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I watch movies. On DVD, at the theater, via cable TV. Sometimes I want people to know what I think about the movies I watch, regardless of whether or not they care. I promise I will make my reviews short, but I won't be ashamed to throw around cliches like "beautiful cinematography" and "post-modern irony," so be warned.

Monday, November 22, 2004 :::


Why I saw it: Because I like the director.

What I think about it: There's nothing more you can really say about this movie other than it is really good. It's well-made, well-acted, well-written, and thoroughly entertaining. Honestly, I can't imagine anyone not liking it. If you need more, it's about two old forty-something friends who go on a tour of the California wine country as a sort of last-fling/bachelor-party before an impending marriage. Then there's some comedy followed by some mild drama. It ends up having the same moral vibe as About Schmidt, as realistically portrayed and well-observed adults muddle along rootlessly when faced with the reality that their lives haven't amounted to much, but that's exactly what bonds everyone together in the end. Anyway, it's one of those seemingly effortless good movies that will build on word of mouth and generate plenty of Oscar talk, especially for Paul Giamatti, so you may as well see it soon and get it under your belt before the rest of the Oscar baits are released in December. This makes four great movies in a row by Alexander Payne, who is destined to snag the Great American Director title from Francis Copolla or Robert Altman. But that's just the I-minored-in-film-studies-geek in me talking.

Learn more about it.

::: posted by dan at 1:14 PM :: #

Sunday, November 07, 2004 :::

Shaun of the Dead

Why I saw it: It looked funny and got rave reviews from Stacy.

What I think about it: Zombie movies freak me out. It doesn't matter if they are full-fledged horror movies like Dawn of the Dead or borderline comedies like Shaun of the Dead - oh wait, I just got that pun. Kidding. I really don't like zombies, though. But I like scary movies, so zombie movies are pretty much the pinnacle of terrifying experiences for me. Shaun of the Dead is laugh-out-loud funny and incredibly fun to watch, but its also creepy and gruesome and knows how to mess with your head. Describing the plot isn't really worth the time, and it gets a little cliched toward the end, but it is nevertheless brilliant, and I've never ever seen a more disturbing "eaten alive" scene than the one in this movie. It's definitely purchase-worthy, and will undoubtably be a cult classic, if it isn't considered one already. Plus, any movie that can bring Dawn and Tim from The Office back on screen together, even if only for one fleeting minute, gets kudos in my book.

Learn more about it.

::: posted by dan at 10:12 PM :: #


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