Sunday, September 28, 2014

Tampopo (1985)

Today's film is Tampopo.  I love food.  I love reading books about food; I love watching shows about food on networks about food.  So, when I watch any movie, I'm always eating something.  However, if you want to watch this film for the first time, you need to eat beforehand.  It's the same way that you shouldn't go grocery shopping hungry.  This movie is food, food, food.

The film starts with a man asking me what I am eating while watching this film.  I look down at my lap, and say, "Cheerios".  No, it's not fancy, but I like Cheerios.  He mentions that right before we die, we see a final movie of our life.  He is excited to someday see this movie.  Then, our movie starts.

A pair of truckers is going down the street.  The passenger is reading a book about noodles and the enjoyment of them.  This is just the beginning of noodle love.  Caress the pork, caress it.  This makes both of them hungry (because they didn't eat first like I told them to) and they stop at a little noodle shop.  These noodles are bad.  The noodle cook is a sweet widow named Tampopo and asks them for help.  One of the truckers, dressed like a cowboy, agrees to teach her.

Meanwhile, a group of businessmen in town enjoy a different kind of fare - French food.  Compared to the simple noodle soup, rich buttery French food is a completely different world.  We also see a group of women learning to properly eat pasta as to not offend foreigners - no sounds, no slurping, while a nearby American happily slurps away on his pasta.  Sometimes we worry too much about what others think about us, and forget to enjoy things like this American is doing.

There are other vignettes focusing on food, too, but I'm not going to mention all of them.  The man at the beginning and his girlfriend hot with some food porn action, including pass a yolk of egg from one mouth to the other.  Also, lots of licking food off body parts.

As Tampopo learns more about cooking noodles and broth properly, so do we.  The images of food are amazing in this film.  All of the different vignettes in this film are all united by the common bond of food.  I liked the scene where they snuck into a kitchen to make a rice omelet.  This is one of the most enjoyable films focusing on food there is.  I will give it an 8/10.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

My Fair Lady (1964)

Today's film is My Fair Lady.  How this won the Best Picture over Mary Poppins is beyond me.  Mary Poppins had better acting, better writing, special effects, songs, everything.  The songs weren't that great, either.  I don't like songs that are "talking" songs and that seems to be what most of them were.

It starts off with Eliza Doolittle, a flower seller, who is busily hollering at everyone.  She has a nasty accent, and this professor named Henry Higgins makes fun of her accent and even sings a few songs about it.  He specializes in speech and meets another man, Colonel Pickering, who specializes in Indian dialects.

Eliza goes to Professor Higgins to pay for speaking lessons, so she can get a better job.  He replies by ridiculing her again.  Later, he bets Pickering that in 6 months he can pass her off as a lady.  So, most of the time, she is practicing her alphabet.  He tries to pass her off at the ascot, but she reverts back to her normal voice when she gets too excited at the horse race.

Later, some hot guy comes to her door, because he was intrigued by her at the ascot.  This leads to more songs.  Eliza goes to a ball, and excels at pretending to be a lady.  Now, all of a sudden, she doesn't like being a lady.  She goes back to where she was selling flowers, and sees her father.  He also has come into money, and is more frustrated than he is happy.  Then, she goes back to the Professor, who spent all that time making fun of her, and the movie ends right there.  I don't like how it suddenly ended.  I'm giving it a 6/10.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Kramer vs. Kramer (1979)

Today's film is Kramer vs. Kramer.  Ted Kramer's wife, Joanna, is tired of her life and fed up with her workaholic husband.  One day she packs up and leaves.  As a result, Ted has to learn how to be a parent for the first time.  I enjoyed watching him grow as a parent.
 For example, the first morning, he is impatient and makes gross terrible french toast.  But by the end, his french toast is perfect.  At first, he drops his son off and rushes to work, not even glancing behind them.  By the end, he looks behind him the entire way as he goes away to work.  First, his priority was work work work, but now his child is his priority.  In fact, he even changes jobs to one that will better allow him to take care of his child. 

Dustin did an amazing acting job.  I really believed that he was a frustrated workaholic that magically transformed into a superdad when his child needed him the most.  I didn't really like Meryl Streep's character, because she abadoned her child, but maybe she had her own reason for doing that.
Then one day, Joanna reappears and wants her son back!  What follows is a bitter hateful custody battle in court, where lawyers coerce them to be mean to each other.  Later, Joanna realizes that Ted is the best person to take care of her son, and she gives up her custody battle.  I will give this film an 8/10.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Short reviews of short films

Wavelength (1967)

It's just 45 minutes of staring at a wall. Reminds me of a slow day at work. 1/10.

