Three For Five

3 for $5 this time. Makes me feel much better. I had no idea it was going to be so cheap. Appartently, that’s how these theaters are getting away with eliminating their matinee prices. All shows before noon on Friday, Saturday and Sunday are $5.00. Anyway, this works out great, as this theater’s a lot closer, but three is pretty much the limit. No way to ever get six like the other place.

So…

Next – Wow. So I went in knowing full well that every Phillip K. Dick story is exactly the same, and while this does little to refute that, it certainly felt better, if not different. It’s a shame, really, that the effects are so horrendous. They belong on the Sci-Fi Channel, not in the movies. Nevermind a movie that relies on them so heavily.

It’s a shame because so much else worked so well. Nicholas Cage is great as the guy who can’t be surprised but desperately wants to be, and while you constantly wonder why Jessica Beil doesn’t just run away from him, she doesn’t seem so sure herself, so it’s not so unbelievable.

In that way, it does seem to have an answer for every problem you might have.  Every time a flaw in the logic of a character or the furutre-telling abilities of Nicolas Cage’s Chris Johnson comes up, it get answered.  And not in the immediate expository sense, but organically within the story, albeit with terrible effects.

The Condemned – We’re all the condemned, you know.  Because we’re watching this movie.  Okay, I’m the condemned.  You’re not.  You didn’t see this movie.  And while you probably feel pretty good about that, and you should, it’s not nearly as bad as you think.  I’m not saying you should give it a chance.  It is a terrible, Americanized Battle Royale.  Of course it is.  Steve Austin is not The Rock.  Of course he isn’t.  But it’s not that kind of poorly made, should-have-gone-directly-to-video kind of bad.  Somebody, somewhere, really honestly cared about making this movie.  Which seems completely strange, even while you’re watching Steve Austin as Jack Riley/Conrad get up after the third time he is apparently killed.

Hopefully, that person is as upset as I am about the way the movie had to shy away from some of the things it wanted to do.  Here’s where I should probably tell you what the Condemned is actually about.  Up until now, I’ve been assuming you knew, but I realize now that’s a faulty assumption.   There’s an island and a guy drops (literally) a bunch of international death row inmates on it to fighuntil there’s onl one left.  and that guy gets to go free.  Oh, and it’s going to be streaming live to the internet, where it of course does amazingly well, ergo, we’re all the condemned.  Anyway, two of the inmates are women.  So you see where this is going, yeah?  Well, so does everyone else, but the movie never says it.  Just like I’m not now, just so you get a sense of how annoyingly stupid that is, since I know you’re never going to see it.

Hot Fuzz – I feel as if I should be more upset that this wasn’t great.  I don’t know if that means it was good enough to not warrant such a reaction or if it was just so successful at being boring that I no longer cared afterwards.

Simon Pegg is funny, I think, so having him play a stoic hero kind of seems counter-productive, even while it’s necessary.  And that’s a microcosm of the entire movie’s problem.  It needs to be certain things, and it knows this, but it wants to be other things that directly contradict those instincts.  It wants to be an action movie, and a good one, but it also wants to make fun of action movies.  It knows it needs to have a mystery villain, but it doesn’t want you to actually care about figuring it out, especially since it’s going to turn out it’s pretty much everyone.  And yet, after all that, it kind of turns into a slasher horror movie.  Which makes no sense to me at all.

Despite all this, it’s still funny a lot of the time, which I suppose should be all that matters in the end.  But it’s not all that matters.  Because if it was, they could have just made a regular comedy and saved a lot of money.  Well, not a lot of money, because they couldn’t have spent that much on this.

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