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Friday, September 10, 2010

Weekend Movie Rentals

As the weekend approaches, one of the things the cash-strapped Black household does is head either to the Red Box or to Family Video to round up some movies for the weekend.  It's a long standing tradition and I thought I would share some of the good, the bad and the ugly with you.

The Good
Sherlock Holmes:  Doesn't matter how many times you watch this movie, there will always be something new that you may have missed.  And, it's kid-friendly.

After Life:  Completely NOT kid-friendly, but an excellent movie that is scary at moments, but also intellectually stimulating.  The contemplation of what takes place after death is fascinating.   Ricci is nude throughout most of the movie as the majority of the scenes take place in a mortuary after a horrible car accident wherein she is being prepared for burial.  Liam Neeson plays the odd mortician in this very strange and twisting movie.  Put the kids to bed and enjoy.

The Wicker Man:  Cage is phenomenal in this film, with plot twists that keep you going until the ending.  Not for everyone, but the movie has moments that just suck you in - you feel the anguish of a man on the hunt for a girl whom he learns is, in fact, his daughter.  

The Book of Eli:  Denzel is, well, Denzel and this movie has action and a plot that is absolutely phenomenal.  Most of you have probably already seen it, but I recommend watching it again.

I Am Sam:  Okay, Sean Penn is a liberal wack-job who even most liberals can't stand but he is a great actor and he portrays a developmentally disabled man who has a daughter and chronicles his fight to keep his daughter.  I didn't want to watch this one but the girls in the house convinced me.  I ended up really enjoying this film even though I did catch myself weeping a bit.

Clockwork Orange:  A cult classic and always good for a late evening with the spouse or significant other.  Twisted, yes.  Sick, yes.  But a film that will make you think and clearly, was way ahead of its time. NOT kid-friendly.

Avatar:  Forget the whole hyper-conservative hooplah about the movie being "anti-this" or "anti-that."  It's truly a good movie that is long, but at the end, you're glad you watched it.  I thought it was well produced and had story lines that were clearly unbelievable, but very entertaining nonetheless.

The Bad
Abandoned:  Brittany Murphy's last film and it is bad.  If you are in the $1 rental aisle, and have nothing better to do with your time, this would be a good one for you.  Murphy's boyfriend disappears in a hospital and the first half of the movie meanders through her search.  It has good moments, but generally speaking, this is a terrible movie.  Murphy looks like she is at the end of her life and it is truly sad. 

8 Must See Horror:  You've seen the videos with the labels, "8 Must-See" blah blah blah.  They are certainly NOT must-see.  These movies are produced with the quality of an 8th grade technology class and are absolutely deplorable.  Don't waste your money.  If the box says, "must see," the only place you must see it is in the trash heap.

Mama Mia:  If you're an ABBA fan, you'll love the movie's music.  If you're a man, you'll want to drive an ice pick into your ears by the time the opening credits roll.  There are plenty of GOOD chick-movies out there (The Notebook, Little Black Book, Fried Green Tomatoes) to watch, and this isn't one of them.

New Moon:  I agree with my step-daughter, Annamarie.  Vampires are not supposed to "sparkle."  They are supposed to kill, maim and do very bad things.  They are the undead, they are blood suckers.  As a matter of fact, the whole Twilight series is an embarrassment to all good (and bad) vampire flicks.

Bruno:  Don't.  Don't even look at the box it comes in.  As a matter of fact, strike it from your memory and forget I even posted it. 

The Ugly
Note -  Ugly doesn't mean necessarily "bad."  Ugly means not a movie for the kids by any stretch of the imagination.

Fight Club:  This is one I love so much, I purchased the DVD.  A timeless movie that takes on "the system" as we understand it and has so many plot twists, you have to drink a pot of coffee to keep up.  Plus, Helena Bonham Carter plays the leading lady in the film.  Bonus.  Bloody throughout, raunchy in some scenes, the movie is not for the faint of heart nor is it for the kiddos.  Not only send them to bed, but make them put in their iPods.

Grindhouse Flicks:  There are two - Planet Terror and Grindhouse.  Tarantino makes two very wild exploitation movies here and they are bloody, filthy and sexually charged.  TOTALLY not for the kids but if you're a Tarantino fan, you'll enjoy these.   Rose McGowan, Bruce Willis, Cheech Marin, Josh Brolin, Kurt Russell and more have cameos that surprise and yes, are very, very sick and twisted.

Have fun at the rental store...