December 31st, 2009

snark maiden

Blast from the past: Cast a Deadly Spell

Himself tracked down a copy of this 80s HBO movie and we watched it with the goose and sparkling saumur. It wasn't the best copy and the creatures are a bit state of the 80s art, but it held up very well - still charming, still coherent. tanais suggested it would make a great TV series for the Sci-Fi Channel and I can see that...
snark maiden

Movies of the decade: personally speaking

I'm not going to pick either of the obvious trilogies (I still haven't seen the last POTC film and while I hugely enjoyed LOTR on screen, I still wish they hadn't distorted the characters so far out of shape for comedic effect - dwarf tossing and carrot stealing are funny, but but they're Not Tolkien). The Pixar movies are a fantastic set of films, and Up outdoes them all. The Miyazaki movies get an uneven ride in translation. There are lots of movies I've just liked. The first Daniel Craig Bond was good. The Harry Potter movies are a great way of not having to read all the books once they get long and turgid.

But the films I turn to again and again, that I've watched more than The Blues Brothers, that I enjoy as much or more every time - Oceans 11, 12, 13. Yes 12 is weaker, but I still like it - it puts a shell around the whole of the first movie so that I like 11 better because of 12. I love the dialogue and the pacing and the plot and the music (David Holmes' albums were all auditions to score these movies) and the faux jargon (a pinch, the biggest Miss Daisy you ever say, you called an Audible last night, you wowser) and the points where the actors juggle the fourth wall (try keeping the weight off next time/settle down and have a couple of kids) and the fact that they play *everyone* - even each other. They're movies I can lose myself in the complexity off without ever pointing and saying 'that doesn't fit the plot or the characters or the universe you've created' (well, maybe the Bruce Willis bit, but then you get straight back to the best cover story and exit strategy ever). I quote them all the time. The Vegas we visit two or three times a year is somewhere next door to Danny and Rusty's Vegas - it's changed in the same way and I wonder if the Vdara casts the same shadow on the Bellagio's pool as The Bank - and I wouldn't love it the way I do without the Oceans. And because of all of that, because of all the wonderful parts, I've watched these movies more than any other movies and they haven't worn out - and *that* is a good movie.