Sunday, July 8, 2012

What I Just Watched

Because I rent DVDs regularly, I'm going to have to be a bit more creative when it comes to the blog title articles when I review several films I watch in one sitting. Yesterday it was like 100 degrees, for the fourth day in a row here in Ann Arbor, and along with reading for my class, I watched three films.

The Tourist is a romantic comedy drama starring Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp. The film, directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck was slammed by critics and didn't do well at the theater, but I thought it was funny and pretty to look at. The plot is rather tried and tested about a double crossing agent and stole money from a bad guy. I give it a 7 out of 10.

As a fan of the 1982 version of John Carpenter's The Thing, I was anxious to see what the 2011 version of The Thing 'prequel' was about. I saw the the first film at the theater and at least 100 times since then. Like many fans of this cult favorite, we wanted to know what happened before the Kurt Russell version, and what happened after. The latter event has yet to be brought to film, however, the 2011 version, directed by Matthijs van Heijningen Jr. and starring Mary Elizabeth Winstead, as a tough and inquisitive paleontologist, and helicopter pilot Joel Edgerton, was pretty scary and gruesome. It did a great job in tying up a connection with the 1982 film, and we get a glimpse of the original state of the horrible Thing before it starts to imitate humans. It lacks the dark, dreary, awesome tension of the 1982 film, but it's a decent horror flick to answer pre-quel questions. It earns a 7.5/10.

I watched Ryan Gosling's Drive again last night, I saw it at last year's TIFF. Ryan, the director Nicholas Refn, and key actors from the film came out on stage after the film screened. I love this film for it's 80's feel in today's setting. Ryan plays a movie stunt car driver who is hired out once in a while to be the driver for robberies. He gets a cut of the action, and gets on with his quite life. He befriends a pretty next door neighbor played by Carey Mulligan until her husband is released from jail. Upon his release, her husband, played by Oscar Issac, immediately gets back into trouble and takes Ryan down the trail of car chases, guns, and murders. This is a great film with a fantastic performance by Albert Brooks too. Check it out, it earns 8.5/10.

Albert Brooks, Bryan Cranston, Ryan Gosling, Nicholas Winding Refn at TIFF 2011
Bryan and Ryan

TIFF Photos by Simone


  1. I couldn't comment on the post you talk about this new blog( don't know why), so...Congratulations!!! & Happy New Blog!

  2. Thanks Marcia, this is going to be a fun and informative blog!

  3. I liked Drive a lot. My brother thought it was the best thing since sliced bread, and gave it a 10/10. I've never seen the new version of 'The Thing', and I skipped the Tourist.