83 thoughts on “Third Tuesday Movie Day”

  1. I watched "This is 40." I'm a big fan of Apatow movies but this one was bad. The thing he usually does well is have raunchy humor but with likable characters and a feel-good story. None of these characters were likable and it wasn't funny.

    1. And I'm in the camp that laughed regularly but was disappointed by the haphazard story, terrible transitions, and hamfisted dialogue for the 8 year old.

  2. Watched The World's End, which was a fitting end to Pegg/Frost trilogy.

    Sleepy Hollow's season finale? Holy cr@p, talk about layering on the cliffhangers. And as for the rest of the new series this year, Almost Human continues to entertain, Intelligence is questionable, and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is going through the motions.

    Runner daughter raved over Frozen and liked Robocop a lot; Mrs. Runner thought The Invisible Woman was a mess.

    btw, saw Marshall, MN's own Steve Zahn got a co-starring role in a new TV series coming up.

    1. I watched The World's End twice in the past month and loved it both times. I also learned that my buddy hasn't seen Hot Fuzz. I'm going to have to fix that soon.

      I've been meaning to finish the Sleepy Hollow season. I watched the first couple of episodes and was thoroughly entertained. I'm finding that watching tv is tough, though, because my weekly routine is to come home from work, make dinner and play with the trinket so my wife gets a break. Plus, I'm still catching up on Archer.

        1. Archer Vice found its footing just in time to go on Olympic hiatus. I felt like it finally clicked in the last episode.

  3. I didn't go with (because I was at a friend's house drinking and playing Settlers of Cattaan), but the trinket went to her first (and hopefully only, because money) movie in the theater to see Frozen. It was reported that she loved it and did quite well for the duration of the film.

  4. * Highlander - Pretty awful (okay, really, really awful), but solid for some in-movie snark, which is all I was looking for, anyway. How did Christopher Lambert find movie roles?

    * Bad Grandpa - I have no idea why Linds thought this would be a good use of an hour and a half. Jackass works mostly because if something isn't working, don't worry, they'll move on to something else in two minutes. Eh, I laughed some, but not recommendable.

    * Captain Phillips - This was the second movie in double feature night (Bad Grandpa was the first... strange double feature). It was good. I flagged a little in the middle, but the ending pays it all off pretty well.

    * Robocop - Better than I thought it was going to be. A couple of the action scenes are frenetic and pulse-racing, and most of the Omnicorp people (Keaton, Oldman, Baruchel) were fun. My friend didn't care for it, because he likes the original. My comments to him were that a) the original Robocop is cheesy fun, but it's not exactly the type of movie you go to bat for and b) if you like the original Robocop and no other Robocop could ever compare, let's grab some beers, go to my house and watch the original. There would be zero point in a complete remake.

    ** Linds and I are in the home stretch in Lost (final seven or eight episodes). It's thrilling and fun, and I'm eager to see how it all plays out.

    Actual Spoiler SelectShow

    I don't have any idea how this show would be taken in tiny, bite-sized chunks, but the narrative works very, very well in large binges.

    1. Lambert got Highlander on the heels of his Greystoke performance, I think. I seem to remember that Lambert has really bad eyesight (and couldn't wear contacts?) so every sword fight was a potential for disaster.

    2. I've watched too many movies with Christopher Lambert in them. He gets cast in movies with summaries that sound like I should enjoy them, but they are almost all horribly, horribly done, with terrible special effects, awful scripts and amazingly wooden acting.

      1. I'll admit that the Highlander films (ok, the first one, anyway) and the subsequent TV series were guilty pleasures.

        1. Another movie that was great at 13 but doesn't quite hold up (I saw the sequel around that time too, and I knew even then it was godawful). Still appreciable for what it was though. Also, awesome Queen soundtrack.

          1. Wow, that's the first time my memory has failed me. 😛

            (and that's some horrible matte lines)

            Personally, my favorite line in the movie was

    3. "I liked the original" is such a meaningless reason not to like a remake. That said, the new Robocop is getting pretty terrible reviews. I'd also give the original more credit than "cheesy fun," too. I think it's a pretty great action movie with a horrible title (and, unfortunately, Peter Weller's worst acting; the guy is a tailor-made villain).

      I read up on Christopher Lambert quite a few years ago, and came away with the impression that he's really well-liked, particularly by directors. So, that may explain his continued ability to walk into movies, make a few sarcastic comments and come off acting like he does in every other movie.

