Posted by: fireweaver | November 23, 2007

humans & caricatures

Amanda and i were feeling rather bummy, since we hadn’t been to the gym all this month (that’s what 2 weeks of out-of-town does for ya), so we headed up for a round of hooker dancing with the 6p floor & chair class. and soon as we were done with that, just for good measure, we took the 7p pole class. i fully expect my abs to threaten mutiny all the rest of the weekend. i actually did a wee bit of black friday shopping afterwards, though of course it wasn’t for xmas gifts, just that the wine cooler for way cheap was just what i always wanted.

Chris’ theater is right at the same place where my gym is (as in, one can see that ginormous monstrosity across the street as soon as you step outside the gym), so i stopped by for a quick visit on my way home. he told me that a couple of the other employees were going to screen ‘hitman’ for themselves at 1, did i want to stay for it and watch another movie in the interim? well, sure, gotta move on from the last free movie, right?

first up was ‘no country for old men‘, which i promptly proclaimed brilliant in a closing-credits text message to a fellow movie whore. it’s been years since the coens have done something worth watching (‘o brother’ was 7 years ago!), but this one is a clear reminder of why i get all excited when i hear they’re coming out with a new movie. the story follows a guy who stumbles across the aftermath of a botched drug deal in the middle of nowhere, takes the inevitable suitcase of cash, and is then tracked by various unsavory types including a particularly creepy psycho. for all the possibility that this could have been done as a thrill-a-minute john woo rain-of-bullets, it’s instead a quiet, thoughful exploration of a slow clusterfuck of greek tragedy proportions. the acting was A+ on all counts, even from actors i don’t normally associate with “quality”: woody harrelson has never had more piercing cold blue eyes; tommy lee jones (who narrates in places, and here’s the thing, the movie’s about him not the hapless guy) manages to shed the “grizzled know it all badass” persona that is his “acting” in most everything he’s in; and javier bardem, WOW, christopher walken can now retire as supremely creepy weirdo, bardem was amazing. ‘no country’ is NOT in the quirky comedy part of the coens’ oeuvre, a fact that really threw Chris for a loop when he screened it at opening last week and expected hilarity, but instead got something much closer to the gritty noir of ‘blood simple.’  one last important tip: if you have any inclination to watch this one, do NOT read a bunch of reviews & synopses, just go.  other people’s impressions may well ruin it for you.

(as i got out of that movie, it occurred to me there were scant minutes to go ’til midnight.  “oh, no, nablopomo!!”  Chris was amazingly tolerant of my demands for immediate internet access.  thank stars above he expects me to be a touch crazy.  so this whole post is a replacement for a quickie “yay, movie!” one from last night.)

after chilling out people-watching for a half hour, it was time for round deux, a screening of ‘hitman‘ for some of the other managers & employees – maybe 7 of us in total.   nutshell review: the trailer is a sterling example of marketing genius. as in, it’s more exciting, better cut, and prettier than the movie it’s selling us.  i’m perfectly fine with a movie that’s all style over substance (see: ‘the fifth element‘), but there’s a catch: nothing else about the movie – the acting, the score, the dialogue,  whatever – can be so inanely stupid as to detract from being amused by how pretty it all is.  ‘hitman’, kids, is a way dumb movie.  and while we’re at it, it’s kinda insulting, too:  every female in there is a whore (literally), every man is a thug (except maybe a waiter and a pair of scared priests).  there’s a few pretty decent fight scenes, and yes, plenty of stuff gets bathed in either arterial spray or explosion flames, so if that’s your excitement criteria, knock yourself out.  otherwise, it’s completely disposable popcorn fare.

except i had another free icee instead of popcorn.

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