Friday, March 24, 2006

Free Movie Weekend

Recently we had free HBO and Cinemax, so we tivo’ed a bunch of movies to watch later. My advice from this experience: don’t watch Flight of the Phoenix. Unless of course you have time to kill with no other diversions and it is free. It wasn’t a BAD movie like WaterWorld or The Postman, or a painfully terrible movie like The Cube or Hypercube, but it was 2 hours of time I’ll never reclaim. Basic premise: plane goes down in a sandstorm somewhere in the Chinese or Mongolian desert. Rescue is unlikely and food/water is limited. A few people you don’t care about die, more people you don’t care about live. The creepy random guy convinces them that they can use the crashed plane pieces to rebuild an airworthy craft and save themselves. Fortunately the passengers were all oil rig workers and skilled in hard labor, welding, etc. None of the characters are memorable enough for me to know their names, even while watching the movie. The only decent acting is by Giovanni Ribisi who is doing a great job with a weak script/plot, but just when you think the movie will get interesting and go Dead Calm on you and someone will have to kill Giovanni before he gets all Billy Zane psycho, the writers throw in a cheesy happy ending where even the nutjob is a hero and all the passengers are harnessed onto the wings flying out of the desert. Riiiiight.

Second movie watched: I Robot. I’ll admit, even being the sci-fi geek I am, I haven’t read much Asimov and went into the movie knowing nothing about the book though I expect I’ll pick it up and give it a read once I catch up on all the other reading I’ve got lined up. It actually wasn’t bad – at least, it was better than I’d expected. To be fair, I didn’t have high expectations of a Will Smith blockbuster sci-fi remake – figured it would be more mass-market entertainment like Men In Black than hard sci-fi like A.I. or Blade Runner (and if you haven’t read Phillip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, SHAME ON YOU). Anyway, Will Smith movies are generally entertaining and this was no exception. I think it is unlikely to become a classic but at least I wouldn’t have been pissed if I’d spent money to see it in the theater.

Since we’re talking about movies, here is my list of movies I think everyone with more than half a brain should see. Not all are sci-fi/fantasy, some are twisted psychological dramas…:

Blade Runner
A Clockwork Orange
Naked Lunch
Serenity (and the 13 episode prequel tv series Firefly)
Alien quadrilogy
LOTR Trilogy (Extended Directors Editions!)

Yeah, I’m a reformed ST:TNG fan but let’s be honest, Trek movies aren’t all that great. And while I will always be a huge X-Phile, it is hard to watch the movie without the tv show momentum to feed the conspiracy drama and yummy sexual tension between Mulder and Scully (will they ever kiss? Yes! Oh no, she is passing out! Denied again!). And don’t pretend you were immune to it and it’s just a chick thing – we all know that Scully was a babe and you wanted to kiss her until she forgot that whole rational, ‘there has to be a scientific explanation’ act too.

If you are horrified I left 2001: A Space Odyssey or Star Wars off the list, you are far more of a dork than I am. Congratulations. Your Official Dork King Certificate is in the mail. Really, it is. You should go stand by the mailbox now and wait for it to arrive so you can frame and hang it before your friends come over for your weekly Dungeons and Dragons game. They will all be soooo jealous. In fact, if you want to put on your Storm Trooper costume first, I’m sure your mail delivery person will be extra impressed and take more care in the future to not mangle your envelopes or carelessly put your mail in the annoying cat-lady neighbor’s mailbox.

Maybe sometime I’ll list chick flicks you can rent to score points with your girl. Though if you are a certified Dork King you probably don’t have a girl…


Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home