Tuesday, October 27, 2009

DVDs/What Are You Watching? - October 27, 2009

(Apologies for the lateness of this post. I experienced technical difficulties) 


Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs: I liked the first movie but borderline hated the second, so I didn't bother with the third. Did I miss anything.

Orphan: Despite the fact that this was directed by the same man who made the House of Wax remake with Paris Hilton (insert grimace here). Still, I was intrigued because Peter Sarsgaard and Vera Farmiga are the leads. Then I found out what the twist was. (Grimace worsens)

Whatever Works:  Woody Allen’s latest film loses its way whenever it focuses on anybody besides the two leads of Larry David and Evan Rachel Wood, who form an improbable but endearing romance. Still, David and Wood are front and center often enough to put the movie across, and David makes a great surrogate Allen. Not up to Match Point, but better than, say, Small Time Crooks. GRADE: B

What Are You Watching

Ramping up for the horror marathon I attended, I decided to watch two horror-ish titles.

The Fearless Vampire Killers: Truly bizarre horror comedy directed by Roman Polanski, who amusingly cast himself as a bumbling assistant to a professor who end up crashing a vampire party. The film's not quite as funny as it seems to think it is, but it's still entertaining - and history has made it eerie, considering Sharon Tate (Polanski's wife, who would fall victim to the Manson family) is the female lead. TCM, showing their usual knack for canny programming, played a vintage promotional short about Tate right after the movie, and watching that was sad and even more chilling than the movie itself. GRADE: B

Videodrome: Since it relies so heavily on VHS as is reason d'etre, David Cronenberg's film about death by VCR  is more than a little dated by now, but its power to shock remains intact, thanks to a strong performance by James Woods, Cronenberg's expert mood-setting, and special effects that are still surprisingly effective. GRADE: B+

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