Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Some Movies (Before I Forget)

Here's a few movies I've watched to add on to the review thread.

Thank You for Smoking (7.5/10) : Going into this movie I didn't know if I should have expected a dark comedy, a dramatic comedy, a drama with some comedic elements, or a pretentious indie flick. After seeing it, I feel that it was really not as easily classified into one of those genres as I'd thought. There is a hefty dose of pointed comedy, but there's also a few "life lessons" moments, albeit not as heavily handed as they could have been, and some interesting drama. It straddles drama, comedy, and after school special quite well and one of the main reasons it can is the performance of Aaron Eckhart. His over the top, likeable, bad guy keeps the movie flowing at a crisp, humorous pace.

The Descent (8/10): Usually I go to horror movies for the cheese factor and to see how many cliches I can pick out before the movie is over. Rarely is a horror movie actually good. The Descent is one of those few. The reason that it was good is that before it dives headfirst into the monster fighting and chase scenes, there is a good amount of character building, even though it is somewhat a standard build-up, as well as the simple psychological horror of being in a tightly confined cave. The first half of the movie is dedicated to pulling the viewer into the tight confines of the cave and conveying the sense of urgency when they realize they need to get out. Then once you add the monsters and the bloody twists of the second half of the movie you have one hell of an interesting and gripping horror movie.

Best in Show
(9/10): Who would have imagined that a mockumentary about a dog show, of all things, could be so laugh out loud funny? I didn't. Christopher Guest knew it could work, though, and along with Eugene Levy he wrote and directed one of the funniest movies that I've seen in the last couple of years. The comedy comes directly from the subtle over the top parodying of the dog show personas. The biggest laughs come when a scene you know is parody feel like they're the real thing. You know there are people out there just like the slack jawed yokel with the blood hound who dabels in ventriloquism or the flamboyantly gay man who revels in his homosexuality or the midwestern small town couple who live for the dog show. It's surreal and utterly real at the same time. And that's funny as hell if you ask me.

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