December 31, 2011

Farewell 2011

2011 Review Roundup

This is a spot for me to throw quick thoughts on the movies I've seen or will be seeing over the next few days that I don't have time to write full on reviews for. Just something I can link to in the lists that will be coming fast and furious at the start of the new year. Full reviews of all these movies will follow, but for now, you'll have to make do with this.

Warning: There's a lot of raving in this post!

The Muppets

The world is full of cynicism, so much so that you start to have trouble finding the simple pleasures in life. Thankfully, the Muppets have returned, and none of that cynicism seems to have affected them. The only thing they are still interested in is bringing joy to the audiences. Boy, do they succeed!

Green Lantern

If I had a power ring like the one's featured in this movie, I would imagine a cross, and then I would crucify this piece of garbage! This film is one of the worst thing to happen to the superhero genre since Batman and Robin!

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

In an age dominated by the Bonds and the Mission Impossibles, seeing a spy film that eschews whiz-bang action in favor of tense espionage and investigation is a real treat. Though it starts off slow, it really delivers, and God Damn! Can someone please just give Gary Oldman and Oscar already? Please?

Midnight In Paris

I've never been a big fan of Woody Allen. Haven't seen Annie Hall or Manhattan, and I haven't dug his last few films, but Midnight in Paris was a joy to watch. Biting humor, a good message, and superb acting from the gifted ensemble is all excellent, but Marion Cotillard... Marion... sorry, what?

The Adventures of Tintin

It's the Indiana Jones movie that Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull should have been! Superb action! Great humor! Beautiful to look at! Spielberg has proven that he still has it when it comes to big, exciting, blockbuster entertainment.

The Artist

ONE!!! OF!!! THE!!! BEST!!! DAMN!!! THINGS!!! OF!!! THE!!! YEAR!!!



I don't know. I really don't. It's very good, and Michael Fassbender is fantastic in it. But I have no desire to see this film ever again. It's that depressing. I don't even know what grade I should give it. Decisions, decisions.


Still to come, War Horse, The Descendants, and whatever else I feel like.

December 26, 2011

Hey! Guess What!

I'M 20!!!!

YEEEEEAAAAAHHHHHHhhhh... oh, wait...

Nothing special happens at 20.

Oh well.

Dance for me, JoGo!!!

December 23, 2011

Less Elementary Than Was Hoped For

I'm smart. Well, sort of. I mean, I do well in class, can usually communicate in clever ways with my peers, and am probably a little too self-congratulatory when it comes to my ideas for scripts. But, in no way am I smart enough to be a detective, and in no way am as smart as Sherlock Holmes. The character created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle makes most modern day man, and women, come to think of it, look like bumbling buffoons. And if this modern day version of Holmes is to be taken seriously as a faithful interpretation of the character, he will kick your ass, drink you under the table, and be completely helpless when it comes to bromance. Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, in addition to having a title that I regret to admit I confuse with Game of Thrones, is a bigger, louder, more grandiose film than it's predecessor, and while it does do some things well, it does enough wrong and repeats enough of the mistakes from the first one to not warrant a full recommendation. Like the last one, it is still a lot of fun, but not much else.

Extreme Bromance!

December 22, 2011

POST #500!!!!: Blacker Than The Blackest Black Times Infinity

500 posts!!! Ma Ha Nei Bu, Eebowai!!!
That's a Book of Mormon reference! Look it up!

Anyway, to commemorate this, the 500th post on Films From the Supermassive Black Hole, here's a review of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.

Last year, I named Let Me In my favorite movie of the year. And you can imagine the comments I got on that one. I stick by it though. I think Let Me In is a wonderful movie, and superior to Let The Right One In. Part of my sentiment came from the fact that I saw Let Me In before Let The Right One In, so the story, characters, and motifs were all new to me. And now, in 2011, I find myself in the exact same position with The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. I know, it's kind of unforgivable that a movie nut like myself hasn't seen the Swedish versions of Steig Larsson's Millennium Trilogy yet or read the books, and I don't really have an excuse; I'll get around to it eventually. But, this approach, I think, offers me a unique viewpoint from my contemporaries. Rather than judging the film based on how well it adapts the book, or how it holds up against the other version, I can just sit back and critique the film purely on it's own merits. And let me tell you, this American version of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo is incredible!

Setting the standard of not to be messed with!

December 20, 2011

Trailer Trash: The Dark Knight Rises

It's time to root through some trailers. What sorts of wonderful things will be alluded to today?

So, this one is gonna be two fold, as I had the good fortune to see the 6-minute prologue in front of Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol this weekend, in addition to see the trailer that came out yesterday.

First off, the prologue. SPOILERS!!!

Much like the Dark Knight sequence that was shown before I Am Legend, depicting the Joker's opening bank robbery, the prologue to TDKR introduces to Bane, and the force that he is. Also starring Aiden Gillen, the sequence shows Bane as he hijacks a plane in order to kidnap a Russian scientist. This involves thrilling, practically made, aerial stunts and chaos. Bane is a ruthless adversary, savagely beating his foes, and having the plane dragged through the air by... another, bigger plane.

The sequence is so full of "HELL YEAH" moments, and looks awesome in IMAX. Christopher Nolan has proved that he can shoot IMAX action, and he looks to be pulling out all the stops for his final foray with Batman. If there's something bad to say about the sequence, if you can call it a bad thing, it's that I couldn't really understand what Bane was saying. I got that everything he was saying is very important, but the combination of the vocal choices by Tom Hardy, coupled with the mask... well, anyway. It was difficult to pick up what he was saying. Here's hoping Nolan and crew fix the audio, cuz then there'll be no problem.

The footage ended with a sizzle reel, showing off all the other characters, most of which made it into the new trailer. Speaking of which...

Love it! While it didn't make quite as a big an impression on me as the Dark Knight trailer revealing the Joker, it's still awesome. While I don't really understand how the League of Shadows comes into play, or how Bane facilitates it all, it seems that there's an undertone of class inequality to this one, with Selina Kyle's cryptic dialogue, and all the scenes of that posh masquerade.

Crazy things happen in this trailer. Tumblers scream down the streets. Explosions are everywhere. Massive riots erupt. Batman has an aircraft. And Bane kills a football team by... blowing up the field. AWESOME!! Also, JoGo's in it. Can this movie just happen already?

Also, I think I've figured out what Marion Cotillard's character is all about. Won't tell you about it here, lest I bring the wrath of the nerds down on me. Want to talk? You know where to find me.

December 19, 2011


There's no excuse. I'm not gonna talk about it. I'm back. Let's leave it at that!

So, if there was a trend that I could put my thumb on for this cinematic year, it would odd yet interesting choices for the director of a big budget action movie. We had Kenneth Branagh, bringing his larger than life and Shakespearian Thor. We had Tarsem Singh, infusing gonzo violence with high art in Immortals. And now, we have Brad Bird, the man behind such animation classics as The Iron Giant, The Incredibles, and Ratatouille. What's he directing? Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, the first M.I. movie since JJ Abrams reinvigorated the series five years ago. Abrams returns as a producer, but the main point of interest is seeing how Bird, fresh to the live action style, fares. And while Ghost Protocol fails where all other Mission Impossible movies have usually failed (lack of interesting plot, a main character who doesn't grow, and an over reliance on action set pieces over espionage), it does manage to showcase that Bird definitely has the chops to make in the live action world. M.I.G.P is tightly paced, very tense, with a ton of great action and set pieces, and a sensational use of IMAX format. It's not setting the world on fire anytime soon, but for holiday thrills, this one more than suffices.

Just chilling. Waiting for the mothership...