Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Good Month

I tend to write a lot of, shall we say, "negative" things on this blog. So much so you might get the impression I don't really like movies all that much. This couldn't be further from the truth. I really love cinema. Love it dearly. Which is why the existence of so much pure filth disgusts me, why the criminal waste of talent and resources that goes into 90% of film production is such a constant irritant.

Still, I feel it's time for a slight corrective, so I'm going to write about some films coming up in May that I'm actually looking forward to (in all honesty, I chose May because looking at the releases for June was too depressing. Literally not a single interesting film coming out and just one Jack Black comedy too many. For its part, April isn't much better. A "Fast and the Furious" sequel and the Hannah Montana movie are kind of acting as killjoys for me). So, for once, something positive. Don't expect it to become a habit.

May 1: "Limits of Control." A new crime thriller from Jim Jarmusch. Bizarre criminal plots and existential dialog? Who could ask for more? This looks like something that might put Jarmusch back on people's radar after his less-than-interesting last few features, and looks to be at least as good as "Ghost Dog."

May 8: "Star Trek." Yeah, I know. I'm a pathetic fanboy. In my defense, I'm merely a casual fan of "Star Trek," enjoying the original series and the bulk of "TNG," but not much else. Don't really care about any of the other series or any of the movies. The preview gives the impression that they've kept the look and the mythos without the corniness, which might work out well. The casting also seems spot on from what I've seen so far. I'm pretty sure it will at least be entertaining, if not out-and-out great. Can't ask for much more than that from a major blockbuster.

May 22: "Terminator: Salvation." I had my reservations about this one. The mono-monikered director brought us one of the "Charlie's Angel's" movies and spent a lot of time at Comic Con talking about the themes of individuality and destiny in this new one, which is all a load of intellectual crap to give his blcokbuster some veneer. However, I can't argue with the look of the film in the previews, and I'm pretty sure that when I saw those giant robots start smashing buildings I grew an extra testicle. It's like a grungier "Transformers" with a NIN soundtrack and some semblance of a brain. If nothing else, the preview at least wipes the sour taste of "Terminator 3" from my mouth.

May 29: "Up." Pixar has done more to combat the tide of cynicism than just about any single entity. Most religions can't claim to have brought as much good will into the world as this company has with its series of films. Every time they release a new one, I go through a slight period of forgiveness and redemption. This usually ends around the time a new Ben Stiller release comes out, but it's nice while it lasts.

However, all the goodwill in the world will not help me through the fact that I hate children and won't go to theaters where they appear in mass. So on opening day I'll probably go see "Drag Me to Hell," the latest from Sam Raimi, returning to the horror genre for the first time in years. The plot has its fair share of social commentary (a loan officer is cursed for foreclosing on an old gypsy woman and is hunted down by demons), but it feels a little heavy-handed. If nothing else, the film seems to at least break the dour tone most horror films have had recently and brings a little fun and weirdness back to the genre. Will probably suck, but I'll see it anyway.

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