Archive for June, 2012
We were complaining that no new movies have opened in the last two weeks. (We saw Prometheus thrice.) Then today all the theatres started showing The Amazing Spider-Man and nothing else. Then we watched it because we had no choice. Then we shut up.
Holy crap The Amazing Spider-Man IS amazing.
1. We thought it was too soon after the Sam Raimis. We thought there were too many superhero movies. And we walked out on director Marc Webb’s previous movie 500 Days of Summer (Too sweet). Therefore it is useful to have Zero Expectations.
2. Andrew Garfield is brilliant. He’s about half the circumference of Chris Hemsworth’s wrist but he carries this movie on his skinny ass and rubber lips.
Interesting that in his two highest-profile roles Garfield knows a vital algorithm.
3. Emma Stone’s Gwen Stacy is the first superhero girlfriend we would hang out with. Most of them we just want to slap. We especially like how she doesn’t get melodramatic about the turn of events.
4. The narrative is coherent and the characters are recognizable human beings. In the superhero universe, Spider-Man is the one who must constantly pay the human cost of possessing special powers. The people he loves keep dying on him or leaving. The movie gets this.
5. Instead of having Uncle Ben and Aunt May deliver dramatic monologues about Peter’s behavior, the director shows us the behavior that they interpret as teen rebellion. Too many filmmakers forget that their job is to show, not tell, and by ‘show’ we don’t mean ‘show how big your dick is’.
6. No one says that line about how great power comes with great responsibility, but it is understood. We like how they snuck in the other catchphrase, “Who am I?” Very clever, writers.
7. The dialogue is cheese-free and there is great chemistry between the leads. When tragedy strikes the movie delivers an emotional wallop without wallowing in cheap sentimentality.
8. Geographically-sound action scenes and solid interior logic. We have to see it again in IMAX 3D.
9. This movie makes Christopher Nolan look like Michael Bay with talent. It is ambitious but not self-important.
10. Marc Webb can claim that it is his destiny to make Spider-Man.
– Campbell Scott. Come back to the movies, we miss you! (Yeah, we had a Singles fixation.)
– Heyyy Rhys Ifans can be handsome.
– Is that C. Thomas Howell?? It’s C. Thomas Howell!
– Good role for Dennis Leary.
– They go to a science high school, yay!
– It’s Stan. Wave at Stan! He helped to raise us. (We should file a class suit haha.)
Breaking news: Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes are divorcing. The search committee will meet shortly.
This week’s recommendations are from Jomari, whom we kept running into at restaurants and bookstores carrying books we had read, were reading, or were planning to read. After many months of this we ended up talking about books, and now we consult Jomari for his expert opinion.
1. The Family Fang by Kevin Wilson: Two children growing up with performance artist parents. Life as Art as Life—insane, but in a good way.
2. The Tragedy of Arthur by Arthur Phillips: Erudite, compelling and almost too clever, and there is an undiscovered Shakespeare play at the end. Or not.
3. At Last by Edward St. Aubyn’s: The latest in the Patrick Melrose saga. So brilliant and brittle, it wounds.
4. Harbour by John Lindqvist: The latest Nordic noir-chiller from the author of Let the Right One In. Atmospheric, well written.
Php995 at NBS. Read our review here.
5. Death Comes to Pemberley by P.D.James: Death intrudes on Ms. Bennett’s and Mr. Darcy’s ‘happily ever after’.
6. Bring Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel: We know how the tragic Anne Boleyn ends after three years, but the author brings us into the middle of Tudor intrigue, elegantly evoking power plays and the role of Henry VIII’s libido on the shaping of English religion and politics.
When the human player in the video above tries to change his shape at the last minute, it still can’t fool the robot at the game, which is called janken in Japan. Its timing is so precise that it never shows its hand too early, and it wins 100 per cent of the time.
– from Meg Ryan atrocity based on The Shop Around the Corner. Even the most blecch movies by Ephron had some good lines.
Nora Ephron’s “bouquet of freshly-sharpened pencils”
Boredom, it turns out, is adaptive as a transient state, but dangerous as a chronic condition. In 1986, psychologists designed a test, known as the Boredom Proneness Scale (BPS), as a way of distinguishing between those who suffer transient boredom from those who suffer chronic boredom:
The statements to follow can be answered using a 7-point scale — from ‘1’ (highly disagree), to ‘4’ (neutral), to ‘7’ (highly agree).
1. It is easy for me to concentrate on my activities.
2. Frequently when I am working I find myself worrying about other things.
3. Time always seems to be passing slowly.
4. I often find myself at “loose ends”, not knowing what to do.
5. I am often trapped in situations where I have to do meaningless things.
6. Having to look at someone’s home movies or travel slides bores me tremendously.
7. I have projects in mind all the time, things to do.
8. I find it easy to entertain myself.
9. Many things I have to do are repetitive and monotonous.
10. It takes more stimulation to get me going than most people.