Miscellaneous 2012 and 2013: Doob

The Place Beyond The Pines

When it comes down to it, a movie can have all the good cinematography, sets, music and acting it wants, but without real characters, the story doesn’t matter and in the end, I don’t care about the movie.  (Eva Mendes and Ben Mendelsohn were closest to making their characters real.)

Wreck-It Ralph

I loved it.  Afterwards, I acted like I didn’t.  Then saw it again.  I got goosebumps; I teared up.  It totally did it for me.  I admit, the first time, it was hard to deal with the premise.  I was very judgmental for a while about the video game thing.  But it had good characters!  It wasn’t even that funny.

Les Misérables

This was awful.  But entertaining.  Hard to pull away.  But an unbelievable, out of control, unorganized disaster.  My mom watched it three nights in a row and wept every time.  Though that confuses me, I did show similar patterns with Wreck-It Ralph.


Stiff.  Movies like this, based on real and important events, are still movies.  They have to be interesting.  As moviegoers, we would like to know a little more about Tony Mendez besides that he has a relationship with his son and he drinks.  And just because Mendez was stiff in real life doesn’t mean you have to play it that way in the movie.  Come on, Affleck, give it to me.  Don’t play your cards so close.

To the Wonder

Affleck, you shouldn’t have said yes to this.  You knew it.  I could see it on your face while you were acting.  What I could also see was that you wanted to put your hands in your pockets so bad but you knew that you couldn’t because you were starring in this improv movie.  Apparently, director Terrence Malick does the, “Look to your left,” kind of directing in To the Wonder.  You can tell.  He lets the camera roll and tells the actors to walk around – or frolic endlessly in the case of Olga Kurylenko – and then Malick might say something like, “Take your hands out of your pockets, Affleck!”  And so because of this, there’s little dialogue and a LOT of interior monologues from MANY different characters.  Don’t see this movie.  Or do it to exercise patience.  Or to understand that it’s okay for a camera to go on a tripod once in a while.  One thing: the small, small side characters are very good and animated and funny and some of them actually speak.  I wish Malick would do a movie with more of those weirdo guys and stop having to cast movie stars just so his films can get made.  It’s so impersonal.

Zero Dark Thirty

Really fucking bad.  Okay.  You (Bigelow and team), like Affleck and team, are making a movie about real and important events.  You have fucked up like Affleck did.  We, the audience, need real characters.  If Jessica Chastain yells at her boss an hour and a half into the movie, in better movies, that would affect us emotionally.  And also don’t fucking make Chastain cry in the last shot.  Exactly the problem.  You think all of a sudden you can have her cry and we’re going to care?  We don’t even know her!  Also not a great move that your only somewhat likeable character is the American that tortures everybody (played by Jason Clarke)!  Not smooth Bigelow.  Not a good movie.


As bad as I thought it was going to be, it wasn’t that bad in the end.  I mean I wouldn’t say you should see it.  But I wasn’t depressed after I saw it or anything.


Katy Perry: Part of Me

Because of the fast editing, I never got a real sense of her, so I never trusted her.


Oz the Great and Powerful

I had a lot of fun.  But I love Sam Raimi.  To me, this was his remake of Army of Darkness, but with Oz characters.  Not kidding.  The storyline has many overarching similarities and some of the shots are identical.  The witch was terrible, almost as big a fuck up as the Green Goblin was in the first Spider-Man.  There were plenty of problems with Oz.  The middle was boring.  But over all, it was very enjoyable.  To me.  You have to go easy.  If you go in there wanting to hate it, it will not win you over. 


Identity Thief

I abandoned my friends and walked out of a really bad movie (Dead Man Down) and snuck into Identity Thief.  But on the ride back from the theater, my friends were describing Dead Man Down and we were all laughing.  But when they politely asked me about what I saw, I had nothing to say.  It’s a formula.  It’s okay.  I was amused.  I didn’t laugh much.  But I did laugh.  It’s not very good.


Life of Pi

Enjoyable.  A little hokey.  Pretty good.  Fun.  Bad 3rd act.


Olympus Has Fallen

The joy factor was in thinking about Die Hard, which is really one of the best.  Absolutely that movie is up there for me.  It’s great.  Olympus Has Fallen is very similar to Die Hard in the sense that it’s a lone dude who’s somewhat strategically killing a lot of bad guys and quietly talking on a walkie talkie to good guys.  But besides having fond thoughts about Die Hard, Olympus is worthy of being walked out of.  Though I didn’t.  Morgan Freeman looked like he wanted to walk out a few times, and he was getting paid.  Bad comparison.  Anyway, I have friends that talk about F.O.M.O.  Fear Of Missing Out.  Like while I’m writing this, I could be out socializing and engaging in life.  But meanwhile, someone is out there socializing, secretly wishing they were writing a blogpost about Olympus Has Fallen.  Anyway, my point is I don’t think anyone would ever, ever have F.O.M.O. for missing Olympus Has Fallen.

One Response to “Miscellaneous 2012 and 2013: Doob”

  1. Timothy Parfitt Says:

    Got to disagree with a couple of these, Samuel. Place Beyond the Pines was ambitious and novelistic. I got swept up in the grandeur. Maybe the music and camera work did more for me than for you. Plus, you know I’m a sucker for melodramatic crime movies.

    And Zero Dark Thirty? Great movie. Granted it’s a movie about ideas, not characters, so I see why you didn’t like it. The main character is a personification of ugly America circa 2001-2012.

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