Wednesday, May 16, 2012

F This Movie! - The Year So Far

With the summer movie season underway, Patrick and JB take stock of 2012 and look ahead at the movies they can't wait to see, the movies they dread and Frankenweenie.

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Also discussed this episode: The Avengers


  1. OK, now I'm definitely seeing Woman in Black; I loved Cabin and Innkeepers and to have that mentioned with both movies and how this has been a strong horror year so far makes me think I made a mistake in skipping it.

    (Also, I found the western novel stuff funny, but then I'm into old pulp fiction. Also, the cover just pops: )

  2. I gotta say, the comments that this year is not the greatest but not the worst I think really under plays how good this year is looking.

    How much better can a year get when we are looking at getting a Big Budget Christopher Nolan Film (never made a bad film), a new Tarrantino film (never made a bad film), a Wes Anderson film, a new Ridley Scott Sci-Fi film, and (for the film students) an Oliver Stone film, along with a more and more likely release of a PT Anderson film.

    How much better does a years slate need to get before its considered a great year? Seriously, all thats missing is a Scorsese film and we would have the set.

    2012 is looking like a great year in film!

    1. I agree that the year has potential to be great, and that I have hope/faith in everything you just mentioned. If everyone is able to deliver what I know they're capable of delivering, I will be the first to call this a great year. The "good, not great" comments were more in response to what we've seen so far in 2012 -- lots of good, very little "great." Hopefully, that's yet to come.

  3. Fair enough, I thought JB was speaking about the "yet to come" side of the year.

    1. I heard part of the show again, and I think you actually heard correctly. I'm with you, though; there is a lot to look forward to. G.I. Joe: Retaliation!

    2. Class act Patrick.

      Hard to beat the anticipation of the year ahead.

    3. For what it's worth (it is worth nothing), I am crazy excited for a ton of movies this year, which is shaping up to be GREAT (IMHO)! For movies! Great year for movies, is my point.

  4. Movies I'm Looking Forward To(other than The Dark Knight Rises):
    1. ParaNorman
    2. Take This Waltz
    3. Killer Joe
    4. Looper
    5. The ABCs of Death
    6. Argo
    Guilty Pleasure Interest: Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

  5. Not much to contribute here, other than to say, in reference to this entire episode, "Yeah, I agree." See, not that interesting, but true. We seem to share a lot of the same opinions.

    It doesn't add much to the conversation, but I will say:

    Bums On Film just became my favorite NPR show. Suck it, Terry Gross.

    I was super excited about more Guntown Marshall, but it turns out fate did not have more Guntown Marshall in store for me. Curse you, cruel fate.

    I did have the "pleasure" of seeing Captain Eo for the first time last year. I've been to Disney World numerous times, but it took the death of Michael Jackson to make anyone want to see that thing again. I can say that it was pretty awful. Unintentionally hilarious, because there's an alien named Hooter who eats the ship's map, prompting the King of Pop to say something along the lines of "oh, hooter! You ate our map!" It's impossible to hear Michael Jackson say the word "hooter" in any context and not snicker like a 2nd grader.

    Lastly, I'm a pretty big Spider-Man fan. Like, pretty big. I didn't care much for the Raimi take on the character because I felt like it was missing something. It felt very separate from the feel of the Marvel Universe for me. It felt like Raimi-verse to me, at the disservice of the character. So I've been keeping my fingers crossed that the new movie would at least feel true to the comic book sense of fun that we've been getting since Iron Man. the new Rolling Stone, Marc Web, the director of the new Spider-Man movie, says, and I QUOTE: "I didn't want to make a movie that felt like a comic book onscreen." So of all the comics to make a movie from, he didn't want SPIDER-MAN to feel like a comic book on screen? Isn't the point of making a movie out of a comic to make it feel like a comic book onscreen? I wish Sony would just chill so Marvel could get the license back, but that's not going to happen. Ugh. I just threw up in my mouth. I mean, does that make sense to anybody? That's like saying "I didn't want Superman to feel like a super hero." Hopefully it will surprise me and not be as bad as I'm expecting. I was expecting nothing from the Avengers and look what we all got.

    Anyway, great show, guys. There are no words for how much joy this show brings to my workday once a week. Thanks.

  6. You're the best, Heath.

    I'm interested in your reaction to the Raimi Spider-Man movies, because I'm a big time fan of the comic (it's my FAVE -- behind, of course, Sleepwalker and Speedball) and I'm a fan of at least the first two movies. I like everything in the first one up to the point when he actually becomes Spider-Man (and even then, there's some stuff I still like). I REALLY like Spider-Man 2. I caught some of 3 on TV the other night, and it's even worse than I remember. YUCK. But I felt like the best stuff in the first two movies got a lot of what I always liked about the comics. I definitely get what you're saying about the movies existing in Sam Raimi world, because he does impose a lot of his signature style on the movies, but I only felt like it was a distraction in a few sequences (the first Doc Ock attack in the operating room in 2 is an example). So I'm not disagreeing with you, just wanting to better understand your feelings about those movies (which, out of three movies, only amounts to one and a half good movies).

    I'm with you on feeling VERY apprehensive about this new take, too. It just seems like Marc Webb is trying to take things in a direction that feels nothing like the comics or the Raimi movies just for the sake of seeming different (he must realize there is no need for a reboot already). He wants it to be all dark and edgy and emo and change huge parts of the mythology. Maybe it will work; I don't want to make my mind up sight unseen, but I have very little confidence right now.

    I will say, though, that the "You found my weakness...very small knives" gives me hope, because that's the smart-ass Spider-Man from the comics.

    1. Yeah, the "small knives" line feels like Spidey. I want more smart ass-ery in this new one, too. By the way, your Sleepwalker and Speedball comment actually made me laugh out loud.

