Unfortunately, the ending of summer is ‘almost’ here; though, I hope everyone had a great summer…Unfortunately, it was a very slow summer in terms of indie and foreign film, but there were still some really great ones… I have, personally, enjoyed “Before I Forget” (Avant que j’oublie), Fatih Akin’s “Edge of Heaven,” “Son of Rambow,” “Reprise,” “The Wackness,” and “American Teen.” And,from the Hollywood line of the sphere, I have greatly enjoyed “The Dark Knight,” “Wall-E” most definitly touched my heart, and “Pineapple Express” made me laugh like I haven’t for a very long-time… I wonder what are some of the the movies that people saw this summer and liked a lot…
The Dark Knight, amazing but just falls a little short of Great.
Broncstud^ I agree with you that “The Dark Knight” wasn’t perfect…However, I thought it was very-well shot, directed, and acted… Especially the performances by Heath Ledger and Michael Caine were really great…I also love how ‘dark’ the movie was in its mise-en-scene, atmosphere and its themes… In addition, the music score by Hans Zimmer and James Newton Howard was totally engaging and fitted perfectly with the film, I thought…
FROWNLAND (one-week run in Chicago last month)
THE HOUSE BUNNY- I was pretty disappointed by the sluggish pacing, but Anna Faris’ facial expressions are hillarious, and like Jenny
McCarthy in DIRTY LOVE, she doesn’t pander to the currently popular idea (Tina Fey, Sarah Silverman), that female
comedians need to be smug, sexy, and constantly showing their self-awareness.
SAVAGE GRACE – The locations, set design are incredibly decadent. The film is disturbing and really beautiful, so (masturbation scene
aside) evil becomes pretty entertaining, and isn’t that the appeal of many summer blockbusters?
Gonzo A fine blend of tragi-comic homage and bitter reminiscence on the life and work of Hunter S Thompson.
I was out of town and missed a few things but…
“La France” – Beautiful, ugly and full of music
“Wall-E” – Warmed my anti-consumerism, silent movie loving little heart (despite the ridiculous amount of products no doubt associated with the film)
“Transsiberian” – A tense and well done genre exercise w/great imagery
“Encounters at the End of the World” – I haven’t laughed so hard in a long time.
Old Films on the Big Screen (new to me) :
“Monsieur Verdoux” – I adore Charlie Chaplin and watching this film switch momentum to assert it’s political message is amazing.
“Celine and Julie Go Boating” – A smile was on my face throughout.
“California Split” – A great study of character and of people who may be a bit more lost than most.
“Day of Wrath” – Just saw this, am still in awe and feel any specific discussion would be insufficient.
Halim yes you hit the notes that i feel the film hit perfectly. It was the Heath Ledger show and he completely stole this film. Plus i have been in love with the zimmer and newton howard collaboration since batman begins. What i meant with saying that the movie is not perfect is that in certain areas the movie missed. For example Maggie Gyllenhall was a very poor choice for that character. No offense but Batman leading ladies are drop dead gorgeous from Basinger, to Kidman, to Thurman, to the amazing Catwoman. And Maggie is just not as beautiful. When the Joker tries to kidnap harvey and he runs into Rachel and says she is so beautiful no lie at least five people laughed out loud. i dont think that was meant to be a joke. For the most part the movie is amazing but i just feel that the little flaws in the end hurt it from being great.
The Dark Knight… Don’t tell anyone, but an insider on the set smuggled me this transcript of the pre-production meet between Nolan and Bale. May it bring insight into his astounding performance as The Batman… -“Chris, I’ve been getting into character, experimenting with different techniques to get the tone right …and I’ve decided to have a stick surgically REPLACEed into my ass for the duration of the shoot.”
-“Christian, why? And why are you talking with that absurdly pained and ruptured voice? —you make Stallone sound like a girl scout selling cookies.”
—“I have a splinter in my sphincter. Art is pain, man.”
RIP Heath Ledger. You were a damn fine actor, and deserved better company for your curtain call.
“No offense but Batman leading ladies are drop dead gorgeous from Basinger, to Kidman, to Thurman, to the amazing Catwoman. And Maggie is just not as beautiful.”
I take offense! —judging a woman by her plasticity? Where is it written that Gyllenhall is “not as beautiful” or that Batman films must only have airbrushed women who do nothing but slink about and hang clothes? …by whose standards is this a new law? by a snickering gaggle of milky-lipped adolescents in a darkened room?
