11.06.2007

Old Movies are New to Me

Thanks to the mystical powers of computahs and the internets I’ve been able to stave off complete movie deprivation by viewing compressed video files over the past few weeks. If the government asks, they’re all backups to my $30,000 movie collection.

Smokin’ Aces
Big name performers collide in this stylish action movie that never quite achieves the kinetic frenzy it so desperately strives for. Jeremy Piven struts and hollers in his usual arrogant jerk persona but without any true humility it’s hard to sympathize with his character. Everyone from Ben Affleck, to Ryan Reynolds, to Alicia Keyes, to Andy Garcia wants Piven dead or locked up in jail. The plot is laughable but still kind of cool.

My Rating: 5/10

Chinatown
Back in 1974, Jack Nicholson was slim, handsome, and perfectly cast as a 1930s hard-nosed private eye caught up in an L.A. water supply conspiracy. Part crime procedural and part drama, this is one of those movies constantly referred to as film noir done right. Chinatown isn’t fast paced but Roman Polanski’s infamous directorial methods have produced a beautiful, dark gem of a movie.

My Rating: 9/10

Big Trouble in Little China
Compared to Chinatown, Big Trouble is on the opposite end of the genre spectrum. Pure 80s cheese reigns supreme in this campy, campy, action/comedy film. The acting seems almost purposefully bad, but that adds to the charm of the zany adventures of a truck driver’s (Kurt Russell) attempts to save young women from the black-magic wielding ghost that rules San Francisco’s Chinatown.

My Rating: 5/10

Black Hawk Down
Military anarchy and heroism take center stage amidst the U.S.’s contested involvement in Somalia in 1993. A planned military mission goes horribly awry and leaves over a hundred American soldiers in heated firefights. Young children should not watch Black Hawk Down but I heartily recommend this movie for adults. The violence can be extreme but however you interpret Ridley Scott’s message, his film is not one you will soon forget.

My Rating: 8/10

Munich
Controversial for its portrayal of the vicious feud between Israelis and Palestinians following the murder of eleven Israeli athletes at the hands of a Palestinian terrorist group during the 1972 Olympic Games. Munich delves beyond the Mossad’s spy games to show an agent’s (Eric Bana) – and by extension a nation’s – loss of innocence. The pacing may have been slightly off on this film, as it occasionally meanders, but on the whole it has the excellent composition and verve you expect from a Steven Spielberg production.

My Rating: 8/10

11 comments:

Sarah said...

Big Trouble in Little China - the kind of movie you watch when you are stuck on the couch for 2 days because of your pulled wisdom teeth, food poisoning, etc. Fabulously bad! Love me some cheesy Kurt Russell!

april said...

I've seen all of them, except Big Trouble in Little China, and your reviews of them are pretty much spot on with what I thought of them.

Matt said...

sarah - Did you know he filmed Overboard after Big Trouble? Kurt Russell is a hit machine!

april - Sounds like we both have good taste!

Martha Elaine Belden said...

1st... thanks for your comment on my blog!!

2nd... i LOVED munich

3rd... hi!

Farmacy said...

Big Trouble in Little China is a masterpiece of cinema.

Seeing someone give it a 5/10 angered me greatly.

Any movie that inspired Mortal Kombat characters deserves to get an extra 100 points.

I haven't seen the movie in about 15 years, but it is still fresh in my mind.

J.D. said...

Munich = greatness.

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upcoming movies said...

Thanks for sharing the list of movies. I love watching movies. I watched most of the movies shared by you. Will surely go for the rest of movies soon.