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07 January 2008 @ 12:18 pm
Movies and More  
So, our weekend storm has quieted down for the moment. Friday was a nightmare, with winds up to 69mph and parts of the city flooded and lots of fallen or damaged trees. We were spared all but a couple of tree problems— a small lilac tree with shallow roots that went down (which I'll replant and stake up like the relentless optimist I am) and a 2-foot split-away of a major branch on one of the Modesto ashes. Which needs the tree-man to visit really soon.

We'd planned to take the kids out to spend Xmas gift-card money and go to Enchanted on Friday, but it wasn't until about 3pm that I realized that the storm had settled down enough to make that possible. So the movie part came through. And my husband and I had Wednesday off together, and a Saturday night date, so there was much movie-ing.

Enchanted: Surprisingly enjoyable film (great concept too), and all good but for the pop-music intrusion during the end. Clue to writers: Waltzes do not involve emo-singing, and also are in 3/4 time and not 4/4 time. Duh. Waltzes are a pre-exiting concept— don't hijack them and warp them. Patrick Dempsey was actually likeable in this movie (he's Dr. Smirky to me), and there was a terrific production number in Central Park that sold itself. The old people's dance part was actually my favorite. Also, Susan Sarandon? Whahoo!

I Am Legend: My husband didn't want to see this at first, because he had it classified as a zombie flick and neither of us likes that genre. But! Not really that at all— it's a remake of a couple of different films and new material that really is its own result. The aftermath of good intentions gone bad, Will Smith stars as possibly the only survivor of a plague. He is the only character for the bulk of the movie, and damn if he wasn't up to it and then some. There's a scene between his character and pet dog that is all Smith's face, and it's just wrenching and letter perfect. Who could have forseen this level of talent from The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, which was a cute little show but not dramatically demanding. Smith's performance here exceeds The Pursuit of Happyness in my book, and that's saying something. Highly recommended.

Catch And Release: Urk. So, let me admit up front, I typically don't find Jennifer Garner pretty. She seems like a nice person and all, but she has a pulpy mouth and really small eyes. Ditto on that last part for her husband. Here, she's playing a fairly uptight person whose fiance died and whom she's now finding out was not the prince she'd thought he was. The problem is, her character isn't very likeable. By the end of the movie, I didn't like her, I really hated her dead fiance, and I hated myself for finding Timothy Olyphant so damned attractive, because his character's a cad. Damn, but that boy is SO my type— really good-looking, longish hair (Hi, Jared!), and a long, lean, lightly-muscled body (Hi, S1 Jared! I miss you!). The parts I liked were the woman's two roommates, the gentlemanly and overlooked Dennis and the fat slacker-dude Sam played by Kevin Smith (the king of Slacker Nation), who was just wonderful in that role. I want her roomate Sam for a friend.

Juno: Well. Very cute movie, great dialogue (the main character is a bit too clever at times, but the actress pulls it off. Loved Michael Cera as the unplanned father of her child, loved J.K. Simmons as her Dad (thank goodness— Oz has really put the warp on this actor for me). Jennifer Garner (!) DID look pretty here, though her character was wound too tight. Really neat script, really excruciating music— folksy with cute lyrics, but the singing and performance quality all sounds like amateur night. Possibly worse. But the movie is well worth seeing.

Finished S5 of Oz last week. I rewound the Beecher/Keller kiss 5-6 times to rewatch, and found myself moaning (!) through it. There was tongue. Tongue. Whoo! And in side-news, a cameo for no particular reason by Ben Vereen in the penultimate episode. Went to imdb.com to confirm it, of course. Man, but I spend a lot of time on that site.


