Yeah, so I've been watching a lot of movies recently; I realized that film in general is a pop culture laden area of academia that I've left relatively untapped, so I'm trying to extend in that direction a little bit. Thus, Movie Buff, a new regular feature. Sure, I've reviewed movies before, but now there's a fancy group title.
So let's do this. Movie reviews will vary in length depending on my interest, and my whim.
All of Me: A 1984 movie directed by Carl Reiner, starring Steve Martin as the man who accidentally gets implanted with the soul of Lily Tomlin. A lot of comedies with female love interests forget that women can be funny as well; instead, what we get is a bland female stereotype who exists, at best, to occasionally act as the straight (wo)man to the funnier male lead. And and worst, they're place holders for "nonthreatening female/trophy" characters. See, for example, Bruce Almighty, Office Space, (large portions of Jennifer Aniston's career, frankly), Billy Madison, Happy Gilmour, etc. Since Tomlin is in Martin's body for most of the movie, All of Me is a little guilty of that as well, but Tomlin's character has her own personality and growth, which is more than can be said for many. There's also real chemistry between Martin and Tomlin, which culminates in a wonderful mirror-reflected dance scene. Their relationship is so sweet that you almost forget that their goal in the film is to murder another woman, annihilate her soul, and take her body.
Primer: a 2004 movie patched together via shoestring by Shane Carruth. Primer is an incredibly dense sci-fi movie revolving around time travel. It's the sort of film that's easy to pick apart once it's over; you can argue about whether the film's logic really works, where certain plot elements come from, whether the culminating emotional reactions fit with what's been shown. But it's a film that will definitely get you talking about it after it's finished, and, also to its credit, you don't ask the questions while you're watching; the pacing is so tight you just get immersed. Plus, it's fairly short, at 77 minutes. I like a film that tells its story, simply (okay, not simply at all) and concisely, without dragging past its natural ending point.
Basic Instinct: Finally, a film that justifies my fear of intelligent women and their sexuality. Thankfully, all they need is a forceful male to quell their wanton ways. (That was sarcasm. On the internet, it's sometimes important to be clear about that. For the record: admired the film's method of manipulation, but disagreed with the message wholeheartedly.)
...okay, I'm still going by my self-imposed limit of 500 words, so I don't have time to review Book of Eli, the movie I actually created the post for. Next time, children. Have faith.
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