Movie Reviews 8-12
Okay, I just wrote an entire post and somehow managed to erase it... so I'm going to skip the commentary for now and give some more movie reviews. I haven't written lately, largely because I haven't been doing a whole lot that's been worth writing about. However, I have been watching a bunch of movies, so here are my thoughts on them...
Network - This movie was incredibly intense and altogether excellent. When it came out in 1976 it was nominated for 10 Academy Awards and won four. One of the ones I was shocked to learn that it lost was the one for Best Picture. Then I looked it up and found that the other Best Picture nominees that year were All the President's Men, Bound for Glory, Rocky, and Taxi Driver. I haven't seen Bound for Glory, but I don't even know which movie I would choose out of the others. They're all on my own Best Movies Ever list. Anyway, back to Network. It was a very sharp reflection of the media world, particularly the entertainment-ification of the news. I was amazed to discover that, despite the fact that the movie came out in 1976, it's not at all dated (save for the costumes and sets). While being one of those movies that just completely sucks you in, it delivers a smart social commentary, complete with the very clever incorporation of the Patty Hearst/Symbionese Liberation Army saga as a plot device. Apparently the writers claimed that the movie was supposed to be purely a reflection of the industry and not a satire, but given the context of the current state of the media, I absolutely took this as a satire - and as such I was incredibly impressed. All in all, an absolutely excellent movie - and Faye Dunaway more than earned the Best Actress Oscar she won for this.
The Girl Next Door - This movie was surprisingly fun. It shouldn't have been surprising, given the person who recommended it to me (thanks, Ev!), but I digress. It was actually a pretty well-written comedy that was over-the-top and completely fun to watch without coming off as entirely ridiculous and stupid (see below). It's not exactly cinematic genius in the realm of Network, but it's an entirely entertaining movie and an excellent way to spend a couple of hours.
My Super Ex-Girlfriend - Now this was entirely ridiculous and stupid, but somehow I still thought it was fun. Perhaps this was because I elected to turn it on somewhere around 2:00am when I couldn't sleep last night? Either way, it's a total "chick flick" and completely silly, but it totally fit the bill for me last night.
13 Going on 30 - And now this movie was just ridiculous and stupid. They keep playing it on TNT or TBS (can't remember which) so I've probably caught it about three times in the last three days and I have yet to figure out why I keep watching this sorry excuse for a movie.
Little Miss Sunshine - Please forgive this line, but I have to say that this movie was a fantastic bright spot between showings of 13 Going on 30. I thought it cleverly done and likable without pandering to the audience or crossing into the realm of being corny. It was completely entertaining and funny without condescending to the audience anywhere along the line. And I know I'm not the first to say this, but I just totally adored Abigail Breslin. She was just such a kid, which was so sweet to watch. No wonder the child is only 10 years old and already has 18 acting credits to her name. But the true highlight of the movie was Alan Arkin, who managed to be completely likable and totally hilarious even though he was a crabby old screwup. I loved this movie - and not just because it relieved me of that 13 Going on 30 nonsense.
Next up in my Netflix queue: The Jerk and the first season of The Larry Sanders Show. Until they arrive, I do have some more great DVDs here at home (thanks, Matt!) so I'll keep the reviews coming until I think of anything more interesting to say!