what used to be a weekly - if not daily - occurrence has now become a monthly or bi-monthly pasttime. watching movies. i seem to only see them on airplanes or on vacation recently, but in the past 2 weeks i've seen 3 movies worth blogging about. and here they are:
- TMNT -
it probably comes as no surprise that i was a HUGE Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fan growing up. that said, i didn't have too high of expectations going into TMNT, the new revitalization of the Turtles movies. how did it turn out? very well i may say.
it wasn't trying to be completely new, which i liked (i kind of put it in the same ballpark as Superman Returns, with it acknowledging the other movies happened, but not being stuck in the rut of their history and style). in fact, i liked it a LOT. it REALLY captured the family that is the turtles, and the overall storyline wasn't too shabby either, with the bad guy having his own twist. it managed to give time to Casey and April, which was neat, and showed the Raph/Leo conflict perfectly. the CGI was spectacular, and the fights were great.
my only gripes are that it could have been longer, could have focused even MORE on Casey and April, and ESPECIALLY more on Mikey and Don (they were, sadly, underdeveloped in the movie). oh, and we could have had more of the Foot, but at least they were in there.
really hope there's a sequel.
- Syriana -
this movie is to the oil industry as The Insider is to big tobacco. it's not anti-American, not anti-Capitalism, not anti-ANYTHING. it just IS.
and that's why i ended up liking it so much.
we get to see a bunch of different people's perspectives on the merger of 2 big oil companies and how it affects everyone involved - from those that run the oil companies to the government that has to approve the merger, the CIA agent put in charge of doing dirty business in the Middle East to those lowly employees put out of a job. i don't think i've seen a more HONEST movie since The Insider.
it's amazing seeing millions upon millions of dollars trading hands in one scene, and then oil workers struggling to eat in the next. Clooney and Damon both put forth excellent - REAL - performances. everyone involved was top-notch.
i can't recommend this movie enough.
- The Departed -
maybe it's because i just saw Syriana the night previous, but i've got to say... i was let down by The Departed a little.
don't get me wrong, The Departed is a wonderfully crafted ride, filled with tons of stomach-churning scenes (from being nervous for the characters involved) and HOLY SHIT moments... but you pretty much knew where the ride was going to end. directing and editing definitely had a style to them, which was cool... and the acting was good, but not as great as in Syriana.
what was cool is that we got to see a little of a lot of characters, but i wish we could have seen even MORE of LESS characters - like the 2 main characters. there weren't enough quiet moments with them. they both had a hell of a ride when it was done, and it would have been interesting to see them experiencing it quietly a bit more - especially Leo.
oh, and while i knew what was going to happen at the end, i'm still not sure i liked it. all i'll say is that i wish one of the people that dies at the end didn't die. i think it would have been more interesting had he lived and no one knew who he was, what he had done.
really makes me want to see Infernal Affairs (the Japanese movie The Departed was a remake of).
OVERALL (out of ****)
The Departed: *** 1/2