September roundup

My personal laptop is in the shop for the next 3-5 weeks. Among the things I forgot I would lose access to was my spreadsheet of watched movies. If I really wanted to, I could dig it outta the backup I took of my drive, but let’s be real. I’m too lazy. So instead of going in some semblance of order, here’s a few of what I remember I did see since we last spoke. And by remember, I mean scrolling thru my A-List history and Google calendar for anything before this past week.

School of Rock – Watched this at Alamo this week, and the smile on my face was the biggest I’ve had in a very long time. I only wish it was a rowdy screening so I could have sung along. Hadn’t seen the movie in a while, but the stage show was still very fresh in my brain, and it tracked so much better than I remembered. Also, was struck by Dewey’s sincerity in dealing with the kids. Sure, his underlying actions were selfish, but these kids felt comfortable enough with him to bring their problems, and when they did, he listened wholeheartedly and gave sound guidance. Mad respect.

The Room – FINALLY! Screenings of The Room returned with a vengeance this past weekend, selling out multiple shows with Tommy in attendance. I’d been dying to return. Admittedly, the crowd was a little rusty with their callbacks. It took a while for them to get going, and some of them needed my buddy and I to start them up. Still, the most fun theater experience ever.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings – First repeat movie of the year (I think), although a big reason was because I got a huge migraine halfway thru the first watch that made it hard to focus (mentally and visually). But I loved it so much. Simultaneously felt very connected to the MCU and very much like its own fresh new thing. And some of the best fight sequences in the whole franchise (hooray for beautifully choregraphed martial arts). That bus battle is going down in history.

Malignant – I wasn’t sold that I wanted to see this, but many horror fans that I trust were talking it up. The trailer made it look like lazy jump scare stuff, which it most certainly was not. Mostly I went because I trust James Wan, and he did not betray me. I dug the vibe, but mostly, yes I loved the final act. No spoilers, but I will say that even though I figured it out a little too soon due to a certain clue that I’ve seen used before, it was so bonkers I didn’t care. Sure the “why” may be a little dumb, but you can’t beat the execution. Pun kinda intended.

The Card Counter – I don’t understand what Paul Schrader was trying to say with this film, or why I should care. And for most of it, I didn’t. There was a point maybe 2/3 in where I did start to get into it and feel invested in the story, and then it was gone. Beautifully shot and put together, but lacking on the story front for me.

Copshop – I had a free evening, and this looked up my alley. Gave me a “Nobody” vibe, and we know how much I loved that one. Copshop was a “me” movie, but not on the level I’d hoped. While I’m normally a stickler for plot, this is the type of movie where you want to minimize the story and increase the insanity. I felt like the set up went on too long, and once we got to the full on shoot ’em up, I wanted more. I wanted bigger.

The Eyes of Tammy Faye – I am very interested in stories like this, about corruption within religious organizations. Let’s just say I have personal reasons that I could make a whole series of posts about. So I was very much glued to this story, and Jessica Chastain’s epic performance, even if some elements of it were a little triggering for me.

Dear Evan Hansen – Speaking of triggering, oh boy was this hard for me to watch. Look, I know there’s all sorts of opinions and controversies around the film between the casting and its handling of the subject matter. For me, this just hit very close to home. The way that Ben Platt exhibited his social anxiety made a knot form in my chest that did not let up, esp when you add in the sucidal ideation as a result of various high school pressures. Oh and add in the overachieving side character who used her perceived perfection to cover up her struggles, yeah very real. I still don’t know if I can say I liked it. I can just say that I felt it, and for better or worse, isn’t that ultimately the goal?