Monday, June 4, 2012


Yo yo yo. It’s your boy Perspicacious P aka P-Dolla aka White Jackal. I’m back again with yet another bunch of riveting reviews.

This time we tackle Tinsel Town. Have no fear, dear reader. There will still be large amounts of profanity and half-hearted, perfunctory criticism.  

So sit back, relax and let yourself go. Shit just got real.

Wrath of the Titans (Movie 17 of 50)

I’m a bit of a sucker for the big, sweeping epic: Gladiator, Braveheart, Kingdom of Heaven, 300, Spiceworld. So although I hadn’t seen the first installment of this ‘series’, Clash of the Titans, I figured it was right up my alley.

It helps that I went into this flick with appropriately low expectations, and I’m happy to report they were easily met. This was just old-fashioned popcorn escapism, with lots of visual effects and perfunctory writing. What’s not to like?

Well, apparently those haters at Rotten Tomatoes found a lot to take issue with. This confuses me. What exactly are the critics looking for when they see a film like this?

It ain’t high art and was never meant to be. THERE WAS A GOD DAMN MONSTER THE SIZE OF A MOUNTAIN, AND IT WAS ON FIRE. How could you not like this? What am I missing here?  

I saw this like over a month ago so I don’t really remember anything else. But if it’s on your Netflix queue or you happen upon it in your torrentz (not that I condone such activity!), it isn’t a bad way to spend a couple of hours.

Safe (Movie 18 of 50) 

Truth be told, I think that Kevin and I are Jason Statham’s biggest fans. He brought up the idea of Statham and Gina Carano from Haywire starring in a movie together, WHICH IS THE GREATEST IDEA EVER. When they make the movie, I really, really hope they call it Crankwire. Both actors exude a brute physicality onscreen and have just enough acting chops and charisma to not distract you during the non-fighting scenes.

Hollywood, make this happen.

ANYWAY, Safe was solid, although I thought it took a bit too long to get to Jason Statham fucking up the bad guys. It seemed as though the writer and director wanted to add a lot of context, but with a movie like this too much context can slow things down.

Essentially, it’s about this genius girl from China who has a photographic memory and can also crunch numbers with the quickness. The Chinese mob obviously puts her to use for its nefarious activities. Eventually she gets caught in the middle of a war in New York between the Chinese mob, the Russian mob and corrupt members of New York’s Finest. Despite the odds, there is one man that can stop them and save the girl…

In the end, Statham did what he does best, and that’s kick a shit ton of ass.

Now let’s greenlight that flick with Gina Carano.

The Avengers (Movie 19 of 50)

Speaking of kicking ass, The Avengers kicked all types of ass.

Let me start by saying I’m not a big fan of comic books or comic book movies. I tried to read comics as a kid, but they bored the shit out of me. I wanted to play Intellivision and drive my parents crazy. The run of comic book movies over the last ten years or so hasn’t really done much for me, except for the X-Men movies and the second Christian Bale Batman movie. The rest I could really care less about.

But god damn this was a fun movie. What set it apart was the witty writing, which I guess is a trait of the screenwriter, Joss Whedon. I have only seen one other thing by him, Cabin in the Woods, so I’m largely ignorant of his work. But if his other stuff is nearly as good as this, I’ll have to check it out. It was escapism at its best and had a self-aware pop culture pulse that made it all the more entertaining.

Robert Downey Jr. stole the show to me. His arrogance and general douchbaggery was done with such swaggering charm that not even I could hate. That guy has charisma coming out of his eyeballs, and he brought it in spades in this role.

Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk also stood out. He gave the character a depth that I didn’t expect. Not that I am particularly familiar with the character outside of the ill TV show from the 70s, but Ruffalo projected a certain tortured humanity I never saw Bill Bixby do.

The final showdown was ridiculous and fun and over-the-top, a nice microcosm of the movie as a whole. Most surprisingly, this may be my favorite movie of the bunch I have seen this year.

Well played, Mr. Whedon. I look forward to The Avengers II: The Electric Bugaloo. Just don’t cast that wack white girl who really couldn’t dance.

The Cabin in the Woods (Movie 20 of 50)

I actually saw this before I saw the Avengers, but I forgot I had seen it until I started writing the review for the Avengers. So that’s how much it meant to me.  

The film didn’t really connect with me, which was surprising because multiple people whose taste I trust recommended it to me. Maybe my expectations were too high, but I think the problem is that I don’t like horror movies and haven’t seen many, and a lot of people liked this film because of how it deconsctructed the horror genre. Since I have no frame of reference or context for this sort of thing, I was left feeling a bit empty at the end. I think if I was more of a horror fan I would have liked the movie more, but I’m not so I didn’t.

Haters gonna hate.

I will say that there was an amazing reference to an 80s anti-drug commercial that for some reason has stayed in my consciousness for 25 years, so I appreciated that. I LEARNED IT BY WATCHING YOU, ALL RIGHT?!?

The Cabin in the Woods wasn’t terrible and was entertaining enough, but I’m in no rush to see it again anytime soon.

And so ends our latest session. As always, it was a pleasure. And the pleasure is all yours.

No comments:

Post a Comment