Monthly Archives: July 2013

Hanna

So, Hannah Montana film. Nah, I am joking I didn’t watch a Hannah Montana film. But I might do, one day, don’t think I won’t. To be clear. I won’t. This Hanna, aside from somehow misplacing a h from her name is very similar to Hannah Montana. She is blonde, and most of the details of her life are made up. See. Almost the same person no? Well whilst Montana face uses her made up life for pop superstardom, and to learn valuable life lessons (one assumes) for Hanna lying like an asshole it is one of the many skills learned in the persuit of becoming a cold blooded killer. Lets be clear, Hanna is a brilliant film. The soundtrack is off though, and its a bad film scholars wet dream. Its full of symbolic bullshit, the most blatant involves a persuit by some sort of secret agent types under the watchful eyes of billboard posters for spectacles. This is just lame, I mean what does it even add to the film, no one is going “oh, that chase scene was made so much better by the symbolic use of posters depicting watchful eyes”. The climax is even worse, though it does look pretty. Just be grateful that every film isn’t like this, bad things would happen, Sam Jackson would have walked onto that plane past a poster for a dodge viper.

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Paranormal Activity

Paranormal Activity is vaguely scary, but I didn’t shit my pants. I have never shit my pants over a film, so that is not the best way to judge scare levels anyway. The ‘how scary’ question almost addressed there we can move on to the primary issue with the film (spoiler) aside from the father figure in the film being a total asshole. The demon actually turns out to be a vilociraptor from Jurassic Park. The evidence is right there in the form of clearly discernable Dino footprints at the end. What has happened is that the raptor has laid its eggs in the upstairs closet, and the children have discovered them. We know from JP3 (aka triceraflops) that if you mess with a raptors eggs it won’t claw your face off. All the other weird things, the duvet removing, strange noises and objects moving can be put down to having a broody raptor in the house. This is why the film isn’t scary, which is an impressive feat, the JP raptors made me nearly poop myself (nearly) when they were running around that kitchen, here their kitchen shinannigans come off more as a cry for help from a busy mother. poor raptors.

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Notebook on Cities and Clothes

You may not have noticed that nothing has appeared here for a while, certainly less than the usual thrice weekly outpouring of rubbish. This is mostly because I was moving, and had no internets, or time, but it was also because I was watching every single Wim Wenders movie ever. Well maybe not every single one, but an awful lot. My interest piqued by the one about angels I watched a while ago I thought it might be fun to watch lots more. I was only half right. This was not such a good one. I should have guessed from the title, never has a more non-committed name been chosen for a film, its like calling Star Wars “some things which happen in space” or Forrest Gump “Things which happen to a man”. Actually that Forrest Gump one is pretty good, you could use it for Benjamin Button too, because it is the same film. Anyway, as the title “notebook” implies this is just Wim and other people rambling on about cities and clothes, occasionally saying something profound and arty but mostly just talking guff over shots that are also a bit overly pretentious. Stay tuned though for more Wim action, everyone loves Wim, because his name is great!

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Total Recall

Total Recall is the tits, three tits to be precise. Yeah its the movie with the lady with three boobs in. That’s pretty much my go to bit of knowledge for Total Recall. Three boobs wouldn’t be that great, I mean, already just discussing the boobs I am feeling all guilty about, you know, objectifying women and implying that any one part of them, namely boobs, being thrice makes them any better than a woman without three boobs- its very dangerous territory – but says something of the thirteen year old me that I could remember nothing else much from this film aside from that. Turns out thirteen year olds are assholes, I apologise for thirteen year old me. I realised as I re-watched this week that generally attitudes towards women in Total Recall are rather thirteen year old-esque. However Arnie is at his best here, and the film has loads of bits were peoples faces like expand and explode and come off and stuff. This is mostly because they are getting exploded in the vacuum of space, but sometimes for other (surprisingly diverse) reasons. I think special effects had bought a load of silicone and just kept looking for places to use it. The fun bit is though is Arnies face seems pretty malleable anyway, so it is a good game to guess when it is just him, and when its going to keep on contorting till it explodes! So here is the lowdown – uses for special effects silicone: third boob – reprihensible. Face explosions – brilliant. Which just goes to show that with great power comes great responsibility.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0100802/

