Tag: movies

since this is a blog, I guess I should post, right?

Not much is going on with me at the moment, so there isn’t much to post about; well, nothing that I would want to commit to typed words going off into the infinite reaches of the internets anyway.

This weekend had it’s nice points. I saw two movies, both of which I liked, District 9 and Ponyo.

I liked the idea and the attempt at paralleling apartheid that came with District 9, but it had a little too much going on for me to really focus (as my friend John stated, this must be Peter Jackson’s Cloverfield — even though he didn’t direct it). However, I will say, that we saw it at the drive in, so perhaps I just need to see it again, in an environment when I can really focus on it. I will have to rent it when it comes out. It was enjoyable, though.

As for Ponyo, I posted about it last week, and my excitement had me really revved up to see it. I detest going to the theater, and this was no exception; all of the talking and whatnot around me made it hard to really let go and enjoy the film. However, I really did love the story, and the animation was incredible. I can’t wait to see it again, because I think that most of Miyazaki’s films require at least two viewings before a true opinion can be formed. The more I reflect on my feelings about Ponyo, the more I love it. I hope that Ponyo’s eventual release on Blu Ray will cause the powers that be to go back and commit Miyazaki’s other films to the format; they are truly deserving of the treatment, and I know that I would be one of the first to rush out and buy them!

Other than that… not much else. How about you?

ponyo on the cliff by the sea

I rarely ever get excited about movies, and I almost never get chills watching a preview (go and check it out here, since embedding is disabled on most of the youtube clips), but both things apply to Ponyo on the Cliff By the Sea, the upcoming Hayao Miyazaki film. I have been a fan of Miyazaki’s for many, many years, and with Ponyo, I dare predict that my love of Miyazaki will only continue to soar.

My first experience with one of his films, was when I saw Princess Mononoke in college and loved it. However, it wasn’t until Spirited Away that I realized how amazing his films truly are. After seeing Spirited Away the first time, I was completely blown away, and realized I had seen one of the best movies of my life. This motivated me to check out some of his previous work, and I discovered Nausicaa of the Valley of The Wind, another brilliant film that also has a place amongst my favorite films ever made.

Miyazaki’s films contain a sense of imagination, wonder, and hope portrayed in a medium that I haven’t seen anywhere else. His whimsical stories are usually backed by a deep concern for our footprint on our world, and often explore the consequences we might face if we ignore the signs; which is kind of deep for a “kid’s movie” huh? His animation, story telling, and direction take dreams, and make them into a visually stunning experience that you can enjoy while you are awake. I find it almost impossible not to fall in love with is characters, and even more impossible not to enjoy their adventures.

As Ponyo is being released this Friday, I will do something I NEVER do: I will head to a theater to see this film. Those that know me, know very well that I HATE going to the movies (with one notable exception: the drive in), but my excitement for this film will force me to put my hatred of all things movie theater aside, and go out to see it. If anyone wants to come along, let me know, because I can’t wait to see this movie, and I definitely want to see it this weekend for sure. I’m hoping that it is everything that I think it will be and more; and given Miyazaki’s track record and the previews, it looks like it might be just that!

Also, I am really, really hoping that the release of this film gets some (if not ALL) of his films onto Blu Ray here in the states. As I said, his films are visually stunning, and bringing them to high definition would be outstanding!

bow to blu

Basically, Blu Ray has re-invigorated my love of watching movies. I even upgraded Netflix to send us Blu Rays if they are available.

High Definition really is the icing on delicious cake. Now… to stop buying so many of these damn movies!!!

Seriously, though, that’s about all I got. I am STILL finishing up small things in the bathroom, and painting the other one, so pictures will eventually come. Other than that… not much; although, I did go work out yesterday, and hope to add that back into my life. Here’s hoping that I actually go again later in the week… mama’s fat!

what would you do in that situation?

Fair warning: I will be talking about a movie (The Reader), and discussing the plot, so if you want to avoid spoilers, do not keep reading after this sentence.

