Doug's Sounding Board


Tuesday Media Roundup #45

Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution – So far it’s been an interesting look at what kids are fed in school. And seeing the food people consume for a given period of time in one pile is an effective tool he uses to show people how they are eating poorly.

Jericho – I haven’t seen a western this clean since the 80s. The clothes were clean, the buildings were clean. Even when the characters were dirty, their dirt looked clean. It almost seems like this was meant to be a made for tv movie. The movie itself started out okay but the second half it fell apart. By the end it just wasn’t making much sense at all. He’s waiting for the train and they make him miss it but nothing comes of that. Then he finally meets up with who he needs to meet up with, they look at each other, and that’s it. Not satisfying at all.

Resurrecting the Champ – Good movie, good cast! It tells a good story about what defines you as a person. It doesn’t seem to be the typical Samuel L Jackson role but he’s still great. Why isn’t Josh Hartnett in more movies?

How the Garcia Girls Spent Their Summer – Three generations trying to find their hookup. All three stories are interesting. The grandmother’s story is interesting because it’s almost shown like a silent movie. The mother’s story is an adapting to a changing world story. The daughter’s story is a story of the first time. I liked it and surprisingly it didn’t feel long despite being over two hours.

Obsessed – It’s entertaining despite being fairly predictable and the main character acting really stupid for the first half of the movie. Any number of early conversations to HR and the temp hiring people would have put an end to this movie. Ali Larter is good as the crazy though.

Not Easily Broken – Pretty good marriage drama. Not everything ties together that well surrounding the core drama, but the core drama is well done.

Gospel Hill – This movie is good for the characters and their history. The multiple plot elements don’t all get explained, but that doesn’t really detract from the appreciation of the characters. It’s like there was a good chunk that ended up on the cutting room floor.

100 Feet – A ghost story with an interesting premise and some surprisingly intense scenes. There is one scene towards the end that goes to the gratuitous level of violence and it makes itself apparent pretty quickly if you want to look away; it quickly oes on longer than previous ghostly encounters. The writer/director is responsible for writing The Hitcher and that remains his best movie, but this one is still pretty good.

Traitor – An interesting story about an American moderate muslim getting involved with extremist muslims. Both the military and government response and his conflicts cover a lot of ground.

The Man in the Moon – Reese Witherspoon’s first movie and she’s even good then.

Iris – A joyful and heartbreaking story, and at times, very harsh. Alzheimer’s movies are the biggest horror movies to me.

Always – I finally saw this! It was as good as everyone told me it was. Definitely has Spielberg written all over it, but that’s a good thing.

Whip It – A fairly typical teen rebellion story but set in a roller derby backdrop. It’s pretty much fun from beginning to end and who doesn’t like roller derby? They don’t explain most of the rules as it goes along, but some of the action isn’t edited together as well as it could be. It seems out of sequence at times.

Across the Universe – Beatles songs taken and applied to a more serious story than was originally meant, but it’s still a decent story. Some of the imagery is fantastic. Between this and Titus the director seems to really like militaristic musical numbers and I think those are the strongest parts of the movie. It’s also fun for Beatles fans who like spotting Beatles references and other references to their era.

Good Luck Chuck – Dane Cook one of the weakest leading male characters I’ve ever seen. He’s the romantic one woman type, but he jumps into having sex with hundred of women at the slightest of urgings from his friend. He makes weak protestations and whines and keeps doing it. The penguins are cute too.

Homegrown – Movies with the paranoia of those new to crime are generally entertaining and this one, while not great, is just that. The cast is great. The surprise came at the end when there is a small convoy through town and the town was Felton. Not all of it was filmed in Santa Cruz county but a lot was. I cou;dn’t tell before because it was all woods.

Dou fo sin (Flash Point) – Good action scenes, but otherwise forgettable. The dubbing was distractingly horrible.

Meet the Browns – I’m not understanding why this is a 3/10 in the imdb. Did too many white people see it? I thought it was funny for most of it, It did get a little heavy handed with the end, but that’s hardly a reason for a 3.

Perfect Opposites – The story of a guy who has his head up his ass about relationships until he loses the woman he loves and has to figure things out. I thought the part of them getting settled in LA was good. Most movies show people moving to a new area and everything just works. You don’t often see the troubles people have in new places in movies.

Pathology – Med students gone wrong. I like the idea of it. I mean who would better know how to kill people than people who have studied how the body works? It doesn’t fall apart at the end, but it does stumble shortly before the end. There is an explosion that isn’t explained that conveniently gets rid of some characters. Aside from that it’s a decent thriller.

Scenes of a Sexual Nature – Intertwined relationship conversations in a park in one afternoon. Most of the characters don’t interact between scenes but there are a few that provide the connection. Most of them are fairly amusing but a the same time not very memorable.

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