Monday, March 01, 2010

Some Movies

Some brief comments on a few movies we’ve seen recently, including a couple that fall into the Movies I’ve Missed (Until Now) category:

THE BOONDOCK SAINTS – From 1999, this action movie that has developed a cult following is a crime yarn about a couple of working class Irish brothers from Boston who have a run-in with the Russian mob. After surviving that, they decide to become vigilantes and clean up the town by killing all the criminals they can find, leading organized crime to unleash a legendary hitman on them. Extremely bloody and so over-the-top that it verges on silly at times, it’s also surprisingly funny in places and the action scenes are very good. I can only give it a qualified recommendation, though. Fans of movies like SHOOT ’EM UP might like it, but I suspect it’s too goofy for most people.

MIDNIGHT MADNESS – Another teen comedy from the Eighties that we missed somehow, and in this case, it probably should have remained a movie that I missed. It’s about several teams of college kids running around town looking for clues in a game called the Great All-Nighter. The star is David Naughton, who parleyed his singing and dancing role in a series of commercials for Dr Pepper into a short-lived movie and TV career. Badly acted and not funny, this movie is notable only because of the presence of Michael J. Fox (his film debut) and a cameo by Paul Reubens. Don’t go looking for it.

MY LIFE IN RUINS – I didn’t really mean to watch two Nia Vardalos movies in the space of a week, it just sort of worked out that way. This is a lightweight but fairly enjoyable romantic comedy that finds her working as a tour guide in Greece, leading around a group of eccentric tourists that includes Richard Dreyfuss, Harland Williams, and Rachel Dratch. The ubiquitous Ian Gomez plays a lecherous Greek hotelkeeper. Hijinks ensue, punctuated by the occasional poignant moment. Nia finds true love with the driver of her tour bus. It’s better than I’m making it sound. Worth watching.

The best of the bunch, THE INVENTION OF LYING, is an odd little comedy written by and starring Ricky Gervais. The concept is that the world is exactly as we know it, except that the human race never evolved the ability to tell a lie. So everyone tells the exact truth, no matter what, leading to a near-constant stream of awkward moments. Until the character played by Gervais suddenly discovers the ability to lie, which winds up changing the entire world. This one is smart and very funny in places, touching in others. And it has the added bonus of having Jennifer Garner in it, who, like Sela Ward, is universally beloved by guys the world over.

7 comments:

Bill Crider said...

I saw THE BOONDOCK SAINTSa few years ago and did a blog post that's at the link, assuming that the link works. A big assumption when I'm trying to create one.

Juri said...

I meant to buy this rather recently on cheap VHS, but then I asked some friends of mine who said the film sucks. Reading James's and Bill's (yes, the link works!) posts I rather regret my decision.

Steve Oerkfitz said...

Hated Boondock Saints. A poor Pulp Fiction wannabe. Check out a documentary called Overnight which is about the director Troy Duffy. One of the most obnoxious people on the planet.

pattinase (abbott) said...

The only one I've seen is The Invention of Lying-which I liked well enough although I think it was kind of similar to the Jim Carrey movie. I thought his first movie Ghost Town (?) was pretty funny, too.

James Reasoner said...

I thought Gervais's GHOST TOWN was pretty good, too.

Bruce said...

Yeah I'm with Steve O check out the documentry Overnight. Just watch as Troy Duffy is given free reign only to come off as one of the biggest asses in film history.

Whats even worse is that he made a sequel.

D.K. Soames said...

I feel so out of touch, I haven't even heard of these. I guess I AM out of touch. I find as time goes by (I hear a song) I limit my exposure to what I can reasonably watch, read, do. But there is so much....