Monday, November 19, 2007

Movie Mon. - "Hmm, let's see... take responsiblity for my own life or blame you? Dingdingdingdingding! Blame you wins hands down! "

Actually got a few movies watched this week.

Shrek the Third: Latest installment in the Shrek series which revolves around Shrek's quest to find the heir of Far Far Away -- a young and sullen Arthur Pendragon -- while Fiona and the other princesses fight off an invasion from embittered Prince Charming and his army of fairy tale villains. Conceptually, not bad; in execution, however . . . meh. Oh, there were some funny parts here and there, mostly involving the princesses (loved Sleeping Beauty's fighting style) and the body swapping Donkey and Puss in Boots, but overall, the movie left me cold. And, for the record, I loved the first Shrek, and liked the second one quite a bit. Think this one had too much slapstick and not enough cleverness.

Meet the Robinsons: Off-beat animated tale about a young orphaned inventor who gets whisked off to the future to meet an oddball family, while a crazy man with a sentient bowler hat tries to steal his inventions. This one was a bit out there, which means, of course, I liked it. Bowler Hat Guy quickly became one of my favorite movie villains due to his addlepated state, and the general chaos and insanity surrounding the Robinson clan kept this from settling down into your typical Disney film. At the same time, I think the rapid-fire introduction of the Robinson clan was a bit too rapid-fire; I found myself wanting to see more of the family in action. All in all, my favorite movie-watching experience of the week.

Hostel II: Sequel to the successful film about a clandestine group which kidnaps young backpackers and auctions them off to the highest bidder; this time around, we get to see the inner workings of the selection process. While getting to see things from the killers' perspective was an interesting idea, I felt like the sequel had somehow lost a lot of the magic that made the previous film work. Despite all of the talk about how over the top the first film was, I never felt like it was all that gory, and outside of the scene with the eye **shudder**, there wasn't much to disturb me. This time around, the film actually felt like it was starting to live up to the label many critics have deridingly given this sort of film: "torture porn." Maybe it was just that in the first film the victims were primarily guys and this time around it was primarily girls, but I think even if it had been a guy being killed in the psuedo-Countess Bathory sequence I would have thought it was gratuitous and over-the-top. A couple of interesting twists here and there, but on the whole, the first one was a much better film.

Man of the Year: Seriocomic look at a Jon Stewart-esque political comedian (Robin Williams) who decides to run for president and, thanks to a computer glitch, actually wins. Have to say, I'm glad that prior to seeing this I had heard many, many, many people say that the previews had been misleading, that it wasn't a non-stop comedy vehicle for Williams, but actually had a much more serious tone -- that way I was able to enjoy the movie for what it was, and not be disappointed by the limited number of Williams rants or by the slow-going of the whole election fraud cover-up plot thread. Overall, just an okay movie.