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Tuesday, January 06, 2009  

My Year in Movies (2008) Part Two

To continue the rundown of what I saw in the theaters this year:

Horton Hears a Who
The first movie that M. Small saw in the theater all the way through. He was totally engaged, asked lots of questions (quietly, of course), and when the credits rolled he asked me, "why did it stop?" I figured he loved it. Then we went home and he told his mom all about the Wall-E trailer. As of this writing, he has no memory that this movie has ever existed. And in fact my own is somewhat fuzzy. But did you know that Will Arnett has played two animated vultures? That has to be a record.

Baby Mama
Trash assumed at first that Tina Fey had written this, which she didn't. She still thought Tina Fey had written it when I came home from seeing it. She wouldn't have thought Tina Fey had written it if she had sat through it.

Gerd got her money's worth, though. Every time things slowed down, she would just remember the line, "I think she wants me to put olive oil on your taint," and laugh. In fact, that may have gotten her through the whole rest of the year.

Iron Man
I don't care what anybody says about how "faithful" this movie was to its source material. This was absolutely the worst adaptation of the Pete Townshend musical I could possibly imagine.

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
I dragged Dave and Tara to see this with me when they were in town, even though they'd already seen it. I'm glad I did, although it wasn't the life-changing event that the hype had built it up as. I did enjoy the first reel a whole lot, though. That could have been the best twenty-minute short ever.

I also love how the ancient stone engineering still operates perfectly. Will my garage door opener still work in twelve hundred years? I think not.

I love WALL-E. Everybody loves WALL-E. M. Edium loved WALL-E even before it came out. I can't tell you how many times we watched the trailers on the computer. For a while, I think the film's release date, June 27, was fixed more firmly in his mind than December 25.

So then we're in the theater, and EVE is blowing shit up, and he wants to go home. Maybe I should have taken him home. I did, with Ratatouille the year before, when he was bored instead of scared. But I know he'll regret it if he doesn't see it through. So we take a few breaks from the mayhem by visiting the hallway. And this ends up being the first movie I've ever seen from two different sides of the auditorium.

Also, I don't know how this happened, but between this, Baby Mama, and Be Kind, Rewind, I may have seen more Sigourney Weaver movies this year than ever before.

This had been out for a few weeks, and I went to see it without having read any of the reviews. By the end, I was wishing I had.

Took M. Edium to see it again one weekend afternoon, this time at a different theater. This time we sat through almost the whole thing, save a few minutes in the first act when EVE's being all destructo-bitch. I got a much clearer sense of the plot this time, and it holds together well.

But I've become convinced that the reason Pixar works so hard on its movies is because they know parents are going to have to sit through them five hundred times when they come out on DVD, and will have considerable leisure to pick them apart. Which I will now do.

1) Buy 'N' Large is supposed to be this evil, hyperconsumerist monopoly, but they built a robot that can keep itself running for seven hundred years. Bring on the evil, hyperconsumerist monopolies, please, and do it before my laptop crashes.

2) EVE is pretty and all, but given that her mission is to seek out life on earth, maybe she shouldn't be spending her first couple of days on the job NUKING THE SHIT OUT OF EVERYTHING THAT MOVES.

3) Pixar is generally wise to avoid rendering humans that occupy the Uncanny Valley where Robert Zemeckis's last couple of films have languished, but it kind of stuck out in WALL-E. The film was full of fantastic environments and characters that looked like they'd been photographed the old-fashioned way (freaking Roger Deakins is in the credits, for Chrissakes), but it was all being interacted with by humans who looked like they'd been dropped in from a cartoon. It was like Who Framed Roger Rabbit? in reverse. Save Fred Willard's character. of course. By the way, I dressed as him to go trick-or-treating with M. Edium on Halloween, when he wore his WALL-E costume. I had a little homemade BnL pin and everything. Nobody got it.

4) I'm used to movies asking to believe that gravity exists on spaceships, but the bit where the Axiom rotates in deep space and the deck pitches over by thirty degrees, like it's hovering over Omaha? I think it was Marion Zimmer Bradley who said that suspension of disbelief is not the same as hanging it by the neck until dead. I should add that this is true even if it hangs at a thirty-degree angle.

M. Edium now owns the DVD, obviously. Two copies, in case we can't find one of them. Lightning McWho?

Trash and M. Edium both seem convinced that I brought him a third time, but I'm pretty sure I didn't. Our friend Bitter did, though.

Tropic Thunder
The night I saw Tropic Thunder, It was between this and The Dark Knight, and I decided on this because it was shorter. I kind of regret that, because I still haven't seen The Dark Knight. You know sometimes people get burglarized and they wonder how someone walked off with some of the bigger items? This is a big movie, by any measure, and Robert Downey, Jr. walked off with it. Although Steve Coogan had the best exit from a movie I've seen since Samuel L. Jackson in Deep Blue Sea.

And that was it. Things dropped off in the fall, after The Amazing Race started, and then it was the holiday season. But 2009 should be another good year for moviegoing, since I've seen two already and possibly a third tomorrow. More on that a year from today.

posted by M. Giant 7:29 PM 1 comments


Gerd and I will go see Dark Knight with you. (Only once though - I'm not a repeat movie guy.)

By Blogger Chao, at January 7, 2009 at 7:28 AM  

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