Friday, September 15, 2006

Opening in Dallas, 09/15

by Brian
Half Nelson (trailer): Been waiting for this for a while, since Kevin Smith and Richard Roeper both agreed that this is one of the best films in a decade.

Jesus Camp (trailer): Directors Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady last made the excellent The Boys of Baraka, and now explore youth evangelist camps. The film got some controversy, possibly contrived, when Magnolia Pictures asked Michael Moore not to screen it at his film festival, and he did anyway.

The Last Kiss (trailer): I’ll probably end up seeing this; don’t really care one way or the other.

The Black Dahlia (trailer): Here’s a question: is The Untouchables actually any good? Universal has been constantly referencing that movie and Scarface in the marketing for Dahlia. I’ve seen (and only marginally liked) Scarface, but haven’t caught up with Untouchables yet.

Gridiron Gang (trailer): The People’s Eyebrow returns, looking a bit more stern than in the ads for Doom but not really any less foolish. At one point I thought that The Rock might be an OK actor under the right circumstances, but now I seriously doubt it. Not that we’ll ever find out anyway.

Everyone’s Hero (trailer): The animated film Christopher Reeve was working on when he passed away. As such, I’d like to be supportive, but it really doesn’t look very good.

Queens (trailer): I think I’m just going to automatically skip every movie from Regent Releasing from here on out. I couldn’t tell you when the last time was that they came around with something that didn’t look like direct-to-video crap.

Also this week, three more movies in the Almodóvar retrospective: The Flower of My Secret, All About My Mother, and Talk to Her. Already seen Talk to Her, so Mother is the priority.


Blogger Jackrabbit Slim said...

Half Nelson has been playing in my neighborhood for two or three weeks, haven't seen it yet. I'm away this weekend, but I may see it next weekend, instead of The Black Dahlia, which is getting consistently panned.

9/15/2006 02:02:00 PM  
Blogger Count Olaf said...

That trailer for Jesus Camp broke my heart in some ways. Seeing the kids with tears rolling down their faces...i have tears now (not of joy). This is going to be a tough one to watch, but I definitely need to see it. I had never heard of it until now, so thank you for mentioning it.

9/15/2006 02:14:00 PM  
Blogger jaydro said...

The Untouchables is good, or at least it was the multiple times I saw it in the '80's. It could be fall under the curse of the '80's films I liked in the '80's--most of them seem to suck now. But the Ennio Morricone soundtrack is a classic--that's indisputable.

What gets me is Scarface. I saw it on opening night on the biggest screen in Philadelphia, and while I enjoyed it, I thought it was excessive and instantly mockable. I've never seen it again. Who knew it would grow to the stature it has now attained, and seemingly for all the wrong reasons?

I like James Ellroy (despite being really put-off by him at a reading, and only realizing later that it's partly an act he does), really dug both the book and movie L.A. Confidential and especially liked his memoir My Dark Places, but I haven't read his early novel The Black Dahlia, and I'm curious if in the film they use the theory so convincingly expounded upon in James Ellroy's Feast of Death. And if you've seen the real Black Dahlia crime scene/autopsy photos, you may find yourself cringing in anticipation of how gruesome it's going to be in this movie....

9/15/2006 02:27:00 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

I totally know what you mean, Count. In some ways the trailer seems like a put on - if SNL did a skit about kids at Jesus camp, would it look any different - but I know how well the directors did with the kids in Baraka. I don't know what to expect from Jesus Camp, really, but I'm certain it will be authentic.

9/15/2006 02:56:00 PM  
Blogger LesterG said...

I haven't seen the Untouchables in well over a decade. It was a fun ride at the time, but I can't vouch for how well it's aged.

My best bet this week: Sixteen Candles showing at Midnight today and Saturday at the Criterion in New Haven.

9/15/2006 03:57:00 PM  
Blogger Nick said...

the Ennio Morricone soundtrack is a classic--that's indisputable.

Strange, first thing I thought of when I thought of the movie. Dururum. Dururum-dururum. Dururum. Dururum-dururum. Wheo-wheoh-wheoooooh. Dururum-dururum.

I also remember that last death, one of my favorite in films. Robert De Niro being very funny as Capone, in a good way. That shootout on the bridge. The elevator scene. And Sean Connery's classic diatribe on how you handle violent criminals ("put one of theirs in the morgue!").

It's a very satisfying film, and the only reason I don't entirely dismiss DePalma. Saw it again a couple of years ago on dvd. Still looked beautiful.

9/15/2006 04:38:00 PM  
Blogger Nick said...

And James Ellroy wrote one of my favorite thrillers of all time, The Big Nowhere, but Dahlia still looks like crap. I'll wait for the dvd.

9/15/2006 04:45:00 PM  
Blogger Professor Wagstaff said...

I saw 'The Untouchables' for the first time in years on pay-TV recently.

It's overrated as it has many simplistic and cartoonish elements, but as a piece of entertainment it holds up well

But it does have significant weaknesses. Whatever Elliot Ness was like in real life, he couldn't have been as boring as Kevin Costner's performance makes him out to be.

9/15/2006 09:28:00 PM  
Blogger jaydro said...

In later life Ness was National Director of the Social Protection Program during World War II. He wrote an anti-venereal disease pamphlet I have stashed away somewhere....

9/16/2006 02:27:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The reviews of The Black Dahlia are pretty much accurate. It has mood and style in spades, but a story that borders on parody of Raymond Chandler. Warning--watching this film may induce uncontrollable giggling.

Jackrabbit Slim, writing from home and not able to remember my sign-in.

9/24/2006 09:49:00 AM  

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