Monday, February 7, 2011

Movie Round-Up

Okay, I am sure my cohorts here are sick of hearing about this, one being in sunny Spain and the other being in sunny Florida, but I think the Winter doldrums are really setting in up here. Usually this doesn't happen until, say, late February, but because January was so terrible here it is starting to set in early. And, usually, weather doesn't annoy or depress me, but I have to be honest here and say that Winter is defeating me this year. It feels like my head is constantly stuck in a snowdrift. Going out is somewhat difficult, not so much because the roads are bad but there is no guarantee you'll have a spot when you get back. I was invited to watch the Super Bowl at a friends' place that were just far enough away, and because I have been transformed into an old man with a sweater pocket full of Werther's, that it was actually prohibitive. Yeah, I guess that New England stiff upper lip was not passed down from generation to generation. The sun helped somewhat yesterday, we did get out and visit people,  which was good, but then I woke up grumpy this morning. So it goes. I'll just acknowledge it and move on...

Enough of that. I'll admit I haven't watched a lot of movies lately. Battlestar Galactica is available on Netflix Watch Instantly so I have been focused on going through that. So far, it is pretty great. I just finished Season 2 and watched the first episode of Season 3. And I don't get paid for this, but Netflix was awesome before, particularly for catching up on TV shows you missed, but when they come on Watch Instantly its even better, but I guess this goes without saying.

But here is what I have seen:

The Uninvited (2009)
I'll just say that I caught this by accident on HBO on two consecutive days. I will admit that I started watching it once then fell asleep, and then caught it by accident the next day and finished it up, I guess I was intrigued by where it was going or might go. So I guess that's something right there. But in the end, it wasn't that engaging, another remake of a Japanese movie/ghost story. Although some of the images, particular of the areas on the water where the girls lived were very pretty, and I kept wondering how David Straithairn and Elizabeth Banks got themselves roped into this. (Just kidding, I know it was money, hey gotta true new things, I suppose.) So yeah, in the end, fairly lame, with (spoiler!) a ludicrous twist ending.

Sunshine Cleaning (2008)
So one night the Mrs. and I were looking around our Watch Instantly queue for something somewhat lighthearted to watch, and we came upon this which has been sitting in our queue for a while now. So we decided to go for it. Fascinating story, no? Anyway, this is your fairly typical indie movie about a small town girl who seems to have gotten stuck in said small town and is trying to improve her circumstances. Here she tries to improve them by starting a business in which she cleans up crime scenes. I'll give it points for morbid originality here, but beyond that there's still not much you haven't seen before, even in the sad tone that much of it sets. Still Amy Adams and Alan Arkin are good as usual as daughter and father.

Gasland (2010)
Everything I seem to be catching lately I seem to be catching by accident. This is no different, but was so engrossing we ended up watching it all. This focuses on natural gas mining and the fairly recent relaxation of environmental standards and how that effects areas (which seems like everywhere) where this mining is occurring. If you want to be infuriated, watch this documentary. I know this goes without saying but it is heartbreaking and makes you angry to see normal, hardworking people's lives being disrupted in awful ways, across the country, pretty much because Dick Cheney and Halliburton and their friends didn't want any regulations stopping them from mining natural gas. If you ever have the chance, you should check it out, honestly the problem is so widespread, but its something I have rarely, if ever, heard about.

One last thing, The A.V. Club had a talk with Delroy Lindo about his various TV and movie roles. Its worth a read. But mostly it gives me an opportunity to say, once again, that Delroy Lindo is not as big or famous as I think he really deserves to be.


1 comment:

  1. I watched Gasland several months, maybe a year, ago on HBO at my mom's house. INSANE!!! Made me so flippin' angry. And I instantly fell in love with the filmmaker.

    Sunshine Cleaning was a pleasant surprise for me as I was having girls night with either Jorlinis or Joanna and we had to both agree on a flick... I compromised and in the end it wasn't so bad. Good acting.