Friday, January 13, 2012

Hollywood Movies Stink Up a Recent Flight for Me

Being a newish dad, I don't watch the sheer amount of movies I did when I was younger. So I either make sure most of what I see is award-worthy or at the other end of the spectrum and completely brain-dead fun.

Apparently, I'm not missing much out of Hollywood these days. And unfortunately, I only hit the mark of my requirements for three of the movies I watched on a recent really long flight.

Pathetically, the film that met those requirements was Bad Teacher. And when that is the pick of your film marathon, it inspires a big "oh boy."

That said, my expectations were low, and Bad Teacher was actually pretty enjoyable. Cameron Diaz was back near her It's a Shame About Mary level of hilarity, Jason Segal (see The Muppets and Forgetting Sarah Marshall) seems to be can't-miss these days, and Justin Timberlake was sufficient. Perhaps I was delirious towards the end of said long flight, but it seemed to actually be a pretty decent statement on the quality of many of our schools and some of the superficialities of our society in general.

Where the allure of the latest film version of the classic novel Jane Eyre lies, I don't know. I just didn't get the boring BBC production of this one. I think the main problem was that leads Mia Wasikowska and Michael Fassbender had no dramatic range whatsoever, despite the next-big-thing status of each. This is one of the few movies I've seen lately that was almost routinely adored by critics but shrugged off by me.

But the movie I was really disappointed by was Super 8. It seemed like this would be Stand By Me-like, with a bunch of unproven kids steering a Steven Spielberg and J.J. Abrams (of Lost) production. It starts promisingly, and then a massive train explosion that the group witnesses seems like it will take the story in interesting directions. But then it dragged so slowly towards a completely forgettable conclusion that badly wanted to be E.T. but was more like a SyFy Channel show that gets cancelled after the pilot. I can't begin to understand what Hollywood was thinking with Super 8.

Bad Teacher: *** out of ***** stars
Jane Eyre: ** out of ***** stars
Super 8: *1/2 out of ***** stars


  1. Dude, I was really feelin you until I got the last paragraph ... Super 8 was the most refreshing movie to me this year. The movie was not about the alien monster but about the kids. 4.5/5 stars.

    One genre of movie that I am sick and tired of is the horror/documentary. It should have stopped after Blair Witch. Some friends to watch Devil Inside, and it ended with a reference to a web site to learn more about what happens. WTF? So I almost fell asleep watching an hour and a half commercial?

    Surprise movie: Bride's maids

    I'm not even going to pretend to watch Bad Teacher, The Hangover 2 or Sherlock Holmes.

  2. Jack,
    I really thought I would like Super 8 a lot. Right up my alley. But there were so many things I thought the filmmakers did wrong and it just rubbed me the wrong way. By contract, I watched E.T. last night for the first time in about 15 years. It is one of my 5 favorite movies of all time, no doubt. It is the one movie that tears me up inside every time I watch it. May never be topped in the sci-fi genre.
    And I agree with you fully about horror/documentaries.
    Loved Bridesmaids. You can google my review here on the site.

  3. There are not so many good comedies anymore :/

  4. It is true that good comedies are hard to find. Good movies, in general, are hard to find. The good news is that there are simply more movies, which means that good ones still exist, it just takes some digging.