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Feb 19, 2010

TGITDNMAR (2/19/10)

It's that time again for TGITDNMAR, which (obviously) stands for Thank God It's The Day New Movies Are Released.

Just one wide release, but keep an eye out for your local arthouse theater - with any luck, you might be getting a chance to see the Oscar-nominated shorts in the coming weeks. Thanks to local (and ever-expanding) chain Harkins for playing the live-action and animated ones this weekend. We hope to catch at least one of the programs.

Finally, there seem to be more movies I have at least a passing interest in seeing then we might have time for. On the potenial docket: The White Ribbon, The Wolfman, The Last Station, the shorts, and the two listed below. Also, if you happen to see Saint John of Las Vegas, I'd like to hear your thoughts - I've seen mostly rotten reviews for the Steve Buscemi-starring character piece, but in today's paper, there was a 4-star one. Color me confused.

Shutter Island
This sub-genre doesn't exactly thrill me, and I'm not near the Scorcese nut that some people are (don't get me wrong, he's great and all, I just don't worship the ground he directs on), but I must admit that as this has gotten closer to opening, my desire to see it has ticked up a bit as well. Helping matters (a lot) is the neverending list of great (mostly character) actors involved (Levine, Lynch, von Sydow, Kingsley, Clarkson, Koteas). It also helps that there's apparently a shocker ending that must be seen to be believed. Even more incentive - it's the topic of the next LAMBcast, to be recorded tomorrow.

Well, all that and I just love the part where Sir Ben holds his palms opposite each other, spreads them apart slowly and states, "It's as if she evaporated, straight through the walls."
Fletch's Chance of Viewing (in the theater): 81%

The Ghost Writer
Though I was aware of it, I hadn't even watched the trailer for this until earlier today. All I knew previously was Roman Polanski and Ewan McGregor were involved. So obviously not much interest overall. Then, just before seeing the trailer, I saw that Kim Catrall was prominently involved. Ugh.

That's all changed. Though he seems to rarely display much range, I'm a big fan of Pierce Brosnan, especially when he does step out of the "suave guy" role (though he perfected it not in any Bond flick, but the excellent caper remake The Thomas Crown Affair). See The Matador and then tell me he wouldn't be great in pulpier fare. Here, he's playing a possibly murderous writer, and I relish the chance to see him play a villainous character. Also on board is the always-excellent and underused Olivia Williams, last seen being underutilized again in An Education.

But even after just one viewing, the thing that got me the most was the look of the movie; sharp, clean, modern, and just a tap creepy. I have high hopes for this being a memorable thriller.
Fletch's Chance of Viewing: 70%

9 people have chosen wisely: on "TGITDNMAR (2/19/10)"

Big Mike Mendez said...

I'll be honest with you, I love his movies. I do. I'm a Martin Scorsese fan. For my money, I don't know if it gets any better than when he directs DiCaprio in 'The Departed.'

Daniel Getahun said...

Not sure where you'll come down on Shutter Island. I don't think the ending needs to be "seen" to be believed, but well I don't want to say too much. People who haven't read the book (I hadn't) just need to be really careful with spoilers around this one.

I've seen Saint John of Las Vegas, and while it initially didn't do much for me, it kind of snuck up on me after a couple of days. It's harmless, meaningless. My prediction: a Darn Tootin'.

whitney said...

I LOVE that insane asylum drama subgenre you're talking about. It's my guilty pleasure...

So I'm so stoked to see Shutter Island.

Ghost Writer is tougher for me...if only because of McGregor trying an American accent again. It's so bad it's painful.

Fletch said...

Mike - And that's perfectly normal - I just gotta give you trouble for having such a hard-on for the guy. You ought to know the culprit here - that's right, I haven't seen all of his masterpieces, and the one I have seen (Taxi Driver) I was not all that impressed with.

But I do love me some Departed. Gets better with every viewing, as does Casino.

Daniel - nope, I haven't read it, either. Probably seeing it tonight, so spoiler issues shouldn't be a problem, at least for me.

Haha - a Darn Tootin' is always a safe bet. I'd venture that it and Decent Fellow combine for 65% of my ratings. Interesting, though - the fact that a) you seem to have liked it and b) it crept in and had you thinking about it for awhile make me want to see it all the more. Thanks!

Whitney - I'm not so sure I do. It might not be fair, but everytime I think about the subgenre, I think of Gothika and it blocks me from thinking of many others (Cuckoo's Nest notwithstanding). Help me out, what are some good ones? I've not seen Girl, Interrupted, nor do I wish to, really. Not even sure it counts. Ok, I lied - talking about it obviously helps - just thought of The Jacket, too. What a disappointment that was. Still can't think of good ones, really.

McGregor doing an American accent doesn't bother me *all* that much, though I'd prefer he keep his usual brogue. Colin Farrell should be banned from doing one, though (even if he was alright with it in Crazy Heart).

JacksSmirkingRevenge said...

I, like Big Mike, celebrate Michael Bol...er,I mean Martin Scorcese's whole catalog.

Fletch, certainly you have scene Goodfellas, which I consider his masterpiece and the best mobster movie ever.

Castor said...

I plan to see Shutter Island sometime next week. What I heard is that the first two third may seem a bit slow but the ending make it all worthy it. I'm pumped for it :)

Dreher Bear (...Where The Buffalo Roam) said...

I'm looking forward to seeing Shutter Island (hopefully) sometime tonight. If not tonight, I'll definitely try and make time during the week. I would love to see Ghost Writer as well, but it's not playing in my local cinema :(.

Fletch said...

JSR - yep, seen GoodFellas, and I like it, I just don't consider it the masterpiece that everyone else does. I'm on record as (controversially) liking Casino more.

Saw Shutter Island. Not very impressed with it. Good mood, great setting, good acting...obvious story and better than other insane asylum fare like The Jacket. Also, neverendingly long.

whitney said...

I don't know that there are really any *good* ones...unless you're using the term really really lightly. I do like Girl, Interrupted. But I'm even more entranced by the really bad horror films that use asylums. When i watch them I know I'm wasting my time and that anyone who knew would lose all respect in me...I just can't help it.