You got me, Dan. I didn’t see Let Me In this year. But just for the hell of it, just in the interest of full disclosure, here are 25 other films from 2010 that I still haven’t gotten around to. In my defense, I’d be shocked if any critic couldn’t cull together a similar list. This inventory of missed opportunities doesn’t invalidate my Top and Bottom Ten Lists of 2010: They are great movies and terrible ones, respectively. It just means that there may be other great and terrible films out there too.
So where exactly are the good videogame movies? They’re everywhere, if you know where to look. They’re just not based on videogames. With TRON Legacy in theaters this weekend, Dan Fields and I (William Bibbiani!) thought this would be a good time to explain why the best videogame movies – so far – aren’t based on a specific videogame. These are movies that capture the distinctive feeling of playing a great videogame or expertly dramatize concepts unique to that medium, something the directors of actual videogame movies rarely seem to grasp.
Heroes don’t HAVE to be boring stand-ins for the audience (I’m looking at you, everyone who casts Shia LaBeouf). They can be compelling characters overcoming hardships, psychological turmoil and overwhelming odds to save not merely the day but rather their own self-worth. Heroes can be inspiring figureheads, neurotic losers and everything in between. Heroes can be wonderful, but for some reason many of them – often in otherwise very good (or at least popular) movies – again, just plain suck.
The Weekly Listicle presents Scary Movies For The Whole Family. Not kids movies with Halloween themes, and not the kinds of movies that will traumatize your kids for life and keep you up all night as they suffer through sugar withdrawals and nightmares, but great Halloween movies that kids can enjoy without feeling pandered to. Trust me, parents… They’ll thank you for it later.
Pete Townsend once wrote “I hope I die before I get old,” but it’s important to note that he was only 20 years old at the time. The song “My Generation” was very much on my mind as I watched Harry Brown, which like the song is British and discusses the difficult relationships between young whippersnappers and old farts.
There may be an Academy Award for “Best Original Song,” but where’s the love for all the other songs that films so desperately depend on? It’s hard to believe now, but there was once a time when motion pictures weren’t chockablock with Top 40 pop hits. In the past 50 years or so this has become a common practice (some people blame Martin Scorsese, but I think even Scorsese would point a finger more emphatically at Kenneth Anger), and for every movie like The Bounty Hunter that demonstrates little concern for song choice or placement there are plenty of films and television series that put a lot of thought in selecting just the right song for the right moment. Maybe it’s on the nose, maybe it’s ironic, or maybe it’s just jarring and weird, but there’s a lot of mileage to be gained from using a familiar tune in an unfamiliar way.
A scant few minutes into Marmaduke there’s a fart joke. Right after this fart joke Marmaduke turns to the camera and confesses, “I know it’s juvenile, but it’s all I’ve got.” It’s extremely tempting to leave this review at that, knock off early and pound some tequila slammers, but I’m a respected professional, damn it. A respected professional who… has to write about Marmaduke. Sigh… So instead I’ll just combine my review of Marmaduke with tequila slammers and see what happens next.
Well, here we are… 3/4’s of the way through the year and the Academy Award nominees are almost completely up in the air. Sure, the major nominees are usually held off until the last few months, but with ten Best Picture nominations up for grabs you’d think there would have been a greater effort to find cream in the crop. Inception seems like a lock for Best Picture, as does Toy Story 3 and maybe a few acting nominations for Winter’s Bone, but seriously… it’s looking grim.
Certain films are so pedestrian, so middle of the road, so damned mediocre that they’re not even worth talking about. With that said, let’s review The Bounty Hunter. Lord knows I never pretended to value my time. Nor, apparently, did the makers of The Bounty Hunter. Nor indeed anybody who actually paid to see this dreck (myself included).
Earlier this week we took a look at the first Step Up, the hit machine that was both sincere and sincerely stupid. Today we return to analyze the even more popular sequel Step Up 2 The Streets, which may be one of those rare sequels that outdoes the original. Luckily the original was so oppressively mediocre that there’s still plenty of room for Step Up 2 The Streets to suck.
So for all of you geeks who couldn’t attend the convention because the Twilight fans couldn’t resist the urge to pack Hall H again (bad news kids, there’s nothing there this year… well, nothing of consequence anyway, maybe you should have waited before you bought those expensive tickets, hmm?), Julia Rhodes, Dan Fields and William Bibbiani present The Weekly Listicle a couple of days early. Please enjoy our tribute to some of the very best movies made by Geeks, for Geeks, and about Geeks… in no particular order folks. Comic Con is about bringing people together. The “Con” doesn’t stand for contest.