Posts Tagged ‘steven spielberg’

Two Blondes Go to a Movie: Super 8

June 16, 2011

Two Blondes review a movie and mostly ramble about themselves.

Jessica says:

I think I have made my affection for J.J. Abrams clear on this blog before, but just in case not – me *heart* J.J. Abrams.  I am particularly a sucker for his television programs (Felicity, Alias, Lost, Fringe).  His blend of science fiction and character dramas is right up my geek alley.  I also adore Kyle Chandler.  I’m not in high school and (obviously) never played football, but I wish Coach Taylor was my coach.  That being said, before I dive in to my criticisms of the film, I want to be clear that I liked Super 8 and I think you should see it in the theatre.  Soon.

Now for the criticisms.  What is up with the lens flares, J.J.?  Too many.  In case you’re not sure what I’m talking about, here is an example:

And another…

And another…

They are those bluish streaks across the screen that were nearly constant in Super 8.  Mr. Abrams used them so often that if you google, “lens flares in film,” the first three articles are about J.J.  For the record, having a lens flare in a shot is traditionally considered bad or a mistake.  However, I kind of like them as a stylistic choice…BUT IN MODERATION.  In my brief googling I mentioned above, I came across this article about his use of lens flares in Star Trek.  He admits to overusing lens flares, but says that it was because, “I love the idea that the future was so bright it couldn’t be contained in the frame.”  OK, then why use so many in Super 8 when it is set in 1979?

My personal preference in monster suspense movies is that I don’t want to see the monster.  Whatever I’m imagining in my head is way scarier than whatever CGI thing you can draw, especially if it just looks like a giant bug.

Now it’s time for my weird, petty issue:  Elle Fanning is a terrific young actress, but I wish they would have dyed her eyebrows to match her hair.  It distracted me for about 20% of the movie and sparked a debate between Alison and I over just how much someone’s natural hair and eyebrow color can differ.

J.J. Abrams made a great 1980s Steven Spielberg movie (and that is in no way an insult).  Unlike a lot of science fiction, you actually like and care what happens to these characters.   Go see it soon.

Alison says:

Watching Super 8 made me feel like a kid and reminded me of some of my favorite childhood movies, but with a twist of modern edge and awesome digital effects. The train wreck was incredible (I don’t think I’m giving any spoilers away by saying there’s a train wreck since it’s in the trailer). And the monster (I won’t say what kind of monster in an effort not to give away the story) was very well executed. I loved that you didn’t get to see it completely till the end. You were left mostly with glimpses, thus being forced to use your imagination as to what this thing is

I watched Super 8 at the Arclight Dome and it’s a really great movie to watch with a large audience. It’s one of those films where you felt everyone was excited to see it and enjoyed the movie going experience. It’s hard to go wrong when a film has both JJ Abrams and Spielberg attached to it.  Not to mention, the very handsome Kyle Chandler (cue Jessica and I both sighing) and also a cast of kids that I thought were perfect casting choices.

I’m not gonna argue that some cynics might say parts of the ending felt a bit heavy-handed, but if you can put away your cynical side, and watch this movie with some childlike wonder, you’re in for a great ride

LA viewers: Very worth paying full price at Arclight (especially the Dome).

Translation for non-LA viewers: Did you read the part about an awesome train wreck scene or Spielberg, J.J. Abrams and Kyle Chandler being attached to this movie? Go see it!

Two Blondes Go To A Movie: Hannah Montana: The Movie

April 28, 2009

Today we have guest “Blonde” Erika Brooks Adickman weighing in on Hannah Montana: The Movie:

miley-cyrus-hannah-montana-movie-poster1ERIKA SAYS:

If the previews before your movie you are about to see are all animated, star talking animals, or involve Eddie Murphy playing a dad, it’s probably a good indication that movie you paid 10 bucks plus parking to see is not meant for your demographic.  If that is not clear enough for you here is a “creeper scale” to help you figure out how much of a creeper you will look like if you see this movie:

twoblondes1pdf-1-page

See 12 year old girl: normal.  Mom or Dad just above that.  26 year old woman you’re already at the age where kids start to look at you and think “Stranger Danger” even if you think you’re hip enough to see a Disney kids movie.  Next to that is a gay dude.  Cause at first you think “What are those two guys doing seeing Hannah Montana: The Movie” and then you go “Ohhhh, it’s a date.  Oh yeah I can see how there’s some serious kitch factor to Miley Cyrus”.  Above that is a straight dude.  If you are a straight male seeing this movie alone (even if it’s cause you lost a bet) you are going to look like a major creeper.  And if you are seeing this movie alone you probably are.  And wayyyy above that is Billy Ray Cyrus in this movie (but more on that in a minute).

