We enrolled in the Blockbuster Video 30 movies in 30 days for 30 bucks program. Doug figures with the summer free, he can watch 30 movies. So far, so good. We have rented, with my Roger Ebertesque comments:
1. 102 Dalmatians: Unwatchable. My kids asked to fast forward over some of the parts of the film that were SO stupid and boring that they felt their brains were going to rot out of their heads. Once I realized one of my all time favorite people, Eric Idle, had been reduced to being the voice of the retarded, stupid, annoying parrot who thinks he's a dog, I gave up watching. Oh, how the funny have fallen.
2. The Cell: Doug watched it, I didn't... I fell asleep. He said about 20 minutes of it were some of the best cinematography he'd ever seen. Jennifer Lopez keeps her clothing on... but there's a nice shot of her ass as she's bending into the fridge to get a snack. Those were the highlights for him. I am sure he has a more intellectual angle and synopsis of the film, but didn't offer it to me.
3. Legend of the Drunken Master: I like Jackie Chan flicks. I think he's funny, and always has a lot of good action... even when the plot is ridiculous. Well, here's a ridiculous plot, and a ridiculous cast, and Jackie in the middle of them all. The movie goes a long way to establish the family relationships, and show what Drunken Boxing is... Jackie gets in a shitload of trouble from his dad for doing the forbidden martial art, but in the end, it is his forbidden martial art that saves the day! Hurrah! The first 20 minutes are boring as all get out. The film doesn't pick up much more from there, but there are two amazing fight scenes... one where he and the master are fighting "the Axe Gang," which is a hoard of 200 axe-wielding maniacs out to kill them. Of course, Jackie wins, but the master ends up getting shot by the head of the bad guys who hired the axe gang. And then he fights the two lead bad guys... eventually winning, but it's some good choreography and fighting. Jackie saves the day! I wouldn't recommend this movie to anyone per se, but if it was all you had, you'd want to watch it more than 102 Dalmatians.
4. Billy Elliot: Aside from the fact that watching any English movie is like watching a Shakespearean play where it takes about 20 minutes to get used to the accent and figure out what the hell they're talking about, this was a damn fine little movie. Happy ending, sad plot... more domestic violence than I've ever seen in a movie since "Mommie Dearest." The lead character has one of the best lines: "Just because I like the Bally (ballet) doesn't mean I'm a Poof." I enjoyed it greatly.
5. Snatch: Damn fine fucking movie. Again, the whole british accent thing is a tad troublesome, and the ones I can barely understand can't understand the gypsies (pikers), the chief character of which is Brad Pitt, who does a nice job of being one sneaky bastard. I enjoyed how the plot just twisted around itself, and things collided and got messy... Guy Ritchie directed/wrote this, as also he did "Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrells," and I am really liking this guy's work. The stuff he does with the camera (card scene in "Lock, Stock" and the diamond vault invasion scene, boxing scenes in "Snatch") are so cool. He's a talented writer and director. Can't wait to see what he does next. Highly recommend this movie.
6. Garden of Evil: (aka: the Evil Gardener). This was an accident. I wanted Gladiator, and so I reached for the box behind the sample picture box and pulled a video out without checking to see what it was... it wasn't Gladiator. I had gone to bed, feeling wiped from the day, so Doug popped the flick in, and was shocked. He said it was one of the worst movies ever. Malcolm McDowell is chasing people around trying to kill them and plant them in his garden. And there is a police chief who is like the chief on "McBain" on the Simpsons, only he isn't the least bit ironic... which made him horribly funny. Doug fast forwarded over a lot of the film and was grumpy with me for not checking to see which film I was picking up. But hey, I made a one dollar mistake... not a $4000 mistake! Ha! Get over it. I'll rent Gladiator for him tonight.