recent movies

"Many Shuvs and Zuuls knew what it was to be roasted in the depths of the Slor that day, I can tell you."
Occulus: As "haunted mirror" movies go, this was pretty solid. In any given scene, it's hard to know whether what you are seeing is real-time, a flashback, a memory, or a hallucination. It's an interesting structure. It was much better than Mirror, Mirror (which I also re-watched. Wow, it's worse than I remembered.)

Under the Skin: It's not bad, but kind of slow. Scarlett Johansson drives around and eats people. It's basically Liquid Sky, but less psychedelic, and no faster paced.

Ghostbusters: I hadn't seen this in years, and I'm happy to report that it really holds up well. Some of the effects are terrible, but the jokes and plot are quality.

Ghostbusters II: This isn't terrible, but it's not that funny and there is far too much baby in it. The whole movie is basically nothing but people coo-ing at a baby. The baby doesn't even do anything, ever. It's just a prize token. More slime, less baby is what I'm saying.

Star Wars: Turn to the Dark Side, Episode 3.1: This is the 7+ hours of Star Wars episodes 1-3 edited down to a single 2:47 movie. It is a much better movie. I wouldn't say it's a very good movie, but there's only so far you can polish that turd. Still, given the raw material they had to work with, this came out better than I expected. This movie is about a monk with serious anger issues making terrible decisions, instead of being about tariffs and union negotiations or whatever the fuck Lucas's movies were about.

The torrent I found of it wasn't the greatest encoding, at 640×358, so it felt like a much older and lower budget B movie than it is, which made some of the stilted, terrible acting easier to tolerate.

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9 Responses:

  1. Joe Shelby says:

    Re: Star Wars Prequels - I had a similar impression with The Matrix's sequels. They could take the two generally crappy/campy films, chop out just about everything having to do with Zion, focus just on the scenes that take place within The Matrix, and have a 2 1/2 hour masterpiece of a sequel. There is absolutely nothing that makes the audience give a damn if Zion lives or dies other than Morpheus is there at the time.

    • jwz says:

      The problem with the Matrix sequels is far more fundamental than that: their explanation of Neo / The One is completely moronic. To make those movies not suck requires a complete plot re-tooling, not merely tighter editing. A proper ending would have Zion shown to also be The Matrix and letting the whole thing swallow its own tail.

  2. Jens Knutson says:

    Thanks for posting these. Much like your annual music reviews, these movie wrap-ups have been useful; I've watched several films lately which I otherwise would have passed on because of these.

  3. Elusis says:

    Seeing Ghostbusters in a theatre with proper movie popcorn and a bunch of other folks (about half people our age; about half younger parents with elementary-aged kids) was good fun.

  4. grahams says:

    Turn to the Dark Side was apparently inspired by the idea of Topher Grace's edit of all three prequels down to one 90 minute film. He only screened the edit once and has said he will never release it... I wonder if the shorter runtime would make it even better...

  5. mattyj says:

    In case someone reads this and is thinking 'Oh yeah, movies. I remember those. I should go see something in the theater this week so I can support an industry that never lets me down. I know! I like Denzel. Perhaps I'll give The Equalizer some of my hard earned money.'

    Don't. Just fucking don't. It's turrible.

  6. Jim Salter says:

    You have got to be kidding me re: Under The Skin. That was unwatchable, terribly paced, unrewarding art film schlock. No resolution of conflict, no clue what's even going on. Not even a few minutes of Scarlett Johansson crawling around naked stripping another woman naked on a lighted floor made that turkey worth watching.

    I'll admit ScarJo did really well portraying the interesting dead-to-emotion lead, but she really deserved a much, MUCH better movie to do it in. Compare and contrast with Her, in which Johansson absolutely KILLED it with voice alone, despite literally never being on the screen at all. (Also compare and contrast an actual good movie vs... well, vs Under The Skin. Ugh.)