Friday, March 18, 2005

At the movies, 3/18/05

Ring Two: I really liked the first ring (haven't seen Ringu, the Japanese original, yet, but I hear it's largely the same). Personally, I like the recent trend towards P-13 horror, big since The Sixth Sense. I prefer my horror movies creepy rather than gross, and a few content restrictions helps push filmmakers in that direction. Of course, 'smart' is good too. And while limitations can be helpful in making a filmmaker work at what he's doing, films can be really gross and enjoyable and smart too. For instance, I really liked Cabin Fever, which was highly gross.

On the whole, though, creepy works fine for me. I'll probably see Ring Two, whereas I wouldn't see Saw. ("see Saw"...it's almost a joke!)

The Ring films, Japanese, American and (I think) Korean, are appropriately circles within circles. Therefore it kind of make sense that the Japanese director of The Ring, Hideo Nakata, has been hired to come here and shoot the sequel to the remake of his original movie. Or something. Plus, he probably worked cheap.

The critical response has not been great. The aggregate score at Rotten Tomatoes.com is only 30% positive. Cinescape.com, a site more representative of horror genre fans, gives it a B-. On the other hand, the guy at Chud.com only awarded it 6.3 out of 10. Ah, well.

Other opening films include Ice Princess, which frankly I won't rag on because it's made a for distinct target audience. Of course it's a mass of clichés. However, if you're 14, then you won't have seen the clichés as much. That's pretty much the point.

I actually half plan to go see The Upside of Anger. Occasionally it's nice to see a movie about regular people sans monsters and stuff exploding. Also, I rather like Kevin Costner when he's doing his laid back and charming shtick. Aside from Dennis Quaid, few people do it better.

Melinda and Melinda is Woody Allen's latest. I can't remember the last time I really was excited that he had a new movie, but it's been a looong time. I complained in my Everyone Says I Love You review that Allen has picked up a typically creepy trait of having one actor in the film basically aping his whole Woody Allen persona. Apparently this time around it's Will Farrell. (!)

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