Saturday, January 29, 2011

Funny Quotes of the Week 113

"I feel so miserable without you; it's almost like having you here." (Stephen Bishop)

"He's nothing more than a well meaning baboon." (General McCellan on Abraham Lincoln)

"Women love us for our defects. If we have enough of them, they will forgive us everything, even our intellects." (Oscar Wilde)

Movie: The Family Stone

The best thing about this movie is perhaps that the only normal couple in it is a deaf man and his black boyfriend.

I must also admit that I laughed several times while watching the movies. I will estimate that about half the laughs were because the movie was funny, while the other were incredulous "please don't tell me they put that into the script" laughs. There are so many instances in this movie where you know ten minutes in advance what will happen.

The actors were okay, though - it was the script that was lacking. And even with such bad script (which made my husband exclaim "Bad Drama!" several times during the movie), I was entertained from time to time.

But you're sure to find something better to watch.

The Family Stone (2005)

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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Movie: I Love You Phillip Morris

Of course, it's interesting to see a movie in which Jim Carrey and Ewan McGregor are playing a gay couple. They are two good actors.

Jim Carrey is playing a con man who manages every possible situation - he is as well-functioning as a heterosexual family man as he is as a flaming queer. He can handle a court room without any studies in law and can talk his way out of prison. However, exactly the same qualities that makes him navigate the world so smoothly, are highly problematic when used in his love life.

Thus, the movie can be said to discuss much the same problem as Woody Allen's masterpiece Zelig - if you can seemlessly fit into any situation and change your personality to accomodate the people around you - is there still a real person inside? I will certainly not say that this movie does this in as elegant or entertaining way as Woody Allen's film, but it is still an interesting view.

Additional warning: this is one of the few movies in which Ewan McGregor does not appear naked...

I Love You Phillip Morris (2009)

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Saturday, January 22, 2011

Funny Quotes of the Week 112

"The Right Honourable Gentleman is indebted to his memory for his jests and to his imagination for his facts." (Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751-1816), Irish playwright and politician, on Henry Dundas (1742-1811), British politician)

"He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." (Winston Churchill)

"The public is wonderfully tolerant. It forgives everything except genius." (Oscar Wilde)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Movie: Straw Dogs

Dustin Hoffman plays a mathematician, David Sumner, in this strange 1971 Sam Peckinpah movie. David has moved to a small faraway town, for no apparent reason, with his wife. It turns out the local people don't fancy David much - but they do fancy David. He is a very non-violent guy, but this certainly does not mean that the film is without violence. The movie was even banned from being released on DVD in the UK from 1984 until 2002, according to imdb.

While the movie certainly does take off in the last half, it is at times simply boring. Which makes it a bit strange that there will be a remake made in 2011, with James Marsden inheriting Dustin Hoffman's role. We'll see how that turns out.

Straw Dogs (1971)

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Monday, January 17, 2011

Movie: My Fair Lady

My Fair Lady, which is, obviuosly, the musical version of the brilliant George Bernard Shaw play Pygmalion, is a classic. It tells the story of Eliza Doolittle, the flower girl that is "picked up" by Professor Higgins, who has made a bet that he will be able to teach her "proper" English and manners so that she can go to a ball at the palace.

There are some very well-known and beautiful songs here, such as "Wouldn't it be lovely", "With a little bit of luck", "I could have danced all night", "On the street where you live" and "Get me to the church on time". Partly, therefore, watching this movie turns into a concert of nice rendevouses.

Audrey Hepburn is very good as Eliza and the other actors involved are also good. It is a funny story with plenty of laughs and a little bit of romance added in.

So why don't I give it a better "grade" than 7/10? Well, it has to do with my usual problem with movies lasting far more than two hours and my problem with musicals. I prefer musicals where the music doesn't make the action stop. For me, the flow of the movie is lost a bit too often.

But of course, My Fair Lady is such a classic that it should anyway be seen at least once...

My Fair Lady (1964)

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Saturday, January 15, 2011

Funny Quotes of the Week 111

"The only trouble about not drinking is that other people who are drinking are liable to look a little silly." (Noël Coward)

"An empty suit that goes to funerals and plays golf." (Ross Perot talking about Dan Quayle)

"He has the attention span of a lightning bolt." (Robert Redford)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Movie: Anything Else

Woody Allen does not have the main role in this Woody Allen movie. Instead, he is the David Dobel, relationship advisor of Jerry Falk (Jason Biggs), who, sadly, falls in love with Amanda (Christina Ricci). While choosing Amanda was not a good idea, going to David Dobel is plain disastrous.

At times it seems that Woody Allen wants to press all his usual funny one-liners into the short scenes with David Dobel. This means that these scenes are a bit too hectic, while the rest of the movie is not as interesting. To me, this made the movie one of the least successful of his career (which, thankfully, doesn't say much).

Anything Else (2003)

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Sunday, January 09, 2011

Movie: The Curse Of The Jade Scorpion

I'm a big fan of Woody Allen's movies. I've seen 31 of his movies, and I find they to be consistently good and very varied. Some of his movies are masterpieces.

The Curse Of The Jade Scorpion is no masterpiece. But it is a very entertaining movie. Woody Allen is playing the insurance investigator who is famous for exposing fraudsters. This time, however, he comes across crimes that are too cleverly performed even for his great brain...

The story is quite well written, but the main attraction of the movie is its dialogue - there are some great insults here, as Woody Allen and Helen Hunt fight for control. The two of them are brilliant together - "It's a match made in heaven... by a retarded angel."

Highly recommended.

The Curse Of The Jade Scorpion (2001)

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Saturday, January 08, 2011

Funny Quotes of the Week 110

"You ask my advice about acting? Speak clearly, don't bump into furniture, and if you must have motivation, think of your pay packet on Friday." (Noël Coward)

"At the age of six I wanted to be a crook. At seven, I wanted to be Napoleon. And my ambition has been growing steadily ever since." (Salvador Dalí)

"There are only two kinds of people who are really fascinating: people who know absolutely everything, and people who know absolutely nothing." (Oscar Wilde)

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Movie: I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry

There's a lot of good intentions behind this movie. Two firemen, Chuck and Larry, realize that Larry's insurance is in danger, and he needs to get married to get things sorted out. As Larry has just saved Chuck's life, he can't really object. So they get married, but it turns out it's not so easy to pretend to be gay after all...

There are a few good laughs in the movie and I can't really put my finger on what does not work, except that the whole idea of straight people pretending to be gay has been used a few times before. Kevin James is particularly funny. So, perhaps it's a good idea to have a look...

I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry (2007)

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Saturday, January 01, 2011

Movie: An Education

Jenny is a girl, just 16 years old, who wants to get into Oxford. However, she meets a guy (David) nearly twice her age who wants to educate her in quite a different way.

The movie is not altogether convincing, particularly I watch in disbelief as the father of Jenny takes everything the David at face value. On the other hand, Carey Mulligan's portrayal of Jenny is rather good.

And Emma Thompson has a tiny role in this movie, too. I'm a bit sad it wasn't bigger.

An Education (2010)

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Funny Quotes of the Week 109

"I can no longer believe in revolution, but I cannot fail to be on the side of the young who are fighting for it." (Pier Paolo Pasolini)

"They say you have to work within the system, but that's hard to do if you can't get in there to do it. (Leslie Perez)

"The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible." (Oscar Wilde)