Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Movie time!

Believe it or not, I actually saw three movies recently, two with Val, and one actually in a movie theater! I think this doubles the number for 2010 thus far, so bonus points for us!

Of course, the movie that I saw in in the dark, chilly environs with the big screen was PIRANHA 3D. Why? Because I could go see it with my father- and sis-in-law, get some laughs and enjoy a couple of relaxing hours. I'm not sure I got that, what with all the squirming and hands over my face.

You may say that this makes me a wuss. I hope not. What I was hoping for was a campy movie in the spirit of "Snakes on a Plane" and "Freddy vs. Jason," and I think the movie delivers on that, but I think marriage and fatherhood has tempered my enthusiasm for such flicks.

I certainly can't blame the cast. Richard Dreyfuss even opens up the movie in a role similar to Drew Barrymore in "Scream," a big name with a bloody demise to get you in the mood. From there we get Elisabeth Shue as the sheriff of a small lake town that is overrun with drunk college kids on spring break and fish with a big bite that cause almost as much mayhem. Ving Rhames is her partner, and Christopher Lloyd shows up as essentially the same wacky character he's played since Doc in "Back to the Future." There are a couple of teens that try to look like Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens of "High School Musical," and Jerry O'Connell is a skeevy "Girls Gone Wild'-type.

What ensues is a lot of blood and a lot of breasts. A lot more of both than expected, actually. Please don't tell my preacher that I went, especially since we started a three-year commitment called Men's Fraternity on Wednesday nights that probably wouldn't approve!

- THE INFORMANT!: While my in-laws watched Cooper, Val and I relaxed with some Netflix movies two Saturdays ago. The reviews were largely positive, it was nominated for awards, the trailer was hilarious and Steven Soderbergh directed. Lots of pluses. Unfortunately it didn't deliver the goods for a movie that has an exclamation point in the title.

Matt Damon stars as a corn exec-turned FBI whistle-blower at a major manufacturer that is fixing prices on a corn ingredient. Scott Bakula comes in as the FBI agent in charge, accompanied by partner Joel McHale of "The Soup," which is one of many interesting casting decisions. Many of the serious roles are in fact taken by comedians such as McHale, Tony Hale, "30 Rock"'s Scott Adsit, "Best Week Ever"'s Paul Thompkins, and "Back to the Future"'s Thomas Wilson.

I think it's part of an effort - including some very goofy music that swells in the weirdest places - to make this a cornball (no pun intended) flick. Instead of being comedic, however, it feels very scatter shot and uneven as it bounces from different places and times; we couldn't tell how the movie got from one place to the next much of the time.

- VALENTINE'S DAY: The prettiest people in the world have some relationship problems. They're just like us! In what seems more like a love letter to L.A., many many folks' lives intersect a la "Love Actually" or "Playing By Heart".

Some stories are sad, others ooey gooey and uplifting. Of course, it all ends in lovey dovey goodness, and that's all we want. But seriously, Jamie Foxx and Kathy Bates are working shifts at a TV station from 7a to 11p? Unlikely!

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