Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Duplicity 3.24

The wonderful duo from Closer team up as spies who are set to dupe the companies they "work" for. The chemistry between Clive Owen and Julia Roberts is no secret and it simply sizzles in this movie. The film cuts from present to past, but thankfully all the past shots are shot in different cities, where the present is filmed mainly in NYC. It made it easy for this blonde to keep up.

Paul Giamatti (Sideways) and Tom Wilkinson (Michael Clayton) play the competing head honchos. Roberts works for Wilkinson's company, but actually is a mole working for Paul Giamatti's company. Owen works for the spy group, which uses Roberts tips, Giamatti hired to scoop the newest product news to come out of Wilkinson's company. Keeping up?

The story line grabs you in too. As someone who rarely thinks during movies, I found myself completely bewildered at every turn in the story. It was a feeling reminiscent to Ocean's 11, 12, 13 movies, that "Man how did they pull that off?!" feeling.

I learned three reasons why I would make a spy despite the fact I love wearing black and trench coats:
1) When I lie, I smile. Thus, cover blown at being a mole.
2) When I see people I know, I either a) run to hug them b) smile or c) awkwardly laugh. I could never carry on a conversation with someone I "didn't" know.
3) I am not observant. All the little clues placed over the city and having to keep your cool when you're being not for me.

That said, did leave the theatre feeling like someone was trailing me. I kept looking over my shoulder after exiting the theatre with the 8 other people in the film. I'm sure if Clive Owen was tailing me, I wouldn't have been speed walking to the car.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Sunshine Cleaning 3.21

I don't think this movie could have come out at a better time (with the current state of things). Rose (Amy Adams) is a single mom struggling to stay afloat and take care of her kid, all while battling an affair with married Mac (Steve Zahn). You feel pity for Rose seeing her so attached to someone who's clearly not available. I'm sure most girls out there will relate to these feelings and kick themselves for not kicking the habit (or guy) earlier.

A standout performance is delivered by Nora (Emily Blunt --Devil Wears Prada). Nora, Rose's sister, lives at home with their father, unable to hold down a job and clearly not a fan of her life. I found myself identifying with her throughout the movie...unsure of where exactly you belong in the world and what you're supposed to do with your life.

So Rose proposes the idea of opening a crime scene clean-up operation (enter Sunshine Cleaning) for her and Nora. Seeing these two walk into a trailer, gasping for air and tying shirts around their heads to keep out the putrid fumes was hilarious. I found myself holding my nose in the theatre as if I was standing in this dump with them. While some of the movie is laughs, they clean up after people have died, so it does get a little emotional. Rose and Nora walk into homes to make everything better in others lives while ignoring their own hazardous spills in life.

Managed to cry for the third time in a movie theatre [others were Pearl Harbor (any movie that "kills" off Ben Affleck and Josh Hartnett...depressing) and Curly Sue (the envelope scene was just too much!)]. Wasn't full blown crying mind you. Just a few tears trickling down the cheeks. I felt way too involved in this movie.

The movie does have a little feel of Little Miss Sunshine as they share the New Mexico location, same Grandpa (Alan Arkin), same Grandpa/Grandkid relationship and the driving of a van. Other than that, two different messes that clean-up nicely.

I Love You, Man 3.20

Jason Segel runs away with most of the movie. His uncomfortable advances in Knocked Up made him memorable and in this movie, he finally gets all the screen time he deserves. Look at his outfits he wears (along with the footwear) and just try not to laugh. Watching him made me feel like I was hanging out with the fellas from Kansas and seeing his "Man Cave" showed the fact just because you leave the fraternity house doesn't mean your domain is gone.

Another stellar performance in the movie comes from Jamie Pressly and Jon Favreau. I'll admit, I've had a major crush on Favreau since Rudy and was ecstatic to see him casted in this movie. Rashida Jones and Pressly are friends throughout the film and Favreau is married to Pressly. This couple pairing is all over the place especially when Pressly gives a description of Favreau when chatting with her friends. Their time in the film is limited, but they sure do deliver some laughs when they're up there.

