Sunday, August 24, 2008

Movies, Movies, Movies

Lover's Prayer/All Forgotten - I know you've never heard of this movie, despite the fact that it goes by two names. It was on in the middle of the night. I watched it because it starred Kirsten Dunst (against Nick Stahl), and she's always doing strange little movies, and I often wonder what her criteria for choosing one is. I thought it was pretty inane and obvious and silly, very self-indulgent--moreso than one would even expect from a Russian period drama. It was first-person narrated and voiced-over, which began to really irk me early on in the movie, and it got no better throughout. Plus, you never really develop a connection with anyone, and they don't have great connections to one another. And there's an odd "B" storyline which weaves in and out but never connects or reaches resolution. Don't watch this; you'll end up staring at the credits feeling had.

Running With Scissors - Strange movie, but I never read the book (and after watching it, don't have any new desire to do so). I didn't really feel very attached to any of the characters, including the protagonist, but then again, it's hard to relate to his embellished life. However, I found it was often entertaining or simply head-shakingly unbelievable, quirky enough to suck you in to see what happens next. I think it could have managed without some of its devices, such as voice-overs and the little summary at the end that ties things up for you. I'd say to watch it if you're looking for something a little different.

Definitely, Maybe - I watched this while I was tired, so I thought it had pacing and dialogue issues which might not exist, so my entire opinion is pending a second viewing. I'm a big Ryan Reynolds fan, and the little girl (Abigail Breslin) is a gifted young actress in all of her movies (although I'd like to see her take on more challenging roles, and a few less where she's more like the Child Character Prop). When the comedic dialogue worked, it was really spot-on. When it was off, it was groan-worthy. I think a few more big names in the leads would have attracted more attention to this movie, but overall it does a good job of what it sets out to do. Just don't expect Love Actually.

TransAmerica - One of the best movies I've watched in a long time. It was moving, smart, not condescending, and relateable. It didn't tie into a little bow at the end. And the performances were spot-on. I actually had expectations for this movie and it was nothing what I expected, straying from formula in a way that's rewarding for the viewer without them having to work for it. It's actually play-like, in a lot of ways, which is one of my highest compliments for a movie, haha. I was actually trying to get some work done as I watched but I kept getting sucked in, which is more high praise. I recommend this.

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