Tuesday, September 27, 2005

13 Going on 30

In a Nutshell: Very cute film, absolutely worth seeing! Jennifer Garner is delightful. Even given its similarities to Tom Hanks' Big, it still has its own charm and its own points to make.

Quick Plot: Jenna makes a wish on her 13th birthday, and wakes up the next day "30, flirty, and thriving." She remembers nothing of the last 17 years, and looks up an old middle school pal to try and figure out what she's been up to, and where she is going in life.

In Detail: I am so glad I finally saw this movie. People kept telling me I would like it, and they were right. Very cute, very sweet, very well done. I was totally amazed by Jennifer Garner. I don't know if this film reflects her personality at all, but I *totally* believed she was looking at the world as though she were 13. Even the nuances of being a "tween" in the 80s were perfectly carried (not surprising, since I guess she was that age in that era). I was also quite charmed by Mark Ruffalo, which makes me much more interested in seeing Just Like Heaven (aka the new Reese Witherspoon movie). A somewhat chick-flick, definitely feel good flick worth watching if you ever get the chance.

Will I Buy It? Perhaps. I don't buy a lot of these types of films, as they do start to get repetitive, and I'm not in the mood to rewatch them often, but this one certainly has potential. We'll see how many times I look into the DVD case and say "I wish we had 13 Going on 30" before I decide.

Red Eye

In a Nutshell: Very good for a B-movie; not bad for a regular movie even. Worth renting, but don't rush out and see it.

Quick Plot: Lisa just wants to get home to see her dad, and she's rather anxious after her flight to Miami has been seriously delayed. After numerous run-ins with a charming stranger, she discovers she is sitting next to him on the plane. It is not a happy accident. If she does not help him to assassinate a high profile politician before they land, he will have her father killed. But what can she do about it at 30,000 feet?

In Detail: First off, let me dispel what seems to be a common misconception about this film, which stems from a combination of the television commercial and the director. Yes, it is a Wes Craven film. Yes, it is a thriller. But NO, there are not *any* supernatural elements of any kind in this movie. I knew what the film was about before I saw the trailer, so I didn't think anything of it. It was only when my brother commented on being surprised about them just being "normal" people, and then my husband commenting that it "doesn't seem like your kind of movie" that I realized that the television commercial could be misleading if you didn't know the plot, particularly when it is a Craven film. No demons, no "monsters," just your average everyday wacko. ;) Having said all of that, the film is quite tense. Not as tense as War of the Worlds, but well done none the less. I was willing to suspend disbelief until the very end, when things started getting a little out of hand. And one particular element of the ending was quite disappointing. Other than that, I'd say it's worth seeing. Rent it, maybe, or catch it on television, but worth seeing none the less. A fun, brainless, rainy afternoon type flick.

Will I Buy It? No. Worth seeing once. That's about it.


In a Nutshell: Your typical B-movie. (Might have been better if I hadn't *just* seen the much better B-movie Red Eye.) Not great, not bad. Semi-tense, had some humor to it, but other than that, it was just kind-of there.

Quick Plot: Jessica has been kidnapped. Her captors have locked her in a room with a smashed phone. After clicking the wires together, she is connected with Ryan's cell phone. She begs for help, and tries to enlist his help to protect her family. If the connection is lost, so is any chance of rescue.

In Detail: Like I said, it was okay. Not good, not bad; just existing. Kim Basinger gives a much better performance than the material calls for, and it did let me see some of the appeal of Jason Statham (I'm certainly more interested in seeing The Transporter after seeing this film). Chris Evans' performance, on the other hand, was rather goofy. I realize this may have been what the part called for, but interestingly enough, the other parts were played too seriously for his performance to fit in. Even William H. Macy, whose character was a little silly, took his part seriously. Evans treated it like a joy ride. Either everyone should have treated it like that, or Evans should have been a little more serious. I realize it was not an incredibly serious part or film, it was just glaringly out of sync. Might have been better with a different lead, and perhaps a slightly beefed up story line, including a somewhat slower reveal.

Will I Buy It? Nope.

Tuesday, September 6, 2005

The Forgotten

In a Nutshell: Certainly keeps your brain on its toes, trying to figure out exactly who is involved, how, and why. A bit disappointed with the resolution, as the "why" part seems to be missing.

Quick Plot: Telly Paretta lost her son in a plane crash 14 months ago. Or so she thought, until everyone around her tells her that she imagined him. She never had a son; she's had a psychotic break. But when she meets the father of another child who was on that plane, and he does (finally) remember his own child, they must discover why everyone else has forgotten.

In Detail: Wow, I was really pumped about this movie. The whole way through, when I got a moment to breathe, all I could think was "if it can just hold on and continue to be this good, I'll be ready to buy the DVD tomorrow." (I was watching it using OnDemand cable, which is way cool, BTW.) And it did. Right up until the end. A taught, tense, emotional psychological thriller, my favorite kind! But the end just fell flat. It's not that I had a problem with the who or the how, it's that the why is never explained, not even a little bit (or if it was, I certainly missed it). Well, I take that back, they did "explain;" I just don't think "because" is a sufficient answer. :p So it was good, and it kept me engaged, and I certainly wanted to know where it was going and how it was going to get there, as well as who all was involved and who wasn't. I'm just a little let down. Worth a cheap rental or catch it on television.

Will I Buy It? No. Really wanted to for most of the film, but not now.