Archive for the ‘7.5’ Category

INSIDE MOVES (1980)

Posted: March 18, 2011 in 7.5, DVD, Home, New, Tally

Date viewed:  2/13/11

Venue:  Home (DVD)

Richard Donner has made some really good movies over the last 30 years, but he’s also kind of hit-or-miss.  INSIDE MOVES demonstrates his better movies haven’t been accidents, because this is a story that easily could’ve been boring and/or overly sappy, but instead it’s pretty enthralling.  There is some flat-out wonderful character work by David Morse and John Savage here.

Rating:  7.5

THE AMERICAN (2010)

Posted: March 8, 2011 in 2010, 7.5, Blu-Ray, Home, New, Tally

Date viewed:  2/11/11

Venue:  Home (Blu-Ray)

I heard this was more meditative than high-octane, and that definitely is the case.  There are maybe 2 or 3 actions scenes, and the rest is straight character study, but it’s good character study.  Clooney is one of those rare actors who can entertain without doing much of anything, and even though the script tests that theory (externally), THE AMERICAN is still beautiful to look at and extremely satisfying.

Rating:  7.5

CALVAIRE (2004)

Posted: February 17, 2011 in 2000s, 7.5, DVD, Home, New, Tally

Date viewed:  2/9/11

Venue:  Home (DVD)

Belgian horror, it turns out, is very similar to French horror (surprise!) — evidently all French-speakers are just as terrified of the countryside as Americans.  But CALVAIRE is better than most domestic movies of the same ilk.  Somehow, director Fabrice Du Welz manages a comedic undercurrent that pulls at the viewer during even the most horrific scenes.  The humor helps to give the movie a sense of purpose that is lost in most bumpkin horror I’ve seen.

Rating:  7.5

EASY A (2010)

Posted: February 8, 2011 in 2010, 7.5, Blu-Ray, Home, New, Tally

Date viewed:  2/2/11

Venue:  Home (Blu-Ray)

Very sneaky, makers of EASY A, very sneaky indeed.  You think you can just throw in a few clips of my favorite teen ’80s movies along with good writing and funny performances and expect me to like it?  Well yeah, that actually works fairly well.  A throw-back to John Hughes movies and CAN’T BUY ME LOVE (but mostly CAN’T BUY ME LOVE), EASY A might just be the most entertaining new release I’ve seen over the last few months.

Rating:  7.5

MAGNIFICENT SEVEN (1960)

Posted: February 1, 2011 in 1960s, 7.5, DVD, Home, New, Tally

Date viewed:  1/30/11

Venue:  Home (DVD)

It’s strange how they used to put effort into remakes.  Even though THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN is a little “dumbed down,” in terms of the characters (when compared to SEVEN SAMURAI), it is still a supremely entertaining film.

I was surprised to find Charles Bronson had more charisma and screen presence than his more revered fellow cast members, including Steve McQueen (whose appeal outside of his looks is still lost on me) and Yul Brynner.

TiMER (2009)

Posted: January 28, 2011 in 2000s, 7.5, Home, New, NWI, Tally

Date viewed:  1/25/11

Venue:  Home (NWI)

Putting a sci-fi twist on a romantic comedy is just about the only way you’ll get me to watch one.  TiMER does this, and does a damned good job too.  It’s clearly very low budget, but the actors are all serviceable to above-average, and the movie actually looks nice as well.  Like all worthwhile sci-fi, TiMER asks questions and doesn’t give easy answers.

Rating:  7.5

ATONEMENT (2007)

Posted: January 24, 2011 in 2000s, 7.5, Blu-Ray, Home, New, Tally

Date viewed:  1/22/11

Venue:  Home (Blu-Ray)

This was so close to being a great movie.  The first part — up until the life-changing event — had me hypnotized.  I loved watching these characters interact, and the typewriter score was one of the most unique, and enjoyable, I’ve heard.  And then the thing happens, and then the war scenes.  The last half isn’t bad, but I would have preferred the first 30 minutes stretched over the course of two hours.  Maybe that’s the point.

Rating:  7.5

FOUR LIONS (2010)

Posted: January 10, 2011 in 2010, 7.5, 8.0, DVD, Home, New, Tally

Date viewed:  1/9/11

Venue:  Theater

FOUR LIONS is another movie hyped by the Austin folk — this one deservedly so.  I need to watch it again to pick up on all of the comedy (subtitles will help), but even missing out on some of the jokes it’s easy to tell it’s a remarkable movie.  Remarkable both from the standpoint it got made at all and that it’s so effective.  Funny, sad, and scary.

Rating:  7.5

ADVENTURELAND (2009)

Posted: January 10, 2011 in 2000s, 7.5, Blu-Ray, Home, Previously seen, Tally

Date viewed:  1/9/11

Venue:  Home (Blu-Ray)

ADVENTURELAND is a bit of a lightweight, but it’s one of those movies that keeps me smiling throughout.  Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart are both likable enough, but it’s the supporting cast and the writing that win the movie.  It’s interesting that it doesn’t really differentiate between the teenagers and those in their early 20s — I’d say that’s accurate.

Rating:  7.5

TRON: LEGACY (2010)

Posted: January 10, 2011 in 2010, 7.5, New, Tally, Theater

Date viewed:  1/8/11

Venue:  Theater

Maybe it’s a case of lowered expectations, but I thought TRON: LEGACY was pretty damned cool.  Yes, the story is kind of an afterthought, and probably doesn’t even make sense to the writers, but I was completely captivated by the world of Tron.  It offered some truly unique visuals, the characters were all moderately entertaining, and the action direction was outstanding — that’s really all I could hope for.

Rating:  7.5