Monday, 4 August 2008

My Week in Film


I've been sick for the majority of the past week which has resulted in no trips to the theatre and makes me one unhappy moxie! However, trying to see that silver lining I thought it would be a great opportunity to see a bunch of not really great films. You know the movies that require little attention span, but can provide a lot enjoyment? I'm always on the lookout for these as they have a high repeat watchability factor. In the process though, you get the sweet as well as the sour. Let's start with the sour, shall we?

Primevil - ugh. I had this confused with Pathfinder starring Karl Urban. I didn't mistake Dominic Purcell as Karl Urban, so I'm not sure what happened there. I blame being sick! Yeah, yeah, that's it. Either way, Primevil doesn't make a choice between being a monster film or political commentary and I don't believe that it could be successful as both, even if it is based on a true story. Add to that a whole whack of humour based on inappropriate racial & cultural comments, threats of sexual violence and you end up with this film.

Next up is Shoot 'Em Up. I literally got this because it was sitting on the shelf in the library (can you tell it's a long weekend?), I had no intention nor desire to see it in the theatre but I heard a fair amount of positive buzz and in general I like Clive Owen's work so I gave it a go. I lasted 15 minutes, turning it off after the third derogatory comment/action to a woman character in the film.

So, that was a bit of a shaky start. But I got some quality nap time trying to get through Batman (1989), rewinding as I woke up to sure I saw it all. This was a revisit as I saw it originally in the theatre all those years ago. With all the hype around The Dark Knight I was curious how this one held up over time. Overall I found it kinda goofy and reminded me a bit of Dick Tracy. I thought Michael Keaton's take on Batman/Bruce Wayne was interesting making him pretty accessible as a regular guy albeit rich. I was surprized to see the character of Harvey Dent (go Billy Dee Williams!) was in it, I didn't remember that part of the story line at all.

We are starting to get to the better ones with films I didn't turn off or fall asleep too. Now we have The Invasion which was a great choice for being sick. I enjoyed both the 50's and 70's version of the film and more importantly was aware of the plot so I knew I wouldn't have to think to hard. Although this latest version is not very creepy, I did find it entertaining in my current state.

Now we get to the sweet films. I finally got a chance to see Greg & Gentillion a Canadian film directed by Matthiew Klinck (Hank and Mike) centred on a comedy duo from Aylmer, Quebec filmed documentary style as they try to make it big in Toronto. I love seeing films shot in Toronto so I can say "Hey, I was just there!" or "I used to work there!" and I also love films like this that are in French and English and the language moves back and forth depending on the situation. But, personal notations aside this is a witty and charming comedy about friendship and the entertainment world. Louis Durand and Thomas Michael give strong performances in the lead roles not only as the comedy duo but as friends as well. See more at the official film site.

The list gets sweeter and sweeter with Brown Sugar which I picked up on the off chance that it would be a dance film. Although it isn't a dance film it was a lot of fun. A romantic comedy about grown up childhood friends (Sanaa Lathan and Taye Diggs) whom have lived their lives living and breathing hip hop. The film is full of friendship and relationship truths from the rocky to the smooth. Strong performances by the leads, and also a great supporting cast including Queen Latifah and Mos Def. Quite a gem of a film.

Switching gears entirely we come to be happy find of the week: The Covenant. Shocked I never saw this when it came out I had to dig into the reason. Turns out it was released during TIFF'06 which explains how I missed this guy witches / coming of age / everyone wears black and looks cool film. You have witchcraft, lineage and mystery all rolled into one for a highly enjoyable experience. Fun times, this film is exactly what I was looking for.

What do you watch when you are sick?


Joseph said...

I generally sleep my sickness off. :)

But yeah, I was pretty sure you'd hate Shoot 'em Up. It gets worse.

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

I don't think I was their target audience, but I thought I would give it a shot. At least now I know!


Sorry to hear you weren't impressed by Shoot'em Up - I have had a mild interest in seeing that one day.

Jamie said...

That sucks you've been so sick. But I'm totally impressed you've managed to take your Movie Moxie approach and explore the not-so-good multiple-viewing-with-limited-attention genre of film!

I see that Shoot 'em Up is a definite no-go for me too. But I'll keep my eye out for Greg & Gentillion and Brown Sugar. The Covenant was definitely a treat!

Marina said...

Not a totally bad haul in there. Happy to hear you enjoyed the mindless fun of The Covenant.

For a while there when I was sick, I'd bit into something totally frothy like A Cinderella Story, 10 Things I Hate About You or Clueless but the last few times I've been sick, I've loved curling up with Joe Wright's Pride & Prejudice and I may have to add Penelope to that mix having seen it this past week and completely enjoying it. Yeah, I get all girlie when I'm sick. :)

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

Yep, Shoot 'em Up was a big no-go here.

Jamie, I try to take every possible opportunity to explore film in new ways! Even if that means some crap! hehe.

Marina, I'm with ya on the girlie films. I should do that next time, watch some Practical Magic, Gidget and The Craft.

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