Twinks Gets Fit...

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Movie Monday...a day late

Rental reviews:

Revolutionary Road-I was interested to see Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet reunited since their epic Titanic pairing. The setting for their characters changed quite a bit even though the time frame is about the same, from a luxury oceanliner to a picturesque suburb. Winslet plays the role of an aspiring actress turned housewife and DiCaprio works a trainride away at a job that he hates. They're not very happy in their marriage--he's more than just flirtatious with some of the young women in the office and she's regretting the life they've chosen for themselves. She longs for the carefree and wild people they once were so she starts planning a new adventure for their family. There are complications that arise, however, and they are at odds with each other about what their future holds.

I was surprised to see Kathy Bates join the Titanic reunion, but she is very good in her role. Overall, the acting was very well done. Both main actors are wonderful at the multi-layered emotions. One review of this film said it was somewhat like American Beauty, but without the laughing moments. This is very true. There are true to life fights and overall, it's a cold, hard look at a marriage crumbling. This definitely isn't a movie you'd want to watch on a whim. Prepare yourself for a tragic film. You didn't go into Titanic thinking there would be a disembarkment party complete with streamers and balloons. Expect drama, expect to feel uncomfortable, expect to have the movie end and not really be able to say much.

I will say that while I think Kate Winslet is a remarkable actress, I don't care much for some of her movie choices recently. Little Children had a similar feel to this one, as her character being a depressed housewife and mother. The Reader was just downright depressing. She really does commit to her character and there's no questioning her acting ability. Perhaps this is the type of movie she needs to do to accentuate that, but my goodness, I miss her gumption in The Holiday and at least she laughed in Sense & Sensibility and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. I don't think I've seen her even crack a smile in the last few movies she's been in.

He's Just Not That Into You-While this movie was an ensemble cast, there were two story lines that carries the movie through. Primarily it's the story with Gigi (Ginnifer Goodwin) and Alex (Justin Long), but Jennifer Aniston and Ben Affleck certainly step it up about 2/3rds of thee way through. It follows the connecting lives of a couples and some singletons hoping for couplehood. It serves a few messages--if someone doesn't seem interested, they probably aren't, if it doesn't fit, don't force it, and every relationship is different. A lot of the movie also showed the complexity of loving someone and having them love someone else instead.

It's a completely watchable and relatable romantic comedy, not terribly deep, but it made some good points. One such point made me adjust my mentality if Brady and I have a daughter. I'll definitely think twice if she is ever picked on by a boy to tell her that it's because he likes her. This movie pointed out how completely backwards that is. That plants the seed in her head that any guy who treats her like crap in her life just does that because he really likes her, but doesn't know how to show it. Um, I don't think so.

Like I said, the story between Gigi and Alex and their developing friendship as he clues her into the message behind the title of the movie is the most endearing part. The pair is so stinkin' adorable.

This is a perfect movie for a date night or if you're looking for something fairly light in subject matter. I would and will watch it again.

Transsiberian-I had no idea what to expect from this movie. Brady had added it to our rental queue and we finally got around to watching it. The movie follows a couple after they complete a sister-city charity program in China when they decide to take a train all the way across Russia. They're already dealing with problems in their marriage since happy go-lucky husband Woody Harrelson can't seem to tame former-nomad wife Emily Mortimer into settling down and starting a family. These issues are complicated when they make friends with a young couple aboard the train whose behavior seems a bit suspicious. The story takes an intense turn when dear ol' Woody Harrelson goes missing.
The scenery of Transsiberian really adds to the isolated feel of the movie. The tagline of this movie says "You can't escape your lies," but I prefer "Don't talk to strangers."
The movie starts a little slow, but the tension picks up about halfway through, well-acted by all, and an effective ending. Brady did come up with a twist that, had it been used, would have been a major mind trip, but I did like what they decided to do with the storyline.

Now Playing Reviews:

Terminator Salvation-The fact that I enjoyed this movie lowered the wife brownie points I got for volunteering to see this movie in the first place, but oh well. I should preface by saying that I did not see any of the previous Terminator movies. I got my Cliff Notes version during the previews.
It was what I expected in that it was very loud (though there was a verry young baby in the theatre who tolerated it) and action-packed. Honestly, the robots scare me. Perhaps it's the red eyes. With my quick briefing of the characters beforehand, I was able to follow the story, though I was more taken in by the death row inmate turned "human" robot than John Connors. I definitely think seeing the other movies in the whole saga would help. Had I not known more of the backstory going in, I might have been lost.
The graphics were impressive and overall, I'd say this movie was well-done. Would I have seen it if it hadn't been for my dear husband itching to see it? No, but I did get pulled into it.

Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian

We saw this after Terminator Salvation. I suppose it was to serve as a reward if I made it through all the explosions and creepy robots. We went from a theatre packed full of adults to a theatre packed full of kids, who provided some really funny commentary.
Our trusty museum nightguard has abandoned his post and taken on the world of infomercials, marketing his inventions in the same manner as Billy Mays. Minus the Just for Men beard. He returns to find out that the museum is going in a different direction, using holograms in place of wax figures and most of the characters he's grown to love are being shipped to the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. He gets a call from mini cowboy, Owen Wilson, newly relocated to Washington that they are under attack. Larry travels to the museum and has to pose as a night guard there to gain access to the archives, where his buddies are being stored. This begins a night of Larry trying to gain back control from just one of Hank Azaria's characters in this movie--Kahmunrah, who wants the magical tablet that brings everyone to life to use for his own power trip.
There's a lot more characters in this movie compared to the first, simply because of the sheer size of the Smithsonian, including Napoleon, Al Capone, the Jonas Brothers as a trio of flying cherubs, and a whole bunch of Albert Einstein bobbleheads. Amelia Earhart, played by Amy Adams leads the pack. The comedy in the movie seemed to be more or less aimed at kids and it was a little disappointing in that they had a lot of material to work with. I actually didn't care for Hank Azaria's main role as Kahmunrah. It was a little tired by the end of the movie. I also kind of thought he didn't do dear ol' Honest Abe justice. It seemed like all the characters took themselves seriously as the historical figure they portrayed except him. They generally depicted one of our greatest Presidents as kind of an airhead actually.
The other disappointment was the logistics of the story. Yes, the premise is that wax and plastic comes to life, but the fact that Larry, no longer an employee at the Museum of Natural History, is given full uninterrupted access after it closed. Other things just didn't quite add up. It was still entertaining, but paled in comparison to the first.

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