ever had before. I really started to break each one down and piece together why it is that I love them so much. After watching them all again, I realized that I don't have an individual favorite. I enjoy each one for the originality they bring, while also being able to sustain the integrity of the original concept for the character. This can be attributed to the genius directing of Steven Spielberg, the incredible writing of George Lucas, and the ability of Harrison Ford to own this character. But what else makes these films so great? Let's take a brief look back at three of my all time favorite films.