Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Quick movie reviews: Scott Pilgrim vs. the Expendables
The Expendables: My expectations were sky high - how could they not be? - but I left a little disappointed. Just a little. My biggest gripe is that, for a movie that aims to bring back the glory of '80s cinema, Syvlester Stallone opted to film the action scenes mostly using the trendy "extreme close-up/ADD editing/shaky cam" trifecta, so a lot of times it was hard to tell what was going on. Other than that, you get exactly what you expect: laughable dialogue, little plot, and tons of explosions. I had a blast! Kudos to Terry Crews for having the most awesome character name ever ("Hale Caesar") and providing the best "blow 'em up good" sequence of the film.
Scott Pilgrim vs. the World: Another slight disappointment. It wasn't as funny as I'd hoped and I'm totally over Michael Cera's charms. Also, I didn't buy the relationship that drives the plot. But this flick is director Edgar Wright's show. He really shines here, with loads of visual quirk, creative editing, and a very brisk pace. Hey, Hollywood, how about letting Wright direct every movie?
Toy Story 3: Congratulations, Toy Story 3. You're second only to Big Fish in the category of films that make me bawl like a schoolgirl. I hope you're happy with yourself.
The A-Team: By all accounts, I should really hate this movie. The last thing the world needs is a cinematic retread of a silly '80s TV show. And that flying tank scene shown in the trailer? Stupid, stupid, stupid. But guess what. The movie's pretty damn fun for what it is. Going into it, my expectations were low, but Bradley Cooper and company won me over.
Iron Man 2: Eh, I liked it well enough, but it suffers from sequelitis. There is way too much going on and the film seems a bit bloated. Robert Downey, Jr. is excellent, as usual, and you can't go wrong with Scarlett Johansson kicking butt in a skintight suit, but I've got to give top honors to Sam Rockwell, who improves every movie he's in. He steals the film. My new favorite actor? Maybe.
Colin: This extremely microbudgeted (£40) English flick was screened on the last night of the "Zombies in Art, Film, and Literature" class I took last week. By taking the point of view of the titular zombie, it puts a fresh spin on a genre that churns out more turds than gems. Sometimes the camerawork gets overly shaky and it suffers the same Multiple Ending Syndrome as Return of the King, but given how much it cost to make, it's impressive. Worth a look, if you can find it.