Friday, June 22, 2012

Prometheus - Gave me an Alien RessurErectio...nvm

So around the beginning of May my family and I packed up and moved from our home of over 20 years and settled down about an hour away. Things haven’t been easy but I am finally settling in to being in a new place. The town isn’t horrible (doesn’t feel like home though) but it does get lonely when you’re an hour and a half drive to your friends.

                As an attempt to keep my sanity in strange new surroundings I have made almost weekly trips alone to the movie theatre. Okay I know it sounds really sad, but it’s has actually been amazing. It’s a really different feeling when you know you don’t have to wait for people, line up with friends so that they can get snacks, worry about annoying your girlfriend what you have to piss, or having to converse about what you did and didn’t like. So far I’ve seen The Avengers, MIB 3 and most recently Prometheus; and I’m sure I’ll be seeing many more this summer.

                When I first saw trailers hit the internet for Ridley Scott’s Prometheus I started to get super excited, especially when I heard the story was occurring in the same universe as Scott’s Alien films! Since I was a child I have equally loved and been afraid of the Alien series, with its dark, hopeless atmosphere. I think when I was around 10 I even drew comics and wrote my own Alien stories. So last week I finally picked my ass up from behind my monitor and drove to the local Cineplex.

Left to right: Charlie Halloway, Elizabeth Shaw, and the android David
     Right off the bat I must say I was thrown off but the interesting direction they took the story in, and how the Alien storyline is interwoven. The film starts with two scientists discovering a final piece of a puzzle that seems to point out Aliens visiting different cultures in ancient times and all pointing towards a certain destination. The two paleontologists, Elizabeth Shaw ( Noomi Raprace ) and Charlie Halloway (Logan Marshall-Green) they pitch their discovery and are funded by an infinitely rich, dying old, Peter Weyland (Guy Pearce). Weyland pays for a space ship to take them in stasis sleep to a moon mapped out by corresponding relics on earth. The ship is operated by Mission Director Meredith Vickers (Charlize Theron) who assisted by the lifelike android David (Michael Fassbender) as well as a group of contracted engineers and scientists.
               Eager to meet the aliens that they believe hold the secret to life on Earth, the crew finally lands the moon many millions of miles away and lands on its surface. Immediately they find large relics from an obviously intelligent civilization, and what started as a hope filled journey becomes a nightmare they could have never imagined. The film takes am extremely dark turn when they begin exploring the alien relics and discover dead bodies in the ship. Suddenly the whole operation is in danger as secret motives are revealed and the great mystery unravels in a unprecedented hopeless way.    

As with many of Ridley Scott’s films the special effect and costume work are very well done. They did a fantastic job of showing off a realistic jump forward in technology (Prometheus takes place in the year 2093) that doesn’t leave you thinking “pfft yeah right buddy!” The makeup and costume work was unprecedented notably on the alien “Engineers” and on the amazing transformation of Guy Pearce to the 93 year old Peter Weyland.

                The one major problem I had with Prometheus was mainly in the choice of actors. While much of the cast, especially Charlize Theron and Michael Fassbender put on great rolls I often found myself off put and annoyed with Rapace and Marshall-Green’s performance. Through several parts from start to finish their acting comes of unfulfilling, dry and unrealistic.

                Despite its short-comings (which it has very few) Prometheus was a fantastic film filled with elements of fear, comedy, suspense and mystery that could easily fulfill a much wider audience compared to its Alien film counter-parts. Despite some annoying acting this film still shines in my book as one of the best films I’ve seen this year. I give this film a very well deserved 8.9/10!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Terri - A very Un-Terri-ble Movie

I deeply apologize for my absence, but I have been one busy boy (I also apologize for the title of this post as well, i couldn't help myself). I just started back at College for the second time to finish a couple of diploma programs (my main one being Television Broadcasting) and it has been absolutely insane! Its hard to find time to write a blog post after long days of shooting and editing videos of my friends acting like retards. I have been just bombarded by assignments and the whole first semester and felt very badly about adding another blog to the internet graveyard. So I figured to break the silence I would talk about what was one of my favorite movies of 2011, Terri.

Terrie was one of the most unique interesting independent comedies I have seen in years. Terri is extremely character driven, with amazing actors like John C Reilly (Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, Boogie Nights), Creed Bratton (The Office) and Jacob Wysocki as Terri. The film is about a naive, overweight, socially separated, depressed 15 year old boy who feels as if he is only floating through life and has given up trying to impress anyone, par example he has decided to ditch conventional clothing and only wear what I would refer to as "Old Man Pajamas". One thing that can be said about Terri though is that he does not have a lack of self esteem and reacts without a perception of what other may think of him.  Terri lives in a big old house with his often pharmaceuticaly comatose Uncle James (Creed Bratton), who is an odd curmudgeon who doesn't often accept visitors and lives a very simple life. It is revealed later in the film the sad reason why Terri is not with his mother and father.
Terri and his sexually confused friend

Near the beginning of the film Terri is befriended by his high school Vice Principal Mr. Fitzgerald  (John C. Reilly) after he notices his obvious social awkwardness and lack of friends. Terri and Mr. Fitzgerald attend weekly sessions as a way to reach out to Terri and discover why he is such a social outcast. Many of the best and funniest parts of this movie come from the relationship between Terri and Mr. Fitzgerald and their unique and realistically odd conversations. Throughout the film the relationship between the 2 becomes tighter and eventually expands beyond the guidance councilor-esq vibe. Through his frequent trips to the principals office Terri also begins relationships a sexually confused girl and a messed up (and possibly schizophrenic) boy named Chad. The world of Terri is one that is so real but at the same time off kilter and not precisely real. At some times this movie is comparable to the very popular 2004 indie film Napoleon Dynamite.

This film is engaging and absolutely and had enough going for it to keep me immersed in Terri's world and mind set. You really begin to feel and care about this unique character as you see that he really has the best intentions but is not understood by the world around him. Terri is very much a 21st century coming of age story like no other. I would easily give this film a 9 pairs of blue pajamas out of 10. Okay I know my ratings don't mean anything because i only write about stuff I like but who the hell cares... or even reads this thing?