Last night, James and I watched the Reader. After the shock of the sheer amount of nudity there was in the film, I have to say, that I was struck by the way Michael handled his relationship with Hanna. It was made clear that he definitely loved her, but he was truly the only one that could have saved her from a lifetime in prison, and yet, he said nothing. Yes, she deserves a LOT of the blame; she committed herself to the SS and 20 years in prison because she was ashamed of the fact that she couldn’t read or write, but I couldn’t help find fault with Michael as well.

I can’t tell you what I would do in those circumstances; I didn’t live through the Holocaust. Do I grasp the enormity of the events that occurred during that incredibly dark time? Not by a long shot. When I try to wrap my head around the fact that the majority of a country stood by and assisted in the murders of MILLIONS of people, just because of who they were, my stomach turns. It is disgusting. With that being said, I felt it was clear that Hanna, while she was a part of the whole machine, shouldn’t have taken all of the blame; she was the only one who had the long sentence handed down to them.

If I were Michael, I think that I would have spoken up for her. Also, if I hadn’t of had the courage to do it when she was on trial (or if it was because he was too angry at her for being at part of the Holocaust), I don’t think I could have ignored her all of those years, and just “went on with my life”. Maybe I just have a big heart, but it would be hard for me to love anyone and let them rot in jail; even if they committed a heinous crime. I would at least visit. I thought that by sending those tapes to her, he was fully admitting the amount of guilt that he had; so why not visit? Yet, again, I can’t say what I would do in that situation for sure, because I wasn’t there, but I just couldn’t help but feel angry at him for not doing anything. I guess that was the point of the movie, so I guess that’s what I took from it.

What would you do under the same circumstances?

ladies and gentlemen…

The Moody/Robinson household now has Blu Ray.


UPDATE: I decided making a Blu Ray specific page was silly, because I will most likely get a lot of them; so I will just put a BR next to the title in the DVD library if it is a Blu Ray disc that I own (this will also be done for HD DVDs with the exception that HD DVDs will obviously have a red HD next to them, and not a BR.). I am also considering getting rid of the regular version of the movies I replace on DVD; I need to make room (I probably won’t though, as I still have regular DVD players in the house)!!


We finally watched Milk the other night, and I really have to say wow, what a great movie. The fact that someone could have the drive and determination to always stand up to those that tried to push him down is incredibly inspiring. Harvey Milk was an amazing man, because he refused to just roll over and take it; he refused to give up. It’s a tragedy that he isn’t here today.

I also thought that the timing of this film was amazingly poignant and extremely relevant, with Harvey and his fellow Californians fighting Prop 6, and with current Californians fighting Prop 8. It just goes to show that things change, but in some ways, they stay the same; the fight isn’t over, and as of right now, it seems there will always be those out there that want to take our rights away from us. Thank God for the Harvey Milk’s of this world that are willing to fight for what is right.

Just as a final thought, I will NEVER understand what gives people the inclination that their opinion about someone’s life means anything to anyone other than themselves. If you think that homosexuality is a sin, I couldn’t care less; it is your opinion, not mine, so please keep it to yourself. Only when people stop trying to use their warped sense of morality and keep pushing their radical system of values (of which most of them do not even abide by), will we all truly be free, and is that really such a bad thing to hope for? I’m pretty sure that Harvey didn’t think so, and neither do I.

why underworld 3 might be the last movie I see in the theater

Yesterday, James and I were invited by some friends to see Underworld: Rise of the Lycans, and as a fan of the first two Underworld movies, and with James excited to go, I agreed to go. We were set to meet up at the Atlantic Station theater, which was pretty crazy because of the Cirque De Soleil going on, but we managed to eat before the movie, and actually made it to the movie on time! (I know, surprising for us!!). Given all of our good fortune with timing, the frustration of parking only increased when we went to get tickets for the film. Going to get the tickets revealed that the theater operates in a typical WTF fashion; only one of the three self-service kiosks were working. Seriously, if you make them available for people to purchase their own tickets, having them in anything less than working order is unforgivable.

