Archive for July, 2012
Jt and I showed ghostbusters on the rooftop deck last night. I had forgotten what a great, tight script it has. It really is the equal of Office Space for density of great lines. In addition, this is probably Bill Murray’s finest comedic performance. When Dana Barrett asks if he’s using the pump device correctly, his stutter start and half admission, “I think so,” is one of the greatest deliveries in all of film.
I also noticed, and this may have been the way the sheet/screen was fluttering, but Dan Ackroyd looks a lot like Connor Jessup, who plays Ben on Falling Skies.
The second one is Ackroyd.
Falling Skies has really started to come into it’s own. The last episode was the best so far. The interplay of Ben, who had once been harnessed and Hal’s newly found, newly de-harnessed girlfriend felt very Buffy like, though in service to a broader narrative.
The episode also gently ribbed coincidences that strain credulity when it turns out the discovery of the girlfriend is part of an alien plot. A trap, if you will.
Finally, I liked the idea that one can sometimes use unethical or deceptive means to achieve positive ends. I’m just wondering what Neitzche would say…
Went to see a comic adaptation of Hound of the Baskervilles this evening, where 16 parts are played by 3 actors. It was quite amusing, though, it seems to me, suffers from the almost cookie cutter approach to get easy laughs through silly puns, fast and sometimes partial costume changes, and the fact that most men don’t make attractive women. That said, it’s a pleasant way to spend a couple hours.
The clip below is a little racist and was changed in the version I saw so a rehash of the first act was necessitated by the late arrival of a wealthy donor. (Similar to the time in high school drama when the drama teacher changed a line where two chicks who were trying to call Paul McCartney wondered if a male classmate was masturbating to have them wonder if he was popping pimples. She rightly didn’t change sir Paul to George Michael or Axl Rose.)
Watched Judge Dredd this evening. While it doesn’t have the high concept of Total Recall, the Noir sensibility of Blade Runner, or the sheer ridiculousness or Mila Jovovovichness of The Fifth Element, I think, in some ways, it is at least the equal of those films and should take it’s place in the canon.
Judge Dredd is sort of the perfect b-movie version of a Luc Besson or Verhoeven movie. It’s got oodles of Max Von Sydow, too little of Diane Lane and some truly awesome character effects (see picture).
I don’t think I’m overstating when I say that the subtle references and wide influence of this movie make it almost impossible to tell which movie it came before or after. Among others, it has references to/influence on Flash Gordon, Max Headroom, Fifth Element, Escape from New York, Futurama, Robocop, Twins, Total Recall, Blade Runner, I Robot, Nutty Eadham Cheese, He’ll Comes to Frogtown, etc.
I even tolerated Rob Schneider.
The most glowing thing I can say is that has inspired me to check out the comics. I will let you know how those turnout.
Again, this evening, I’m sitting on the roof top deck, drinking copious amounts of alcohol, for a lightweight, at least, and listening to a Weezer concert across the river. I knew the first song, but I apparently don’t know as much weezer as I thought.
I’ve also been reading Red Shirts by John Scalzi, which I like a great deal. It’s kind of a mashup between R&G are Dead and Star Trek. You may think that sounds like Galaxy Quest, but there’s a good deal of Waiting for Godot thrown in. Good stuff. It’s about crew members who realize that they’re extras destined to die on an outer space TV drama.
I received the John Carter and Alien Anthology Blu rays today and I’ve been geeking out pretty hard. Jt and I watched Alien and it’s pretty clear that, even though Prometheus is pitched as a prequel, it’s more accurate to call it a remake of Alien. Nearly all of the major beats in Alien show up in some form in Prometheus. I know this will earn me derision of true fans, but I believe Prometheus is by far a superior movie. Alien hints at some deeper story, but is mainly just a monster movie.
John Carter is extraordinary in that the DVD is wholly unaware that it bombed in the theaters. To watch it, you would think there might be a sequel, which would actually be cool. They do go over the trope that you couldn’t make the books into a coherent movie, but I’m of the mind that the first book, A Princess of Mars could have been adapted pretty much as is, just smoothing out the cliff hangers at the end of every chapter. The macguffin they added feels entirely forced and it would have been much preferable if they had just embraced the fact that the Barsoom novels use every sci fi trope imaginable (except the cheesy macguffin in the movie) and they had just run with it.
John Carter (of Mars) will go down in history in the same way we remember Flash Gordon.
It will be an Aliens/Mars weekend.