The New Random Thoughts of a Movie Insomniac: Vol 1.

fight-club-cant-sleepI use to write these posts over at my other site The Vern’s Videovanguard in which I would review recent movies I have seen  It’s been a while since I wrote one of these, and at first I was going to write up each films as a full review.  But that would take too long and some of them I have nothing more to say then I do now.  I’m sure Im already starting to bore you with this intoduction.  So I’ll stop and get on with the movies I have seen.

 

The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug

HobbitIn this middle section of a three part trilogy that itself is just from one book. We find that Bilbo and the other dwarfs are on their way to retrive a gem from a dragon so that their people will be posperous and rich.  Along the way they get captured by some elves, befriend other races who seem to both want to help or betray them. Oh and they eventually do find a dragon, but the film ends before any plot can be resolved. This was a dull dull movie that felt really long when watching it. In the original trilogy I was invested in Hobbit’s quest, because the characters were well written and the story was fascinating. Plus they didn’t use three movies to tell one story. That would be like having each “Lord of The Rings” movie get split up into 3 different films. Could you honestly sit through three movies of “Return of The King“? Ok Maybe some of you, but I sure as hell couldn’t. I wouldn’t even mind if this was split up into just two parts, but by doing it this way.  It really drags the plot down to a near stop. The action scenes also failed because it was clear that everything was done on a sound stage with a Green Screen.  I swear it looked like the actors were a bunch of 12 year old boys pretending to be these characters. It would have made a better movie if it was done that way. I sure hope that there will be a version where all three movies are trimmed down to just one because that is the only way I will ever see any of these again.

 

 

Dallas Buyers Club

dallas-buyers-club-poster1I hate it in movies when a character who is hated and despised. Somehow has a moment with another character that makes him or her loveable in the audience’s eye. I call this the ‘Scrooge’ effect, and it has been done for eons. Some movies skewer that image a tad, but they still have those moments that make those characters endearing. What I love best about “Dallas Buyers Club” and Matthew McConaughey’s performance. Is that Ron Woodroof is not a likeable character. Despite some of the changes he goes through, he is still in my mind the same guy even at the end. Yes he has a new perspective and is not
as prejudice as he was before. But he also never seemed to remove any of  his ideals either. The guy still drank, did drugs,screwed around constantly, and was still uneasy around gay and transgender people. He saw a common ground with Rayon(Jared Leto) because they were business partners. But I wonder if he would have felt that way about him if he wasn’t helping with the cash. Speaking of Mr. Leto. I thought his performance was good in this. It would be nice if transgender characters in movies wouldn’t succumb to the usual stereotypes that most movies put them in. But at least this is a step in the right direction.
Rayon is not a sidekick to Ron, and isn’t used simply for comic shtick like most other gay characters are.  I never saw Rayon as being a transgender because the movie doesn’t focus on that aspect all the time.   I just saw her as being a person who like our main character Ron.  Found some injustice and wanted to fight it.   What Ron did to help make drugs available for patients was very nice.  I still don’t think that he was 100 percent a nice guy.  Yet it’s that personality that did make me like this movie a lot more then I was anticipating.

 

 

Cosmos.

CosmosI want to take a brief moment to mention the show “Cosmos If you haven’t been watching it, you really should. On each episode there has been at least one moment where my mind has been blown by the theories that it presents I’m not a scientific person at all, but it’s hard not to want to study more about our universe and learn our place within it.

 

 

Frozen.

FROZN_014M_G_ENG-GB_70x100.inddThe story is about a little girl who is a mutant and can freeze things. She soon meets up with Charles Xaiver and later joins The X-Men. Well,no not really. But that sure would be cool if she did. Instead she hides her power from her sister(because she once hurt her when they were younger) until one day she accidentally let’s it go and freezes her whole village. She flees and goes out to live in Superman’s Fortress of Solitude. While her sister tries her best to find her. The part about the fortress being connected to Superman is fake, but it is made of ice. This was one of the better Disney movies I have seen in a while. It’s not as good as the ones from The Renaissance era, but it deserves to be up there pretty high. I like it’s message about true love not being a romantic one, but about family. I like that one of the villains is also the hero, and I really like the animation in this. The exteriors, the costumes, and the look of the characters are all really well drawn.  The only thing I did not care for were the songs. They are not bad and in the context of the movie they work pretty well. I just never found any of them to stand out on their own. Even the hit song “Let it Go” only worked when Elsa(Idina Menzel) was singing about her frustrations in keeping her power locked inside. I know that many people will say that the song is a metaphor about how we should never hold back and do the things we want. That is great if the song made you feel that way. But when you listen to the lyrics. it tells a part of that story and how the character feels in that moment. It just never worked as a stand alone song for me. I’m not saying that it’s bad, it’s actually quite good. It’s just not on the same level of songs as “Beauty and The Beast” or “Jungle Book“.  I look forward to what else Disney can do, and if they can keep it going like this. I expect another Renaissance from them. Also watch the Mickey Mouse Cartoon that should be included with your Blue Ray. It is also really good.