After waiting for the incredibly slow people in front of me, I managed to get our tickets, and I have to say, the moment my receipt printed I was almost instantly in an even worse mood. I mean, it’s almost adding insult to injury with the economy in the toilet, and for them to still be charging $10 for a movie ticket?! Now I know why our theater was practically empty; going out to the movies in particular is getting too darned expensive. I could have just bought the DVD for the $20 I shelled out for us to see the film, and I could have enjoyed it in the comfort of my own home; and even watched it more than once!

All things considered, I will say that I liked the movie, though, so for that reason alone, I was glad that we went to see it. However, that wasn’t enough to bring me back to the theater in the future; and here’s a few reasons why: Unlike most, I am not impressed with seeing a movie in the theater. It doesn’t do anything extra for me, and I quite like having the comfort of being able to enjoy my comfortable couch, as well as the ability to press pause and run to the bathroom if it’s necessary. When watching from home, I don’t have to worry about parking, and I don’t have to pay for concessions. I also don’t have to deal with annoying theater goers. (that’s more reasons NOT to go than I thought!).

So… Underworld is probably the last movie I am going to see in the theater for a long while. During the previews, we saw one for Watchmen, and while I really want to see that movie, I might have to just wait for DVD; after all, I can just outright buy it, and if it sucks, I could chuck the DVD in the trash, and I would be out no more than I was to go and see it in the theater.

As an aside, I really think they need to come up with some gimmick that will pull people like myself back the theaters, or the movie business is going to continue to suffer. People need incentives to go and see your film, and charging out the nose isn’t a pro for certain. My suggestion, is that they offer you the exclusive chance to buy the DVD upon exiting the film. Seriously, how many times have you seen a movie, and you wanted to go and watch it again? For me, that’s most of the time, and that is yet another tick in the column for waiting until the DVD is released. How cool would it be to get the DVD right after seeing it? I know that would make me go to the theater without hesitation. Oh well… I can’t make the movie business bend to my desires. While it sounds like I’ve already made up my mind, I guess we’ll just have to wait and see if anything can get me back to the theater in the future; if not, does anyone want to come over for movie night?!

summer ’08 movie checklist

Yesterday, I finally got to see Iron Man, and I have to say, that I was definitely impressed. The story was great, and the special effects were amazing. Also, Robert Downey Jr. was not only likable in the part of Tony Stark, but he was actually debonair and quite attractive. Talk about a role to change how you feel about someone! Anyway, I look forward to owning that one on DVD for sure.

After seeing Iron Man, I felt the desire to make a little list of other movies of interest that I would like to see coming out in the next couple of months; and by the looks of it, there are some potentially enjoyable ones on the horizon! Here’s my list (in no order whatsoever):

  • Wanted (opens June 27th)- Jolie hotness and major action. Looks like it will be pretty awesome.
  • The Dark Knight (opens July 18th)- I loved Batman Begins, and Christian Bale is back in the role of Batman, with Nolan directing again. Also, I can’t wait to see Heath as the joker, the trailers make him look terrifying.
  • Hellboy II: the Golden Army (opens July 11th) – The first Hellboy movie was fantastic, and by the looks of it, this next one is going blow it out of the water. I can’t wait to see what the consistently amazing del Toro has up his sleeve.
  • Mamma Mia! (opens July 18th) – Not only am I jazzed that a musical, filled to the brim with ABBA songs has made it to the silver screen, but Meryl Streep is in it!! Also, it will be interesting to see what Amanda Seyfried can do… she was fun in Mean Girls!
  • Hancock (opens July 2nd) – Looks like a My Super Ex-Girlfriend-ish film; comic book goodness with humor, fun, and special effects. I’m in!
  • Get Smart (opens June 20th)- At this point, is there really any reason to doubt Steve Carrell? He is consistently hilarious, and by the trailers, this looks like another slam dunk.
  • The Mummy: Tomb Of the Dragon Emperor (opens August 1) – Why not?? The other Mummy movies were fun, brainless action eye-candy. Let’s do it again!
  • The Incredible Hulk (out now) – Well, the first Hulk movie SUCKED, and this one looks much better. Plus, a bunch of my fellow comic book geek friends saw it and liked it a lot. Also, Edward Norton is in it; isn’t that enough of a reason?
  • I think that I might wait for DVD for the following: Indiana Jones: TKOTCS, Kung Fu Panda, The Happening, and The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian.

