Virtual Bourgeois

Just An Analog Guy Trying to Upgrade For a Digital World

2014 Movies #3

Posted by Gerald on May 23, 2015

2014 Movie #21 – Machete Kills (Robert Rodriguez, 2013): What can I possibly say that the movie didn’t with “Machete Happens”. I think this is the sort of thing you either love (as I did) or you think is the biggest waste of time and money you’ve ever seen (most same people who have taste). Basically, Machete is back, but this time in what was clearly a James Bond-inspired adventure (pretty much “Moonraker”). Mel Gibson has rendered himself an outcast, but he did a great job as a Bond villain. Walter Googins, Lady Gaga, and Antonio Banderas all played the same character and it was wonderful. I just can’t wait for “Machete Kills Again… in Space”. Seriously, at one point Machete grabs a guy by the neck, stabs a power-box with his favorite weapon, and thus electrocutes his enemy by using his own body to conduct the electricity. If that doesn’t make you giggle with delight, this is the wrong movie for you.

Summer Movies #1 – #50 – see those posts

2014 Movie #72 – The Adventurer: The Curse of the Midas Box (Jonathan Newman, 2014): This is a good example of a poor movie that has the ingredients for a better one – especially in terms of casting.  Sam Neill is good, as always, as the villain but other members, especially Lena Headley, are just wasted.  The young actor playing the lead has a certain gravitas, but no spark.  I think this wanted to be more fun than it was.  It is an attempt to create a YA adventure franchise based on some novels I’ve not read.  It has a strong air of steampunk and Victorian adventures, but just never really comes to life as either of those things.  All through it I kept thinking about The Mummy films – and how I should have just re-watched those.  This isn’t bad, just flat.

2014 Movie #73 – The Getaway (Sam Peckinpah, 1972): This is a good but not flawless movie.  Ali McGraw was early in her career and has been (justly to my mind) self-critical of her work on the film.  Although this is one of Peckinpah’s best known and most successful films, it isn’t one that fully demonstrates his style as a director.  That isn’t to say his style is absent – there is an excellent opening sequence that uses Peckinpah’s inter-cutting and shifts in narrative time, and his use of intercuts with different speeds is there in several of the action shots – but overall this is a pretty conventional, though well-made, action film.  That it works as well as it does is a bit of a miracle if you read about the production, which featured the beginning of the affair (and eventual marriage) of McGraw and Steve McQueen, lots of drunken arguments between star and director, and just a lot of drama all the way around.  I want to go back and revisit some Peckinpah films and watch the few I’ve not seen.

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