Friday, September 14, 2012

Chasing Amy (1997)

Number Rolled: 32
Movie Name/Year: Chasing Amy (1997)
Genre: Comedy
Length: 113 minutes
Rating: R
Director: Kevin Smith
Writer: Kevin Smith
Actors: Ben Affleck, Joey Lauren Adams, Jason Lee, Dwight Ewell, Jason Mewes, Kevin Smith

I can’t even describe how happy I was to roll Kevin Smith. I don’t roll him enough. He doesn’t have enough movies made for me to feel I roll him enough. Of all the movies of his I COULD have rolled, I’m glad it was this one though, because I have something to say.

A great deal of my friends are Kevin Smith fans. When I was in high school a group of us would sit in a basement drunk off 40s and watch movies; Clerks, Mallrats, etc. I felt a little less invisible when I was watching those movies. Chasing Amy was eventually among them, though I don’t remember if it was during those basement years or later.

The majority of the people I spoke to about the movie had basically the same thing to say about it, “meh, it’s ok. Not as good as his other stuff.” Granted, I think Clerks is the best fucking movie ever made, but Chasing Amy is possibly my third favorite by him (directly after his newest one, Red State).

I think the actors did a phenomenal job. At one point in the movie there’s a crying scene that Joey Lauren Adams has to act out and I think she executed it perfectly. For one, it wasn’t pretty. I watch some of these dramas and romance movies out now and the actresses cry without messing up their make-up or raising their voice. I sit there thinking…. “wow. Is that what I’m supposed to look like when I cry cause… fuck… I don’t look like that when I’m happy!” Joey takes it to another level. It’s realistic. I like that. I’m not the biggest fan of Ben Affleck, but he did well and Jason Lee… well… let’s just say – he’s on my “list.”

The subject itself is what snags me and really raises this movie to unbelievable levels in my eyes. The first thing I enjoyed was the bisexual struggle within Alyssa Jones. A lot of times, when someone initially finds out I’m bisexual I get the whole “that’s pretty cool, so just about everyone accepts you hm?” and that’s bullshit. People don’t realize how bullshit that is. I’ve had straight people tell me that I will just need to choose eventually and gay people tell me that it’s just a phase. That’s just not the way it works. There’s a chart, I believe it’s called the Klein Chart, that depicts 10% of the population as totally straight and 10% of the population as totally gay with everyone else falling at different levels in between. But instead of acknowledging that bisexuality exists, a lot of people call it a “phase” or call bisexuals “greedy” or “confused.” Maybe I was confused in my teenage years, but I know who I am now – and that I define myself as bisexual hasn’t changed.

The second subject that I love didn’t really hit me until a couple of years ago. It’s an underlying subject in the film that shows you shouldn’t judge someone by their past. I have an amazing boyfriend who knows everything about my past. Even the stuff I’m so embarrassed about that I don’t even want to think about. And boy, do I have a lot of that. His response is that it doesn’t matter because who I am now is not who I was then. He accepts me for who I am and accepts my choices – for better or worse. As simple as that seems it’s very rare. I’ve had significant others snipe for days after finding out something from my past that happened years ago. I’ve had people completely stop talking to me for stuff they’ve found out. And there are some people, I’d never even attempt to tell about my past because I’m not stupid and I know how they’d react. This movie shows that you have to put an individual ahead of their actions. Judge a person by who they are now, because they wouldn’t be that person without having learned from the past.

As funny and raunchy as this movie is, it’s got a deeper meaning. One that can’t be overlooked. It just makes that lesson fun to learn and helps it go down with a couple spoonfuls of sugar.

So yes, I hear people who say it’s not one of his best movies. To them I say, in the immortal words of the late great George Carlin, “fuck you and fuck everybody who looks like you.”

Overall Opinion – 5/5

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (2001)

Number Rolled: 3
Movie Name/Year: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (2001)
Genre: Children & Family Movie
Length: 152 minutes
Rating: PG
Director: Chris Columbus
Writer: J.K. Rowling, Steve Kolves
Actors: Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Richard Harris, Maggie Smith, Alan Rickman, Ian Hart, Robbie Coltrane, Richard Griffiths, Fiona Shaw, John Cleese, David Bradley, Warwick Davis, Tom Felton, John Hurt, Sean Biggerstaff, Harry Melling, Oliver Phelps, James Phelps, Matthew Lewis, Chris Rankin, Richard Bremmer, Julie Walters, Bonnie Wright, Zoe Wanamaker

Harry Potter is one of those movies I can’t just look at alone. The book has way too much to do with it for me. I love the story. I read every book. Showed up at Barnes and Noble at 6am for their release – in costume. Showed up to many of the midnight showings of the movie, also in costume or at least carrying a wand or snacking on Bertie Botts Every Flavor Beans (yes, they do have vomit flavor and yes it does taste like vomit).

It took a lot for me to put these movies on my list to begin with, because they are such modern classics. However, I have no problem stating my opinion of them… loudly.

I feel it’s blatantly obvious that Chris Columbus is/was a fan of the series. He stuck as close to the book as he could while still finding ways to make it more capturing to eye of Hollywood. The actors and actresses they chose were perfect. Fitting the characters straight down to the physical descriptions and minor quirks. I can’t imagine anyone else but Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter, Rupert Grint as Ron Weasley and Emma Watson as Hermione Granger. I’m already dreading the eventual reboot of it. Let’s face it, there was too much money made for it not to be rebooted later on. Let me just shake my head now and get it over with.

Overall Opinion – 4.5/5

Monday, September 10, 2012

Contract Killers (2008)

Number Rolled: 58
Movie Name/Year: Contract Killers (2008)
Genre: Action Thriller
Length: 86 mins
Rating: R
Director: Justin Rhodes
Writer: Ric Moxley and Justin Rhodes
Actors: Frida Farrell, Nick Mancuso, Rhett Giles, Wolf Muser, Christian Willis, G. Anthony Joseph, Steve Boergadine, Lee Sherman, Paul Cram, Justin Smith and Julia Denton

“Contract Killers” is about a woman assassin who wakes up one day hunted by the same killers she once worked with. Within the first scene her husband has already been murdered with the word “Lisa” etched into his forehead and a chase scene progresses. I’d write more about what it’s about but that’s it. Seriously.

It all honesty, the beginning gets you pumped up for a great action move. Like a mix of “Fast and Furious” and “Mr. and Mrs. Smith.” A blonde contract killer running for her life while we’re seeing disjointed memories of how she got into that place, what could go wrong? Everything. Just everything.

After that first scene? There’s nothing. It’s like someone decided to try and include every bit of every genre they could into a movie, but only a little at a time. Some action over there, a little drama over here, but working against each other like a violent game of tug-o-war. Half the movie had me sitting there with my forehead in my palm groaning, the other half had me stifling yawns.

The action was bland. The drama had no depth behind it at all. Even the sex scene was as disappointing as the one in “Bloodrayne.” All in all, if you haven’t seen it? I say, “good choice!”

Overall Opinion – 1/5