Sunday, July 03, 2005
Yeah, I know they're late, but, well, I am busy sometimes. Anyway, here are the 3 latest movies I've seen, and I must say, after Madagascar, things are looking up.
The best Batman movie ever, blah, blah, blah... I'm sure you've all heard about it before so I won't go into too much detail. Suffice it to say that this did very well in setting the records/story of Batman straight. And whatever good review you read about it from critics is probably true.
Just a couple of things I like to give my opinion about:
>> Villains? What villains? Which of the characters were these again?
>> Okay, so it probably wasn't as clear as in the other movies who the villains here were. Was it Scarecrow, or the drug lord, or Raz Al-Ghul? And, how did they become like that? They really didn't explain. But, as Christian Bale said in one interview, "This is the first movie about Batman himself, and not the villains," so it's understandable why the story didn't dwell too much on the background of the bad guys.
2. Gotham City
>> I think one of the best things about this movie was how the City of Gotham played a really big role in transforming Bruce Wayne into Batman. Because Batman has always been protecting this city, it was really nice to finally have been told why. So now we know that Batman's not just doing it for revenge or all the usual angst, nor unreasonable good will. We're actually presented with Batman's goal--to get Gotham, and perhaps the rest of the corrupted world, back on it's feet, in ways more peaceful/less drastic than that of Raz Al-Ghul's clan.
3. Rachel (Katie Holmes)
>> I hate this actress like anything, and really, there were absolutely zero sparks between her and Christian Bale (though maybe it'd be more upsetting if there were :P), but I'm giving her a break this time as it's lucky for her to finally get cast in a good movie.
>> Anyway, sure, the story could've done without her character, whose stand on Batman/Bruce Wayne is inconsistent, by the way, but maybe they wanted the audience to see her through Bruce's eyes, as in, through a guy's POV, which is to say that she's female so she's confusingly inconsistent.
>> Maybe what they were going for was a "neutral" character. One who knows Bruce Wayne is Batman but isn't exactly pro the alter ego thing, as she believes (I think) that Bruce can still bring about justice as himself, which I guess isn't such a bad angle to look at.
>> I'm not saying that the kissing scene at the end was in place, though. Really, if they'd just been best friends, that would've worked well, too. :P
>> I can't believe why they've only thought of casting Christian Bale as Batman now. Though, I can't really blame them. I never thought of it either. But, just like Viggo Mortensen's owning Aragorn, and John Behr's Max Evans, this was just perfect. And except for Katie Holmes, everyone else was perfect too. Especially Gary Oldman--the commissioner's always been one of my favorite characters and having him play it was just really great.
I found very little to complain about and that's kinda saying a lot as I normally find everything complainable. I am just amazed how they made the story so realistic, you almost forget it's a "superhero" flick.
Just a mention of my favorite scene before I end this--the part where Batman summons "back-up", well, that was just really cool.
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
I like science fiction. So sue me. And what's wrong with British humour? Doesn't everybody know that nothing is universally funny?
So it was a weird film. That doesn't mean it wasn't good. People just don't know how to appreciate different movie formats. Maybe they all still think that cinema is just for "entertainment". Whatever.
I loved it. It was funny, creative, unpredictable, and has some nice insights about existence. Who cares if the way it was told was not the usual way stories are presented?
Those who didn't like it probably just aren't open-minded enough to understand movies more complicated than Madagascar, which by coincidence, is the exact African country (?) they mentioned in this film.
In case you have no idea what this movie's about, it's about the Earth getting blown up and the only survivors having to hitchhike space ships to make their way through the vast galaxy.
Seriously, how can anyone not find that interesting?
War of the Worlds
I kept hearing people comparing it to Independence Day (ID4) and was about to think myself, which one I liked better when my friend told me how this movie was just focused on Tom Cruise's character, Ray's life, and I realized that it's not actually a movie about an alien invasion.
I remember thinking throughout watching the movie, how they (film makers) don't seem to make an action/suspense/sci-fi movie that doesn't explain/expound on the relationships between the characters. Like how it was so relevant for that pilot in ID4 to have given up his life, because he had kids left behind. Or how his kid surviving an alien attack restored Mel Gibson's character's faith in God, and ultimately his will to live, in Signs. In this case, it's about how a "weekend Dad" earns the trust and respect of his kids, because he does everything he can to save them--and it just so happend that the threat was from outer space (not Europe :P).
I was waiting for a montage of how people around the world were reacting, how church groups would come together and pray, how the White House would call help from everyone... I think, even until the movie ended, I was expecting a scene like it, but there was none. Maybe they felt it would be too ID4-ish if they'd put some (or it's because the novel it was based on really didn't have that kind of scene), but anyway, now that I think about it, I'm glad there weren't any.
There weren't any drastic acts of heroism, or big scenes of cooperation amongst men, though despite their absence, I didn't think the movie lacked anything.
I guess the point is that, in case of alien invasions, if you're not already in the army or something important like that, it's every man for himself, because there's no pont in forming a Resistance when you don't have a lot of time, so really, the only thing you can do is think about what's important to you, and then save it.
How would the Earth react to an alien invasion? Or, more specifically, how would you react? Somehow, I think this has the best portrayal of the answer.
So, although the ending was kinda weird (If the aliens were everywhere, why not Boston?), it did not leave me puzzled. I mean, yeah, I was expecting something bigger to happen, an unpredictable twist, as I didn't believe for one second that humanity's weapons were enough to defeat alien powers, but surprisingly, I wasn't disappointed when nothing like that did happen.
Additional praises to this movie for getting me on the edge of my seat, and actually shaking with fear. That hasn't happened to me since Jurassic Park and that was literally 11 years ago.