Sunday, September 18, 2011

Five Films, Again

I posted Five Films way back in April 2009. The basic premise was a listing of five films that TLC and I had recently watched for the first time and, despite our very different opinions, we agreed on how to rank those films on a 5-star basis. The post was somewhat controversial with some of our friends, especially giving Doubt 5 stars and Moonstruck 3 stars. So here's another brick in the wall of controversy.

All About Eve - starstarstarstarstar

I may never say something like this took me three sittings to get through the full 138 minutes of All About Eve, and I'm still giving it 5 stars. I guess I've just been really sleepy lately. This movie is still fresh and current 61 years after it won Best Picture. There's a reason it's one of only two films to ever get 14 Oscar nods or the only film to ever receive four female acting nods; it's that well done. This film is so iconic that a fictitious stage-acting award in the movie later became a real-life award. I'm not exactly sure what makes the film so good - it just clicks. Aside from falling asleep twice, I was riveted by the web spun by Eve. If I ever write a list of Top Ten All-Time Films, this would make the cut.

Wit - starstarstarstar

Can we all agree up front that Emma Thompson is perfect in anything she does? No exception here. "Wit" is the film adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize winning play "W;t" (the semicolon is intentional). Basic story is that a tough college professor of 17th century metaphysical poets is diagnosed and treated for stage IV ovarian cancer. You watch her introspection as she relives the consequences of her life of 'no mercy', remembers a life in love with the beauty of words, and deals with a terminal condition. A very poignant film, but I doubt I'll ever watch it again - it's an exhausting movie. Cancer is no picnic, and the film doesn't present it as such. Hauntingly beautiful.

Extraordinary Measures - starstarstar

Not a bad story (inspired by a true story), not a bad cast, and definitely not a bad location. We principally watched this film because it was filmed in the Portland area. The filming seems to have taken place only on the ten or so sunny days of the year. I may rent this again in February to remember what the city looks like behind all the clouds. The major problem with the film may just be character development. You just don't ever get attached to any of the characters so it's hard to empathize with their struggles.

My Date With Drew - starstar

Man loses job. Man decides to fill time by trying to get a date with a certain actress. Man films it all cheaply and releases a movie. I think TLC picked this film up at the library just because I can't stand Drew Barrymore. I'm sure she's a nice enough person, but if she opened an acting school, it would teach nothing but vigorously shaking one's head side-to-side and trying to sound dramatic while speaking with pursed lips and a semi-lisp. The seventh circle of hell plays "Ever After" over, and over, and over again. No offense to anyone who likes that Kewpie Doll known as Drew; this is all just personal preference.

I digress... so frankly, this film sucks. We watched it in fast forward mode. The only saving grace? He gets the date and it's in the movie. Fortunately, Drew is herself in the movie and not acting as someone else.

Nights in Rodanthe - star

Alright, so we knew this one was bad going in. I wanted to watch it ever since Stephen Colbert mocked it (watch here). I am just shocked that people actually pay money for Nicholas Sparks to write romances; it would make sense if he were making campy comedies though. "Nights in Rodanthe", "The Notebook", "Dear John"....laughably bad. Those films are just waiting for the RiffTrax treatment. Skip the box of kleenex, bring a barf bag instead.  

"Oh, those horses! They're like her heart! So wild, so free!" - Stephen Colbert

Disagree/agree with the reviews? Sound off in the comments section.


  1. Love the post. Funny
    Nick B

  2. I am surprised that I have never actually heard of All About Eve. I will definitely have to check that one out - and probably Wit, too! Thanks! (Oh, and thanks for the heads-up about the others!)