Friday, August 26, 2011

Celluloid #125

In Theaters

the Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011) Wyatt - I have never seen any of the "Planet of the Apes" films, but found this one to be entertaining blockbuster fare. Will is a scientist working with chimpanzees to develop a cure for Alzheimer's. The side effect is that the chimps become really intelligent. Funding gets shut down, and Will takes a hidden baby chimp home with him. The baby's mother was one of the test subjects and he inherited the effect. Caesar reminds me so much of Nim from Project Nim, and in a way, their storylines are quite similar Caesar too has to spend some time in a caged center where he becomes increasingly discontent. 3.5/5

In Home

Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead (1991) Herek - When Mom leaves for vacation, 17 year-old Sue Ellen and her younger siblings are left with an elderly babysitter. As the title indicates, she dies early on and the kids decide to fend for themselves rather than call their mom and risk her coming back early. They quickly run out of money and trash the house ("the dishes are done man!"), so Sue Ellen has to get a job. She lands an unbelievable position at a fashion company by lying about her experience. This movie is zany, so 90s, and includes an early David Duchovny. 3.5/5

My Blueberry Nights (2007) Wong - This movie could easily be used as an example of how we often give a pass to films or even idealize them because they are foreign (I often fall prey to this). In reality, the story and aesthetic of this film is not very different from other Wong Kar Wai films, but somehow seeing English-speaking characters makes the dialogue seem cheesy. Elizabeth gets dumped and makes a friend at her local cafe, but shortly leaves town. First to Memphis and then later to Vegas. She meets two characters - an alcoholic who can't get over his wife leaving him and a gambler with daddy issues. I'm not really sure what the point of these characters is, other than to show Elizabeth that her life is far from being a tragedy. 3/5

2 or 3 Things I Know About Her (1967) Godard - Godard is in one of his more absurd moods. The ladies in the film talk directly to the camera, and our main protagonist works as a prostitute sometimes. Other than that, I watched this a little over a week ago, and nothing much has stuck with me. 3/5

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