Tag Archives: 2011 movies

“Dream House”, nightmare movie

Well, at least they fell in love and got married.

That would be delightfully deadpan Daniel Craig and (unofficial) official actress of this blog, Rachel Weisz, whose psychological thriller “Dream House” opens this week in the States.

What's going on? Does the trailer really give away the plot of the whole movie? (via Just Jared - no duh)

The reviews seem to suggest that you shouldn’t bother.

I believe that I’m not too keen to see this theatrically – there’s so much out that I want to see that I haven’t got time to watch so this movie doesn’t stand much of a chance, even with La Weisz in play.

No UK release date as yet.




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Cinematic Offerings, for September 2nd 2011

As you might expect, there’s not a lot going on at the cinema as we enter the doldrums between the Summer and the awards season which kicks off in mid-October.

America has the likes of “Shark Night 3D” of which all that can be said is found in the title, found-footage SF thriller “Apollo 18” and political drama “The Debt” to enjoy (or avoid) over the Labor Day weekend, whilst duking it out for box office supremacy in the UK are a re-release of Terence Malick’s “Days of Heaven”, Brit Horror “Kill List” and comedy horror remake, “Fright Night” – the only one of the bunch which would induce me to extract crinkly papers from my bill-fold.

Yes, I know “Days of Heaven” is a work of art but sometimes you want to watch a beautiful meditation on American migrant workers at the turn of the century and sometimes you want to see unhinged Vampire action scripted by one of “Buffy The Vampire Slayer”s signature writers.

Comic Horror from the decade of neon leg-warmers and Walkmen

This year's 7,236th remake of a genre film from the 1980's.

I really loved the original movie – a tale of suburban vampires, nerdy saviours of the world and campy horror tv hosts – and find myself looking forward to this contemporary revisit, not least because of the cast.

David Tennant in "Fright Night". Or his Norwegian Black Metal alter ego. One of those two.

Anton Yelchin, Colin Farrell, Toni Collette, Imogen Poots, Christopher Mintz-Plasse (yep, McLovin is Evil Ed) and the one, the only David Tennant, here taking on the iconic role of Peter Vincent, so brilliantly played by Roddy McDowall in the original 1985 film.

I’m hoping for modest thrills, nifty chills and gruesome chuckles a-plenty, with the pop culture smarts that Marti Noxon brought to “Buffy”.

Don’t prove me wrong, guys.

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Harry Potter and The Emperor’s New Clothes

Accio Whatever...

On Saturday, Lovely Mrs Boo and I went to Manchester to partake of an Imax screening of “Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows Part 2” at the Printworks Cinema’s Imax screen.

We’ve been there before – Seeing “The Matrix Reloaded” in Imax is one of those movie experiences which I’ll always remember – and have a real love for the big-screen format, so going to see “HP7B” wasn’t exactly a hardship. Although, as a sidebar, it’s of note that we cancelled our trip by a week to avoid any residual effects of the recent riots which so effected Manchester city centre. Things definitely seem to be getting back to normal in that regard.

To “HP7B”, then – Mrs Boo has seen the film twice, and embarked on a re-reading campaign which saw her polishing off J.K. Rowling’s series in three weeks following the release of the final film in the series. She’s into the books, less into the films but really wanted to take in the last part of the story on the biggest screen possible.

The movie itself is fine. I’m more of a fan of what David Yates did with the last four films than my wife is, whom I suspect has a true Potterphile’s devotion to the original texts and misses some of the novels’ sub-plots and diversions. It has to be said – if you have two lengthy movies to do justice to a novel as epic in scope as the final Potter book was, and you can still be accused of omitting crucial information, there’s something slightly amiss in the adaptation process.

We had a great previous experience seeing Yate’s first Potter film, “Harry Potter and The Order of the Phoenix” at the Printworks Imax screen, replete with sections which were presented in large format 3D – the incursion by Dumbledore’s Army into the Ministry of Magic’s Hall of Mysteries was wholly 3D and quite remarkable with it. So you might expect us to be quite chuffed by the prospect of seeing “…Deathly Hallows Part 2” in 3D, right? Not so much.

Given the choice, we would have wanted to see this movie in 2D Imax, and the option to do so wasn’t there. It’s a real shame – the post-converted print that we took in on Saturday just wasn’t up to snuff. The image quality was such that in order to see images in focus, I hit upon the successful but wholly absurd strategy of closing an eye periodically. What’s the point of a stereoscopic 3D presentation which requires the viewer to negate the process entirely in order to watch the film?

I don’t know why “…Phoenix” worked and why “…Deathly Hallows Part 2” didn’t, but the image quality was miles apart between the two films. Perhaps the shortened length of the sequel in “…Phoenix” worked in its favour, but the difference was apparent. The only sequences in “HP7B” which saw any benefit from 3D post-conversion were the credits – the camera push through the Warner Brothers logo and the Harry Potter logo were advertisements for the format and far better than anything in the rest of the film.

The Imax presentation itself was lovely – a picture which fills your field of vision pretty convincingly and truly brings you into the experience, truly visceral sound which has a palpable, near-physical presence in the theatre environment and this time around, no commercials or trailers to detract from the film. It’s just a shame that the 3D really added nothing and, in fact, actually detracted from my enjoyment.

And as for the ticket price – over £25.00 for two adults to see a film is really taking the proverbial. If distributors and theatre owners want to know why people don’t want to go to the cinema as much as they used to, that statistic is surely contributory evidence. I couldn’t and wouldn’t pay those prices on a regular basis and I don’t know how cinema owners would expect a family of four to afford tickets to see a film like this given those prices. I’d rather wait for the Blu-Ray, frankly.

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Rachel Weisz Tuesdays

A trailer for Rachel Weisz’s latest, the docudrama “The Whistleblower”. Weisz plays Kathryn Bolkovac, a UN peacekeeper in post-conflict Bosnia, whose revulsion at people-trafficking caused her to make powerful enemies.

Not, then, “The Mummy 4”. I think we’re clearly in compelling, adult, very possibly “Guardian”-reading, ‘torn-from-the-headlines’ territory, with a hint of slight ‘preaching to the choir’. Generally, the people whose attitudes would benefit from exposure to difficult material like this are the people who never get to see it and actively avoid it.

Or, ‘dolts’, as I like to politely refer to them as.

Your Tuesday Moment of Zen...

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