Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Musing on Movies - Another Catch Up

What do you think of theaters showing commercials before the movie? Not trailers, but for other things, like sodas and sneakers and cars? Do you think they should start rolling the commercials before the advertised start time of the movie so that the movie itself starts on time, or is it okay to start showing commercials at the advertised start time, even if the film itself won't start for a few more minutes?

I like watching cinema trailers and the invariable part of this process is the local and mainstream advertisements beforehand. Some of these used to be really funny too, I can remember a Fosters ad about the dangers of global warming and it ended with this kangaroo having a cold one and just saying "B******s" to it!

I always used to assume that the film would start late because the trailers would be on first so it gave me a longer lead in time to get there if I was running late. UGC cinemas used to have about 15-20 minutes worth of adverts and trailers, I always wanted to get there by the end of the advertisements so I could watch the trailers. I did get caught out once and missed the start of the Empire Strikes Back Special Edition because the cinema started the film exactly on time and didn't allow for trailer time. We missed the first few minutes that day.

However, Merlin Cinemas [this meme always seems to turn into a Merlin Cinemas rant] don't show trailers sometimes, I don't know why, but then that place is so disorganised that I guess we're lucky that they can even find the film. I'm always disappointed when the film just starts after the music dims after the crappy music stops playing.

"There's no crying in baseball!"
~~A League of Their Own

Do you cry at movies? Do you cry when you see them a second time (or third, or fourth....)? What are your favorite tear-jerkers?

I have to be really moved by a film to cry in the cinema, I have done it a few times, but the presence of complete strangers in the nearby seats always puts you off showing real emotion.

Films that I have cried to in the cinema include Return of the King, Titanic, and ET. Of course at home it's a different matter and I cry all the time. I think I even cried watching Holby City last night!

Friday, January 13, 2006

Musing on Movies - Special FX

What is the first special effects or effects heavy film you remember seeing and thinking "wow" at the visuals? (I know for many, it was Star Wars.) What are some recent examples, if any, that wowed you?

I'm another "Star Wars" person I'm afraid. Recent films which I thought were visually stunning were The Fifth Element (that film had such a unique design look too it - Jean Paul Gautier made Leeloo's costume), and also Minority Report with all those cool automated cars on autopilot on the road strips and the auto-updating newspapers. The animated cereal box was a bit much though. I also liked the "look" of Pitch Black (from a planet in the permanent light of a trinary star system to being pitched into total darkness). The sequel, The Chronicles of Riddick which came out about a year or so ago, also sported some pretty nifty FX.

Movie Review: King Kong

I went to see this film on Christmas Eve, but have obviously forgotten to write a review of it and post it here, so here goes.

I enjoyed it in the whole, Peter Jackson did a great job of updating the movie from the 1928 classic and did a much better job than the 80s version. The special effects were fantastic, Skull Island's dinosaurs were realistic and amazing, it was like watching a fourth Jurassic Park movie.

Kong was extremely well animated and you never thought for a moment that he was just a cgi creation, it was as if you were looking at the real thing. Naomi Watts as Anne was a very good choice for the role as she portrayed a sort of fragile beauty.

The only criticism I can offer is that the movie was way too long. Merlin Cinemas decided to cut for an intermission break halfway through (crap I know), and by which time Kong had only been on screen for a few minutes. I thought at that point, god how much build up plot crap have I been watching if the movie is half over and we've only just got to the Monkey?

Overall I'd give it 7/10 (would have been higher than this if it was a 2 hour movie)