A Single Man

“OMG work has been murder this week. I had time to watch movies when I’d come home, but I figured in the state of mind I was in, I wouldnt be able to give them a fair watching. Pulled what I call a Dawn Dawn Double Feature today. That just means I saw two movies today. This time, both at the Kendall Square Landmark Theater. First time I ever double there. Usually I get one there, then catch the second elsewhere.

Anyhoo, first up was A Single Man, which I thought was rather incredible. I absolutely adored Colin Firth’s character, George, and he was played so expertly. You could practically feel the pain he was going thru, and sympathized with his character every step of the way. Fully support the inevitable Oscar nod Firth is poised for.

Guess we’ll keep going down the line with the cast. Never particularly cared much for Julianne Moore, except for Magnolia, but I loved everyone in that. While she was good here, I dont see why she’s also supposed to be a lock for an Oscar nod. I dunno, just wasnt as struck by her as I was by Firth and some of the others. The others would be Nicholas Hoult and Matthew Goode, neither of whom I was familiar with previously. Apparently Nicholas Hoult was the little kid in About A Boy, which I never saw. He annoyed me at first but I fell in love with him over the course of the movie. And Goode was (resisting the urge for the bad pun) quite go..um…great as the idealized lover.

While I definitely recommend this film, I warn you it is quite the downer. As if the story wasnt somber enough on its own, the feel was heightened by the lighting. During George’s low points, the lighting would be very bleak and dull. It’d brighten momentarily along with his moods, but that didnt usually last too long. I found that detail to be extremely effective and was quite impressed by it. By the end, it was one of those that I just needed a minute to recover from. I wont go into spoilery detail but all along I’d expected the film to end a certain way, then it didnt, then it twisted again. I spent the last 5 minutes frozen, with my hand covering my mouth after I’d gasped with surprise along with the rest of the fairly sizable crowd. I didnt even get up until halfway through the credits, and I wasn’t the only one who’d been affected that way it seemed.

A Single Man – \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/

2009 Recap

“Yes, Im finally doing this write up. Okay, I guess 5 days isnt all that late. Certainly better than last year. January was just about over by the time I posted.

Instead of going by release date, Im counting the year based on when I went to the theater. So, for example, even though Avatar was released on Dec 18th, I didnt see it until Jan 3rd, so for me it isnt eligible until next year’s recap. I did notice on last year’s recap that I included some of those gray area timeline films, so I wont take those into consideration when ranking my faves. Example: Revolutionary Road was out last Dec, I saw it in Jan but ranked it as an honorable mention. I’ll list it, but wont rank it.

First off, here’s the list of what I saw at the theaters, with links to their write ups. Most of these are on my old blog , and they might not be as extensive as I try to do now. Im skipping the first entry’s worth of reviews cause I think they were prolly actually late 2008. I didnt used to be so good about posting right away

Okay I’ll stop with all the arbitrary guidelines I’ve set for myself. No one else cares.

Seven Pounds
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Rachel Getting Married
Revolutionary Road
Gran Torino
The Wrestler
The Reader
Defiance
Taken
Push
Coraline
Fanboys
The International
Watchmen
Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li
Confessions of a Shopaholic
Duplicity
Sunshine Cleaning
The Great Buck Howard
I Love You Man
Monsters Vs Aliens
Adventureland
Observe and Report
17 Again
Crank 2: High Voltage
Fast & Furious
The Soloist
X-Men Origins: Wolverine
Star Trek
Angels & Demons
Terminator: Salvation
Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian
Up
The Hangover
Land of the Lost
Year One
Moon
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
Public Enemies
Bruno
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince
I Love You Beth Cooper
(500) Days of Summer
Funny People
Julie & Julia
G-Force
GI Joe: Rise of Cobra
District 9
Inglorious Basterds
Gamer
Taking Woodstock
Extract
The Informant!
9
Jennifer’s Body
Surrogates
Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs
Fame
Zombieland
Whip It
Paranormal Activity
The Invention of Lying
Toy Story Double Feature
Where the Wild Things Are
Law Abiding Citizen
Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant
Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day
The Box
The Men Who Stare At Goats
A Serious Man
2012
Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire
The Messenger
The Fantastic Mr Fox
The Twilight Saga: New Moon
Brothers
The Hurt Locker
The Blind Side
Everybody’s Fine
Up in the Air
The Princess and the Frog
Invictus

—–

\m/ shit that’s 82 times I went to the movies. Although Im slightly disappointed. I expected to break 100. Not complaining though. Still averages to more than once a week. And Im sure the Regal Fenway, which is where probably at least 50 of those occurred, isnt complaining either.

