Zombie Kill Of The Century

I love the movie Zombieland. I just like zombie movies in general, actually, and Zombieland also has other things that I like, sarcastic quips, Woody Harrelson and Emma Stone among them.

So, I knew I was going to at the very least enjoy Zombieland: Double Tap. And I did. It also includes a few other things that I really like, love triangles and Rosario Dawson. HOORAY!

Zombieland isn’t the best movie ever, but it’s a good one, so obviously it’s sequel is also not a great movie, but an adequate one. It’s fun, funny, the kills are good and it’s final set piece is reasonably impressive, for a midlevel zombie comedy.

There’s also a bunch of Elvis jokes, a dumb hippy kid who tries to convince Abigail Breslin’s Little Rock that he wrote, “Like A Rolling Stone,” which is genuinely hilarious, especially once she reveals that she was only hanging out with him to get away from her suffocating family and because he had weed. “I know who Bob Dylan is you idiot!”

Also, that final set piece? It involes Rosario Dawson running over a bunch of zombies with a monster truck.

I’m sorry, I’m human, that’s just plain wonderful.

Rankings

  1. Once Upon A Time…In Hollywood
  2. Spider-Man: Far From Home
  3. Avengers: Endgame
  4. Rocketman
  5. Detective Pikachu
  6. Zombieland: Double Tap
  7. Godzilla: King Of The Monsters
  8. Downton Abbey
  9. Joker

Trailers

Knive’s Out: My level of hype for this movie is astronomical. It looks so so so so so so good.

Doctor Sleep: After finishing the book, I’m even more excited for this. I like that they’re making Dan and Abra’s first contact seem a little bit creepy.

Charlie’s Angels: This is going to be the gayest lady movie ever isn’t it? Whatever, I’m in for the wigs alone, but the action looks pretty sweet too and is Patrick Stewart Charlie?

The Turning: YOU GIVE ME ALL OF THE GOTHIC HORROR. ALL OF IT. We wants it. The precious. (Evil demon children. Also is this literally a modern take on The Turning Of The Screw? Because that’s awesome. I should read that. I like the James I have read…)

Bad Boys For Life: I am glad Will Smith is back. I’ve missed him. I didn’t see Aladdin and I still haven’t seen Gemini Man, so I get that my excitement may seem less than wholehearted, but it isn’t.

Countdown: No. I mean, it looks fine, just, not for me.

Fangirl Loves Star Wars: Solo: A Star Wars Story

I really love Solo, as I noted in my review of the movie. It has a lot of things I like in a movie generally, cover up in neat Star Wars wrapping paper, so there’s a lot to love. I get into internet arguments about this movie a lot, because I think it’s wonderful and I know a lot of people think it sucks. But those people are wrong because it’s great.

I’ve watched it several times now, and each time I am delighted. The action is clean, the characters are clear, the performances are wonderful. Do I wonder what it would have been like in it’s initial incarnation, sure, do I like Paul Bettany fine, but wonder if Michael K. William’s version of Dryden Voss was more interesting (it probably wasn’t, they’re both great actors, with similar placid with darkness boiling under the surface energy. But the representation boost would have been great, and I love Williams.)

I have to be honest though, I came to this movie for one thing and that thing delivered. From the moment of this movie’s conception I was saying I didn’t care what went on around it, I wanted Lando in this movie, and I wanted Donald Glover to play him and I would accept nothing else. As I’ve watched and rewatched Star Wars since things got moving again in the past few years Lando has become my OT favorite. (Obi-Wan is my prequel and overall story fave, Poe is my NT fave) I’m thrilled that Billy Dee Williams is reprising his role in The Rise of Skywalker. 

Donald Glover was the only choice for Lando and Lando’s role in this screen play was perfect. Or whoever shot whatever got shot. Part of the tragedy of the internet (which I mostly love, because I wouldn’t be writing this if there wasn’t an internet) is that this movie got so burried. In an earlier time where only weirdos like my parents knew that Larry David was no longer running Seinfeld, (this is real. My parents were incensed when David left. They came around on the later seasons because they featured George and Elaine better and Jason Alexander and Julia Louis-Dreyfuss are brilliant, but it took time. Again, I come by my shit naturally) it wouldn’t have been turned over that and over that Lord and Miller were fired off the movie.

There’s a subtle sexism to the way this decision is talked about on the internet. As if it was a capricious and unnecessary decision on Kathleen Kennedy’s part. As if she isn’t a savvy, experienced producer who know what she wants. As if by clashing with the anarchic genius of these two men, she is somehow wrong, the thief of art.

There’s truth there, but it’s not a narrative attached to say, Joss Whedon’s departure from The MCU after clashing with Kevin Fiege. No, that was two visionaries with contrasting views of a film.

I told myself this post wasn’t going to be about the metanarrative and yet here we are. (To be fair, I couldn’t rightly spill 500 words on what I like about the movie, since part of what I like is how light and kind of shallow and silly it is.)

