Where The Wild Things Are:
Lots of people are familiar with the children’s book by Maurice Sendak and so there was much excitement and anticipation surrounding this movie.Â The first thing you should do is remember how little story there is in the book.Â In case you have forgotten, its about a boy who throws a tantrum and is sent to bed without dinner who then goes on a magical adventure with the Wild Things where they make him king and have a rumpus until the boy decides to go home, and after returning he finds dinner waiting for him.Â It really isn’t the sort of thing you’d expect to be made into a full blown hour and a half movie.Â Considering what little there is in the source material, Spike Jonze does a pretty fantastic job of turning it into a movie.Â He does capture the style of the art, the Wild Things themselves, and the island they call home.Â But the story here, which much expands upon the ten sentences of the original, is about a boy who may or may not have behavioral problems.Â For sure he does based on his lashing out (wrecking his sister’s room and biting his mother), and we are only given peaks at the possible causes (a sister who doesn’t want him around, a single mother who works hard and is dating) but nothing concrete is ever said.Â When Max runs off into the world of the Wild Things its obvious, to me at least, that each of the Things is an aspect of Max’s own personality, his feelings.Â They play, they fight, they talk, and Max does eventually come home and his mom feeds him dinner.Â I would caution people who want to take their kids to see this.Â Go early when your kid has energy, because when I saw this at 6pm, the movie just wasn’t colorful or exciting enough to hold the attention of the fifty or so kids in attendance.Â It makes for a good “art house” style film, but I think most kids are going to be bored.
Yeah… this movie isn’t exactly going to be breaking any new ground. Â Guy is a psychopath who likes to marry women with kids, then kill them. Â New step son gets suspicious. Â Stuff happens. Â You’ve seen this movie before and you will see this movie again. Â Why? Â Because it is fun! Â But fun as it is, it is also not really worth $10 to see. Â Wait for DVD.
If maniacal family members and overt scares aren’t your thing, consider going to see a late showing of Paranormal Activity instead.Â I’m not going to blow smoke here.Â This is not the scariest movie ever made, and anyone who has told you otherwise is lying to you.Â However, the style and production of the film lend it to a level of creepiness that might get to you if you are the sort of person who is afraid of the dark.Â It is a slow building film, similar to The Blair Witch Project, but in my opinion much better (and less shaky camera).Â If you haven’t heard anything about this movie, don’t go looking, just go see it… this is one case where knowing nothing makes the movie better.
Years ago, I’m Gonna Git You Sucka parodied the 70’s blaxploitation films by bringing it into the (then) modern era and poking fun at the common elements most of them shared.Â Black Dynamite does the same, but with a decidedly different approach.Â The production values make the film look more like a lost 70’s film, and their skewering of the genre is as much aimed at the construction of those films (the screenplay, the acting, the sets, the use of stock footage) as it is the tropes they all shared.Â I honestly have not laughed this much or this hard at the theater in a long time.Â If you can handle the language, sex and 70’s as well as the absurdities of the plot, this movie is well worth the price of admission.
Law Abiding Citizen:
The only release this week I haven’t seen a screening of is the one I want to see the most.Â Gerard Butler plays a guy who feels his justice was undermined by the DA (Jamie Foxx) who offered one of the men who killed his family a deal.Â It turns out he isn’t just any regular schmo but some super black ops type mega spy assassin dude who is going to get his revenge on the men who did the crime and the system that didn’t punish them to his satisfaction.Â I may have mentioned before that I think I’d pay to listen to Gerard Butler read a phone book… damn I’d kill to have that accent.Â Plus, I generally like every movie he’s done.Â And hey, I saw the preview, stuff blows up, and there’s nothin’ wrong with that.