Anything I’m missing? I generally detest going to the movies, but some of these are going to force me out to the theater. Let me know what you are looking forward to seeing this summer!

region free is the way to be

A couple of months ago, I decided it was time to upgrade our DVD player to a HD upconversion unit, and I managed to get a great deal in the process. One of the other requirements I had for the unit, was that it not be Sony, because I wanted to see if I could unlock it, and make it region free. Being a lover of British shows and lots of British things, I wanted the opportunity available to get region 2 DVDs if I should so desire.

Well, as I wrote about some time in the past, I have had a great time watching shows like Spaced and Hyperdrive; both of which are only available on region 2 DVDs. Well, my most recent exciting region 2 goodness comes in the form owning the movie that is just hitting US theaters this week: Run Fatboy Run.

Now, my love for Simon Pegg may be a little bit on the verge of “I’m ready to walk down the aisle with this sexy man and have his babies”, so it should be no surprise that I jumped at the opportunity to get this DVD; even though it was like $35 (damn conversion rates and shitty US dollars!). Well, it was a good purchase, because the movie is actually quite cute, and definitely enjoyable. I am debating on whether or not to see it in theaters, but I probably won’t, because a) I paid so much for the DVD, and b) I hate going to the movies, and if I can sit home, I would rather do that.

Either way, I am definitely a believer that being region free is the way to be. Having a region free DVD player has given me the opportunity to relish all of the amazing material that my dream lover Simon Pegg and sexy bear Nick Frost have done overseas; some of which is brilliant. Either way, here’s to consumerism, right?!

another scream of praise for Juno

Damn. Juno is a magnificent film. I have been mulling over what I wanted to say about it for a few days now, mostly because of how great my experience was with this movie. I hate when you go to a movie, and leave feeling like, “well, that was okay”. When I left Juno, I felt completely entertained; I knew that I had just seen a movie that I loved. A movie that was funny, silly, sarcastic, well written, and at parts, a full blown tear jerker. All of the actors attached to this film completely excelled, and it really goes to show when you get real talent, both in writing, and in acting, together, you can make something great.

The movie itself is about Juno getting pregnant, and then deciding to give the baby up for adoption. The best, is her balls out attitude about the whole situation, where she clearly puts up the wall to mask her true pain in her decision. The exchange between Ellen Page (who plays Juno) and everyone else in the film is full of humor, but it is also filled with a sense of maturity that you probably wouldn’t see in someone her age. However, it is definitely refreshing, and completely entertaining.

I only have one small gripe with this film. As much praise as I have heard about almost every actor in this picture, I have seen very little said about the amazing performance that Jennifer Garner gave in the movie. I totally echo what my buddy Popmuse said; I am surprised that there was no praise for her, and no nomination for best supporting actress or anything. There are moments in this movie where Jennifer Garner just gives a look, and it completely speaks every layer of emotion that her character is dealing with. It is impressive. She is also responsible for me almost all out crying during this film in several points; her emotion is just so believable. That’s what acting is about, too, isn’t it? Hence, my surprise that she is barely mentioned with regards to her performance. Either way, the film is great, and I am just glad that she was able to do what she did in it; even if there are only a few of us that are truly thankful.

I think that Juno would be my number one movie of 2007; that is, if I had seen it in 2007 (we saw it this past weekend). However, I do have to say that Hot Fuzz definitely would be a direct contender, as it is no secret that I totally love that movie (it’s a personal favorite of mine); and I did see it in 2007, when it came out. Overall, Juno is exactly the type of movie that warms your heart for the wrong reasons, makes you laugh hysterically at awkward situations, and totally rips your heart out of your chest just when you start to think that you have convinced yourself that this is just a movie. Amazing movie going experience, one that deserves a full five out of five stars. I will be buying this on DVD the day it comes out, if anyone wants to come over and experience some movie greatness with me. I have a strong feeling that this movie will easily become a favorite of mine.