The Sci-Fi Keeps Coming
So, at the risk of turning this blog into a full-out “movie” blog… Here’s some more that I didn’t catch in my Summer Movie Preview (and as an update there – I’ve actually seen 2 of the movies on that list, which for me is pretty good because I grew up when movies were $3.25 so paying $9-$12 to see a movie in a theater seems ridiculous). Also not that these aren’t “summer” movies, per se (hence the title referring to Sci-Fi rather than Summer); two of them come out in November bracketing my birthday very nicely.
Pluses: I love Chloe Moretz. She’s awesome. I’ve only ever seen her in 30 Rock and the first Kick Ass and looking at her filmography, I think I might like her less if I were forced to watch the other movies she’s done, but in this context, she’s great. Jim Carrey is pretty much unrecognizable as The Colonel, and it seems like a good role for him. Clark Duke is cool. He was good in The Office and I like his style of humor (from the trailer it almost seems like he’s playing the same guy).
Minuses: You knew after the first one was a hit, they’d try to do it again… but this time it seems more like a straight up Good-Guy-Bad-Guy type thing as opposed to the kid turning into a superhero and then getting in over his head and having to struggle to be an actual superhero. Lots of other superheroes… could be good, or could suck. Either way, though, it can’t possible be as bad as Super, which I cannot honestly recommend to anyone who doesn’t just absolutely love gratuitous violence. If they’d kept that one to just even a decent level of violence, it could have been as good as Kick Ass (because Rainn Wilson’s character was a unique take on an origin story, and Ellen Page was hilarious as his sidekick). I thought the first Kick Ass was pretty over-the-top, but it almost seemed like Super was made just to be like “No, guys, this is over the top!” KA2 looks like it’s probably more mainstream and therefore will hopefully have a normal amount of unnecessary bloodiness.
Pluses: Low expectations. I don’t think anyone is really expecting this to be a “good” movie… But it should be as entertaining as any Riddick movie. Well, probably not as good as Pitch Black but better than The Chronicles of Riddick, so by “as entertaining as any” I mean: as entertaining as the average Riddick movie.
Minuses: You’re taking a pretty big risk if the the only way to escape an alien planet is to tell everyone who wants to kill you where you are in the hopes of capturing one of their vessels.
Pluses: The book is a Sci-Fi classic and it looks like they’re going to do a good job of adapting. Of course, multiple Academy Award winners and nominees doesn’t guarantee good performances or a good movie, but it can’t hurt. Hopefully they don’t try to big-budget-actionify it…
Minuses: I’m almost afraid to say I want to see it because, yes, Orson Scott Card is totally anti-gay. Even his attempt at getting people to see the movie was half-hearted at best. To summarize: Hey guys, I still think gay sexual behavior is wrong and should be punished, but since the Supreme Court say it’s okay, then my opinion doesn’t really matter, so go see my movie anyway. Thanks dude. On the one hand, all the people who actually made the movie have already been paid, so boycott won’t really hurt them all that much. On the other hand, a boycott is probably only going to show up as a number on an executive’s spreadsheet where it will drag down the average revenue of the “sci-fi” category and make them less likely to want make more. On the third hand (this is sci-fi, right?), look at all the sci-fi movies that are getting made and one flop probably isn’t going to make that much of a difference. I mean, you’ve already got Upside Down dragging things down… So maybe for my birthday I’ll make a choice between…
Thor: The Dark World
Pluses: A cast that reads almost as impressive as Ender’s Game. Obviously there’s less moral elements (in the movie and outside of it), so that’s good for me being able to state my desire to see it but probably less good for the overall quality of the film. It’ll be fun. Probably not as good as The Avengers, but probably as good as the first Thor, which was fun.
Minuses: To be honest, none. As long as you’ve got the appropriate expectations.
Pluses: It’s about time travel. I’m a sucker for that even when it comes in the form of a romantic dramedy (which is actually in Merriam Webster – wow). It’s not a complete carbon copy of The Time Traveler’s Wife (even though it does also have Rachel McAdams her hair is totally different [and much worse, if you ask me]). About Time is a dramedy – even categorized as comedy and drama on Rotten Tomatoes, while TTW was a Romance/Drama (not sure if there’s a combination of those two words). This time, the guy can actually control the time travel, and I like the set up of conflicts this seems to set up (or at least appears to from watching the trailer). It’s from the guy who did Notting Hill, Bridget Jones’s Diary, and Love Actually, all of which I was far too macho (or just trying to be) to appreciate when they came out, but did enjoy eventually (even in spite of Renee Zellweger’s inability to open her eyes for what seemed like the entire movie; and the fact that Love Actually was a bit over the top and mushy on the romance).
Minuses: If it doesn’t have any sharpness or roughness to it, the movie could easily slide into romantic drivel. Time travel is hard to get right. The lead guy looks a little bit too bumbling and awkward and unattractive… Even with time travel, I’m not sure I’d believe he could end up with Rachel McAdams (at least not as the perfect woman she’s portrayed as in these movies).
So there’s that. I hope to have some non-movie related posts soon, but these are so easy since I only have to spend 2 minutes watching a trailer and then write what I think instead of having to document some technical process or something with screenshots and directions, let alone actually thinking deeply about something…