A Few Reviews

I’ll just start by saying I have not a degree in film. But, I don’t think that makes me any less qualified to give my opinion and that’s what blogs are for – opinions.

The manfriend and I don’t have cable. In fact, we still have an analog TV. Not watching network television isn’t some hippy rebellion.  We simply don’t want to pay for it and find that we have better things to spend our money on and better ways to spend our time. I can’t tell you how productive I am on the weekends when I don’t have 20 shows to catch-up on via Tivo.

But, we’re not totally out of the loop and I definitely can’t go all egotistic on you and say that we don’t watch our fair share of TV shows and movies.  But how can you watch TV shows without cable? Netflix! So, while I get plenty done during the work week (sometimes working multiple 12 to 13 hour days in a row), and plenty done during the daylight hours of the weekend, we do watch a fair bit of the old boob-tube at night.

Just like most people, we manage to watch a ton of crap. I can’t tell you how sick I am of remakes and feeling like I’m watching the same thing over and over.  “Just change the title, the character names, location, and you’re set to go!” is how it seems to work these days. Not to mention that finding a film with depth, great graphics, a great plot, great cinematography, and great action all rolled into one seems impossible. It’s like they have to pick one thing to focus on and the rest goes by the wayside.

Top that with the fact that the manfriend has a penance for crappy movies and I can tell you that we’ve seen superior  junk. I can’t seem to get him to understand that $5 for a Steven Seagal 4-disc series is not a deal. Therefore, we own a library of some of the worst that’s come out of Hollywood.

But lately we’ve hit on some real gems. Below is a list of my recent faves with a brief explanation of why I liked it. Please chime in with your own recommendations and feedback!

1. Dexter – we simply can’t get enough! I love the balance between what is moral and what is a social service. Plus Michael C. Hall is a doll even when he’s being creepy!

2. Gran Torino – firstly, I love the fact that Clint Eastwood is still playing believable bad asses at almost 80! Some people might find some of the, ahem, “colorful” language in this movie to be offensive. But what is so beautiful is that this movie is all about how actions speak louder than words. He might say the wrong thing, but he certainly does the right thing. The movie might be a bit slow, but it’s well worth it.

3. Avatar – yes, I’m on the bandwagon. However, I’m going to come right out and say that I don’t think the plot is all that great. It’s the same story we’ve come across time and again (not that the overall message should be discounted, though). But the graphics and 3D are revolutionary. Just like with Titanic, James Cameron has just upped the anty. Basically, if you don’t see this in 3D, don’t bother. But if you can catch it before it’s out of the theaters, definitely do it!

4. Into the Wildis John Krakauer (who wrote the novel this is based off of) a superstar or what? Yes it’s over two hours long and yes it can be glum, but what a great movie! I’m a sucker for anything based off a true story and this is quite a story. Without spoiling it for anyone, the kid this is based off of is an inspiration (although a bit naive) and the movie does a great job of portraying his relationships in a very vivid and meaningful way.

5. Star Trek – I’m referring to the 2009 movie here, people. I thought they did a great job with characterization and graphics. They manage to make you like and care about the characters while telling an in-depth story and providing great graphics. As mentioned above, this seems next to impossible for Hollywood lately, which makes this movie all the better. Plus Chris Pine for a couple of hours is happy time!

Alright, that’s all for now!  Let me know what’s captured your imagination lately!

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