Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Summer Movies

I've been to four different movies over the past ten days. A week and a half ago, I saw "A Perfect Getaway", a thriller whose main point of interest is a doozy of a twist.

Going in, I didn't know what it was, but it's always cool trying to figure out what it is ahead of time. I wasn't able to do so in this case (I rarely do), but that didn't keep me from having a good time with it. The film took place entirely in Hawaii which made it awfully easy on the eyes (Milla Jovovich also helped greatly in this regard).

A few days later, I finally caught up with the 6th Harry Potter movie. Though there was hardly any action to be found, the characters and the struggles they faced held my interest throughout. Not something I'd wanna revisit, however, and like all previous installments, a very pale imitation of the far superior "Lord of the Rings" films.

On Saturday, I went to "District 9", a very highly praised sci-fi movie from a new director. Made for a paltry $30 million (crap like Transformers costs over $150 million), this movie had it all.

It started as a documentary about aliens trying to fit in with humans in South Africa before turning into a full-force action pic. I usually don't root for characters much in action films, but the ones in this movie really had my sympathies. A number of moments had me on the verge of cheering. Very stirring film and the number one movie of last weekend.

Yesterday, I caught "(500) Days of Summer".

As I went up to the cashier, I said, "I'll take one to "Days of Thunder". The guy asked me to repeat what I said and I did. A moment later, he gave me a tic to "Summer". I wonder if he went up to one of his coworkers later and told them about the yutz he encountered in the early afternoon.

"(500)" looks to be a love story, but the narrator states early on that this is not the case. The film had a number of laughs, but was even better at showing what it feels like to be in the "honeymoon" phase of a relationship, just not necessarily a relationship that is gonna end up with wedding bells. This is something that most rom-coms just don't get. Both leads were fantastic and the non-linear form that the film followed made for a more interesting experience than if it had followed a more traditional path.

One thing I noticed after seeing "Summer" was the high it had me on. Walking around the lake afterward, it was extremely palpable and I was reminded why it is that I love movies so much.

Here are my grades for the four: "A Perfect Getaway" (B+), "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" (B), "District 9" (A), "(500) Days of Summer" (A-)


Randy said...

Perfect Getaway and District 9 sounded pretty good. I'm not a HP fan, so I'll pass on that one. And Days of Thunder sounds like a good choice for Netflix.

(I like being the yutz too)

Rocketstar said...

good to know, thanks man

Narkissos said...

saw district 9, and immediately fell in love with it. went to see it cuz someone said it's cover up for halo, one of my most favourite only one thing to say it's one of the best scifi movies I've enjoyed in a while. 3 cheers for director neill blomkamp for giving us such an awesome movie with such skimpy budget!
I was a hard-core star wars fan

Thomas said...

Thanks for stopping by, Narkissos. I was able to catch "D9" a second time with friends earlier this week; it still packed quite a punch. I agree with you on Blomkamp, just an incredible visionary and light years ahead of mainstream stuff like GI Joe and Transformers.

Timothy Smith said...

D9 looks wicked cool. I have some kind of kidney infections at present so I am out of action for the foreseeable (yep, the spell checker claims thats correct) future. Could not have come at a worse time. But maybe thats a killer excuse to hang out at the movies.

Thomas said...

Sorry to hear about your kidneys, but at least you're getting some use outta your very-costly health insurance. :P

"Inglourious Basterds" is said to be a very well-done, though violent, fantasy of Jews going after Nazis during World War II. It was the number one movie this past weekend and is next on my list to see.

Wishing you and the Kids (double meaning implied) all the best!

Timothy Smith said...

Both those movies sound cool.

Insurance has not done much. I only pay 12-15K a year in premiums which does not get you the kind of insurance most employees enjoy. I still have to hit my deductibles. So far I am out $1000 bucks for cat scans, xrays, ultrasounds etc. Tomorrow morning I guess I will know more but who knows. I think my deductible is a 1000 so now Blue Cross will have to cover 80% of whatever is to come. (I pay 20% until I pay out a total of 3,000 then blue cross has to pick up everything)

Now that the baby has come we can change the wifes plan which will lower our bills. We will end up paying about 800 or so for a family of 4 with no pregnancy coverage. Still, thats about 600 less then we are paying now.

Really hoping for the public option or the co-ops. If we are going to cover everyone I would rather see single payer or the public option.

My insurance agent did tell me my premiums are going up another 10% this October. I guess the guy that runs blue cross is only making 12 million a year. Cant have that!

Thomas said...

Tim, went with a friend to "Basterds" a couple days ago. Absolutely fantastic and mesmerizing. The trailers led me to believe that there'd be a lot of violence and gore, but this wasn't the case at all; dialogue (mostly in the form of subtitles) was the order of the day. It also offers a nice alternative view of WWII. I can't recommend it enough. Quentin has really put together a masterpiece.

You know I agree with you on the need to change the way insurance companies are run; expecting us to just accept it when our premiums go up more than 10% a year is patently ridiculous.