Pretty much everyone with a computer and a URL has weighed in on the Alito nomination, leaving little space for an amateur wonk like myself. So instead, I’m going to focus on what I’m good at: babbling about film.
Only two films! One of these is Jarhead, with a pretty fantastic cast, and a director whose previous work hasn’t done a whole lot for me, but even so I’m kinda looking forward to it, thanks to a really kickass trailer. My one fear is that Will, a man whose good taste in cinema is unparalleled, didn’t really like it. So we’ll see.
The other film this week is Disney’s first stab at CG animation, Chicken Little. I think you’d have to be a movie exec to think that the reason a film like Finding Nemo outgrosses a film like Treasure Planet is the animation, and not something like the fucking script. I might see this if Doom is sold out, or something like that.
“A domestic drama version of Spellbound!” That must have been a boozy pitch meeting. At any rate, Bee Season, and sometimes you just know a film is going to suck in your bones. Like a storm coming.
Zathura, a sci-fi retread of Jumanji, looks simply dreary for anyone who’s not a ten-year-old boy (hell, did ten year old boys even like Jumanji?). Derailed could go anywhere: Aniston makes me unhappy, but Owen makes me very happy indeed. The trailer is cool, too. But I have a premonition that this film could not possibly have a good third act. I’m cautiously optimistic about Get Rich or Die Tryin’, which looks like it might have that whole 8 Mile thing without 8 Mile‘s sin of being…how can I put this…a fucking movie about fucking Eminem.
The two biggest release of November, vying against each other? Okay by me. In this corner: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, which looks from the trailer to follow the Prisoner of Azkaban mold, rather than the tepid first two. But at 2.5 hours, I have no idea whether there will even be the semblance of a coherent plot.
In the other corner: Walk the Line, this year’s “beloved dead singer” biopic. I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m positively giddy: Joaquin Phoenix looks to be perfect as Johnny Cash, and it’s the sort of “bad boy makes good” story that leads to the best of this admittedly benighted genre.
25.11.2005 – Thanksgiving weekend
Crowded: I’ll start with the film nobody is going to see, Just Friends. Then, the Usher vehicle In the Mix, which will not survive in a busy weekend with Get Rich or Die Tryin’ still pecking at the urban audience (because as we all know, there can only be one film with a black lead in theaters at a time. We don’t know that? That’s just the studios? My bad). The Ice Harvest looks like the best John Cusack movie in years, but will lose the comedy audience to the appalling looking Yours, Mine & Ours (the worst trailer in current release). For the art houses, there’s the high-minded liberalia of Syriana (George Clooney with bitchin’ “insane hobo” beard), and another fucking version of Pride & Prejudice, which will suffer due to the fact that everyone who likes the book enough to see a filmed version has already seen the BBC adaptation a dozen times.
Last and least, the weekend’s de facto champion: 2005’s entry in the “hack director making a crappy film from an awful musical” genre (last year’s): Rent, by Chris “Phone It In” Columbus, based on the most overrated Broadway musical of…well, ever, now that I sit and think of it.