      1. "Cheesy fun" probably sells the original short. I think your comment on Peter Weller is probably why I end up feeling that way. I should clarify that I like the original a great deal.

        I think the new one, while completely unnecessary, is probably getting short shrift with critics, but I'm willing to turn my brain off for the occasional action movie, so who knows?

      2. The original had such a great cast.

        I think Peter Weller grew into the villan mold. He was certainly fine as Buckaroo Bonzai, but I agree now I can't see him in a protagonist role (to the point that a recent movie I KNEW he wasn't the kind of character that the movie set him up to be)

        Spoiler SelectShow
        1. It's not just hindsight - I watched it just a couple of years ago with fresh eyes and he was just extremely wooden (even before the change). I was stunned at how bad he was, given how great he is these days.

        2. "fine" as Buckaroo? Dude, that is the Greatest Film Ever Made!!!!!. They should have retired the Best Actor Oscar with him for that role.

        3. Weller also had a pretty good turn as the baddie in a two-parter on ST: Enterprise.

          Also, looking him up on IMDB, I noted that he had a part in the great 1973 made-for-tv flick, The Man Without a Country.

  5. I really want to hear Spooky's thoughts on Frozen.
    EAR and I had a chance to take in a movie ourselves and that's what we picked.

    1. I thought it had some real highs and lows. Basically anytime it didn't focus on the relationship between the sisters, it suffered (outside of the scene with the shop owner, which made me laugh heartily). A lot of the characters came off as unmemorable and I'm not sure the snowman added anything, nor did he fit in with the overall tone of the movie. However, I also really dug the songs and thought each and every performer was well-cast, even if the role had little to do with the narrative.

      I thought the twist with Anna's fiance was too predictable, but it seemed to work for everyone else. I also thought the twist with the "act of true love" was predictable, but this might be because I think like a writer, because it surprised everyone else. Plus. I loved the moment despite seeing it coming from the beginning.

      It wasn't the triumph I was hoping for it to be, but I wasn't sorry I saw it, and my daughters loved it (with Sour Cream stating that it was her very favorite movie). It was fine enough.

      1. Spoiler, right? SelectShow

        Without the snowman, the movie would be a lot harsher. He cracked me up many times, and his goofy grin softens the peril. (This is important to me as my girls — AJR too, though not as bad as CER — are so sensitive to suspense in films.)
        Still, you're right that he's completely unnecessary to the plot.

        1. I didn't think any character should be there to soften the peril. I thought the snowman did little besides ruin dramatic moments and slow the narration.

          'Spoiler' SelectShow
  6. The Meaning of Life: finally got around to this. My least favorite of all the Python movies. Some hearty laughs when Cleese is around, and a couple of funny songs, but it wallows a bit in its own excess.

    Terms of Endearment: I was in the mood to cry, so my wife recommended this. I did, at the scene everybody does, but the story if these people's lives bored me, despite it being very earnest and well acted.

    Finished Fawlty Towers. Hit and miss. 12 episodes was more than enough with zero character development.

    Started Dexter, on season 2. It seems like most episodes have one solid 10 minute chunk and the rest is like what the hell. I really wish they had found anyone besides Carpenter.

    1. I watched season 1 of Dexter when it was on CBS (? I think) a couple years back. I don't know how heavily edited it was for nudity and gore, but the story could've used some tightening up, too.

    2. Carpenter gets a lot better, but your other criticism stands.

      For all the talent involved, the show just isn't really a great show. It's the most irritating type of show to me: if it was terrible, I could just give up, but it's just good enough for me to keep going, and now I'm so close to the end (two episodes into season six) that I can see the end and it's almost all I'm watching. The writers continue to fall back on character tropes that are well played out. With Dexter, since he has no real emotions, it's a real problem for writers because they can't tell conventional stories with him. That doesn't explain the rest of the cast's complete lack of change throughout the series. Realistic though it may be for a bunch of adults to get set in their ways, it's a little bit static. LaGuerta is still subtly greedy, Batista is still deferential, Deb is still a shit-talker and Masuka is still making the same exact dirty jokes. Dexter's father serves very little purpose and could have been written out after the first season. As a result, pretty much all of the best scenes involve Dexter and non-regulars, as they, humorously enough, are sometimes given real character arcs where they grow and change.

      On top of that, I hear the series finale is a huge letdown. I don't know why yet, but I look forward to rolling my eyes and cursing my need to see it through.

