Monday, May 11, 2009

Movie Day!

Laura and I haven't seen a movie in a theater since The Day the Earth Stood Still, so it's remarkable that we saw two movies in one day this weekend. We started with the 10am matinee of Wolverine, which we enjoyed. I liked the cast; Hugh Jackman was ironic and funny and enviably muscled, Liev Schreiber was a very good psychotic bad guy, and Danny Huston made a good Stryker (though Brian Cox in X2 was probably better in the role). The action was entertaining, and I got so wrapped up in the story that even the ridiculous stuff seemed completely plausible at the time (sole exception: an early moment involving swords and bullets and Deadpool, which was so hokey it bumped me out of the movie for a minute). If you're feeling like a good action movie, I'm recommending it.

I've heard a few serious comic-book fans talk about how much they hated the movie because it violated canon in numerous ways. To this I say: aww, how horrible that your fictional worlds don't precisely coincide -- obviously the older one, in comic book form, is the perfect mirror of the platonic ideal of character and setting, and any deviation is clearly blasphemy! Seriously, this whole set of arguments is pretty funny coming from comic book fans, who by this point should be used to an extremely flexible canon which varies based on the year, the writer, and the mood of the publisher. And, it stayed pretty consistent with the world of the other movies, which I did appreciate. I'm fine with them reinventing a lot of stuff for the movies, but it's just bad writing if they reinvent stuff between movies.

We took a short break, then headed back to the theater for the second movie of the day: Star Trek! I really liked this movie. I was happy to get back to the early original-series Star Trek characters, and I liked what they did with them. And, without getting spoilery, they started the movie with a plot device that'll kill all of the Trekkie canon complaints. Any "it didn't happen that way!" complaints go out the window, and it makes the movie more fun to watch. And the cast was great; Kirk and Spock have chemistry, and everyone fought the urge to imitate the old series cast member they're replacing. And, the bad guy: fanatically evil. You see what broke him, which makes him "human", but he is in no way a sympathetic character. For the serious Trekkies, the movie has a bunch of little in-jokes. They're done nicely; fans will catch them, but they're subtle enough that they won't leave newcomers with the feeling they just missed a joke. I suspect I'll have to watch this movie once more on the big screen. I'll wait two weeks, when my free passes are good, then catch it again.

Oh, and: when did matinees in Indy jump to $7.50? Ouch!

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