Before I most my top picks, gotta give the usual DISCLAIMER. Im actually gonna steal the same one I wrote last year. These are my personal favorites of the year. Not necessarily the best movies. Just the ones I enjoyed most or felt some special attachment to. I’ve said this many times before, but I can recognize a movie as bad and still enjoy it for its entertainment value. Likewise I can recognize a movie as good, and hate it. Without further ado

**drumroll please**

Dawn Dawn’s top 5 for 2009

1-Star Trek
2-Zombieland
3-(500) Days of Summer
4-The Hangover
5-(tie)-Inglorious Basterds
5-(tie)-Up in the Air

Honorable Mention: I Love You Man
Almost Honorable Mentions: Fanboys, District 9, The Messenger


Some comments on the above.
-Was back and forth between on which order to put 2 and 3. Ultimately I put Zombieland higher because that was far more of a Dawn movie.
-Was also a bit torn about The Hangover vs I Love You Man making it into the actual top five. Decided on The Hangover because that one surprised me in how awesome it was. While …Man was great, I expected no less from Paul Rudd and Jason Segal.
-Really wasnt sure which I prefered between Basterds and Up in the Air. I’d originally been a bit harsh on my judgement of Basterds, mostly because Tarantino has set the bar so high for himself. But thinking back on it later, yes that movie is brilliant. If its not as good as the ones I consider his top 3 (Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill) thats because those 3 are really \m/ good. On the other hand, I did love Up in the Air as well. Timely, quirky, fun, deep. Thats the contender with the possibility of winning that Im backing for the Oscars this year
-I was also a bit harsh on The Messenger when I first wrote it up. I dont even think I gave it a full 4 \m/ but I really should have. That was one damn good movie. I mostly wanted to include it so it gets a bit more very deserved attention.

And now, for good measure, the not so good ones.


Bottom 3
-I Love You Beth Cooper
-Year One
-Bruno

Dishonorable Mentions:
Observe and Report, Land of the Lost, A Serious Man

Comments
-I know someone’s gonna wanna come and choke a bitch for me including A Serious Man on the list. Dont hate. It just wasnt my style. Yes, I do think the Coen bro’s are movie gods, but this one wasnt for me
-I somehow still ended up impulse buying Land of the Lost on Black Friday, even though I know it was kinda bad

Yeah so movie-wise, 2009 was a pretty good year. Some highlights (cause I like bullet points)
-Actually blogged every last movie I saw in theaters
-Started a new, more hardcore blog
-Earned some street cred watching AFI movies, and will continue to do so until I finish the list
-Upgraded my entertainment center
-Reached 1000 items in the movie wall of doom
-Got a private screening of a movie. How cool is that?
-Watched a movie at Grauman’s Chinese Theater, also wicked cool
-Tied for second (only behind by one point) in the usual Oscar prediction game

I know I had more, but I can’t think of ’em right now. And bed time is rapidly approaching. Here’s hoping 2010 is even more epic!

\m/

It’s Complicated

“If you’d just told me the plot of It’s Complicated, I woulda told you there’s no way in hell Im seeing that. But throw my favorite actress, Meryl Streep, into the mix as well as all the good things* I’ve been hearing and Im there.
*good things include but are not limited to Golden Globe nominations and inclusion on EW’s 25 movies to see before the Oscars.

Turns out, it was oh so incredibly worth it. I was dying of laughter at various points throughout the film. Unfortunately, that was lessened a bit since the trailer gave away the hi-\m/-larious webcam scene. The audience reaction to that was amazing, and I really wish I coulda had that too.

