Friday, June 06, 2008

Movie news

I've bumped up against an idea several times now which probably means I need to do something with it. At our last diocesan staff meeting we were talking about increasing our usage of video (YouTube, etc). Our communications director had been to a meeting with Father Matthew Moretz from Rye, NY. If you've not seen "Father Matthew Presents" it's worth your time to take a look. Check out the "Father Matthew Channel" at YouTube. Serious subjects approached with a little tongue in cheek. It's been a fairly amazing response. In less than two years his channel shows just shy of 50,000 views.

So here I sit with a degree in Theater, decades of radio work, fully comfortable with public speaking and script writing and an office full of cameras and video editting software. Hmmmm, think someone is nudging me a little bit? So I have to think about what that may mean for me.

In real movie news let me finally get around to my review of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. First let me say I enjoyed it. I have a great appreciation for the tradition that Spielberg and Lucas are honoring with this series. It's the old movie serials of the 1930s through the 1950's. It's action, adventure, outrageous villians and equally outrageous escapes. And this one does all of that. While not as good as either Raiders of the Lost Ark or Last Crusade it is better than Temple of Doom. ToD always suffered from over cuteness (Short Round) and a female lead with whom there was ZERO chemistry (Kate Capshaw). The biggest negative in this one is Cate Blanchett (maybe it's a Kate/Cate thing) as the villain. She's simply awful. One dimensional, flat and uninteresting. Really bad.

I've been interested in the very negative response from a lot of Indy fans especially with regard to the aliens from outer space. Somehow the complaint seems to be that this makes the movie less "believable". Which only makes me wonder if some folks aren't taking this whole thing a little seriously. Indy is older and wiser (he gets it right with Marion this time!) The script (which is a little uneven) tips it hat to many of the top icons of the time period, the 1950s. The Bomb, motorcycle gangs and UFOs. These movies aren't about believability, they're about over the top fun. And this one delivers. Plus they seem to be setting up for a possible baton pass to the next generation. We'll see if Shia LeBouef can carry the franchise.

Double Happiness This is a neat "little movie" from Canada. I have this whole category of "little movies". They're not made with a big budget, they usually have lesser known actors or actors better known for supporting roles in lead roles. And they are often wonderful discoveries. "Double Happiness" is the story of a Chinese-Canadian woman trying to find the balance between the new world life she wants and the old world life of her family. It's not always easy, it's often funny and it was fully worth the 87 minutes of run time. The star is Sandra Oh, best known from her role on TV's "Grays Anatomy". I'm reminded of my other favorite "little movie" Crossing Delancy

Ok that's it for now. Gotta figure out my own video calling.


No comments: