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Thursday, February 26, 2009

What gives with the remakes?

When it comes to remakes, the Angry Nintendo Nerd says it best: "What a load of fuck." 
But America thinks the exact opposite. I can't begin to name all of the unnecessary remakes that are happening, so I'll pick five movies that are most likely going to boom into theatres, stealing everyone's money and proving why America is dumber than a pile of diarrhea dump. 

1. The Taking of Pelham 123 
This Tony Scott-directed remake of the Walter Matthau classic stars Denzel Washington and John Travolta. Judging by the preview, there are no differences between this film and its predecessor. Except for the fact that Travolta will ask for a couple billion instead of a few million. And then there's Tony Scott's direction—it makes me want to puke. His editor has the attention span of a gnat on meth. This guy hasn't made a good movie since ever. 

2. Arthur
Granted, I've never seen the original Dudley Moore romp, but anything that replaces the always funny Moore with the obnoxious Russell Brand is unnecessary in my book. Why don't we just write an original script for Moore? Are the guys who wrote My Best Friend's Girl busy? 

3. Robin Hood
You may know this one as Nottingham. The Ridley Scott-directed period tale starring Russell Crowe as the Sheriff of Nottingham and Robin Hood. Interesting? Yes, but still how many Robin Hood movies must a man sit through? No actor will ever top Alan Rickman as the Sheriff. 
And I don't get why Crowe and Washington consistently do films with the Scotts. Why do they feel indebted to these guys? The only thing the Scotts do is consistently show their best films were flukes. 

4. Total Recall 
Ain't It Cool News just reported this one today. Prediction: this adaptation will star Vin Diesel and Michelle Rodriguez, and will be directed by Rob Cohen of XXX fame. Paul Walker will make a guest appearance, and John Leguizamo will be the villain who likes to eat rats from the toilet. 
Laugh now, but it will happen. 

5. Clue
Great! A remake of a film based on a board game which will probably be directed by Gore Verbinski of Mouse Hunt fame. 
What's that the crowds say? "But he directed Pirates of the Carribean!"
To which I respond, "You're right. That movie was based on a ride. And if you can tell me what happens in the third one, I'll give you $5."

Until then, I stand, grimacing at the very thought of these films being released. What a load of fuck indeed.  

Friday, February 20, 2009

Cody's 2008 Oscar Predictions

These are my 2008 Oscar picks. This is what I think will win, not what I want to win.I will give my opinion on my favorites of the year.

Best Picture-Slumdog Millionaire. I haven't seen The Reader yet, but I have seen everything else. It's a shame because Slumdog is a average film and the worse of the nominations. IGNORED: Doubt, The Wrestler, Wall-E, and Revolutionary Road are far superior films than anything nominated.

Best Actor-Mickey Rourke. I think Sean Penn has a chance, but the Academy likes comebacks more than gays. I haven't seen the Visitor, but Mick gives the best performance of the nominated and of the year. IGNORED: The Academy hates Leo for some reason, and his performance in Revolutionary Road is his best since The Aviator. Josh Brolin was also great in W.

Best Actress- Meryl Streep. The only two films I have seen in this category were Doubt and Rachel Getting Married. Hathaway does a great job, but Streep gives one of the best performances of her career. Streep makes Doubt a great movie and hopefully she will win. IGNORED: Kate Winslet got nominated for the wrong film. Her performance in Revolutionary Road was the only performance this year that rivaled Streeps.

Best Supporting Actor- Heath Ledger. Every year this is the best catagory, and this year is no different. I loved every performance, but thought Hoffman, Shannon and Ledger were all equally great in their own way. When he died a year ago I said Ledger would win before seeing the film. I saw the film and he did a great job. IGNORED: Comedy is hard and I would like to have seen Adam Scott get a nomination for Step Brothers or Clooney for Burn After Reading.

Best Supporting Actress- Viola Davis. Everyone did a good job in this catagory, but Viola, Tomei, and Amy Adams were the stand outs for the nominations. I will be happy if any of these ladies would win. IGNORED: One of the best performances of the year was Rosemarie DeWitt in Rachel Getting Married. She is amazing and got hosed!

Best Director- Danny Boyle. This is probably the weakest catagory of the year. The only one who deserves the award that was nominated is Gus Van Sant for Milk. The Academy is a year too late for Fincher. IGNORED: Pick one: Aronofsky for The Wrestler, John Patrick Shanley for Doubt, Sam Mendes for Rev.Road, Coens for Burn, McKay for Step Brothers, Andrew Stanton for Wall-E, Nolan for Dark Knight, Demme for Rachel Getting Married, and hell even Favreau for Iron Man. These are better than what was nominated.

Original Screenplay- Milk. This movie has to win something. I prefer Wall-E and will be happy if it does win. Milk and Wall-E are the only films nominated that I have seen and Wall-E is one of the best screenplays of the year. IGNORED:The comedies again Step Brothers, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, etc and the Wrestler.

Adapted Screenplay-Slumdog Millionaire. I really hope Doubt wins this catagory because it is the best screenplay of the year. IGNORED: Revolutionary Road is probably the 2nd best script of the year. It is a shame how this film got shut out.

Best Cinematography- The Reader. This is the second weakest catagory of the year. I haven't seen The Reader, but it's Deakins and it's WWII and you know it looks good. I haven't seen The Changeling, but The Dark Knight is my second pick in this weak crop of films. IGNORED: Dean Semler for Appaloosa, Harris Savides for Milk, Colin Watkinson for The Fall and Roger Deakins for Doubt and Revolutionary Road. Deakins is the best Cinematographer in films right now. He had 2 films nominated last year and lost and got ignored twice this year and still has a film up for nomination.

Editing- Slumdog Millionaire. Usually, but not always, whatever wins editing wins Best Picture. I am pulling for The Dark Knight, but I think Milk deserves it also. IGNORED: Same stuff I've been saying Revolutionary Road,Doubt, The Wrestler, etc. I also think Man On Wire and Harvard Beats Yale 29-29 needed to be in there.

Art Direction- Revolutionary Road. Sadly this may be the only award this film will win. The Duchess may also win because it takes place in the times of powdered wigs. IGNORED: Appaloosa, Doubt, Milk and mostly The Fall.

Costumes- The Duchess. Same as above. Powdered Wigs and Ball Dresses always win.

Make-Up- Benjamin Button. Easy, nothing else came close this year.

Original Score-Wall-E. Slumdog and Ben Button have a good chance too. IGNORED: The Dark Knight, the best score of the year.

Best Song-Jai-Ho. The end dance scene in Slumdog is one of the best parts of the film. It's the only time the audience is allowed to be happy. IGNORED: Boats and Ho's and Sweet Child Of Mine both from Step Brothers. I also loved Little Person by Jon Brion and Deanna Story from Synecdoche, New York.

Sound- Wall-E. Wall-E is almost a silent film so sound carries the movie. Dark Knight has a chance, but it will just plain be wrong if Wall-E loses. Nothing sound wise can touch this film this year.

Sound Editing- Wall-E. Same as above. All Hail Ben Burtt!

Visual Effects- Benjamin Button. This film is ground breaking, everything else this year is in Ben Button's shadow. Not once does the aging process look ridicules. The Visual Effects is the sole reason Brad Pitt was nominated for best actor, because his appearance is the only thing that changed during the entire movie.

Animated Film- Wall-E. I haven't seen Panda or Bolt, but they weren't nominated for best screenplay so this one is in the bag.

Foreign Film- Waltz With Bashir. I haven't seen any of these nominated films. I have heard good things about Bashir and nothing about the others.

Documentary Film- Man On Wire. Man On Wire is a amazing film and I hope it wins. I haven't seen the other nominated films, but look out for Trouble The Water. It's about Katrina and may get a few votes. IGNORED: Harvard Beats Yale 29-29, best Doc. of the year.

Documentary Short Film- The Witness From The Balcony Of Room 306. Haven't seen any of these, and Room 306 is about the assassination of MLK. Winner. IGNORED: Renke Slate

Short Film Animated- Presto. Why not. This Way up is my 2nd choice.

Short Live Action- Speilzeugland. One word:Nazi's. Nuff said. IGNORED: Straight and Narrow

Thats it. If you got this far then I am proud of you and thank you for your patience.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


I don't know much about this year's Academy Award nominees for most of the categories. I will be the first to admit that I haven't even seen Frost/Nixon or The Reader and I really have no interest in them. What's the point? 2008 is over and all I've got to show for it is a list of favorites that weren't even in the movie theaters for more than a weekend (except for New York and LA). As far as the nominees themselves, the only group that really bothers me is the acting. There are some choices that are utterly mind boggling compared to some of the other performances that I have seen this year. Like I said, I haven't seen everything, but I've seen enough.
Take the Best Actor category for instance. I have no problem with Sean Penn or Mickey Rourke. Sean Penn is brilliant as Harvey Milk and Rourke puts on a tour de force in The Wrestler which is deserved of this award. I understand and appreciate putting up Richard Jenkins for the award because of all his service rendered as a talented character actor who finally got his chance. The thing that gets me in his case is that he deserves better than a straight laced white guy who learns how to play a drum from some whacky foreigners as his best actor moment. And I like Brad Pitt a lot as an actor and even respect what he has done over the past years lending his name to some films that would have never even been made unless he was involved. But this isn't a popularity contest and they shouldn't throw him a nomination just because he's a cool guy. You're the Oscars for God's sake! If we're gonna do it this way, throw every guy's name into the hat and we'll text in our vote. The Best Actor then assuredly going to Zac Efron for his performance in High School Movie 3. 
Then there is the Best Actress category. Again, I have no problem with some of them. I think Ann Hathaway was superb in Rachel Getting Married and Meryl Streep should win hands down for her mesmerizing performance in Doubt (Believe me, I went to Catholic school for eighteen years of my life and watching her in that film gave me goosebumps.). Going into Frozen River, I was excited to see a harsh, gritty performance by one of my favorite actresses since her days on Homicide: Life on the Street. Then I watched the film. Props to Leo for her acting, but if this is a student film at best. Again, if you are going to give this long shot a chance, give a little more to chew on than human smuggling (oh, cutting edge and so controversial) and a movie that could have been totally resolved by her son getting a job.
All I'm saying is that if you are going to call yourself the Academy Awards and hold yourself in higher esteem than all other awards shows, don't lower the bar with your heart string nominations and popularity contest standards.  The biggest shame of this past year was the films such as Revolutionary Road and Snow Angels that didn't even see the light of day let alone garner as much attention as they should have. If you want to change the whole thing into the Red Carpet Film Festival where every man, woman, and child can enter whatever bat-hitting-crotch moment they recorded with their I-phone in hopes of winning that cash prize, be my guest. My advice is to go against the grain of modern everyone is a winner mentality, put on a tuxedo, give awards to films based upon their merit and evidence that they will stand the test of time along with the classics, and start acting like the fucking Oscars.  

Monday, February 16, 2009

DVD Review: Appaloosa

One actor saves this film and another one ruins it. The savior of this movie is the greatness of Viggo Mortensen. He looks the part and his character has the most appeal. The anchor that sinks this movie is the always annoying Renee Zellweger. She sticks out like a sore thumb and her botoxed face and modern dialogue just do not fit into a story that takes place in the 1880's. I even began getting irritated by Ed Harris's character because of the way he acted in her presence and pondered why he was even attracted to her. I liked Viggo and Harris as a team,but too bad they thought they had to throw her into this film. Jeremy Irons is wasted and the film is more of a love story than a western. I like the overall story, but the film suffers from a bad script. The dialogue is too modern and the story at times is not plausible and this only occurs with the love story,which is 70% of the film. I wish they would have just stuck with two lawmen dealing with a corrupt cattle barren. I know that story is tired, but with Viggo, Harris and Irons it would at least be entertaining. Lose the Love Story and add a scene of Zellweger getting stampeded in the first 5 minutes and you have a picture. The cinematography by Dean Semler is gorgeous and one of the best looking films of 2008. The gunfight scenes are top notch and realistic. Between Zellweger and bad dialogue Appaloosa was a disappointment. 3 out of 5 stars

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Films Showed On Airlines Make Me Want to Puke!

I know Airlines have to show Family Films and try not
to offend anyone, especially prude mothers who live to complain about how everything corrupts their children. To me really stupid films are just as offensive as cussing and nudity. After spending a whole day in the airport yesterday all I wanted was to sit back and watch anything that is somewhat interesting. We take off and the stewardess tells us we have to watch Beverly Hills Chihuahua. I wanted to puke and was really pissed this is what we had to watch. I will watch almost anything when I am working or on a plane, but I do have standards. It seems the last few times I have been on a plane the airline shows a film of this quality and I will read over watching this crap. I can't sleep on a airplane, but the one time I have in the last 15 years was because Fun With Dick and Jane came on and it was lights out for me. Coach Carter, Glory Road, and A Night At The Museum are films I wouldn't regularly watch,but will and have on a plane. When A film like Broken Bridges and Code Name: The Cleaner are shown it just heightens my frustration that comes with plane travel. I will just about watch anything and it really means something when I choose a book over a TV. I have had some good experiences when traveling from Europe, but 85% of the time it is total shit! I am afraid I see Bride Wars and Inkheart in my future.