But OMG Meryl. Not sure how into detail I’ve gone as to why she’s my favorite, so if this is all repetition, apologies. What started her climb up my list? 2008. In that one year, she had an amazing rich role and dramatic performance in Doubt, earning her yet another Oscar nod. But she also had a completely for fun role in Mama Mia. That juxtaposition of films is the type of thing I’ve always admired in actors. I love it when someone is so versatile and able to balance fun and prestige (is that the word Im looking for?) She’s done Sophie’s Choice and Lemony Snickett’s, The Deer Hunter and Fantastic Mr Fox. And then this year, she took what could have been mediocre roles for another actress and now has Golden Globe nods and legit Oscar buzz. And every syllable of the praise she has gotten has been very well deserved. She was just stunning in this movie. Who says you need to be a size zero twenty year old female to have the lead role in a rom-com? Her every expression & emotion was just flawless. Bestest part about Meryl in general? Despite being one of today’s most acclaimed actresses (13 Oscar nods in addition to her two wins) she’s so gracious and humble. She’s so sweet about receiving praise and you see her incredibly happy for her colleagues if they beat her for an award.

I’ll quit gushing about Meryl now. Kinda tough to transition to talking about the rest of the cast. Oh, but I must. I’ve adored Steve Martin since I was like 6. I can’t even begin to count how many times I watched Father of the Bride back then. We’re all always so used to seeing him as an over the top comedian, but he had such as sweet vulnerable side this time around that was so touching.

Alec Baldwin was a little much for me. Granted, Im not particularly familiar with him, but from what I hear that was pretty typical Alec. I’ll admit, my favorite Baldwin (besides Adam who isnt a true Baldwin, or at least not one of those Baldwins) would be Stephen Baldwin, but I’m open to reassessing that once I get to the 30 Rock DVD’s that have been sitting in my queue since Black Friday.

Also quite enjoyed John Krasinski’s performance. He’s another one that Im not too familiar with (wasnt interested enough in The Office when it started, and Im juggling waaaay to many shows now to jump in), but Im well on my way to becoming a fan. He had Ryan Reynolds like charm that was just so captivating (eh that word might be a tad strong). I also thought that his character, as one of the daughter’s fiancee, worked quite well. As an outside insider (or is it inside outsider) his perspective was a nice addition and allowed for some comedic bits that needed some strong relationship with the main characters, but wouldnt have worked with the kids.

The most pleasant surprise award this time around goes to Rita Wilson. Dont really see Mrs Tom Hanks (they’re one of my fave celeb couples, bee tee dubs) that often, and always makes me smile when I do. But what made me smile even more was the first few seconds of screen time Hunter Parrish got. I’d forgotten he was in this. Although, I gotta say his performance/presence felt kinda forced. His character was waaaay to nice for him. He works much better with some edge. Not quite as much as he had in 17 Again, cause that character was just an ass. But Im used to him in Weeds, which is such a better fit. Pretty boy with and edge is totally my type.

As previously mentioned, the movie was quite hilarious. And I actually did rather enjoy the storyline. It was unique yet familiar. Its the sort of thing I dont really have any personal experience with (I’ve never been married and/or divorced, and my parents are still married after 29 years) but from my limited perspective it felt like they included everything. In particular, I wouldnt have thought to include the impact on the children as a major part of the story, but I thought that grounded the whole thing. The one downside was that it felt like it was about to wrap up by the graduation party, and then there was still a whole other half hour. Took a little big to get its groove back then, but ultimately I was happy with how it all concluded.

