Monday, October 22, 2007

Recent movies - I Love You Again, Serpico, The Simpsons Movie

I Love You Again (1940) - While home in Carlsbad this weekend (celebrating Amy's birthday -- September 15th; Josh's birthday -- October 8th; and my parents' 30th anniversary -- October 15th), my dad had I Love You Again rented from Netflix. He thought it was from the Thin Man series, but as we watched we realized it was actually a standalone Myrna Loy and William Powell flick. It was just as charming as the first Thin Man movie we watched.

It's a screwball comedy. There's a lot of fast dialogue, slap-stick antics, and goofy wooing. The story is I think what is described as "high concept" (is that right? Does that mean an elaborate concept or reality upon which the rest of the movie rests?): Powell's character is a straight-edge nerd at the beginning of the movie, but when he gets clocked on the head he switches over to his real self, a smooth con-man, with no memories of the nerd he was for nine years. He discovers that he has been married to a beautiful woman, but that she has become fed-up with his boring nature and is seeking a divorce. The rest of the movie is Powell trying to con the town and win back his newly-discovered wife. Hilarity ensues.

Serpico (1973) - Al Pacino is very very good. The story is fascinating. The movie begins telling the story with that detached sensibility that a lot of 70s movies seemed to have, where the main character is shown but we never know what's going on in his head or what exactly is driving him to act the way he is. We aren't given much background, and all we know is that he just wants to do police work. We can only guess at his true feelings based on the emotions that we as viewers are experiencing. As we get further along in Serpico's life we are finally privy to more of his thoughts as his emotions can no longer be contained.

It's funny that Serpico came right after The Godfather Part I, because in both his character receives a traumatic facial injury that requires re constructive surgery.

Well, I thought it was funny.

The Simpsons Movie (2007) - Speaking of funny, this wasn't all that. A couple funny moments, but it mostly felt like an episode from the recent seasons. The timing and comedy just aren't there. I laughed a few times, but this is not the same creative team the produced the monorail episode, or the lemon tree episode, or the classic Cape Fear parody. At least it was only two dollars.


Nobody said...

I Love You Again sounds a bit like (Jerry Lewis') Nutty Professor, which surprised me how good it is when I finally saw it again last year.

Michael Corleone gets reconstructive surgery in the Godfather?

Ryan said...

Well, they never show it, but in the book he actually gets really hurt when the cop punches him in the face. His cheekbone or something gets broken and leaves an abscess in his face. He doesn't get surgery until years later when he comes back to America, and it describes him having to keep a handkerchief up to his mouth at all times because he drools involuntarily. Somehow he still manages to bag The Thunderbolt, though.

I think, in the movie, they do at least show him having a shiner for an unnaturally long time.

Nobody said...

Oh, in the book eh? No wonder only you noticed the connection between facial surgery in Serpico and a black eye in the Godfather!

Citing "Pacino's character... in the book" is an autistic observation on the order of Mary Thompson!

Ryan said...

*middle finger emoticon*