 

 

Nymphomaniac Vol 1

NymphomaniacThis is going to be a tough one to review because Vol 2 hasn’t been released yet. When it does I plan on writing one on both parts together, but for now here is what I have to say about the first section. The movie is about Joe(Charlotte Gainsbourg) who is a self diagnosed nymphomaniac. When we first meet her she is found on the street and looks
badly beaten. She is taken home by a man(Stellan Skarsgard) who proceeds to tell him all the events in her life that brought her to where she is. The movie has gotten some notoriety because of the use of body doubles of porn stars for the sex scenes. It’s the actors face c.g.i’d onto a porn star’s body and that’s how come we see actual shots of penetration. It’s only used a few times, and it’s very quick when it does. There is nothing really overly erotic about any of the sex in this. Which I guess is showing how empty it is in her life.  I’m just speculating on that theory.   In one scene Joe tells about a time when her and a friend hitched a ride on a train to see how many guys they could fuck on the trip. At the same time the guy who helped saved her, begins telling her stories about Fly Fishing and how both can be connected. There is another section where she also compares the different men she has fucked to that of different musical notes. When combined they bring in this organ of orgasms to our main character. The moment with Uma Turman as the wife of a man who has left her for Joe was one of the funniest moments I have seen in a Lars Von Trier movie. Infact there were several moments that were funny inside this feature that I wasn’t expecting. Like I said before I will write up a full review on both movies after the second one gets released.

 

 

Big Trouble in Little China.

big_trouble_in_little_china_poster_02I decided to re watch this one again, and it still holds up today. I like that the main character Jack Burton(Kurt Russell) is not your typical action star.   He is actually pretty dumb for most parts and doesn’t do anything really super heroic.  The kid Wang Chi(Dennis Dun) is more of a hero then him.  Jack doesn’t do much to change the plot but things still effect him and others. Yet he still prevails as defeating the bad guys and wining. Well ,for the most part. Yes the special effects and the music are a bit dated, but I feel that adds to it’s charm. It’s also the only John Carpenter directed movie I could show to kids without feeling bad about it. It has action, comedy, supernatural elements, and all around a great movie.

 

What have you seen this week?  Let me know in the comments section and have a great week.

 

 

 

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About The Vern

I love movies and I enjoy writing about them too. They both go pretty much hand in hand with each other and it's fun to discover new classics. I co host the podcast The Film Pasture and As You Watch. While also contributing reviews and articles to other great sites when I can.
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10 Responses to The New Random Thoughts of a Movie Insomniac: Vol 1.

  1. theipc says:

    Big Trouble in Little China = 1,000,000 percent BADASS!!!

  2. Chris says:

    I’ve seen all of those, except Cosmos. Desolation of Smaug was impressive for the visuals, but I thought Unexpected Journey had more heart. For me, There was also a freshness about first Hobbit movie, that I hadn’t been in that universe for a long time. Agree it should not be a trilogy, 2 Hobbit movies at the most.

    Dallas Buyers Club. Excellent performances, but for me, Jared Leto’s character doesn’t have enough to do in the film to warrant all that awards buzz. An inspiring story, but to me not particularly memorable. Laurence Anyways is the best recent film about a transgender. It has it all, great performances, interesting conflict, the soundtrack of the year, and the photography is beautifully put together with the music. it’s my #2 film of 2012, and that’s from someone who is straight.

  3. Great reviews. Agree with you on the songs in Frozen, not quite up there with the movies of the 90s but they have grown on me the more times I’ve heard them.

    Dallas Buyers Club, excellent movie and great performances from McConnaughey and Leto. As for The Hobbit, I’m still enjoying it but have to say I was very frustrated with the ending to the last movie!

    • The Vern says:

      Chris: Thank you for the recommendation of Laurence Anyways. I watched the trailer for that, and it has my interest. Agree the performances and soundtrack look amazing.

      Natalie: I’m glad you agree with me about the songs in Frozen, and that you were frustrated with the ending to The latest Hobbit

  4. jjames36 says:

    Great reviews. We agree on almost all of them (at least of the ones I have seen). I haven’t yet caught Nymphomaniac, Big Trouble in Little China or Cosmos.

    I will say I think Frozen better than most of the Renaissance Disney flicks, mostly because it layers its characters better, makes them more robust and (in my eyes) compelling. Which makes it more appealing to all ages. I would count Frozen perhaps Disney’s finest animated film yet.

  5. The Vern says:

    Thanks for the comment James. Big Trouble in Little China is a lot of fun. You should check it out. Elza in Frozen was a great character, but the rest were kind of cliche. I agree that it is one of the better Disney movies, and I would watch it again. Its just not one I would want to own.

  6. table9mutant says:

    Nice reviews. : ) Glad you liked Frozen okay – I LOVE it. Also thought Dallas Buyers Club was very good…

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