Sunday, August 2, 2009

The funny and not so Funny People!

In the new installment of the film review I went and saw the movie Funny People by Judd Apatow and read a review from themovieblog .com. Mr. Apatow has been the brains behind some of the funniest films of the last ten years. The last two films he directed were The Forty-Year Old Virgin and Knocked Up. For Apatow’s new film, Funny People he chose a story of a famous comedian who is dying of a blood disease and through his acceptance of death finds what his life was missing. This realization of what his life could have been is then coupled with the knowledge that he is getting better and will live. The plot of the film is not all that original but what is now a days? In the middle of all this a rising stand up comedian is given the chance to live out a life long fantasy of working with his biggest hero.

First off let me say that I liked Funny People. I thought it had the right mix of funny and serious. The parts where the actors did stand up comedy are laugh out loud funny. The wardrobe in this film was great. The t-shirt that everyone was wearing helped to describe who they are, which can be hard to do sometimes. The story showed a side of comedy that people don’t always get the chance to see, the people behind the curtain. Seth Rogen’s character Ira is a stand up comedian who lives with two other actors, comedians. These people are the ones in Hollywood that write the jokes you hear at the Grammys or Oscars. Their character write joke for other people to use. Ira is asked by Adam Sandler’s character George to live with him and write jokes for his stand up act, and a friendship is formed. Most of the film is about that relationship that builds between these two characters as George finds out he is dying and then getting better. The rest of the movie is the relationship between Ira and his roommates and George and his ex fiancĂ©. One thing this film definitely did not have was a stereotypical chain of events. Just when you think that the guy is getting the girl or that things are starting to work the plot changes, which makes it a more realistic film in my opinion.

Like I said earlier, I liked this film. Although I liked this film I felt that there were a lot of characters that needed more development. I agree with what the review had to say when it comes to most of the lesser character in this movie. Most of the lesser characters have story plots started in the beginning of the film only to have them forgot about and then randomly picked back up on an hour later. There were also some parts where I found myself wondering where the film was going but that not always a bad thing. I did feel though that the film could have been cut from two plus hours to maybe an hour and a half. There were just some very slow and unnecessary scenes. This can be said about the cameo characters also. There were a shit ton of famous people that helped to make this a star studded film but at what cost?

In all I like the way that Funny People is a run of the mill story line with a few choice changes making something more. There are definitely some parts that could have been cut or shortened but there was nothing too painful. The review I read gave this film a four out of ten, but I giving it a seven out of ten.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Who watches The Watchmen?

Every once in a while a story is written that grabs the readers by the short hairs and doesn’t let go. The Greek and Romans had their wars between the Gods and the Titans. Theatre had Macbeth and Othello and the 1986’s had The Watchmen. The Watchmen is a graphic novel for the ages, ranked as one of Time magazine top 100 best English novels from 1923-present. Written in 1986 The Watchmen continues to hold a huge fan base in both the comic book world and beyond. That being said how could something so loved and acclaimed be created into another summer blockbuster and still hold its luster? I recently added this film to my collection on Tuesday and haven’t put it down since. Usually these reviews are done about films that have recently been in theaters or are still showing, but with its release this week I thought it was appropriate are timely.

The Watchmen starts off with a band and though the film is 190 minutes there are few slow parts. The action filled first few minutes is then followed up with one of both the greatest opening credits and prologs that you will ever see in a film. The decision to use Bob Dylan’s song The Times they are a Changing as the back ground song to the opening credits was nothing short of brilliant. Zach Snider, the director of the film made sure that every scene was both visual to the eye and mind. Vibrant ultra violate colors resonate through the cold dark setting of an alternate 1985 world. With a cast of characters both as dark and yet colorful as the streets they try and protect. Without giving too much of the plot away I will say that this pre apocalyptic world is a, what if for the ages. What if President Richard Nixon wasn’t impeached and used his victory in Vietnam as a platform for his third term election and ultimate victory? What if the Cubans and the Russians never stopped arming their missiles? What if a person was subject to a horrific scientific accident and became as powerful as a God? These questions and much more in the next paragraph of this week’s Film Reviews; The Watchmen.

Zach Snider along with the rest of the cast spent a few years bringing to life a world that asks these vary questions in The Watchmen film. I personally have never read the graphic novel and though I consider myself a comic book fan had never really heard too much about The Watchmen. I went into this film not knowing what to expect which I think made this film even better of an experience. I watched a world in complete distress and yet it was like looking into a mirror. Only one person in the film had what comic books would consider super power. Dr. Manhattan is a God like entity that hovers over a world that he himself has no stake in. By not having any stake in our world Dr. Manhattan has no reason to safe it. It is thought that he has the power to stop the nuclear arms war that threatens man’s extinction but it his words, “Why would I”. The rest of the cast are made up of what the film calls masked vigilantes trying to solve the mystery of why crime fighter are being killed off. Not much should be said about the rest of the cast they all have their own parts to play, but there is one that stands out. The character of Rorschach is what you would call the anti-hero. His job is to destroy the wicked. He lives in a world of black and white and has no problem with it.