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Steffilegoline on January 7th, 2008 09:21 pm (UTC)
I was amazed on how good Will Smith was in the film. It's a one-man show ad he just carries the entire film brilliantly.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on January 7th, 2008 09:33 pm (UTC)
He really does-- other than suspense/story reasons, I never needed anyone else to show up in that movie. He was enough, all by himself-- never lagged for a minute!
Steffilegoline on January 7th, 2008 09:38 pm (UTC)
Very, very true. His acting was very, very intense.
layne: sam calling deanlayne67 on January 7th, 2008 11:32 pm (UTC)
I am legend
I cried when he killed the dog, the lullaby and all. And Sam ... heheh, keep thinking of Dean and whether he could kill his Sam when and if Sam turns darkside.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on January 8th, 2008 04:51 am (UTC)
Re: I am legend
keep thinking of Dean and whether he could kill his Sam when and if Sam turns darkside.
I'm still not sure he could. But if he managed it, I think he'd kill himself immediately afterward. :(

The scene with the dog made me cry too. The only friend he had left. *sniffle*
aeroport_artaeroport_art on January 8th, 2008 12:54 am (UTC)
Enchanted!!! Juno!!!!! Wait, I can't believe you didn't like the music! I loved it, couldn't get that last song outta my head for the longest time. Folksy is good in my book :D

Hmmm people have been telling me good things about I Am Legend. This will warrant a rental.

I'm glad you survived the storms! I hear a semi blew off the freeway around San Rafael...? Craziness.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on January 8th, 2008 04:53 am (UTC)
Folksy is good in my book :D
As a musician myself, I tend to have issues with people who don't sing well. As in, they really, really bug me. And this isn't just the folksy types-- do you know that Placido Domingo sings flat? ARGH.

hear a semi blew off the freeway around San Rafael...? Craziness.
I'm not sure if I heard that, but I know part of I-5 was closed because a couple of trucks blew across both all the lanes. Really, anything big with a flat side becomes like a sail in heavy wind-- even if the thing itself should weigh a ton! :0
PamalaX: AlexYEAHpamalax on January 8th, 2008 02:34 am (UTC)
The whole family went to see I am Legend on New Years eve and we all thought very highly of it.

Em keeps saying it was the most terrifying movie she's ever seen but means that in a good way. Her and ther girls watch a lot of that scary stuff now and she said the isolation in that movie was more frightening than anything she'd seen before.

We got to see it in IMAX too which was really cool.

Em wants me to go see Juno with her this weekend so I'm looking forward to that one.

Edited at 2008-01-08 02:35 am (UTC)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on January 8th, 2008 04:54 am (UTC)
Em wants me to go see Juno with her this weekend so I'm looking forward to that one.
It'll probably embarrass her to death, seeing that with her mom. Which she doesn't realize yet. ;)

We saw "Millions" with the kids, and PG really ranges in other countries! Unmarried people in bed together, nekkid-- I really didn't expect to be seeing that with the kids! Good movie though-- and thank goodness for subtitles, so I can translate the English into English. ;)
Queen of Musicdove95 on January 8th, 2008 04:43 am (UTC)
I Am Legend is ONLY good because of Will Smith.

As for Juno, I loved it. It's not a complex story, but I thought it was honest, cute, and endearing. I actually liked the folky-quirky music. ;)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on January 8th, 2008 04:56 am (UTC)
I Am Legend is ONLY good because of Will Smith.
That is probably true, though he was more than enough for me (love a good performance). Although... seeing the weed-infested broken-down New York streets (complete with birdcalls and such) was really atmospheric for me.

It's not a complex story, but I thought it was honest, cute, and endearing.
Yes, exactly-- I liked it for what it aimed to be, and thought it succeeded. Though the music drove me nuts, it still fit with the overall theme of the movie. :)

Little Australian Bundle Of Delightful Joy: made of awesomehuggenkiss on January 8th, 2008 09:54 am (UTC)
Will Smith in I Am Legend was just phenomenal. His acting is what made that movie for me, full stop. I'm not a fan of the zombie-genre but I overlooked that completely for the emotional story that really got to me. I cried so damn much in that movie! From when he started losing it in the street when he saw that the dummy had moved until well after he tried to do his suicidal run at killing them all, I was just a wreck. Un-freakin-believable. I ♥ Will Smith!

Edited at 2008-01-08 09:54 am (UTC)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on January 8th, 2008 08:25 pm (UTC)
You could easily make the case that this version is NOT a zombie movie. The Dark-seekers aren't really zombies-- they're living, mutated humans who eat any meat for food, and no longer recognize real humans as being like themselves. Mainly, really fast scary predators!

Un-freakin-believable.
Oh, word. What a performance! And I worry that "zombie genre" is going to haunt his chances of an Academy Award nomination. His acting was phenomenal in this movie.