I've seen Drive twice now. After seeing it the first time, I wasn't sure how I felt about it. There were a few moments of John Hughes style 80's romance mixed in with all the other cool **** that I was completely not expecting and unprepared for, so when they happened on screen, I was mostly just confused. It's my own fault for coming into the movie with preconceived notions about it.
So I wanted to see it again before I made up my mind about it. On second viewing, the 80's moments didn't bother me much at all, although the songs used during them bothered me because I thought they mostly sucked, but beyond that I thought they fit the film just fine. And everything else in the movie was pretty great. The chase scenes were tense and really well done, the violence was shocking and awesome and the story itself, while not wholly original, was a pretty decent story. All of the cast did well, especially Albert Brooks who I'm kind of slightly hoping gets a best supporting actor nod (not expecting, just hoping).
Director Nicolas Winding Refn continues to impress.
I read a bunch of the reviews of this that were negative, so going in I wasn't expecting a whole hell of a lot. Just a good time. After walking out of the theater, I felt satisfied. I don't know what anyone else expects from a movie starring Jason Statham, but it was pretty much exactly what you should expect from one. Silly, over the top and lot of fun.
I was a little disappointed by some of the fight sequences using the patented Hollywood close-up, shaky cam shots, but I doubt Clive Owen is able to do that stuff like Statham is, and they still managed to make it brutal enough to keep me from being too distracted by it. Recommended for fans of Statham movies.
A documentary about the Brazilian Formula One racing star Ayreton Senna. I have absolutely ZERO interest in racing of any kind, but I thought this documentary was really, really great. It was pretty intense during the race sequences, helped immensely by cameras that had been mounted on the cars in the race. Watching this guy take curves at the speed he did... on a huge theater screen... woof.
The documentary did a really fantastic job showing what Senna was like off the track, too, without seeming like it really had an agenda. I'd never heard of the guy, but it was really fascinating watching him go from go-karts to Formula One and becoming almost a national hero in Brazil before his death. HIGHLY recommended.
A Spanish "found footage" horror film in the vein of Blair Witch Project. I think whether or not you like this movie depends a lot on how you feel about these types of movies. A family heads out to a giant old house owned by their family that has a labyrinth in the backyard. The kids, who do a webcast talking about supernatural folk tales and scary stories naturally go exploring with their cameras and come across some vaguely weird/creepy ****.
The movie follows the Blair Witch Project template pretty heavily. Instead of being lost in the woods, they're in the labyrinth, but the labyrinth is overgrown so it looks a lot like woods. They know the way home, so the whole thing isn't spent outside, but the majority of the good **** happens there. And like BWP, the build up for Atrocious is really good. It starts slowly, but the creepiness ratchets up as time goes on. They don't give away much at all and let your imagination do all the hard work. Really effective.
Where the movie stumbled a bit for me was the ending/climax. They take a kind of different route with it, which I thought was weird and kind of takes you out of the moment. It was cool to see someone trying something a little different, instead of just copying what had come before, but I'm not sure it worked all that well. Overall, though, I liked the movie quite a bit and would recommend it if these found footage flicks are something you enjoy.
I was totally going to ignore this film when I saw it was coming on the movie channels, but I decided to IMDB it and saw that it had gotten some good reviews, so I decided to give it a shot. A bunch friends go sailing and end up getting stranded in the middle of the ocean when a freak storm capsizes their boat. Eventually, a big cruise ship comes along and they all climb onboard to find it empty. Well, mostly empty...
The first half hour or so of this movie was not very good. I thought about just turning it off. The actors were kind of annoying and the part with the storm and the wave that overtakes their boat was pretty ridiculous. But I didn't want to give up on the movie just because they didn't have the budget they needed, especially after reading some of the reviews. Which ended up being a really good idea.
I don't want to tell you why because I think some of the reason this movie worked as well as it did was because I didn't know what was going to happen next for a lot of it. It goes in a direction that isn't obvious and is actually kind of smart. It's much more Twilight Zone than slasher horror. The ending is maybe a little predictable, but it still works pretty well. Overall, I'd recommend renting it or watching it on a movie channel, but not buying it. It's an ambitious attempt to do a slightly different horror film and it mostly works pretty well.
On the movie channels pops up an old Robert Duvall cop movie that has never been released on DVD. That's enough to get me to want to try it. Duvall plays a detective who's got a bit of racist thing going on and he gets suspended after kinda-sorta tossing a (non-white) mobster off a roof during a fight. While he's off duty, his partner gets killed and he decides to investigate the murder, badge or not.
It sounds like a cool movie, but, unfortunately, it wasn't. It was actually pretty lame except for Robert Duvall. Duvall was great and made the movie watchable, but honestly there wasn't a single other thing about this movie that stood out. So I'd skip it if I were you, unless you're a big fan of Duvall.
I actually didn't know this was a Criterion movie until after I'd watched it. I decided to check out reviews of it because Robert Mitchum and Peter Boyle were in it and the reviews were really positive. Mitchum plays a middle man who moves guns from a supplier to bank robbers and occasionally does some other criminal type stuff. He also informs to the police. His criminal partners don't much like that, though.
It's a bit of a slow burn, but if you've got the patience for it, it's a damn good movie.
Yeah, I'd never seen this before. Yeah, it was a lot of fun.
Hadn't seen this before, either, and totally loved it. It's like the scene at the end of Psycho where the psychiatrist is explaining to everyone that Norman's mom killed everyone, not Norman except it's the length of the entire movie. Kinda. It was great, though.
I only DVR'ed this because Timothy Olyphant was in it, and for the most part, that was all I really enjoyed about it. It wasn't a bad movie. It was fun. It wasn't anything special either, though. Recommended only to people in love with Timothy Olyphant.