Movie Round-Up: November 6th, 2009

The Men Who Stare At Goats:

This movie looks bizarre enough to make me laugh. Seriously, a movie about a secret military group trying to kill goats with the power of their minds? I may not rush to the theater to see this one, but it is definitely on my must see list for the future.

A Christmas Carol:

Again?  I suppose Hollywood needs to trot out the Dickens classic every now and then, but I haven’t been a huge fan of the dead-eyed uncanny valley motion capture Zemeckis films so far, perhaps this one will change that.  It is in 3-D, and I love me some 3-D.  However, I might want to wait until a little closer to Christmas to see it.  I just hope its not gone by then.

The Fourth Kind:

I like movies about alien abductions. Fire in the Sky, Communion, and so on. So I am predisposed to like this movie, however, after seeing a screening I found I only sort of enjoyed it.  It was interesting, but felt more like a documentary than a movie.  On the other hand, as a film making experiment I think the movie does very well. Writer/Director Olatunde Osunsanmi used a mixture of “filmed” footage starring Milla Jovovich and “raw” footage consisting of audio and video tapes of the true events the movie is based on.  In addition to that, the majority of the “filmed” footage, taken almost as re-enactments, played in simple stereo sound and had a tinny quality, as if we were listening to the sound through a tape deck, but when important “action” scenes, those concerning contact with aliens, the theater would flood with full high quality surround sound.  It made an impact on the audience, the switch from stereo to full surround, and heightened the experience.  While overall I was a little disappointed in the story of the film, I would definitely recommend seeing this one in the theater if you are at all interested.

The Box:

With the success of I Am Legend a little while back, it was inevitable that other Richard Matheson stories would get to the big screen.  This one, originally titled “Button, Button”, was also previously an episode of the 1985 run of The Twilight Zone.  A half-hour or hour long show seems the right length for the content of this story.  Matheson’s original differed from the Twilight Zone episode, and so this movie differs from both.  It was too long, too slow, and for something billed as a horror and/or suspense film, it lacked both.  The real problem with the film is that it telegraphs its only punch and then never deviates.  If you pay attention in the beginning, after the short conversation with Mr. Steward after Norma Lewis presses the button, you have all the information you need to know how this is going to end.  Sure, the movie throws a few red herrings at you to try to fake you out, but they are all hollow elements, and in my opinion would have been a far more interesting story than what we got if they had been fleshed out.  So, my recommendation, pass on this one.  In fact, don’t even bother with it down the road when its on DVD or cable.

One comment

  1. Aaron says:

    I remember Fire in the Sky. I’ll probably wait to see The Fourth Kind on TV. I’m interested, but not very.

    I will see A Christmas Carol in the comings weeks, though. From the trailers, it looks good, despite my reservations about Jim Carey as Scrooge. I cut Disney some slack for the remake, since it’s the first in 3-D, and since it’s the most commonly adapted story even without Disney.

    I’m looking forward to the 3-D, but I won’t feel like I’ve experienced the new 3-D technology until I see it applied to non-animated actors and a real setting. Avatar will be largely animated, but I think that will probably serve.

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