Category Archives: Saturday At The Movies
Do you remember The ‘burbs? It came out back in 1989, directed by Joe Dante and starring Tom Hanks, Bruce Dern, Carrie Fisher and Rick Ducommon, and was a fun and slightly creepy tale about how neighbours react when someone moves into an old house across the street. Every couple of years I go back and watch it; I even wrote about it here back in 2010. It’s just one of those under the radar movies that sticks with you. And when I finished watching Suburban Gothic, the excellent second film from director Richard Bates Jr., I couldn’t help but feel like I’d seen a kindred spirit to The ‘burbs.
As the American Fourth of July holiday figures solidly into its plot, what better time to talk about the first of the big movie blockbusters – Jaws – than on Independence Day? The biggest and the baddest of the sharks, a real-life monster based on a real-life incident, and the baptism of fire of one of our greatest directors – Steven Spielberg – Jaws is one of the greatest films ever made. Meet me after the jump for my thoughts.
Birdman stars Michael Keaton, Edward Norton, Emma Stone, Zach Galifianakis, Naomi Watts and relative unknown, Andrea Riseborough. All are excellent. All “act” in this movie. All have deep passions that are portrayed on screen. All have subtle and effecting moments. More arresting than the performances, however, is the commentary on the nature of film, theater, art and commercialism.
While the world waits for some official confirmation that Game of Thrones and Conan star Jason Momoa will be cast as Aquaman for the upcoming Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, I can tell you without any hesitation that the man recently released his first directorial effort, a solid film titled Road To Paloma. I didn’t have any expectations going into this one, and I was more than pleasantly surprised by the final results.
I think some folks are afraid to say it, but I’m not. Guardians of the Galaxy is the best movie of 2014, and it’s only been out a couple days. I saw it once and I want to see it again. When’s the last time you heard someone say that about a movie? This is the one. Meet me after the jump for a quick spoiler-free review of Marvel’s newest hit flick, Guardians of the Galaxy.
Here we go again, it’s the secret origin of the Justice League, yes, again. This time, it’s an animated version of the most recent version, the New 52 version by Geoff Johns and Jim Lee. But where’s Aquaman? And what’s wrong with Captain Marvel, ahem, I mean Shazam? Check out my thoughts on Justice League: War after the jump.
With all the buzz about and rousing success of the new American Godzilla, I thought I might take a look at another Godzilla flick, one from a few years ago, that flks on this side of the Pacific might not be all that aware of. The full title is Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack (or in Japanese, Gojira, Mosura, Kingu Gidora: Daikaijū Sōkōgeki), but it’s known lovingly by G-fans as GMK. Meet me after the jump and I’ll tell you why 2001’s GMK is one of the best Godzilla movies of recent memory.
One of the most controversial elements of the “Doctor Who” mythos is the dreaded TV movie. Made by Fox with the cooperation of the BBC and Universal, and intended to spin off into an American TV series, the Doctor Who movie in 1996 starring Paul McGann is almost universally hated. Let’s find out why, and why now might be time to reconsider it, after the jump.
Monsters in monster movies.
The wolf man, the vampire, the swamp beast, the thing from another planet, the mutant entity. All of these creatures – and so many more – who doesn’t love them? The problem is that, in film, they are often derivative of those that have been seen in movies before. Sadly, they are also rarely done well.
At their essence, monsters are metaphors for the things we, as human beings living out our relatively short existences on this planet, fear. They are what we don’t want in our lives: hardship, pain or disease. They are what we can never hope to truly comprehend: hatred, death, and, sometimes, even love.
Monsters force us to acknowledge these elements in our own lives and, in acknowledging them, force us to understand and come to terms with our own, primal, fears and misgiving.
In a way that was very understated, very delicate and very human, that’s exactly what the 2010 low budget indie film, Monsters, did.