Sunday, June 12, 2005

Flick the Button

1. William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet: Yet another movie I thought I saw long ago, but now I think I started watching, got a headache from the editing and camera jiggling and turned it off. Stylistically bold, but also could use a whole lot of refinement. Some, no, probably most, of the actors and actresses are just a little bit short of having the credibility to pull off the respective roles. If this were a much bigger hit, I fear that there would've been a dozen lookalikes - 11 of which would suck royally, but one which would probably be incredible. Bonus points because Benvolio played the dude with the hilariously terrible wig in Hu$tle. Fired.

2. The Ladykillers: Original, Ealing Studios version. I haven't seen the Coen Bros. version. Here's the thing with this movie: while I thought it was funny, the old lady annoyed me so much that I was really rooting for them to murder her. Guinness is unrecognizable, and hilarious. The heist seems just too simple too. Of course, I like heist movies - and I don't know whether this really is one. Might be just because it wasn't what I was expecting, but fired.

3: Kind Hearts and Coronets: Fantastic. Funny, well acted, well staged, ingeniously written. One of the best comedies before 1975, but it's not madcap (and probably why I like it more than most early comedies). Clever, but doesn't browbeat you with it's cleverness. A gentlemanly comedy. Cadillac.

4: The Magnificent Seven: Not as good as Samurai, but tough and manly and cool and clever. I wasn't drawn in as much as some of the other westerns, but it's still really good. Even with all the badass machismo, Coburn stands out. Throughout the movie I was trying to place the actor who plays Lee. Of course, that'd be Pootie Tang. My brain works in mysterious ways. Steak knives.

5: Duck Soup: I'm not much of a fan of Marx Brothers films and I have trouble saying why. I think they age poorly, and maybe because so many comics have ripped them off, the original jokes seem stale. And I know that isn't a good reason, but it's my experience. All that said, this is much better than the others I've seen. It's shorter for one thing, and doesn't rely on annoyance humor as much. Plus, Groucho doesn't really have to play a romantic character, which he can't pull off. It's funny. Made me laugh a lot. Cadillac.