Next week we get into Rebels, with season 1. Rebels has grown on me as a show in general. It’s not as good as Clone Wars, but you will see this journey in Real Time.

Remember Who The Real Enemy Is: Catching Fire closes it out

Catching Fire

Guys, thanks for following along with movie season, which ends today with this review of Catching Fire. 

I will still go see movies. I will still review movies. Just, not as many, and no more rankings. I’m also going to write a wrap up, explaining the final rankings and what I’ve learned from this process. Isn’t that exciting?

Anyway. Catching Fire.

I have complicated feelings towards The Hunger Games series. I read the entire trilogy the summer after I graduated from college. The other things I binged on that summer were A Song of Ice and Fire and Mad Men. So, I came into September with a very bleak view of human nature. I was pretty much just like, “Dude, everything sucks. People are the worst.” I recovered by rereading Narnia, because, well, it’s very positive.

Anyway, I remember seeing the first movie, but it didn’t make much of an impression except that Jennifer Lawrence and Woody Harrelson were awesome. (I’m actually watching it right now, I should have watched it before I went, but I chose sleeping and eating instead.)

Catching Fire was my favorite book in the series, for the same reason that Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire is my favorite book in that series, and Eclipse is my favorite Twilight, and A Feast For Crows is my favorite Song of Ice and Fire. I’m weird that way. Also, I dig world building.

Catching Fire like the rest of this series is unbelievably bleak. I’m not going to get too into plot, because when I tried to I just went on and on. I’ll talk about instead the things I was looking forward to seeing, and that I really liked.

I was so excited to see The Victory Tour. The juxtaposition of Katniss and Peeta’s attempts to distract the people and their growing unrest is handled beautifully. Jennifer Lawrence continues to be incredible, and it’s especially noteworthy that Katniss is not a particularly loveable character. She’s self righteous and petty, and takes everything so much for granted.

But Lawrence makes you root for her at the very least.

Yes, the story belongs to Katniss, but the movie doesn’t belong to Lawrence. It belongs to Woody.

love  Woody Harrelson. I love Cheers, and Zombieland and his half a season jaunt on Will and Grace as Grace’s feckless but loving boyfriend Nathan. I love the work he does here, in particular the way that Haymitch understands both of his young charges, and the way it’s telegraphed (as I’ve always believed) that although Peeta is the love of Katniss’s life, and Gale her annoying high school boyfriend, but Haymitch is her soul mate. They’re cut from the same cloth and it’s a relationship dynamic that I love.

Elizabeth Banks was great as Effie Trinket. She was so underused in the first movie, and I feel like Banks is underused as an actress anyway. She’s so capable and all anyone’s ever really seen her do is be the whiny girlfriend in various bromantic comedies. I loved the way that Effie is heartbroken at having to bring Katniss and Peeta back to the arena. Especially Peeta. Everyone hates that Peeta has to go back.

New arrivals that I loved, Sam Claffin. I think Finnick is a hugely cool character and I liked the way that Claffin played him. I’m surprised that they hedged on Finnick’s, erm, extra curriculars as a Capitol Prostitute, but hey, it’s not like it’s an easy thing to deal with. I loved Jeffrey Wright at Beetee, although because of Boardwalk Empire I am terrified of him. And then there was Jena Malone.

I love Jena Malone. I was so excited when I realized that Jena Malone was going to be playing Johanna. I like that Malone and Lawrence are a similar type. I like that it’s a kind of, “if you cross the line that’s who you’ll be” kind of warning to Katniss.

Bonus points: Alan Ritchson played Gloss, the male District 1 tribute. He also played Aquaman on Smallville. The water base of the arena seemed like it was giving him an unfair advantage.

I loved the costume design as much if not more than the first time around. These are visually exceptional movies.

I was really overwhelmed by the movie. It was visually great, the performances were top notch and it’s a great story. But it’s grim dude.

Trailers:

Divergent: I read the book, and just couldn’t get into it. It’s a decent story and I’ll probably go see it, but I really don’t care that much.

Noah: You know what modern Hollywood needs more of? Biblical epics! The Old Testament is rife with awesome, awesome stories that would make tons of money and that you can do great special effects with. I hope this movie does unbelievably well. Also Emma Watson, yay!

American Hustle: I really don’t see the appeal, but it’s such a great cast. Like absurdly good. I’ll probably watch it in two years on HBO one night.

Rankings:

1. Pacific Rim

2. Runner, Runner

3. The Great Gatsby

4. The World’s End

5. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

6. Salinger

7. Kick Ass 2

8. The Butler

9. Man of Steel

10. Don Jon

11. The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

12. The Wolverine

13. Thor: The Dark World

14. Iron Man 3

15. Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters

16. Despicable Me 2

17. Star Trek Into Darkness

18. Elysium

19. Monster’s University

20. After Earth