It’s Complicated – \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/

Spartacus (AFI #81)

“Everytime I hear the name Spartacus, the next thing I hear in my head is “”Christian had a thing for Tony Curtis. So he brought over Some Like It Hot and Sporaticus””. Im sure ya’ll know what movie that is from. Minus 2 friend points if you dont. The next thing I hear in my head is Tom Everett Scott in That Thing You Do saying “”I am Spartacus””, which he says several times in that movie. Usually its the slow, deep voiced rendition when he’s on the phone with his gf. Couldnt find clips of either, but in my search I came across this. Totally unrelated, but it made me smile. 😀

The movie, on the other hand, didnt exactly make me smile unfortunately. I just had a hard time getting into it. Cant quite pinpoint precisely why that was. I was watching it online, which had two contributing factors against it. One is that when I have my laptop so close at hand, its hard for me to not be opening up other browser windows and surfing at the same time. I tend to get intimidated (thats not quite the right word, but the best I got right now) when Ive got a 3+ hour movie ahead of me, which puts me off to it and ups the probability of finding something else to do at the same time. The other being that the stream was a bit choppy. Sound was fine, but the visual seemed to be skipping pieces. I was this close to running over to Best Buy to buy it on DVD instead, but laziness and cheapitude won out.

I think another big hinderance for it was that it wasn’t quite what I was expecting. When they started with the whole gladiator school and storyline, I was thinking it would be along the lines of Ridley Scott/Russell Crowe’s Gladiator, which is one of my fave movies despite the fact that in every other movie besides that and 3:10 to Yuma I absolutely despise Crowe. But yeah when the storyline shifted from there, it really lost my focus, and never quite got it back.

Redeeming factor: Tony Curtis. Was really drawn to him in this film. He seemed to be the only one on screen that I ever really cared about. And no, I dont think the Clueless reference is responsible for that.

Yeah so as much as it pains me to speak ill of such an acclaimed movie, kinda glad I found it for free instead of paying 16 bucks for the DVD cause Im not exactly interested in seeing it again any time soon.”

Avatar

“EW just published its list of 25 movies you need to see before the Oscars. I’ve already seen 17 of them before it was published, which I think is even better than last year after intentionally going out to see ones on the list. The 17 are (and lets see if I can do this from memory cause I dont feel like getting up and checking it): Up in The Air, Avatar, The Hurt Locker, Precious, Up, Fantastic Mr Fox, (500) Days of Summer, A Serious Man, The Messenger, Inglorious Basterds, Nine, The Blind Side, Invictus…d’oh I gotta get up and check it…Julie & Julia, Star Trek, District 9, The Informant! Beyond that, I already had plans for 3 more this week. Hoping to get to Its Complicated either tomorrow or day after. Depending on how this week goes I’ll either catch A Single Man on Thur at Coolidge Corner or I’ll double feature it on Sat at the Kendall with An Education (which I plan to see on Sat either way). That’ll bring the total to 20. Then Crazy Heart and The Lovely Bones go wide next week, so I’ll swing ’em at that point. That will just leave The Young Victoria, The Last Station, and Bright Star. I’ll prolly wait until nods are actually out before deciding if I really feel like putting in the effort for those.

Okay, so technically I’d only seen 16 of them before reading the list, cause number 17 came today–Avatar. I know, for me thats a long time since release date for me to catch such a major flick. Plans to watch it earlier were all thwarted by life and other outside factors. Anyways, the Regal Fenway had been jam packed the past two days, with Avatar selling out, so I figured I’d go to the earliest showing possible 3D or not. That plan worked out quite well. Caught the 11:45 which did feature a third dimension.

PS – Kinda had this song stuck in my head the whole time. Only slightly related

Initial reaction, wow. No it wasn’t the best movie ever or anything like that, but as far as groundbreaking film-making technology wise, dayum. And the plot was pretty decent too.

But for reals, the CGI and special effects were killer. I was particularly fond of the night time scenes with all the glowy plants. I wasn’t too sure how I felt about 3 hours of 3-D, but I actually do think it was worth it. Normally I complain when the extra dimension only equals extra depth (as opposed to things jumping at you, which is what I like) but it was such a great touch. It made their world so much more massive, almost felt like being at the IMAX without really being there. I can’t even fathom what it must be like in 3D at the IMAX.

Im generally not someone to be so readily accepting of a new alien culture, especially not such a “”tree-hugging”” one as the Na’vi. But I was drawn to them for some reason. Just absolutely loved them. I find it kinda strange that toward the end of the film, you’re cheering AGAINST the humans in the story. We become the bad guys. Deep. Whoa.

