Nathaniel R at The Film Experience has invited any and all interested parties to answer a series of questions about the Summer Movie Season That Was; being sort of addicted to form-based blog posts these days, and generally speaking a fan of Nathaniel’s various interactive blog experiments, I decided to toss out my own response.
Best Movie I Saw This Summer:
Bernie, which combines the clever-nasty cultural humor of mid-period Coens with the laconic observational cinema of Richard Linklater’s best work, got the McConaughey Express of 2012 off to a great start, and gave Jack Black his best role ever.
Thing I Actually Learned (at summer movie camp!):
That a teddy bear voiced by the insufferable Seth MacFarlane could be a more appealing CGI character than anyone in the Madagascar or Ice Age franchises.
Major Summer Crush:
Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone. Not even their characters in The Amazing Spider-Man. Just them, as people, in life. They are THE CUTEST IMAGINABLE.
Moment I ♥ So Much I Thought My Heart Would Burst:
Anne Hathaway switching from nervous waitress snooping around to flirty, self-possessed, awesomely dangerous thief in less than the blink of an eye, in The Dark Knight Rises.
Princess Merida, Katniss or Hawkeye?
Merida, for getting far and away the coolest and most accurate archery scene of any of the three, and having bitchin’ hair.
If Only “Hulk” Had Smashed…
The script for Lawless, wasting such a top-drawer cast, outstanding design, and one of the great long-lost genres on what ended up being a largely milquetoast period drama.
Mash-Up ~ Summer Movie Characters I’d Like to Introduce (and why):
The Queen from Snow White and the Huntsman and Bane from The Dark Knight Rises: she deserved a much better showcase for her scorched-earth villainy, and he deserved a better femme fatale girlfriend than the criminally under-written and mis-performed Talia al Ghul.
Rank the Magic Mike strippers:
1) Magic Mike (Channing Tatum)
2) Big Dick Richie (Joe Manganiello)
3) Dallas (Matthew McConaughey)
4) Ken (Matt Bomer)
5) The Kid (Alex Pettyfer)
6) Tito (Adam Rodriguez)
7) Tarzan (Kevin Nash)
At Least The Theater Was Air Conditioned:
So many choices, but I think I will go with Battleship, the most impersonal, narratively inert of the many dull-as-paste effects-driven blow-up-a-thons I watched this summer.
Best Old Movie I Saw For the First Time This Summer – Go Me!
Night and the City, a film noir of unusual bitterness directed by Jules Dassin, right before his exile to France. Astonishingly good work by Richard Widmark and drop-dead gorgeous chiaroscuro cinematography, with one of the most effectively nihilistic attitudes I’ve ever seen even from that supremely nihilistic genre, spiked with just enough genuine affection for the characters to make it all the harsher.
Line Reading That Stuck in My Head…
Captain America, in The Avengers:
“Barton: I want you on that roof, eyes on everything. Call out patterns and strays. Stark: you’ve got the perimeter. Anything gets more than three blocks out, you turn it back or you turn it to ash. Thor: you’ve gotta try and bottleneck that portal, slow them down. You’ve got the lightning – light the bastards up! You and me: we stay here on the ground, keep the fighting here. And Hulk: smash!”
(Yeah, it’s obvious. Sue me).