On the other hand, why am I surprised at an audience reaction? What market does this “blockbuster” serve? Who does it appeal to? And why am I even discussing it?
Because, you see, what I found most offensive about the trite transparent for the most part very badly acted loud Batshit pseudo-philosophical mess …hyped, I might add, through every available media channel known to humankind this summer… was this subtext of the outcast all-American “hero” having to carry on his private “just” war, even when he (the poor misunderstood protector of the truth) becomes public enemy #1 and vilified by the citizens of the world at large. Sound like a familiar scenario in a wider political context? One thing Hollywood knows, it’s how to tap zeitgeist —reassure the American public that EVERYTHING IS UNDER CONTROL and simultaneously screw $ out of them by distracting them with a whizzing bike and a man wearing kevlar bunny ears.
Roll up roll up see the Bat-Man! Watch as he gets upstaged by a better and unfortunately very dead actor wearing clown make up! Go home and imagine you too are a billionaire playboy with conflicts of the psyche conducting an unpopular war! Tell your friends! AND REMEMBER KIDS— it’s OK to spy on the private conversations of ordinary citizens —because we are the good guys, and we gotta catch them damn clowns before they blow up a public service building
Or maybe I just read too much into it.
No no no not to much. Just enough to let us all know we like the clown way too much. But i understand and disagree , and i must say that maggie gylenhall is the next shelley duvall.
Hey T. I most definitly agree with your comments about ‘judging a woman by her plasticity.’ I couldn’t have put it better myself… I also thought it was an offensive way of putting it too; even though I play for a different ‘team’ and I don’t have an opinion on Maggie Gylenhall’s beauty on way or the other… I would say I like her as an actress, she was in various movies that I have liked, however her performance/ as well as her character wasn’t that mesmerizing in the movie, compared to the other characters and the actors of the movie…Perhaps this wasn’t her ‘shining’ role which obviously has nothing to do with her beauty…
Look gentlemen i am not trying to come off as insensetive to a womans look as they say beauty is in the eye of the beholder and i’m positive that there are many people who find Ms. Gyllenhall extremely attractive i just have to say that i am not one of them. As for the plasticity aspect well that is what i pay for in a summer blockbuster so forgive me for looking for that stepford wive type of beauty. I mean shit the movie is make believe. So i am not judging her acting i am judging Nolan’s casting skills and by far that part was really miscast. I mean would you cast her in a bond film? Seriously think about that? Because that is the standard of beautiful women in film and don’t you think that in some way you should aim to reach that kind of sexyness from that kind of part. Look i think michelle pfeiffer is both beautifully sexy and has great acting chops. Same for Uma Thurman guys i’m just trying to say that Ms. Gyllenhall just doesnt hold the mustard as well as the other’s. Shit Wynona Ryder would’ve been better.
i saw this at the tribeca film festival during the summer: Let the right one in.
Tropic Thunder took me by surprise and now I’m the guy who is constantly trying to convince his friends in the MFA program to give it a fair shot.
wall-e was probably the best blockbuster-style film of the summer, but part of me really adored hellboy2, and in terms of managing spectacle with independent values it really impressed. the dark knight was a great film too, although the over-exposure of the brand just killed the post-film experience for me. the 14 year old in me enjoyed iron man and the incredible hulk too. i like the contrast between the serious-fare of the winter months and the blockbuster period over the summer.
Wall-E was my favourite film of the summer along with Vicky Cristina Barcelona. The narrator in Vicky Cristina Barcelona threw me off hand for a slight second.
Hunger – Steve McQueen
I only got to see one summer movie and it was The Dark Knight and it was ah-mazing!
I did really love Dark Knight, but my favorite movie of the summer would be Reprise. Simply beautiful.
The Fall (I’m not sure if this is technically a summer movie, but that’s when it came out where I live)
The Dark Knight
Pineapple Express. It is the Cheech & Chong of my generation, except better in every way possible.
I think The Visitor by Tom McCarthy is the best summer indie and the finest of the year so far. It’s my kinda movie. Like an American Ken Loach flick. All these wannabe big Oscar movies coming up this year have a beast to compete with. A beast with a face.
Dark knight. was awesome.