Dog Star Man (1962)

I know that only the first part is in the list of 1001 films, but I went ahead and watched all of the parts.  Don't do that.  It's a completely incoherent mush of colors, mixed with random nude naughty parts. 2/10.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Deliverance (1972)

Today's film is Deliverance.  I was under the impression that this was a disturbing/terrifying film.  Well, that may have been true when it was made in the 1970's.  It still has its moment though.

Four friends get together to canoe down a river before the whole area is flooded (for a dam I think).  Canoeing and White water rafting is a fun and relaxing pasttime.  Well not this time.  Two of the friends get separated and get out onto land, where one of them is raped by a hillbilly.  That hillbilly is shot by Burt Reynolds, and they all carry him away and bury him together.  There is much arguing and speculation about what the other hillbillies will do once they find out he's missing.

Since there weren't any cell phones back then, and their cars are waiting for them at the end of the river, they have no choice but to continue on the path they're on.  They go over the waterfall and crash down to the bottom.  One of them was not wearing his life jacket and drowned.  Burt Reynolds (I never learn his character names because he's just Burt Reynolds) breaks his leg or something, so the remaining two have to help him get to safety.

One of them scales the cliff to shoot the hillbilly and is careful about coming down.  This is especially exciting since the actor is actually scaling up a real cliff.  They finally make it to their cars, where the creepy banjo playing kid is eyeballing them.  All the hillbillies in this creepy, but not like mutant creepy.  I will give this film a 6/10.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

21 Jump Street (2012)

Today's film is 21 Jump Street.  No, I never watched the TV show, but the film was really funny.  It starts off in high school, where Jonah Hill plays a dorky nerd, Schmidt, and Channing Tatum is the hot yet dumb Jenko.  As we would expect them to.  Seven years later, they are both in the police academy and have become friends.  They would have never been friends in high school, because high school forces you to separate into your own interests, but as an adult, anyone can be friends.  My husband and I were complete opposites in high school, but as adults we get along.

After graduating, Jenko and Schmidt are given park watching duty.  They try to arrest some rough drug peddlers, but Schmidt freezes when trying to fire a gun.  Meanwhile, Jenko catches his perp but is too dumb to remember the Miranda rights he's supposed to say.  As a result, they are sent to 21 Jump Street, where they are told to go undercover at a high school and bust a drug ring.

It's very different going back to high school, and this time Schmidt is finding himself to be more popular.  It helps that they mixed up their schedules, which causes lots of comedy opportunities.  Also, there is plenty of drug related humor and explosions!  This movie is simply fun to watch.  No, it's not as good as Superbad, but it does have its moments.  It's silly at times and is overall fun.  I will give it a 7/10.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Trois couleurs: Bleu (Three Colors: Blue) (1993)

Today's film is Three Colors: Blue.  While yesterday's film was a thrilling mystery, today's is a sad drama.  We start off with our main character, Julie, losing her husband and daughter in a car accident.  She is unsuccessful at killing herself in the hospital, and is later released to her humongous house complete with housekeeper and gardener.  Turns out her husband is a famous composer, but we learn that maybe Julie was the one doing the actual composing.  She packs up and leaves her house and gets an apartment without telling anyone.

I liked this because Julie is played by Juliette Binoche, who also played Vianne in Chocolat.  I love how she acts, it's just unfortunate she had to have that awful 90's haircut.  Also, the scenes are filled with only blues, cool tones, and earth tones, nothing bright.  So, in every scene, whether it's something big, like the beaded chandelier thing, or the light on someone's face, there is an element of blue.

I didn't like how Julie handled her grief.  She never talked to anyone about it, she just shut down inside herself and moved away from any kind of support system.  She even has sex with someone she knows cares about her, just to dump him and run away, prompting him to look for her for months.  He does find her and together they finish her late husband's last music composition.  The chorus is some Greek bible verse which I'm not going to bother to look up.  Anyway, if you're depressed please talk to somebody, not do anything that Julie did.  I will give this film a 5/10.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Cube (1997)

Today's film is Cube, where an unseen villain places unsuspecting victims in, literally, a giant Rubik's Cube, where they must work together to navigate through a maze of traps.

I don't want to give too much away, because the suspense is the best part of watching this.  Which rooms will have traps?  What are they?  Who will die?  Let's say that only two people are actually useful, in that they can use their math skills to solve the puzzle of the Cube.

Who made this Cube?  Was it the government?  Was it aliens?  Is the government run by aliens?  Also, the cop who takes control and later beats people is by no means unexpected and should not be considered a spoiler.  After the puzzle of the Cube has been solved, what happens to those who survive?  What is on the outside of the Cube?  A new, bigger Cube??  What if its a series of cubes-within cubes within cubes???  Where does it end people?

This movie was enjoyable because it was a psychological thriller with a touch of mystery, and enough gore to keep me somewhat entertained.  I do enjoy good gore.  I will give this film an 8/10.