Monday, July 23, 2012

In Nolan We Trust

This past January, I put together a list of the 12 films I was anticipating most this year.  I haven't seen all the films on the list that have been released, which reading some reviews was probably for the best.  But last night I saw my most highly anticipated movie of the year, the Dark Knight Rises.
     My original reservations centered around Christopher Nolan's casting of Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle (Catwoman).  These reservations are as unfounded here as they were when he cast Heath Ledger as the Joker.  She portrayed, in my opinion, the best rendition of Catwoman that I have seen.  Although considering this was one of the competitors it wasn't a terribly difficult task.
     This film had me from the opening scene, where the villain Bane shows himself as a masterful tactician.  Well to be honest, this film had me from Batman Begins and it would've taken an epic failure on the order of Spiderman 3 to crush it (seriously Topher Grace is Venom and Toby Maguire was emo, what the eff were you thinking Raimi?).  It does a tremendous job of tying Nolan's Batman trilogy together and almost caused me to call into work today so I could stay home and watch the other two films.   A trilogy is supposed to have an overarching story over the series, and this was achieved perfectly.  The Dark Knight Rises is not as good as the Dark Knight, but I think that has more to do with the Joker just being a stronger character then Bane.  Though Bane was phenomenally played by Tom Hardy and was certainly a bad ass, the Joker is Batman's arch-nemesis.  One can only imagine how the film would've been different if not for the untimely death of Heath Ledger.  The trilogy did peek with the Dark Knight, but the Dark Knight Rises is a tremendous conclusion to Nolan's dark Batman universe.
     My only real complaint is simply that Christopher Nolan's time with Batman is over and although there is always the possibility (more like high probability since the film pulled in 160 mil in it's first weekend) that another director will pick up the cowl, I find it hard to believe that they will do as exquisite a job.  Hopefully it won't be turned over to Joel Schumacher and his nippled batsuit again.
     Now all I can do is wait until the Dark Knight Rises is released onto blu-ray so I can watch the three films back to back, as they were intended...wonder if I can pre-order it yet.

Oh sweet Jesus, yes.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Good memories...

    Growing up as a kid I was fortunate enough to live near a drive-in movie theater. My family would go at least a couple times a year. I have fond memories of sitting in a lawn chair with my brother and sister, eating popcorn from home, watching Ghostbusters 2. The drive-in was what made my summer. We as a family didn't go to the movies much so the chance to go see two movies was a special treat.
    Well the wife and I ventured out last Tuesday night to go see a double feature of Brave and the Amazing Spiderman.  We don't live too far from the same drive-in that I went to as a child, and going there even as an adult is a trip back to more innocent times. Times when the most I had to worry about was getting past  world 6-2 in Super Mario Bros. or waking up early enough on Saturday mornings to catch the latest episode of X-men. The drive-in may have updated a little (the speakers that clip on the windows have long since disappeared and the snack bar now has a very good ice cream shop), but there's still a comfortable feeling about the place. The summer doesn't feel like it's started until a visit to my drive-in.
    Do yourself a favor and start your summer off the way it should be. Go see a double feature at your local drive-in. Oh and Brave and Amazing Spiderman are both very good movies. Brave is a solid Pixar movie but not in their top echelon with the likes of the Incredibles or Ratatouille. The Amazing Spiderman, thankfully, helped make me forget about the atrocious Spiderman 3. As a comic book fan, there were some liberties taken with the origin story, but it didn't seem to sour the movie at all. Maybe it was just the overall good mood I was in being at my ol' drive-in.