In all I felt that The Watchmen tells a story all too real to our own. The film was well done and though long had a lot to tell. The costumes were realistic and the sets were great. It looked like an American city pushed to the brink or destruction. The realistic portrayal of the president, military and their actions adds to the feel that this is more of a documentary than a graphic novel. I think this film brings to life a novel that everyone said could never be made and did a great job in doing so. I give it a nine out of ten.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Terminator Salvation

For this weeks review I chose the new Terminator film. First off I have been saying for years that this film had to be made. In every film John Connor is spoken about as the most bad ass dude on the planet and yet in every film we see him in he is a crying little baby. Unfortunately this film did not live up to the expectation I was hoping for. The movie starts off by confusing the Hell out of everyone with the introduction of the new would be terminator. The movie then skips the most interesting and visually attractive part of the franchise; the machine revolution. I did think that Christian Bales performance was good but the rest of the film wasn’t. I think that there was much more time spent on getting action in the film than a good script. Like the review I read I liked the variety of terminators in the film. There were different machines for different tasks, which makes sense. This film did have a few funny parts in it. Towards the end of the film a computer generated Arnold head placed a top a younger body shows up to join the fight. I don’t think this film was bad I just think it could have been much better. By the end of the film nothing chages for mankind, so if posses the question of why did I just watch this film? This was a good example of what happens when a film has a lot of money and special effects but no real story being told.

Sunday, July 12, 2009


When a sequel to a film is made the common assumption is that it will not be as good as the original. Even when sequels have the same cast and directors as the original they more often than not don’t change the mistakes made in the previous film. After a film is made, both die hard fans and critics of all kind come out of the wood-works to do exactly what I am; review the film. For some reason though the powers at be do nothing to heed the complaints given by people about the first film and therefore are destine to remake them in the sequel.

Transformers 2 is a great example of a bad sequel. The review I read on made sure to separate itself into two sections, good and bad. I liked that he did that because when you watch this film that is exactly what happens. There are good parts and awful parts. When I talked about reviewing films I wanted to not only say that they are good or bad, but whether or not they exploit stereotypes that further hatred and misunderstanding in our society. In the new Transformers 2 film there are two Autobots that are the definition of stereotype. "I absolutely must start with this one. THE TWINS! Oh dear heavens the Twins. These two new Autobots are the new Jar Jar Binks. They absolutely ruin this movie. They are the most offensive and racist stereotypes I’ve seen on the screen in a LONG time on top of being unfunny and as annoying as hell." These two characters are the most racist thing I have seen in a movie in a long time. They are obviously supposed to be black and were put in the film as an attempt to get more of a diverse demographic. That being said the film made sure that every scene they are in has them fighting for no good reason, using foul language, and wearing gold capped teeth and did I mention that they are the only Autobots to not know how to read. AWFUL!

Transformers 2 had much more action and comedy then the first film, which is good, but the only reason why is because the story and dialog lacked sustenance. The dialog in this film really is poor especially for being a big time summer blockbuster. There are also so many gaps in the story line that you can’t help but think about them while you watch the film. Overall I would agree with what the review had to say and to put them in my own words; I liked the film and thought it was well worth the money, but, and this is a big but, the first one was better.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


For my first blog comment I found a review of the film, The Hangover, from This blog gave the film rave reviews, but was sceptical at first. “The trailers were obviously very funny, and I had a fear that maybe the best stuff was in there… it wasn’t." I could not agree more about this quote. There are many films being made today that look great from what the preview shows us only to find out that everything the film had to offer was in the preview. From start to finish I thought the film gave the audience an accurate portrayal of how four random guys deal with being put into an anything but ordinary situation. This review makes sure to tell the readers that the film is rated R for a reason. This is a great way of describing a film. When people want to know about a movie they also want to know why it has the rating it does. In all I agree with the blogger's review of the film, The Hangover.

The second review talks about the film, Star Trek. The blog tells of a fantastic tale filled with action and adventure with a sprinkle of comedy and nostalgia. The blog then gets into a less than interesting example of why I think Treky fans suck. On the original ship there are four hundred crew members but in the movie there are eight hundred, really, is that actual important to the plot of the film. The idea of a film review is to watch the film for what it is. Stop talking about what the seventies sitcom had, because the film is not the show, it has its own essence. Sorry I got off track there a bit, I agree with the review, Star Trek was a intensely action packed Sci-Fi film that we can both agree should be watched by all.

For my last film, Observe and Report, I found a review that I can’t even begin to convey how opposed I am to. First off the person who wrote this blog thinks that because the film was not one hundred percent comedy it was a bad and confusing movie. He seems to think that a good comedy can not also be, at times, sad and depressing. I believe this film was great, one of the best comedies I have seen in a while. By creating a character that was not some slap stick one dimensional retard Observe and Report gives the audience a roller coaster ride of what's next. The main character is allowed to have different moods and feelings about what going on around him. The blogger did not understand that when a funny character has his hopes and dreams shattered the character becomes sad and the mood of the film changes for a bit. I guess this guy was waiting for the main character to fart inappropriately or get caught fucking a pie in every other scene. This review definitely irritated me, it is because of people like this that awful stereotypical films continue to be made.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Missions Statement

Final Missions Statement

Walking to my car, the sun and heat of a Florida Summer day hits my face. What separates this walk from the one I took some two hours ago is the sense of empowerment felt in every step. I’m walking like people should know who I am. Why am I walking like this when a few hours ago I did not? I just got done watching a great film. A great film can change the way you walk and view the objects around you if only for a few minutes. These works of art build upon themselves as you watch them until you find yourself completely engulfed.

Everyone has there favorite films along with one hundred and one reason why, but which one really is the best? What even constitutes for a great film, let alone the greatest, is it the soundtrack or ensemble cast? Does a great film have to be in a foreign language or does it speak in a dialect we can all understand? For my mission statement I will pick a list of the top ten films according to a collection of different sites such as AFI. Once the list has been created I will watch these films and write why I felt the film should or should not have been on the list and where I would have placed it. Judging of the films will be based on certain aspects of the film such as the tone or mood along with character development, costumes and setting. I want to play devils advocate with these films and in doing so hopefully find the list of the top ten films.