Wednesday, October 29, 2008

World's Shortest Movie Reviews

Alternative Title: How to Succeed in Politics Without Really Trying
Notable For: Having more alcohol per scene than any movie in history, even Cocktail. Seriously, Jack Daniels should have had top billing.
Summary: Much like Nixon, this is a biopic that manages to be scathing and rather sympathetic at the same time. It's not easy being a total f***-up in a family full of achievers, after all.
The Bottom Line: Fine acting all across the board. I was especially impressed with Richard Dreyfuss as Cheney, even though I'm not a big fan, Jeffrey Wright as Colin Powell, and James Cromwell as Bush Sr. Surprisingly, Thandie Newton disappointed me with her weirdly sneering, jerkily shuffling Condoleeza Rice - I expect a more nuanced performance from an actress of her calibre. Her Condie was like a bad SNL skit.
Warning to Democrats and conspiracy theorists: You will probably not like this movie, as it was not shot on location in Hell.

Baby Mama
Summary: A workaholic (Tina Fey) suddenly has to have a baby, and turns to a rent-a-womb service run by a mysteriously fertile woman (Sigourney Weaver). She's paired up with a surrogate straight off the set of Jerry Springer (Amy Poehler).
Bonus: Steve Martin plays a pompous, New Agey f***tard.
The Bottom Line: Consistently funny, with solid comedic acting and fleshed-out characters. Does not rely on cheap, gross-out gags for its laughs. Far more than I can say for any other comedy in recent memory.

The Happening
Summary: Mass suicides and zombie-ish behavior sweep the East Coast, sending a schoolteacher (Mark Wahlberg) and his family on the run. Is it terrorism, or something more natural? Who cares?
The Bottom Line: M. Night Shyamalan has finally disappointed me. I liked Lady in the Water and The Village, but this one was just too dull for words. Stupid premise as well. I won't give it all away, but I will say that if you want to have a Dumba** Double Feature, rent this with The Ruins.

Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Alternative Titles: I Know Who You Did Last Summer, The Odd Couple Does Spain
Summary: Free-spirited Cristina (Scarlett Johannson) and sensible Vicky (Rebecca Hall) are, against all odds, good friends. On a summer trip to Spain they both fall for the same bad boy (Javier Bardem) in their own special ways, and have to deal with the complicated relationship he has with his tempestuous ex (Penelope Cruz).
The Bottom Line: Woody Allen goes through hot and cold spells. He's in a hot one right now, so if you're a fan, catch this one before he makes Curse of the Jade Scorpion II.

The Bottom Line: 24 meets The Exorcist. Not bad, but not particularly good either.


tshsmom said...

The only one I want to see is Baby Mama.
Told ya that M. Night sucks! ;)

My word ver is moron. They don't have to get personal, do they?

Wandering Coyote said...

I'll wait for W to come out on video, but I really want to see Vicky etc. so I might see if there is a pirated version available. I'm a Javier convert! I hope to see Changeling soon; it looks really good and CBC gave it a decent review.

PS. I hope this publishes. So far, Shaw isn't turning out to be a hell of a lot better than Telus. GRRRR!

SME said...

Now don't be dissin' M. Night. This was the first movie of his that I didn't like! As far as I'm concerned, he has a better batting average than any other director working today.

I had the word "shipless" the other day. What's that supposed to mean?!

I'm really starting to like Javier too...especially now that he doesn't have a bad haircut. ;D

I've gotta see Changeling! I'll be posting about the story behind the movie soon.

Bridget Jones said...

Well the first two sound worthwhile. I have liked M. Night too. Thanks for the reviews!