The rants and raves of a teenage cinephile who is just a little bit obsessed with Catherine O'Hara and Hayao Miyazaki.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Mini Review 4-Pack!

Guess what guys? Today you get an extra special treat, which is that I am going to review in short a few movies. It'll be fun!

The Help - The narrative is very clunky, but the spot-on performances from every single member of the cast and the visually appealing aesthetic more than make up for it, and I'll be darned if I wasn't a teary mess by the end. Emma Stone is great, but this is Viola Davis's movie and she runs away with it, giving a performance of sensitivity and gravitas. However, best in show goes to Sissy Spacek, who somehow manages to turn the word "napkins" into one of the funniest moments in the movie. (7)

Rise of the Planet of the Apes - Cliche time - I admired this movie more than I enjoyed it. Considering this could have been a total joyride made for money's sake only, it was surprisingly artistic and intelligent. It tackles themes like animal testing and human evil in ways that are, while not always subtle, usually successful - not an easy task. Plus, the CGI was UN BE LIEVABLE. Bonus points for the cinematography. (7)

30 Minutes or Less - In short, the movie is as enjoyable and funny as it could have hoped to be but it's nothing really special - and for 83 minutes, it somehow seems to drag. Aziz Ansari and Jesse Eisenberg make a really great tag team though, with Ansari being wildly hysterical and Eisenberg providing a unsurprisingly powerful amount of real acting in a role that could have come off as hysterical and incoherent. (6)

Crazy, Stupid, Love - This one was tough for me. I think that I'm confusing how much I wanted to like this movie with how much I actually did. That being said though, despite being imperfect and falling prey to some minor cliches, it's definitely one of the best big-studio romantic comedies in a LONG time, thanks almost completely to the remarkably talented cast, none of whom can really be singled out because they were all just so good. I will say though, Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling were simply superb, and the amount of chemistry they exuded was irresistible. (7 - but a super high seven. Like, almost an 8. I'd have to see it again.)

And just for fun (and because I love lists), my top 10 performances from this quartet, in no order:

  • Viola Davis, The Help
  • Sissy Spacek, The Help
  • Octavia Spencer, The Help
  • Jessica Chastain, The Help (um, range much? this was completely different from Tree of Life)
  • Jesse Eisenberg, 30 Minutes or Less
  • Aziz Ansari, 30 Minutes or Less
  • John Lithgow, Rise of the Planet of the Apes
  • Ryan Gosling, Crazy Stupid Love
  • Marisa Tomei, Crazy Stupid Love
  • Liza Lapira, Crazy Stupid Love

So, which of these movies or performances was your favorite? As always, your opinions, be they affirmative or negative, are always welcome below


  1. Some actually think The Help has a chance for a Best Picture nomination... not so sure, now that they need 5% I'd say.

  2. Alex, it should be interesting to see where that goes. It doesn't seem like it's a strong enough movie to get that 5% but I can understand people might love it...I really hope Viola Davis gets nominated at least.

  3. summer is not a good point in the awards season to get excited about anything. :)

    where is the Mary J. Blige (right spelling?!) song in The Help? during the film or credits?...

  4. It's weird how everyone who finally sees Crazy, Stupid, Love is slightly let down by it. Did the trailer and that cast promise too much?
    I know it was a total disappointment for me! Loved Emma though.

  5. Alex: If i'm not mistaken, it's in the credits. I actually quite like the song but the music branch always screws that category up.

    Jose: I think the cast was just way too promising! Though they all did great and the movie would have been not nearly as good without them.

  6. Wow..!! Its amazing.Crazy Stupid Love is really amazing.When I had watched this movie.I got amazed,Really superb..

    Coming Soon Movies


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