5 Mar 2009

Monthly Movies: January + February 2009

So I've been meaning to write this up for a while now... a month to be exact! Had planned on starting an ongoing series about the films I've seen in the cinema, summarising the month ('cause it's doubtful I'd find the time to write something each time I go to the movies), and wanted to start with the first month of the year. But busy beaver me, couldn't find the time! So I'll just start off by combining two months. No biggie! :p I'll (hopefully) be keeping this up at the beginning of every month, writing about what I've seen on the silver screen, more ore less depending on my inspiration at the time.

Here goes! (asterisks indicate a film I was able to see in VO, i.e. not dubbed! very difficult to do in Alicante): Australia, Changeling, Curious Case of Benjamin Button, In the Name of the King, Pride and Glory, Twilight, Valkyrie, Vicky Cristina Barcelona.

Australia: Baz Luhrman's back and ready to dazzle us with a couple of gorgeous stars (and good actors to boot!), some breathtaking landscapes, a delightful boy and an engaging story! I did find it odd the way the film was put together, at one point two thirds of the way through you think you've reached the end of the stoy (and you would be right in most cases), but here he just uses it as a launching point for a new adventure! I didn't mind it, although I know others have complained about both that and the length (almost 3h), but I for don't didn't notice the time passing by. Wish I had seen it in English though, I loves me an ozzie accent! ;o)

Changeling: Clint Eastwood gave Angelina Jolie another chance to impress us with her acting talents (and another well-deserved Oscar-nom for her) as a mother up against a corrupt police force while looking for the truth behind her son's disappearance, and took us back to a time that seems like a whole different world. The scariest / saddest part: it's a true tale.

The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button: I already jotted down here my first impressions of David Fincher's new tale (based on a short story by F. Scott Fitzgerald), and several weeks later those feelings haven't changed. Still feels magical, poetic. Did someone say long or slow? Definitely not for me!!!

In The Name Of The King: a reminder not to let my dad pick the movies we go see!!! or least look them up on the internet first! AWEFUL!!! I can't remember the last time I wanted to get up and walk out of the movie theatre... and that was only 20' in! So predictable, so poorly put together, so badly acted... ugh!!! John Rhys Davis, are you so desperate for a paycheck? This is a long way from Gimli son of Gloìn! :o(

Pride and Glory: oh dear, what a disappointment! We went because it seemed like a sure thing: a crime thriller pitting a family of cops against each other, with excellent actors (Colin Farrell, Edward Norton, Jon Voigt), what could go wrong? I don't even remember... it was just plain obvious and forgetable. I did get a treat out of recognising Jennifer Ehle (Dirty Dancing wrong! BBC's Pride and Prejudice anyone?!) even when bald!!! :p

Twilight*: O.k., time to confess, have actually seen this one twice! ;o) I saw it in Spanish before Christmas; was curious as to what all the hullabaloo I kept hearing from accross the Atlantic was about (I'd never heard of these "famous" novels before), and I must say I quite enjoyed it! A fresh take on an old tale, some intriguing characters (although some of those bleach blonds looked painfully artificial...), basically an enjoyable escape into a romantic yet tense fantasy. When it appeared as the VO movie of the week (in the one cinema that does VO) I decided to repeat to get a second look to compare with the books I'd just read. Still not disappointed! One of the most successful book -> movie adaptations in a while!

Valkyrie: Tom Cruise might have actually regained a measure of my respect with this one! I didn't think I could become so involved in a thriller when I already knew the inevitable ending (plot to kill Hitler by some German officers... anyone who's studied a bit of history knows it failed, the war would have ended much soomer!).

Vicky Cristina Barcelona*: oh what fun!!! and on top of that to have been able to see it in VO instead of dubbed, to catch the switches between English and Spanish when Maria Elena arrives on scene (Penelope's performance definitely worthy of her Oscar!). Even better having seen it with a friend who doesn't speak Spanish so able to witness someone reacting the same way the characters did in the movie (incomprehension of the words, understanding of the general feeling transmitted). My favourite (recent) Woody Allen Movie! And the first time in a long time I've actually liked Scarlet Johanson on-screen (although Rebecca Hall's Vicky was even better).

That's all for this month! Later posts will be shorter, if I can remind myself to do this monthly! :p
Have you seen any oh these? What did you think???


  1. Anonymous6/3/09 23:44

    Jennifer Ehle wasn't in Dirty Dancing.

  2. Right you are! that's what I get for writing too quickly and too late... she looked VERY familiar and for some reason Jennifer Grey popped into my mind (I have a stubborn mind too, couldn't dislodge her from it).

    Jennifer Ehle was Lizzie Bennett in the famous BBC Pride and Prejudice!!! (with the famous Colin Firth as Darcy in a wet shirt scene)

    my mistake! thx for pointing it out! will edit it.

  3. Loved the BBC Pride and Prejudice. I have it on DVD.
    Anyway...I was going to comment on the Twilight stuff. It was indeed one of the better movie to book adaptations I've seen, but after re-reading the books there were a few things I wish they had left in for the purpose of explanation. My boyfriend watched it with me and had a lot of questions that I could only answer for having read the book. I'm looking forward to New Moon.

  4. I didn't miss anything particular from the book... if anything I was wondering why they added stuff to the movie, like that series of murders when James and co get closer to Forks...
    With all the talk I heard about changing director and increasing the budget (due to the werewolf morphing) for Full Moon, I hope they don't concentrate on the special effects and fights stuff to the detriment of the characters! Those chapters in the book where it's just "november" "december" etc followed by blank page... brilliant!


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