    3. The Meaning of Life: finally got around to this. My least favorite of all the Python movies. Some hearty laughs when Cleese is around, and a couple of funny songs, but it wallows a bit in its own excess.

      This was good fun when I was 13, but it certainly didn't hold up. I think I read they really weren't speaking to each other much at that point and everyone kind of phoned their bits in from a distance. Kind of like Abbey Road, but, you know, not that good.

      1. There are moments in that one that are really excellent, but as a whole it really doesn't click. Of course, that's comparing it to other Monty Python flicks. Compare it to comedies in general and it still probably rates well enough.

      2. Don't you mean kind of like Let It Be? Abbey Road is when the Beatles all tried really hard one last time to be a band.

  7. Took my parents to see Nebraska. Just as good as the first time I saw it. Just as real as the first time I lived it.

    1. The scene where the brothers get together to watch tv is like watching my extended family hang out together.

      1. Dido. The football game scene could have been something out of my childhood. And the town looks waaaay too much like several towns I knew well in Nebraska.

        The worst part is that the "sexual assault, not rape!" kid, (Cole?) looks disturbingly like my brother's oldest boy.

  8. Didn't get to watch a ton this last month.

    The Spectacular Now. I had high hopes for this and it didn't really meet my expectations. It was decent, but the ending was pretty lousy. I've heard the book's is better, I'd like to read it some day.

    anohana the Movie: The Flower We Saw That Day. I cried a whole lot. I'm not sure there was any other purpose to the movie than to make me cry. But it was still pretty good.

    I think that's it, other than the ongoing anime stuff I've been watching this season.

  9. The one other thing worth mentioning is In Bruges. The UK has this genre that we don't seem to have, where a movie can be darkly funny for an hour and then at some point drop the humor and become a depressing thriller. It's very weird, even with as many as I've seen, and I'm always uncomfortable with big changes like that in films when they happen, though this is my bias coming through as we're taught not to write that way. I actually quite liked both of the films in this film, but it honestly feels like a different screenwriter wrote each of the two halves. It's shot well enough, acted very well and is full of good, tense scenes and a lot of humor. At the end, though, you're thinking...what the hell did this just turn into?

    Seriously, this is how it ends, so don't open it unless you've seen it SelectShow
    1. Interesting you mention Reservoir Dogs in the spoiler, since Tarantino also did the split-genre thing with From Dusk 'til Dawn, though much differently. The contrast between cheeseball crime movie to cheeseball vampire flick is more sudden but less compelling than the In Bruges switch, but it's one of the examples of genre switching I can think of in an American movie.
      Other ones I can think of are Tucker and Dale versus Evil and The Cabin in the Woods, but again, not nearly as drastic as the In Bruges switch. Strange that the only examples I can come up with are horror movies...

      And yes, "what the hell did this movie turn into?" pretty much describes what I was thinking about the ending of In Bruges.

      1. Good callout on From Dusk Till Dawn. I think the horror movies you mention get away with this because you go in expecting horror, so it switches to the thing you expect, not away from it.

        1. There's just as much or more humor in the second "half" of Cabin in the Woods as the first. There's definitely a shift in the story, but I don't think it deviates at all in the horror/humor mix.

            1. I saw it go from crushingly ordinary to great. Until the hour mark (or wherever) I couldn't figure out what the fuss was about. The second half makes the first half make sense, though, and I'm still not sure if I love or hate that aspect of it. I'm sure I like the movie, though.

              1. These guys made the first half more than just ordinary, but yeah, I agree the second half also makes the first half better.

                1. Those two were the one aspect of the movie that gave me pause. If everything had been as it seemed, the characters were lame and cartoonishly evil. I stuck with it because I trusted that there had to be more to the narrative, but even I didn't expect it to be so brutally layered.

      2. What about the giant interlude in The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly when it turns into a Civil War film. That's a pretty drastic switch in the middle of an all-time great.

        1. Oh I like that.
          Some times, I think movies do well to lengthen things just to let the viewers live with the characters a bit more, to care more.

