Saturday, May 5, 2012

What Emily's Been Watching, April Edition

Not a lot of watched movies this month.  I blame it on two things:  1. Much of my movie watching time this month was taken up by watching Radiohead concert footage and interviews (couldn't help it).........oh yeah- and blogging!  2. The trouble with watching French movies is that I can't multitask while watching, so I had to really set aside everything else, and that is hard to do when Plants vs. Zombies comes out with an ipad upgrade that has been keeping me plenty busy during prime movie watching time, so I would have to opt to usually not watch a movie and watch Letterman or something instead.  I still managed a few though:

L'AUBERGE ESPAGNOLE- I couldn't find the translated name of this movie! (2002) [R] comedy/drama/romance.  So this one was the prequel to Russian Dolls (which I watched last month and didn't know it was a sequel).  When I discovered this movie existed, I started reading things about it and everyone said that this was better then the sequel, but I kind of disagree.  I ended up liking the other one better, this one seemed to make the other one better to me.  I didn't dislike this one, but I think when it is all said and done, I enjoy the other one better.   Maybe I'm just weird and may give them both a go again some other time and watch them in order.  Maybe.  Although this one played "No Surprises" by Radiohead more then once.  That will raise it a notch or two.  Watch it if you want.  Or not.

THE CABIN IN THE WOODS (2012) [R] thriller/horror.  This movie has been all the buzz since SXSW  (and before actually).  It is one of those "hush up about the ending" kind of movies (a la Catfish), so I knew that I needed to get myself to a theater quick before I heard something I shouldn't.  So when we made plans to have dinner and see a movie with my visiting cousin from California, this is the one we agreed upon.  Well, I gotta say (without spoiling anything)- what a crazy, weird, fun movie.  I had a blast watching it and really liked it.  But about half way through realized it was really NOT the best choice of movie to drag my 40 something (50?) year old cousin.  In his words, "I could have done without watching that".  Whoops.  But, we really knew little about it since no one was talking, so how could we know?  Anyway, my sisters and I loved it and I think my brother Ben liked it too.  It is a great movie for that person who likes horror movies, and all I will say about it is that it kind of deconstructs horror movies in a very fun, unique, and enjoyable way.  There were parts about it I REALLY liked and the third act was about as much fun as I've had watching a movie in a LONG time.  Advice for when you see it:  go in with a sense of humor, don't pigeon hole it or the actors upon first meeting and let things fall where they may and go with it.  Oh yeah, and did I say to have a sense or humor? Because that is key.  Emily recommends this movie for the scary movie watching crowd- in fact, for that crowd, I'd say this is a must (although, it really isn't scary)- but trust me on this.  But you have to follow my rules, or I can see not liking it.

Embedding of trailers was disabled for the two I tried, but perhaps that's for the best.  It doesn't spoil much if you want to seek it out- there are still PLENTY of surprises to be had.  But if  you'd like to see it totally fresh- skip the trailer.

OSS 117: CARIO, NEST OF SPIES (2006) [NR] spoof/comedy.  This was a movie that's been on my sights for a few months.  It is what Jean Dujardin (lead actor in The Artist) is famous for in France.  In fact it has the team of Dujardin/Bejo/Hazanavicius, so I was curious to check it out.  Conclusion:  after 35 years, I am still decidedly uncertain when it comes to spoofs.  I can enjoy a Mel Brooks film with the best of them- but they aren't all my thing.  I saw and laughed and quoted Hot Shots about a million times back in the day (still quote it from time to time), enjoyed Naked Gun 2 1/2 (have still never seen the first one) many times.  Other then that they tend to annoy me more then anything or they just don't make me laugh.  This movie was classic spoof and at first all you could hear were the crickets, but as the film went on, I found myself enjoying it more and more until by the end I decided I liked it well enough.  Don't know how much of a glowing review that was, but it is accurate.  Apparently, OSS 117 is France's answer to James Bond and stories about this detective have been made a lot, Hazanavicius decided to make a new OSS 117 film with a twist- make it into a comedy, and it worked.  This was a very popular movie and they made another one, but I've heard it isn't as good and since I wasn't totally wild about this one, I think I'll skip it.  Fun seeing Jean Dujardin doing comedy.  Emily can recommend this movie, especially for the spoof and spy movie loving crowd.  It's fun.  Great musical number towards the end I enjoyed immensely, but my favorite scenes hands down were the ones featuring the chickens- cracked me up! 

DINNER GAME (1998) [PG-13] comedy.  This is a classic French film that is one of those movies that America remade with it's own flavor and let me tell you (I think I already have)- that flavor for me was unpalatable.  I disliked Dinner For Schmucks a lot (but not as much as Rob- no one hated that movie more then Rob).  This one I thoroughly enjoyed.  It was funny without crossing that line into annoying.  "The idiot" was perfect I thought.  Funny, annoying, and believable.  It was really a great movie with some great scenes in it (I especially laughed at the main character's friend that comes over towards the last half.  He played a great role.  I liked how this one played out- in this version, they never actually make it to the dinner.  I thought that worked better.  Emily recommends this movie to anyone that liked or disliked Dinner for Schmucks.  Curious to see how both types felt about this movie.

Disabled trailer................grrrrr.  Find it here if you'd like.

Wall of Shame

CHINATOWN (1974) [R] drama/mystery/crime. I watched this because it's one of those movies that gets brought up a lot in movie discussion circles.  It also scores a 100% on Rotten Tomatoes.  I liked this movie.  It was fun seeing a young Jack Nicholson playing a classic-style private eye.  It was also some good old film noir- which is always fun to look at and watch.  The story involved a pretty intricate crime story involving the man that controls LA's water system.  One of those that gets hairier the deeper Nicholson digs.  It remains interesting, Fay Dunaway plays a great character and it ends appropriately disturbing.  Emily thinks this was worth a watch if you have missed it.

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