Friday, June 15, 2007

Too many films, not enough time; No. 3

Sitting in a dark room for 2 hours is a hard sell when it is so nice out and there are so many cool things going on around town. But if you are suffering from heatstroke or living without air conditioning, there are some great options:

Day Watch
This is the typical summer movie, with subtitles. The second installment of this trilogy from Russia looks faster, slicker and maybe a little more brainless. Picking up where Night Watch left off, this is your basic saga of the eternal struggle between Good and Evil, with a capital 'g' and 'e'. The Night Watch Trilogy is the most financially ambitious film project to ever come out of Russia. But don't hold that against it. There is some good fun to be had. If you don't believe me check out the trailer HERE.

Killer of Sheep
Filmmaking, the way it used to be. Charles Burnett's 1977 16mm student film has been given a new lease on public life with a physical restoration and proper copyright clearance for the music used. Not only is Killer of Sheep a testament to the life of one black family in the Watts neighborhood of LA, but it is also a testament to filmmaking (with the emphasis on 'film'.) The awards handed out to this film are monumental: it was one of the first features to be selected by the Library of Congress for preservation because of its "social and artistic importance." Nice website HERE.

La Vie En Rose
Who doesn't like Edith Piaf? Her life was as interesting as her music. This bio-pic offers a dramatic look at the "Little Sparrow's" life, with great critical success. If you have the patience, check out the very flash-y website HERE.

Okay. This film is probably going to be mediocre at best. But I am interested in what Luc Besson is doing, despite the fact that he never seems to live up to even low expectations. The premise of this film seems a little cliche: low-life saves supermodel, supermodel saves low-life. That being said, the black and white shots of Paris look beautiful. Watch the very impressive trailer HERE.

As always, "good" is a matter of perspective, and, in my opinion, Corey Yuen has more great movies under his belt than crappy ones. And that is statement I am willing to stand by. From his films with Cynthia Rothrock (Yes, Madame and Righting Wrongs), to some of the best work Jet Li has done (Fong Sai Yuk, The New Legend of Shaolin, Bodyguard from Beijing, The Enforcer, etc), to recent ass-kickers (So Close, Transporter); these films have provided me with an immense amount of entertainment, and I could sit down and watch any of them again today. So I'm willing to cut Yuen a little slack for what seems to be a lame video game movie. I beg you, watch this trailer HERE. The opening is funny and the action looks awesome. These women are no Jet Li or Cynthia Rothrock (or Shu Qi or Karen Mok for that matter) but this looks like loads of me.

If none of those entice you there are still good films playing in the 'continuing' category:
Crazy Love - Crazy documentary.
- Crazy Japanese animation.
Paris Je T'aime - Crazy omnibus.
Waitress -
Crazy heart-warming popular success.

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