Back to Being Busy

Imagine them harmonizing 'hello' ...And here it is Friday again, with movies aplenty opening. Let’s dive right in, kids:

Fear(s) of the Dark“: Wanna get creeped out by shadows and subtitles? This is the anthology for you. And though it’s really uneven, the segments that work are going to be so much more effective in a dark, squeaky theater than it’ll ever be in your living room.

Nightwatching“: In which Peter Greenaway continues his excavation of his own navel, this time dragging Martin Freeman along with him. I will continue to see everything and anything Greenaway does, based on the brilliance and audacity of the work he did two decades ago … but I’m also aware that it’s been a losing proposition for the last fifteen years.

“One Week”: Joshua Jackson, diagnosed with terminal cancer, takes a trip across Canada to look at our prized landmarks. It’s named for a Barenaked Ladies song; it’s got a Gord Downie cameo. Michael McGowan’s follow-up to “Saint Ralph” practically bleeds maple. Susan liked it, though I suspect the phrase “big commercial potential” is wishful thinking. Jason is a little more realistic.

“Owl and the Sparrow”: Stephane Gauger’s teeny little drama about a Vietnamese runaway in Ho Chi Minh City is opening today without fanfare or even a press release, as far as I know. But Glenn saw it, so we’re covered.

Pontypool“: Zombies! Not really! But if we call them zombies — if we actually, collectively, use the word — then they are, properly, zombies, right? You don’t have to use the zed-word to appreciate the semotic genius of Bruce McDonald’s horror exercise … but even if you do, it won’t help. The contaminated will still get you.

Watchmen“: Zack Snyder uses his “300” juice to bring Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ quintessential graphic novel to the screen, more or less as its creators imagined it on the page. Reviews have been mixed — A.O. Scott was particularly down on it in the Times yesterday — but I think it’s a pretty successful translation. Even if they did leave out the calamari.

I kinda miss the calamari.

3 thoughts on “Back to Being Busy”

  1. Let us agree the original calamari was an interesting idea, but keeping with the “Dark Knight” and “Iron Man” view of a realistic world without too much supernatural artifice, the alternative choice still works, somehow…

  2. The IMDB trivia section shows what a “visionary” Zack Snyder is.

    “When casting the film, Zack Snyder presented each of the actors with a copy of the script and a copy of the graphic novel. Later, during filming, Snyder allowed the actors to carry a copy of the graphic novel on set and re-write dialog to better match that of the source material.”

    Geez, what a hack.

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