Friday, January 18, 2008

18 January 2008

let's do this thing.

Opening Wide:

Cloverfield: It looks like The Blair Witch meets Godzilla but by god that's original enough. Plus, Blair Witch would have been a lot more enjoyable if Godzilla had shown up at the end, though Godzilla stick figures would have been tough to fabricate (especially with short, clawed dinosaur arms). It's worth noting that one of the most secretive movies in recent memory still screened for critics. If Abrams hush-hush whale-monster can be screened for critics then it's official: not screened = terrible. Original

27 Dresses: Having been knocked up since June, Heigl has apparently been trying like crazy to get hitched before illegitimacy sets in. At the bottom of the shotgun wedding barrel, Cyclops. He also played John Wilkes Boothe in Zoolander. Derivative as hell, but it counts as original.

Mad Money: A movie that, it appears, could actually be improved if Jim Cramer showed up and screamed at the entire cast. Aside from the overarching joke of Diane Keaton doing a movie about doing absurd, stupid things for money (Mama's Boy, Because I Said So), this seems bereft of comedy. Scratch that: there's a joke about robbery and ticket prices and movies that suck. It's not worth making. Original, I guess.

EDIT: Roger Ebert has informed me that Mad Money "is actually a remake of a 2001 TV movie... Britain's Granada made it about a team of cleaners who pull the same scam on the Bank of England. Two character first names are the same (Bridget and Jackie), but the last names of the Keaton and Danson characters are changed from Watmore to Cardigan." Not Original.

Opening Limited:

Teeth: Teenage sex comedies are a dime a dozen. What sets this one apart? Vagina Dentata. I wish I were joking. Original

Cassandra's Dream: As original as O Brother Where Art Thou, in that both are old Greek stories that have been reimagined by excellent writers/directors. I am inclined to call this one original despite the apparent adherence to the myth on which it's based. Discuss. Original

Taxi to the Dark Side: Documentary about what bastards we are. Afghanistan prisons and failures of American Coalition security. Original.

Day Zero: The draft is reinstated, and Uncle Sam wants Elijah Wood. Despite the beard and war overtones, no ring is believed to be involved. Original.

The score:
Week: 6-1
Year: 11-3

It would appear that a good week for originality does not mean a good week for film going. Luckily, There Will be Blood is opening up the street from me. It's on my bucket list.

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