      It's very difficult to explain my reaction to the Raimi Spider-Man movies. I'll try though, as best as I can, to sum up this feeling deep down. Oh, that's diarrhea. The other feeling! the one about not really digging the Spider-Man movies, that's the one I'll try to explain.
      I don't know, sometimes the movies play on these personal levels, on character moments, then there are other times when I feel like I'm watching a cartoon, and not in a good way. I do not think Willem Defoe's Green Goblin works. Defoe himself is alright (though he has pieces of the scenery stuck in his teeth) but the costume...I don't love it. It feels a bit campy, not "fun roller coaster" but more "the 8 year olds will love this part." Green Goblin dressed as an old lady to lure Spider-Man into a trap? Say what now?

      Also, I was not a fan of the casting of either Tobey Maguire (he consistently looks constipated) or Kirsten Dunst. I'm apprehensive about the new movie, but I do think Andrew Garfield is 10 times better cast than Toby Maguire. I guess other Marvel movies of the time felt more like the Marvel Universe. And by other movies of the time, I'm talking about X2. Well, X2 and Elektra. Just kidding. No, it just felt very dark and heightened....oh, you know, those first two movies feel like Tim Burton's Batman to me. They feel like they exist in a separate world. The parade scene with Macy Gray felt like it needed a Prince song while Defoe threw money to the crowd on top of a big float. Where's Spider-Man? He's at home, washing his tights. Does any of this make sense? it's all so subjective and personal, I'm not sure I'm conveying anything. I still feel like the Spider-Man who I have read so much of hasn't been seen in a movie yet. But you do, so maybe my expectations are just way too high. It's not like anyone broke into my house and burned my Spidey comics--wait, Doug just did.
      Did I help you to understand my feelings toward those films? Or did I just prove that comics fans can be really nitpicky?

    2. This is interesting (and just what I believed would be the case). I think we arrive at different places, but I think we have many of the same hangups about the movies -- everything you mentioned as being a problem is a problem for me, too.

      I was bummed out by the casting of Tobey Maguire when it was first announced, but I definitely ended up liking him a lot in the part. I thought he got a lot of things right about Peter Parker: his sweetness, his decency, his awkwardness. I'm totally with you on Kirsten Dunst, though; while I never thought she was terrible, there was nothing about her that resembled the MJ from the comics (and it got worse as the series went on and she just became mopier and mopier).

      Incidentally, when red-headed Emma Stone was announced as being cast as MJ in Amazing Spider-Man, I was all "Hey! Good choice. I could totally see her as Mary Jane." Then the announce that they would be dyeing her hair blonde and having her play Gwen Stacy. And I was all "Hey! You continue to confuse and frustrate me, Amazing Spider-Man. But, again, I still haven't seen the movie.

      The Green Goblin is a big problem. I feel like his horrible suit is part of that early 2000s thing, where movies where afraid to be "too" comic-booky (see: the costumes in the first X-Men). Why anyone would think that costume was more "realistic" I couldn't say, but there is some half-hearted attempt to suggest it's military armor. Blah. I still don't think anything Green Goblin-related really works except for his last line ("Don't tell Harry," which is my favorite moment in the whole movie and captures everything I love about Spider-Man comics). Most of the stuff after he actually becomes Spider-Man doesn't work in the first movie. It's all one big montage (something that would be repeated in Iron Man and Captain America).

      But, to quote Film Crit Hulk talking about The Avengers, I thought it worked in the ways it needed to work.

      Having said that, I haven't seen it in a long time, and things have changed so much since then (comic book movie-wise) that maybe my reaction would be different. In just ten years, we've gone from needing to explain Green Goblin's "armor" to Thanos showing up in a movie. I'm sure if Spider-Man were being made today, it would be totally different.

      Oh, wait. It is.

    3. Well, at least we have the same problems with the movie. I do agree with pretty much everything you are saying, and it is true that the movie is a product of its time...I tell you, the blu-rays currently have a ticket promotion to see the new Spidey flick, and I only have the first two movies on DVD so I may upgrade them to blu-ray and watch them again with a more open mind. I've really been thinking about buying them (for the ticket to the new movie), and this gives me even more incentive to do so. Maybe we should pick up this conversation later in the summer after the all new, all different, all at night Amazing Spider-Man hits (flops?). At that point I'll have watched them again in preparation of the new movie and my opinion may have changed. You wanna?

    4. Doug, I totally forgot all about that spoof. I haven't watched the MTV Movie Awards in several years, but I remember when it was appointment television. I also forgot how hot SMG was/is. I'd be her Mr Pointy. (semi obscure Buffy reference...anyone?)

    5. I would be down for that. I'm worried about rewatching them, though, because I'm guessing they haven't aged very well. But let's do it!

      Nice Buffy reference, too. And thanks for laughing at the Speedball/Sleepwalker joke. That was strictly for the hardcore Marvel nerds.

  7. Patrick, any chance for a Raimi's "Spider-Man" universe podcast when/around the release of the new "The Amazing Spider-Man" comes around? I've suggested these on e-mail for a podcast. Make the podcast kind-of an unofficial 'this trilogy is now history' remembrance of the good, bad and in-between of what is by box office numbers the most successful/popular superhero movie franchise of all time. You can even invite Mike and his fellow comic book friends over and double it over as a review/comparison to the new "Spider-Man" movie (if you record it after its released).

    The most in-depth you've talked about it is about 5 minutes worth of "Spider-Man 2" gushing in the 'Favorite Super-Hero Movies' podcast (Part 1). But I think there's plenty to talk about since all three movies cover the gamut from near-perfection (2) to wasted potential/total shit (3) to compromised middle-of-the-road just OK (1). Think about it, won't you? It's the excuse you need to rewatch the Spidey movies on Blu-ray before the new release.