Sunday, April 27, 2008

Movie Stuff Both Good and Bad

The original WarGames--with a predictable, not particularly bright plot offset by the incredible charisma of young Matthew Broderick --will always be a guilty pleasure of mine. If I come across it while surfing channels late at night, I’ll stop and enjoy the little blast of eighties Cold War nostalgia that I also get from the likes of Red Dawn. It isn’t a good movie in the same way as, say, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, but it still makes me smile.

But a remake (with an even dumber plot plopped on an apparently no-charisma zone) probably won’t be making anyone’s nostalgia tour two decades from now. Which might be why it’s skipping the theaters and going direct to video where only the plainly foolish might be suckered into watching the thing.

Yet again I feel surrounded by seas of stupid. You can see the trailer for the abomination at the link.

On the plus side, when we went to see the slight but funny Forgetting Sarah Marshall (with all of its surprising and unfortunate male frontal nudity), I saw trailers for movies that I absolutely cannot wait to see. Steve Carell was born to play Maxwell Smart--which might seem a small thing to be born for, but if it’s as funny as the original TV show, Get Smart will be one of the funniest movies I will have seen in years. The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian looks to be a worthy followup to The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

Lastly, a new version of The Hulk, with no connection to what shall forever be known as Ang Lee’s worst film, with Edward Norton is coming up, too, and it looks much more fun than the last movie. It doesn’t hurt that Norton, apparently, contributed some of the writing. Between that and Robert Downey, Jr’s turn as Iron Man, I have to think that there is some good comic book action coming to theaters this year.

Anyway, the message is this: don’t see War Games: The Dead Code, but look forward to some fun, dumb eye candy while the Democrats continue to work hard at making presidential politics a real brutal contact sport.

And if you’re looking for more raunchy comedy from the Judd Apatow machine, Forgetting Sarah Marshall will have you laughing and, true to form, has some touchingly real moments about how men and women screw up their relationships. It’s a joyously vulgar thing and, for all the talk of bravery for movies like Crash and Brokeback Mountain, Jason Segel showed true bravery in his willingness to bare himself in so many (often disturbing) ways and top it off by singing a portion of a melodramatic rock opera about Dracula’s desire to be loved. That’s courage, my friends.

Let us all, who have attended Rocky Mountain Blogger Bashes, give thanks that I am not a particularly courageous man.


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