Posted by: fireweaver | May 6, 2008

explosions & epilepsy

yesterday at work, i got a somewhat cryptic text from Chris: “can you be here at 630?” ‘here’ is generally assumed to be his theater, and we’d talked about catching some movies sometime this week. assumptions turned out to be correct, and we settled in for the first evening show of ‘iron man‘.

i don’t want to gush too much, but here we go anyway: all summers should kick off with such a bang. iron man is about a gadget-laden billionaire playboy (no, not batman, that’s in a few months) weapons manufacturer who is captured by the enemy and creates a kick-ass defense suit instead of the missile he was forced to; middle eastern vigilantism ensues. it’s actiony enough that it qualifies as a hot-weather popcorn-chomper of a movie, but thinky enough that you don’t feel your IQ dropping by the second. being as how it is a story about a weapons designer, there were enough explosions to make michael bay happy, and simultaneously these things blowing up actually had something to do with the plot at hand. the first time i saw the trailer, it really wasn’t working for me; smirkmeister robert downey jr just doesn’t strike me as an action hero. that smirk, however, totally makes the movie – he’s sardonic and rude and übergeeky (read: hott) like you’d expect, just with a lot of flames & destruction. jeff bridges is playing utterly over the top in this one with a shiny shaved pate and wicked zz-top goatee that utterly banishes any thoughts of the dude. gwynneth paltrow (?!) does quite well in a not entirely thankless bit as the trusty secretary. it’s a lot of fun, all the glowing reviews are well deserved.

after grabbing a quick bite in between movies, Vi & Justin joined us for a sneak of this weekend’s upcoming ‘speed racer‘. Chris happened to mention that someone at the distributor told him that this would be the movie to watch if you were into psychedelic drugs. huh. well, the cartoon wasn’t in my all-time top faves, but i’d seen it enough times to know that it had nothing to do with LSD. i hadn’t seen any trailers for the movie and knew nothing about it beyond the couple of posters up at the theater, but it took all of 30 seconds to figure out this, too was a cartoon. yes, there are live actors doing the acting, but nearly the entire thing is CGIed in a blinding palette of candy-bright jewel tones & neon, and everyone is wardrobed as a slick, stylish line-drawing of themselves (ditto hair, ditto makeup). marred only by an overlong pause in the action for the family-film obligatory ‘yes i’ve learned my life lesson’ moment, it’s visually loud as hell and twice as fast, and supremely fun. afterwards, Chris dazedly complained that the (neon’ed, heavily be-poster’ed) interior of the theater looked sadly bland and boring. my take on it was the serious query as to whether the theater would be slapping up an epilepsy warning outside the box office.

edit: apparently, i was hitting “save” instead of “publish”, so my last 2 posts didn’t show up. but they’re here for your love now!

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