A great film to see with anyone (family members included...saw it with the brother and only felt awkward/uncomfortable/wanted to disappear a few times).

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Watchmen 3.11

A movie to see. Watchmen is set in 1985 America, where costumed heros are becoming less of everyday life and more characters in a comic book. When an unexpected event occurs to one of the former members of the Minute Men, the troops are forced to reunite to bring humanity back to safety.
Not only is the plot line more adventerous and deep than I had expected it to be, but the cast is full of upcoming actors. All guys will fall in lust over Malin Akerman's character in her tight latex suit and long brown hair. I was nervous knowing that she was the sister from 27 dresses, but she came out shining as Silk Spectre II. Hardly an upcoming actor, but I still love Billy Crudup as Dr. Manhattan. Girls watchout, even though he is blue and shining, you will get to see the goods a few times! To name a few more there are: Matthew Goode from Brideshead Revisited and Match Point, Patrick Wilson from The Phantom of the Opera and Jeffrey Dean Morgan as the well known Denny from Grey's Anatomy.
Lastly, I would love to meet the people behind the sound and visual effects department. You will know what I mean when you see the movie. Even if you should decide not to see Watchmen, download the soundtrack. The scene where Unforgettable by Nat King Cole is playing, I was in awe.

Free Redbox Movies on Wednesday

Just a heads up. Every Wednesday you can go to Redbox's blog to get a code for a free movie that day. Pretty awesome considering some gems have come out recently with "Happy-Go-Lucky", "Boy in the Striped Pajamas" and "Milk". And since they goofed one week, the promotion will last the first week into April. You just have to check the blog every Wednesday for the code.

3.10 Wendy & Lucy

A tale about a girl, trying to get to Alaska with her dog. She then ends up losing her dog and spends the rest of the movie trying to find her.

Deja Vu:
-Reminiscent of "Castaway" as Wendy (Michelle Williams) seeks solace and sanity through her companion Lucy (a la Tom Hanks and Wilson). Also a spark of "Into the Wild" with the whole escaping for life in Alaska.

Williams is exceptionally poignant in this film. I sat there thinking really, the girl from Dawson's Creek? She takes on the role of homeless Wendy extremely well. I loved the humming throughout the film; it was so real. I know I sure do hum when I'm walking around aimlessly while planning life in my head.

Really loved the fact no one comes to her rescue so to speak. She befriends a few people who help her out, but mostly she's on her own and she knows it and she wears that fear so well on her face. It seemed so real. One particular scene, which blew me out of the water, is where Wendy is sleeping in the woods and comes across a man. I sat there bewildered wondering how in the hell she could keep her composure.

When the movie ended, I wanted more. Not necessarily more answers, but more glimpses into the life of Wendy. It was like an hour and a half movie so maybe that had something to do with it; we're all used to sitting there for at least two hours.

Good previews: Sin Nombre (directed by the "Y tu Mama Tambien" boys), O'Horten (subtitled, Lisa won't enjoy it)

3.10 Two Lovers

I have been dying to see Joaquin's last "film" since he announced his "retirement." This movie did not deliver like I thought it would.

It's a tale of Leonard, desperately trying to escape his past while living with his parents. Leonard has his moments and clever one liners, but most of the time, you just sit there wondering where in the hell does he come up with this stuff? And should Leonard take a clue from "He's Just Not That Into You," it would have solved a lot of problems for him. 

Gwenyth is okay in it. Nothing to write home about. She's borderline wet blanket. Vinessa Shaw's character is passive yet agressive, strong yet vulnerable. I enjoyed her camera time on screen as well as Leonard's mother. Leonard's mother is the kind of mom most of us out there probably have. The one who peers under your door to see what you're doing and tries to give you the benefit of the doubt while believing any tale you throw her way.

Joaquin's character Leonard was just too much for me. Too dependent, too suffocating and unstable. Kind of like his image at the current moment.