Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Episode 5 - 13 - 13

After a brief tragic delay to allow for The Boom Operator to do some actual Boom Operatin' for a local film here in and around town(!) we're back with reviews of Iron Man 3Mud (another A-State pride film) and the remake of Maniac. We also had to pay homage to Ray Harryhausen, whose stop-motion gewgaws and monsters enlivened so many of us growing up.

As for Maniac: I have no idea why anyone thought William Lustig's film needed to be remade, except by the horror-crazed French Aja/Lavasseur/Khalfoun, who have the love and influence to make good filmmakers, but not the actual ability. Elijah Wood is not as nasty and disturbing as Joe Spinell, which dampens some of the effect, but the slicker production and better core also highlight what made the original memorable. Still didn't justify a remake, but there you go.

Mud: The Boom Operator thought this Arkansas film was a good take on Southern culture, steered by career-defining performances from Matthew McConnaughey and Ray McKinnon.

Iron Man III: Although I enjoy the American national metaphor-interplay in the Iron Man movies, I did not like this one. Shane Black's dialogue didn't get any good deployment, nor did the Iron Man: Extremis storyline, and there just wasn't enough good in the overlong, visually bombastic story. The Iron Man trilogy was always more interesting to talk about than to actually watch, overall.

We heard music from the following:

The 7th Voyage of Sinbad, 1958 - Bernard Herrmann
Mysterious Island, 1961 - Bernard Herrmann
The Chipmunk Adventure, 1987 - Randy Edelman
Chain Reaction, 1996 - Jerry Goldsmith


Thursday, May 2, 2013

Episode 4 - 29 - 13

Lords of Salem: Rob Zombie, once again, can do absolutely nothing except trot out a cast of his wife and friends and lovingly ape the styles and environments of his favorite filmmakers. Lords of Salem may be his most visually and aesthetically impressive film to date, but it also never rises above pastiche and reference. The individual sequences were great - Kenneth Anger meets Ken Russell, but don't have a narrative to give them context and heft.

We heard music from the following:

Suspiria, 1977 - Goblin
Delta Force, 1986 - Alan Silvestri
Iron Man, 2008 - Ramin Djawadi
Bedknobs and Broomsticks, 1971 - Various


Episode 4 - 22 - 13

On this week's show we discuss the downfall of physical media, as we pour one out for the closing of one of our local entertainment superstores.

The Place Beyond the Pines was reviewed by the Boom Operator this week, and was very much a movie in three acts, two of which were fairly interesting and drew you in only to be laughably disappointed by the wrap of act three. Can we please cast Ryan Gosling in something other than the crazy silent type role? You know, all of his characters would have restraining orders on them in the real world...but since he's sexy...that's another story.

Regarding Oblivion: A curious mixture of over-explaining things best left to our imagination and over-explaining plot points that were far too obvious. On the plus side the visuals, Icelandic scenery, and Tangerine Dreamy score by M83 created an interesting palette. The weak side, sadly, is what makes (and will make) most sci-fi like this unmemorable, the inability to properly handle a complicated, disturbing concept (cloning), not because this film came down on the optimistic side of a bioethics issue for once, but that it did so shallowly. Who cares if Tom Cruise #2345 dies? We have a spare!

We heard music from:

King Solomon's Minds, 1985 - Jerry Goldsmith
Flashpoint, 1984 - Tangerine Dream
The Place Beyond the Pines, 2013 - Mike Patton
Oblivion, 2013 - M83