August 11, 2010

Movies...a few bits and bobs...

A few bits and bobs and different things at the movies...
  • Flickchart - yet another website that lets you rank the movies that you've seen.  This one goes for the simple mechanism of ranking two movies against each other and putting them into one big ranking as you rank more and more movies.  At the moment, Chicago is my top movie, but I'll make sure that falls over time.  Hero and Raging Bull and Up and a bunch of others need to slide up.
  • 30 Best Films of the Decade - I'm using this as a checklist of flicks to see over the next couple of months.
  • Films Based on DC Comics - I was looking for a list of all the direct-to-DVD releases that DC had done in the past few years and came upon this Wikipedia list instead.  It's got what I wanted, just further down the page.  I'm kind of surprised at how many of these I have not seen, really.
  • Dinner for Schmucks - I hadn't heard very many good things about this one before The Girl and I went to see it with the Calen clan this past weekend, so I didn't have very high hopes.  Turns out, however, that it's really funny.  Yeah, the Steve Carell character is pathetic and does integrate a number of actually sad, kind of touching notes throughout, but he's hilarious, too, so that more than makes up for the minor pathos.  And the ending is a little too neat and tidy, happy and hopeful, but it doesn't really matter because there were a bunch of times throughout when I - and The Girl and the rest of the theater - were laughing out loud.  No, it's not perfect, but it is funny.
  • Tropic Thunder - meh...there are a few chucklesome moments throughout, but in general, I just found it at best chucklesome.  At worst, there are a number of scenes that were pretty boring.  I don't think I'll ever be seeing this one again.
  • Wall-E - This leaves only Cars on my Pixar to-see list (amazing roster of films that they've put together, easily the most consistently excellent run of films from any studio, even above Ghibli in my view).  I was actually a little disappointed in Wall-E.  Yeah, it's really well done, and it's phenomenal that they were able to turn two almost non-speaking lead characters into an engaging story, but I felt that the environmental theme was heavy-handed and simplistic.  I get that Wall-E in an analog for our modern, disposable, sedentary society, but could you maybe make the people a little less helpless, a little less rotund, a little less tuned into their screens to the expense of the rest of their world, please?  And the fact that a single plant germinating - inside a refrigerator, no less - means that the entire world is ready to be repopulated seemed a little simplistic in light of the barely-visible sun, dust storms, and piled detritus all around the Earth to which humanity is returning.  I dug the film, yeah, but I don't think it's nearly the equal of Up or Ratatouille or the various Toy Stories.  I'll put it above A Bug's Life, but that's about it. Oh, and I loved Fred Willard's part.  Good stuff from him yet again.
  • Top 10 Modern Magic Realism Movies -These are some excellent films.  I would've never thought to connect them into this theme, but I really like the concept.  They feel somehow similar thematically.  I would include LA Story instead of Run Lola Run - not that LA Story is necessarily better (it is one of my favorites and the second date that I went on with The Girl), but it's simply more magical.  I don't see that Lola is all that 'magical'.  And I'd've put Big Fish in instead of Adaptation except that Big Fish doesn't feel like it fits the 'modern' part of the label.

5 comments:

Joe G said...

Wall-E was AWFUL! I don't need my kiddies seeing dystopian futuristic films...nor do I really want to. What the heck was Pixar thinking?

On another note- check out the site Getglue.com. Seems to be a no-brainer for you. I've played with it a bit, but here you can like/favorite/list/comment on all types of media - movies, books, music, video games, personalities, authors, musicians etc...like the whole gamut. Check it out.

Joe

Kate said...

Wow, nice to see Dear Zachary pop up so high on that 30 Best list. It's probably the most devastating film I've ever seen. Don't read too much about it, just watch it.

coachsullivan said...

After ranking 500 movies and making nealry 2400 choices (so far), I'm more than a little surprised to see Gandhi sitting at #13 for me. Hoosiers is still sitting in the 200s. The Godfather still hasn't worked its way up into my top twenty. Cute site, but how accurate it winds up being I'm not for certain.

coldnorthgamer said...

I'm about 340 movies listed with Army of Darkness 1 and Blues Brothers 2, which I just don't believe. They haven't come up very many times and it's always been movies that they are just way better, so it's an easy choice. I do like when it's two movies that you really have to think about which you liked better.

PHSChemGuy said...

JoeG - I won't say that Wall-E was awful - won't go that far. It was just a little heavy handed for me.

I'll check out GetGlue...don't know how many social media outlets I can have though.

Kate - haven't seen it...I'll give it a try if the library has it...and it's now on reserve heading to me

Sullivan & Gamer - I noticed the same sort of problems at first. It helped me to then click to filter by "Your Movies"...it let me compare stuff and nudge them up or down pretty quickly...

Gamer - the best matches I've had were Traffic vs Crouching Tiger because I saw them in the theater within a week of each other and was blown away by both...Hero vs Crouching Tiger because they're so similar...