Did like the cast. And before you question how possible it is to give acting merit to a CGI being, I’ve got one word for you: Gollum. Sam Worthington is kind of a poor man’s Ewan McGregor (their American accents sound the same). Is it weird that I found him hotter as a Na’vi? Between this and Terminator: Salvation, he’s really starting to prove his worth as an action star, and he’s doing a fine job of it. Was pleasantly surprised to see Giovanni Ribisi. Hadn’t really seen much of him in a while. Was equally surprised but less pleasantly to find Michelle Rodriguez in this one. Never really cared for her, but this may be her first few steps toward redemption in my book.

Wasn’t anything too special about the story, but it was good and simple. Really, I think this movie was more of a showcase for the technology and the environment than anything else. And the characters were good, which keep me interested. Was a bit lengthy, clocking in at 3 hours if you count all the previews. But when you realize how \m/ long James Cameron spent on this one, I think he’s entitled to a little bit of excess running time.

Avatar – \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/

Sherlock Holmes

“Today’s theater movie was Sherlock Holmes, or How Guy Ritchie Got His Groove Back.

When I first heard that Robert Downey Jr was gonna be playing Sherlock Holmes on screen, I was happily intrigued. When I first saw the trailer, I squealed with delight. When I heard (and Im still not sure how I found this out so late) that Guy Ritchie was directing, I jumped in the air and screamed excitedly. Im a big Guy Ritchie fan. Snatch is my sixth all time favorite movie, and I of course love Lock Stock… as well. We all know that Swept Away nearly killed his career (no I haven’t seen it). Revolver wasn’t that great. Rocknrolla was a step in the right direction, but still not up to his caliber. But finally, with Sherlock Holmes, he is on his way back to the top.

Now it seems that lately there’s always two things (different ones each time) that hinder my movie experience. This time it was that I was really hungry during the second half, and also the screen was _really_ dark. Too dark to have been a directorial choice, and also I think it was a bit dark during the previews (which were kinda awesome, btw). So didnt enjoy it as much as I otherwise would have, but I still think it was quite good.

There was so much that I thought really rocked about it. There was the really quickly cut shots (a Ritchie signature) used for reveals. And the whole mystical element mixed in with the mystery. The fight scenes were great, especially when Holmes would spell out his moves in slo-mo then kick some ass.

What really got me going, though, was the Holmes/Watson relationship. Why? Because Im a huge fan of House. I’d heard that House and Wilson’s bromance was based on Holmes and Watson (get it? Holmes –> House), but that was kinda always just something I knew, but didnt fully grasp. But seeing them bicker, with Holmes meddling and Watson always coming back, I so totally \m/ get it now.

And yes, Robert Downey Jr was amazing beyond all reason. So smart and charming and tough and oh yeah, sexy like whoa. Never previously understood the fascination with Jude Law, but that’s something else I now get–also charming and sweet and clever. Always adore Rachel McAdams, and she was quite stunning as per usual.

Um, yeah, so Sherlock Holmes = WIN!

Sherlock Holmes – \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/

Do the Right Thing (AFI #96)

“Had enough time to get one of these in before heading to the theater this afternoon. As my Twitter status suggested, I went after the largest unwatched gap in the list. Now (except for the top ten) the biggest gap is 3 unwatched movies. Im thinking I’ll keep going at random until I acquire them all, then go in order with what’s left. That’s still a ways off though.

Anyways, Do the Right Thing. I’ll start off by saying that my nitpicks are just due to personal preference. The two things it had going against it for me: 1-not much of a continuous story, and we all know I like narrative. B-Im not exactly the target demo for this. So for those two reasons, it did loose me a bit here and there, which means that the amount to which I enjoyed it is less than what it should’ve been given the quality of the movie. Make sense?

There were some characters that I did like, the first one being Spike Lee’s character Mookie. Definitely the best choice to sorta lead the movie. Good balance between sweet and tough, and very sympathetic. Also loved Da Mayor played by Ossie Davis. Just love the irony how the voice of reason in many scenes was the drunk guy. Martin Lawrence also gets points for his debut performance. And John Turturro always kicks ass.

