Category Archives: Movies
In which Liz tells Frank about klassic kinema.
Are you sitting down? You’re not walking anywhere, right, setting yourself up for some amazing pratfall once I conclude this vaguely cliche beginning and tell you something utterly ridiculous? Maybe take a seat, relax, though not too much. BE ON YOUR GUARD, Frank, because I have SHOCKING NEWS…
…We now live in a world where the man who directed Constantine made a better Hunger Games movie than the man who directed Pleasantville. Yes, I’m saying that the man who thought Shia LaBeouf would be a believable street tough has out-performed the man who gave us one of the more unappreciated and beautiful films of the 1990s.
(I mean, sure, Gary Ross’s use of the word “colored” ends up being pretty heavy-handed, but I adore the scene where Reese Witherspoon learns to love books, so shut up, Pleasantville haters.)
(And yes, also, sure, Francis Lawrence did make one of the best casting moves ever by signing up Tilda Swinton as the angel Gabriel but WHATEVER.)
Anyways, Frank, the point is that Catching Fire? It is really good! It is, in fact, arguably better than the film which came before it! I was told this in advance, but was very doubtful (see above). And yet, totally true.
The reasons for why, though, are pretty simple… Read the rest of this entry
Liz: Frank, here’s the thing — not only have I seen this movie twice, but I have seen the opening sequence four times (due to various screening-type things). But the reason I’ve seen it twice is that I thought I was busy on opening day, then a lunch got canceled and I suddenly had an opening in my schedule. My original plan was to see it that Saturday night — I had tickets and everything — but I was SO TERRIFIED of spoilers that I decided to skip out to the movies and be on top of things. And I am glad, because I don’t think I would have gotten to Saturday without finding out which classic Trek film was being appropriated. How about you — did you go unspoiled?
Frank: Liz, first of all, I love that by the end of its first weekend you had already seen the movie two to four times. I have seen it once (but I really paid attention). And no, I was spoiled. Read the rest of this entry
John Ross is back! John Ross is back! Having survived “50 Shades of Grey” and “The Host,” he’s once again about to reveal the secrets of lady-focused drama. Is it because he loves the act of epistolary recapping? Or because this blog gives him a reason to do things like watch movies based on young adult fiction? That is between John Ross and his maker. All I know is, we benefit.
My expectations were below gutter level when I went to see The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. At the time, it was at 13% on Rotten Tomatoes and based on my previous experience with a young adult novel franchise turned movie — The Host — I made sure to sit near the back just in case. But then halfway through the movie, when I did in fact have to go to the bathroom, I found myself holding it because I didn’t want to miss anything. Whether it was intentional or not — I still can’t tell — this movie is fun to watch!
Now I know the point of this is to fill you in on everything that happens in the movie but honestly I couldn’t tell you. I had no idea what was going on half the time. Like other teen novel adaptations, you get the sense that the filmmakers had to leave in everything from the book or face the wrath of its fans. (Too bad the World War Z novel wasn’t popular with teenage girls.) But that’s what I love about these young adult novel adaptations: Were it not for this fear of pleasing the fans, no one in their right mind would make a movie as batshit insane as this one. Read the rest of this entry
As you and I are both vague-to-huge nerds about screenplays and story development, I wonder if you’ve ever checked out the original script for Pretty Woman? There’s a real reason for me asking this: $3,000, as the project was called then, lays claim to a bit of interesting history for the film industry.
Here’s the story: It was heralded as one of the better-written scripts of the year, intended as a dark take on prostitution, drugs and whatever else sucked about the time period. But writer Jonathan Lawton’s rather dark take on a Hollywood Blvd. prostitute getting picked up by a wealthy businessman was then rewritten by script doctors Robert Garland, Stephen Metcalfe and Barbara Benedek for director Garry Marshall.
Marshall and his team then transformed the gritty tale into a light-R Cinderella-esque fairy tale, and made like, ALL THE MONEY. Like, ALL OF IT.
But everyone who I heard discuss this made the rewrite sound like a bad thing. The triumph of commerce over art, you know? So I wanted to find out for myself, and thus, this week I not only rewatched Pretty Woman in its final incarnation, but managed to Google up a copy of the original $3,000 script.
And HOLY SHIT, FRANK. WHAT THE FUCK DID I JUST READ? Read the rest of this entry
I have a pretty long list of things to tell you these days — like Orphan Black! I hear really good things about Orphan Black, Frank! — but I keep getting distracted by other stuff. You know, life, the universe, bizarre Tom Hanks movies…
I stumbled into Larry Crowne on HBO the other day while procrastinating some tasks, but had no plans to give it a single additional thought ever again until for some reason, I found myself trying to describe it to a friend, and was like, shit, this movie is WEIRD. So now you’re going to learn about it, Frank. Get excited!
Larry Crowne is the story of people rebuilding their lives in an almost completely conflict-free fashion. It is the story of a large cast of charming actors standing around and (for the most part) being pretty nice to each other. It is the story of a man finding freedom by buying a used scooter. It is simultaneously really strange and really boring, which is in its own way vaguely interesting? It’s a weird movie, Frank.
Let’s see if I can sum it up pretty quick.