  10. A couple of big movie month(s)*, but unfortunately insufficient time to comment more than star rating:
    Lincoln - 9/10
    Captain Phillips - 9/10 (this was my world while in the Navy - very surreal to see it on the silver screen)
    Man of Steel - 7/10
    The Croods - 6/10
    Brave - 8/10
    X-Men Origins: Wolverine - 8/10
    Ender's Game - 7/10
    The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey - 7/10
    Despicable Me 2 - 8/10
    Elysium - 6/10
    Only God Forgives - 2/10 (I couldn't even finish this...ugh)
    Stand Up Guys - 6/10
    Jack Reacher - 6/10
    Cashback - 8/10 (the cover "art" caught my attention - what can I say, I'm a teenaged boy - but the movie was really quite good)

    *This is both Jan & Feb

    1. My thoughts on the ones you mention that I also watched-

      X-Men Origins: Wolverine - Figured out who the "bad guy" was about twenty minutes into the movie, and that pretty much killed any possible suspense. Effects and action were impressive enough, but script was definitely meh.

      The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey - I wish Peter Jackson could do a little more editing. So close to really, really good, but too much dead time. Special effects for Smaug are amazing.

      Only God Forgives - 2/10 (I couldn't even finish this...ugh)- I did finish this. It was terrible, and I'm not sure what the point of the whole movie could have possibly been. Even worse than Drive and Valhalla Rising. Nicolas Winding Refn is going on my blacklist (him and Uwe Boll- it's a short list right now).

      Jack Reacher - I liked it. It seemed to struggle trying to get the whole plot organized and pointing in the same direction, but a perfectly serviceable action thriller.

      1. You might be the first person I'm aware of to have that negative a reaction to Drive. I liked it a lot at the time, and in retrospect, I find myself liking it more.

        I'm not sure at all about Only God Forgives, though. It doesn't seem like it would be up my alley.

        1. I'm not the only one, though I'm in the minority. To be sure, Drive is pretty visually appealing and has a decent plot, but I found the long pauses between lines of dialogue during "conversations" to be highly irritating.

          It did have Christina Hendricks (edit: and Ron Perlman!), though. That helped.

        2. I absolutely adore Drive. I would not recommend Only God Forgives at all. It was pretty, pretty, pretty bad.

          Refn is no Uwe Boll in my opinion, but I actually subjected myself to the entire runtime of Postal which still haunts me to this day.

      2. See, I liked Drive and Valhalla Rising was interesting enough to get me to try Only. I don't typically turn a movie off, but this went nowhere ...and did so slowly.

        I like your take on Reacher. I suppose expecting more of it was my problem, not the movie's.

  11. Let's see what I watched...

    Bye Bye Birdie - holy crap did this age terribly. I think I enjoyed Peggy Olson's spoof of Ann-Margaret better than the real thing. It's amazing this could be created just a few years before society grew up.

    Looper - eh, I'm not huge into sci-fi, but it was enjoyable enough - especially for a movie in which Bruce Willis walks around killing people

    Django Unchained - WHOA!!! WHOA!!! I cannot emphasize enough how much I absolutely loved this movie. I'm killing myself for not seeing it in theaters (mainly because of how comically inept the end of Inglorious Basterds turned out to be). It was sooooo unbelievably hilarious and great. A perfect lovechild of Shaft and Sergio Leone. Plus, the music! WHOA was this movie great.

    Bye Bye Birdie was DVR'd off TCM, and I went through the channel's lineup next week and found about ten movies to record. I'll have a bunch of classics to watch soon!

    1. We did Bye Bye Birdie when I was in high school. It's hilariously bad, but also sort of charming in its relative innocence. I think it should be remade with Bieber instead of Elvis.

      1. Right, both Sheenie and I also did Bye Bye Birdie which is why I watched the movie. Just awful dreck.

    2. On TV, Sheenie and I are now at Season 6 of West Wing. Who else besides Donna and Lee Adama would fit on a list of Absolutely Atrocious Characters on Otherwise Excellent TV Shows?*

      I'm 3 episodes into the new season of House of Cards. It's perfectly enjoyable crap. In fact, it's better than perfectly enjoyable crap because it ramps the ridiculous up to eleven. The end of the first episode of season 2 when he finally breaks the fourth wall got me absolutely giddy. I just love Kevin Spacey devouring all the scenery.

      Justified improved immensely last week as Boyd and Ava's plot finally seems to have a point. I still can't understand the casting of Michael Rappaport as a Florida hillbilly.

      *must be a main character, not just a random pop-in like Poochy, the theater troope from Deadwood, or

  12. Just finished the last ep of this round of Sherlock series. Like I've said before, the British are especially good at overlooking plausibility in favor of an OMG scene.

    1. Oh, yeah, I finished that up, too. Although I wasn't overly excited about the way they finished up the season,

      Actual Spoiler SelectShow

      Still was pretty good watching.

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