While this may not have been exactly my thing, I do completely get the point of the movie. The MLK quote at the end pretty much sums it up. And the climax of the movie was definitely intense. In particular, staying cryptic here to avoid spoilers, loved the way that Smiley concluded the scene.

One last thing I found noteworthy was how epic sounding the score was. Kind of an interesting choice, but it actually worked quite well. With such loud costumes and scenery, it makes sense I guess that the music match.”

M*A*S*H (AFI #54)

“What’s with me just not getting movies lately? Seriously? Here’s another one. #54 on the list M*A*S*H Between me not understanding the humor and there not being much plot, I was just disinterested. It also just felt very awkard, and Im not sure why.

One thing that kept throwing me off was Donald Sutherland. I’d only previously seen him in The Italian Job. Seeing him here 30 years earlier, and having just spent the past week watching season 7 of 24, oh my God I never realized how much his son Kiefer looks just like him. For a moment there, I thought I’d turned on The Lost Boys instead.

Other than that, I had little sympathy for the characters. The “”Hot Lips”” storyline was okay, but most of the rest was lost on me. The one thing I did find quite funny was the final PA announcement. Everything else, just wasnt for me, I guess.”

Nine

“I hadn’t expected to go so long without a post. I’d decided against squeezing in an AFI before leaving for Texas cause I didnt want it to feel too rushed. Then I didnt really have sufficient time while I was there to get one in or run to the theater. Opted to spend my free time watching Bones and Big Bang Theory. Then work murdered me this week, and the need to pass out trumped the desire to watch movies I’d hafta pay attention to. So here we are.

First post of 2010. I’ll work on my 2009 movie wrap up sometime this weekend.

Before I get started on Nine, I had one comment I wanted to throw in about the previous entry, Cabaret. I was talking to a friend of mine at a Christmakwanzikahsolstice holiday party and Cabaret came up in conversation. (Someone asked if anyone there was Jewish, and when no one replied, I mentioned I’d seen Cabaret that day and asked if that counted). He told me that the storyline(s) in the movie was(were) purposely different from the stage version. Its based on a book called Berlin Stories which is a collection of short stories about living in Berlin in 1931. According to my buddy, they purposely decided to use different stories for the movie than they did for the play. So I guess I halfway take back my previous complaint about the story differences.

With that, we’ll transition into another musical–Nine. First impression, very unimpressed. I very much love musicals and musical theater. I figured between the Academy Award superstars in the cast and the high production value that this was gonna be great. Instead I sadly found it rather boring.

I couldnt quite grasp what was going on. Yes I gathered that Guido was gonna be filming a movie in a few days and hadnt even written a script yet. But I couldnt follow exactly how all the other events (and women) fit into that flow. Also, the musical numbers seemed too forced. With Chicago, director Rob Marshall’s previous musical, the dream sequence-y songs fit right in. I think that was from how the character would appear to start bursting into song and likewise come out of that state at the end. The transitions were too choppy in Nine. And the whole dream sequence flashback with a dream sequence dance in between that happened a few times was just weird. Im sure the stage version must have worked much much better, and I would be interested to see it someday. Another nitpick, yes I know that musical numbers almost always have to be lip synched. Im okay with that. However, Im not okay with them putting in no effort to hide that fact. Not sure if it was the sound balance, the staging, or the acting, but I was rarely able to “”believe”” they were really singing.

There were a few musical numbers I really did like, as stand alone scenes. I loved the dancing in “”Be Italian”” (Im guessing at song titles). The sand and the tambourines looked so great. Going into it, I did not expect Fergie’s number to have been my favorite. I also enjoyed Kate Hudson’s number, even if she wasnt quite the best singer. Although I didnt find her as nails-on-chalkboard-ish as my more musically inclined friends had warned me she’d be. But while those were my favorite numbers, their characters were the ones that felt most out of place to me. I really did not understand how they really fit into the rest of the story.