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Hall Pass

Yeah I watched Hall Pass, I am not proud of it. I watched some other insanely depressing shit and I needed something to pick me up, Hall Pass came a callin. I laughed, three times. One time was in the bit they put over the credits of ‘alternate takes’ which supposedly demonstrate that the actors ad-libbed the whole thing, but here the presence of additional actors sort of ruins the allusion- this was definitely just shot to make the credits less boring. So three laughs. I like Owen Wilson too, he is endearing. These things aside this film has a crushing inevitability and a painful sexist streak – its not a spoiler to say that the only person who actually does anything terrible in this film is a woman – because its clear from minute one what it will occur – largely because there is no chance the ever so endearing Owen Wilson would ever do anything remotely naughty, even with a hall pass.

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Warm Bodies

At the very beginning of Warm Bodies the mindless wandering zombies are fleetingly compared to their former selves, before the zombie apocalypse. What these ‘normal’ people are doing is also wandering, mindless, eyes on their smart phones – our zombie hero laments his inability to connect on a personal level, the film is saying that the smart phone user has the same problem. So here is my thesis: the current resurgence in zombie films can be directly related to the alienation and personal separation which inevitably comes with the increasing trend towards a life lived online. Warm Bodies very explicitly argues that only by re-learning real life social interaction can we hope to be saved. This isn’t anything new, Japanese horror movies were doing this with ghosts like five years ago, has Hollywood only just caught up, or have we only just caught up with the Japanese in terms of our increased reliance on technology to frame our relationships? Either way Warm Bodies makes its point really well, it is funny and heart warming and although the second act is rather too much taken up with quite how a zombie and a human can fall in love the end is great – Night of the Living Dead this is not. So what is fucking up my thesis? World War Z is fucking it all up. We have some amazing zombie related shit around at the moment, loads of great tv and some real good movies like Warm Bodies, all about what it is to be a human, alive, in a post apocalyptic zombie world. All well thought out and speaking directly to our current hopes and fears for our future. But World War Z? The book? Its brilliant, its about so much more than the zombies, it philosophizes, it makes you think. The film? It makes you think about how annoying Brad Pitts hair is, it makes you wonder why they threw away a brilliant opportunity for him to shoot his kid in the face whilst screaming “i love youuuu, we have to be sureeeeee”, and thats it. That is all I took away from World War Z. I didn’t walk out of the cinema thinking “I must value those around me, I must help them as they help me, I must Love! and be Loved!” I just walked out thinking that cgi zombies are not so great – World War Z is a film out of time, if it had come out ten years ago I would have shit myself at how cool it was, now though zombies have something to say and ‘R’ in Warm Bodies is saying it.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1588173/

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Wings of Desire

In Wings of Desire we follow angels. They are timeless, reminiscing about the first men whilst wandering post war Berlin. What the angels do is listen to peoples thoughts, they can hear anything and be anywhere. Children and other angels can see them, and sometimes, it seems, just sometimes, they touch the hearts of the people they listen to. This is not an easy film to get into, it moves at the pace of a snail who has taken sleeping pills, and whilst there is a storyline this is much more about how different people, of different ages, races and classes all have their own thoughts, as important to them as they are inconceivable to others. Its a nice film, the angels are not some old testament nutcases sent by a vengeful God to smite …etc … they just listen. They don’t even have wings save for the first ten seconds when we sort of need them to explain that they are angels. I wont ruin the end for you, but the films philosophical bent becomes ever more pronounced as it plays out, to the extent that I didn’t really understand quite what was going on at some points – but then who can proclaim to understand the work of angels? Just F.Y.I, Peter Falk is in this, as himself, and he is just ridiculously cool.

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