The High Countries

because it’s all paperweight…

T-minus 28 days. And if you look over to your left, you’ll see the fat lady singing. That’s right. It’s over. LOST is coming to a close starting Feb 2, 2010. The one show that gave this blog its wings oh-so-long ago is finally beginning its phoenix flight. Is that the right term?

In honor of LOST kicking the bucket, I’m going to resurrect the blog in rare fashion (frequent posts) for the remainder of its season. What better way to reignite the blog than with a grease-lightning round of “Machine Gun Movie Review”, courtesy of the common cold. Friday I woke up and literally could not feel my face. I was sick. I did no writing. I did no calling. I did very little talking. I did, however, do a frequent amount of movie-watching. Nine in two days actually.

Here’s a rundown…

Food Inc.: What a great inquisitive movie. A fantastic look into the actual nuts and bolts (or is it salt and steroids?) that make up our food industry. Scary, convicting, horrifying all wrapped in one big bowl of cheap, subsidized, fast-food burgers. (8.91/10)

The Cove: Maybe one of the coolest doc’s I’ve seen to date. I wish the end would have been a little more triumphant, but the overall movie was beyond excellent. Oceans 11 meets Free Willy meets Bourne Identity. Fantastic, should win Best Doc at the Oscars. (9.2/10)

Bronson: One man’s take on Britain’s Most Violent (re: Famous) Prisoner. What many thought was going to be Director Nicolas Winding Refn’s take on the crazed, though uniquely charming prisoner, Charlie Bronson turns out to be actor Tom Hardy’s masterful portrayal of a man so disturbed for stardom. Bronson, a journey of fame: any press … may actually be good press. (8.02/10)

The Messenger: Woody Harrelson puts on a masterful portrayal of a broken down, compelling, Iraq War soldier. Sure, we’ve seen these types in movies before, but Woody’s, much like all his other stuff, lets us in on a secret … without a few turns of events, we could easily be that guy too. Ben Foster hops onboard as the new guy, assigned to bring the news of a soldier’s death to the Next Of Kin, along with Captain Tony Stone (Woody). Maybe one of the most heart-wrenching movies I’ve seen this year. Also maybe one of the best. (9.31/10)

Tyson: straight Mike Tyson drama thanks to HBO. I thought I knew Mike Tyson’s life well … until I watched this film. Talking head interviews I still can’t believe made it to screen. The sheer drama in his voice has to be worthy of some award. I dare you to do anything but stare as you watch his interviews. What a life… (8.34/10)

Where the Wild Things Are: I thought I had it on pretty good information that this was a children’s movie for adults. Whoever told me that was wrong. This is a children’s movie for children, and me going into it with a  different mindset ruined it completely for me. I was unimpressed, though, there were some legitimate laughs. (5.9/10)

The Lovely Bones: Quite possibly one of the worst films I’ve seen in years. It takes a lot to get to the top of my movie list, let alone the bottom. One main criteria is that you need to adapt or create already great work. The Lovely Bones, the novel, was already good (great), apparently and the film adaptation butchered it. First 19 minutes: compelling, great, intriguing. Last (what felt like) 8 hours: horrendous. (2.85/10)

Julie & Julia: My mother LOVED this movie, so naturally, I was bit hesitant. Though, after I finished it, I was overcome with this giddy sense of inspiration. Maybe I should challenge myself to something for a year? It probably helped that I watched it three days into the new year, I am a blogger, I love to eat and that I love Amy Adams and Meryl Streep and Stanley Tucci (who were all exquisite) but regardless; truly, honestly, fun. (8.78/10)

Dead Man Walking: This is an old 1994 classic. I liked it. It doesn’t much fit with the current Oscar season, but oh well. I watched it. It was good. It was not great. Sean Penn was good. Susan Sarandon was great. I thought it had a great message about Jesus and his life and what it meant to confess, love our enemies and work towards redemption, but for some reason … I felt it should have been even darker. Terrible crimes are typically done by terrible people, show me some of that. (6.86/10)

Brief Interviews With Hideous Men: I love The Office. Brief Interviews With Hideous Men was a masterful written work by the late David Foster Wallace. It touched The Office’s John Krasinski while at Brown University. While watching it, you can almost see why Krasinski – playing the tired, selfish ex-boyfriend of the film’s main’s narrator and lead – chose to play the movie. At the conclusion of the film, we get “The Monologue”; you know, the one that solidifies in your mind exactly why this was considered Krasinski’s passion project? The one any stage actor would kill for? And that’s the rub, the monolgue would have worked infinitely better on a stage – where two people can actually keep our attention for 9 minutes and where big, 25-dollar words seem perfectly placed as opposed to corny and forced – rather than on the screen. The moment Ryan/Subject #20 (Krasinski) begins to speak like David Foster Wallace, my interest got up and walked out. I had no energy left to translate the postmodern boil of rape-induced love connection that followed in the hitchhiker-story’s wake. It was a wreck; any 80 minute adaptation of a 330 page, four-part short story would be. So, it’s not Jim’s fault? (5.31/10)

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January 4, 2010 - Posted by | Entertainment, Lost, Movies, Television, The Office

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