The all star cast was pretty good, I’ll give it that. Lets just go down the list of who’s left, shall we?
-Daniel Day-Lewis is a really great actor (LOVED him in There Will Be Blood, and was quite happy about that Oscar win) even if I didnt really like Guido’s character that much.
-Marion Cotillard is so cute (Im thinking about her presenting at last year’s Oscars), but this time she was vulnerable with a tough side. Her attitude and bombshell-ness in her second song caught me completely off guard and it was fan-\m/-tastic. Im just intrigued by the way her career has gone. If you think of most of the recent Academy Award winners, their careers have kinda built as they got more well know, then they won their award as kind of a nice pretty bow on top of all their acheivements. (Im looking at you Kate Winslet, prime example). Marion Cotillard, on the other hand, was this little nobody of an actress who managed an Academy Award nod, then a surprising win. And now she’s building her career off that win. Totally backwards, but it works, and I’ve been happy to see her.
-Penelope Cruz has been moving her way up my list of fave actresses. Its a rare combination to have such a sultry character who just oozes sex but also has a depth behind that. You usually only get one or the other, but Cruz pulled it off beautifully.
-Didnt care much for Nicole Kidman. She didnt really do a lot, and her accent was just strange.
-Judi Dench’s character was prolly my favorite, even if I didnt care much for her song. I have a tendancy to gravitate towards the most grounded character when the rest of them are a bit off the wall.

Yeeeeah, so overall bit of a disappointment. I’ll still end up buying the DVD, but you’re prolly just best off You-Tubing the main numbers

Nine – \m/ \m/

Cabaret (AFI #63)

“One of the movies on the AFI list I was most excited to watch. I was in a production of Cabaret two and a half years ago (I was a Kit Kat Girl, Texas specifically) and at the request of the director we were expressly forbiddento watch the movie, and I never got around to it later. Seeing it now, I totally understand and agree with our director. Its so different.

The Cabaret numbers are mostly the same, but all of the other songs were taken out, or at best played as instrumental background music. The only song I was really sad about being left out was “”Dont Tell Mama””, not that I dont like “”Mein Herr”” but at least if I woulda gotten …Mama stuck in my head, I’d have known more than two words of the song. And the story got changed around so much. They did keep the big important emotional storyline (sssh spoiler…rhymes with smishmorshion) but other than that, it was virtually unrecognizable. Hell, Sally and Cliff, er Brian’s, nationalities were switched. Was particularly sad that we didnt have the Shultz/Schneider storyline although that was replaced by Fritz/Natalia. I couldnt really hear the dialogue, and the big disadvantage of the whole Amazon on demand thing is the lack of subtitles, so I really have not idea what was going on with that whole Maximillian storyline.

Was excited to see Joel Grey in this infamous role of his. Up ’til now, the only time I’d ever seen him was as Phil, the leader of the sexaholics anonymous meeting, in Choke. (Awesome movie which you should check out by the way. Couldnt find a video clip of his main scene, but its hi-\m/-larious) And I didnt even know that was him til I saw him present at the Oscars last year. Michael York caught me offguard. I knew the name was familiar and when I first saw him, I nearly yelled out “”Basil Expedition!”” (Austin Powers). I also know him as the antichrist character in The Omega Code, which was a pretty awful movie. It was trying to be Left Behind, but failed miserably. I digress.

And Liza, OMG, Liza. My goal in life is to be Liza Minnelli. If I can’t be her, then I’ll settle for Tina Fey, but really I wanna be Liza. She was so bright-eyed and bubbly, and I totally ge the fascination with her. Was sad that she didnt have as big of a breakdown during her last big number as I would have expected, but she was still fantastic in the role. Oscar trivia – her win for Cabaret makes her the only child of two Oscar winners to win one themselves. She’s also like the seventh person ever to win an Oscar, Tony, and Emmy.

Anyhoo, leaving for Texas tomorrow, provided that I dont get snowed in like last year. Hoping to get another AFI flick in before I go (late afternoon flight), and then we’ll see if I can swing any while Im there. Ill mostly be watching 24 with my Daddy.”