Saturday, January 23, 2010

Two Movies, Two Bands, and Two Sisters

I realize that I like going to see movies. That used to be an occasional, almost rare thing for me, but now that I'm just a few minutes away from a theatre, I find that it tempts me. When I went to buy a much-needed new hairdryer, for instance, I thought I'd pop in to Harkins first. The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus looked kind of interesting; I might have saved it for a movie to rent, but it seemed like it had visuals that would be better on the big screen. Definitely had the visuals, which were Alice-in-Wonderland-trippy at times and obviously green-screened, but still a bit of a feast for the eyes. That was all I was expecting to get, but the plot was good, as well. It plays with the Faust idea of bartering with the devil, only Doctor Parnassus is bartering with his daughter instead of his own soul. That sounds just as much like Rumplestiltskin, which happens to be one of my favorite fairy tales, to me. This movie hooks your interest all throughout; definitely one to watch. The ending was too anti-climactic, though. Instead of drawing to a close, it dwindled down. There was something missing, one extra step that should have been taken. All the same, this will probably be a movie I buy.

Classes started again on Tuesday, ending my lovely, long break. They do promise to be interesting, even if I shall have many, many books to read this semester, but I decided I should have a treat Tuesday afternoon. A pre-semester award, if you will. I went to see Peter Jackson's The Lovely Bones. As you will recall, I first read the book because I thought I might like to see the movie. The trailer looked good, if action heavy. And during the first part of the movie, I was impressed. Another visual movie, with stunning CG crisper than most of Parnassus and excellent cinematography. But after the halfway point, I was waiting for certain things from the book to happen. They didn't. The movie ended. I didn't expect the man who made all the intensely long Lord of the Rings movies to have cut too much out of this one. Maybe because he was trying not to get the same King Kong criticism? Too long, cut all of such and such out? Now, in the book, the Salmon family really goes down to the depths. They went down in the movie, but they weren't far enough. Abigail's affair with Len Fenerman isn't exactly something I fancy, but it was an important part of the book. At least a hint should've been in the movie. In the book, though the family knows the truth, Susie's case is never solved. It essentially is in the movie. I think that fact, however subtle, is close to fatal. I was surprised when I read the book to find that the peace at the end didn't come from the solving of the case, but from acceptance and love. I didn't get those same vibes from the ending of the movie. Just a couple of tweaks and I think it could have been so much a better adaptation. All the same, I do think it was well-done . . . the things it does achieve aren't easily reached . . . it just wasn't my absolute favorite book to begin with.

A couple of notes:
My new band (for listening, not playing in) reminds me of Blondfire, just a little older and a little more fey. They have some intriguing music, so check out Metric at their site.

Heard of The Hillywood Show? No? Then you must watch them (two sisters, Hilly and Hannah, who do this all non-profit). They parody like no one else, using amazing imitation, fan film experimentation, and parodying that laughs with movies rather than against. Their greatly-awaited New Moon Parody came out earlier this month and already has 811, 281 views. It's unlike any parody I've seen before; they take the opposite approach most New Moon parodies do, focusing on Bella's rebellion instead of her depression. Hillywood, besides being meticulous about detail, also is into layers. You'll notice a new edge each time you watch a parody or episode. Take a look at their website here.

Fireflight's new album, For Those Who Wait, comes out next month. You should really go pre-order it . . . .

And it is very cold today. Methinks I shall go make some hot chocolate now.

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