Here’s the gist of Hannah Montana: The Movie:
Miley Stewart played by by Miley Cyrus is just your average teenage girl trying to live out every tween’s dream: the life and career of one of the world’s biggest pop stars and the life of an average high schooler.  But how can Miley have the “best of both worlds”?  Leave it to daddy Robby Ray (played by real life dad Billy Ray) to figure that out.  Slap on a blonde wig and some chintzy big earrings and faster than you can say “clarkkentissuperman” you’ve got yourself a secret identity.  Somewhere along the way Miley has gotten way to attached to the fame and perks of being Hannah.  So her dad decides to wrangle her back to her hometown of Crowley, Tennessee to visit her Grandma and get back to her roots.  Along the way Miley will fall in love, try to avoid a British tabloid reporter out to get the scoop on Hannah’s big secret, save a town with her music, and have many, many, many prat falls.

Let me just say that the movie opens with Miley and her BFF Lilly (Emily Osment sister of Hayley Joel) trying to get in to an arena where “Hannah” will be performing.  Miley is running late to her own concert but the guy at the front wont let them in.  She and Lilly will have to sneak in.  And I thought to myself, (and by thought i mean, shouted to the movie screen)  “As if!”  As if, Miley wouldn’t have a cell phone (probably an iPhone) to call her dad and be like “Dad I’m late let me in!”.  And, as if the security backstage wouldn’t have been alerted that if they see a girl who looks a lot like Hannah Montana but with brown hair is walking around she is not a security threat.  Saying things like this and laughing at the movie actually isn’t as fun as you would think or as fun as I expect.  It actually of makes you feel like a lone Miranda in a sea of Charlottes.  You think, “When did i get to be such a cynical old biotch?  But I also wonder if i would have ever been into Miley at 13.  Would I have idolized her?  At 13 i loved movies like Adventures in Babysitting and Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead and The Babysitters Club (wow I must have had a thing for movies with Babysitter in the title).  But at least those movies involved swearing, kissing Josh Charles, and hiding your type 1 diabetes from a cute foreign exchange student.

I will say this, if you if you’ve got a big sweet tooth for Taylor Swift, Rascal Flatts, country hoedowns, and saccharin teen pop music it might be worth it for you to see this movie inspite of all the obvious flaws.  In spite of myself, the song “The Climb” gave me goosebumps and I went home and downloaded the hoedown throwdown) because i love songs where the dance is built right in.  And in case you’re wondering, yes I taught myself the dance after many many watches on YouTube.  So maybe I’m not such a miserable crone after all.

hannah_montana1But I can’t in good consciousness recommend this movie.  Unless you’re babysitting your niece or are a huge Miley fan just wait and Netflix it if you’re curious at all what it’s like.  There are so many other things you could put your 10 dollars (plus parking) towards.  Instead, take 2 of those 10 dollars and download “The Climb” and “Hoedown Throwdown” and watch an old episode of Hannah Montana on the Disney Channel.  You’ll be happy driving around in your car for a good week and after watching 22 minutes of Miley on TV, glad you dodged a bullet.

Some thoughts on the movie from an ADD’d mind that can’t consolidate these into lovely paragraphs:

  • Tyra Banks is in this movie. Now, I know Tyra is trying to model her career after Oprah. Well here’s something Oprah would NEVER do: a cameo in a Hannah Montana movie. She did The Color Purple, a movie directed by Steven Spielberg. She didn’t have a fake fight with Miley Cyrus on screen over shoes.
  • This movie is SKAWEEEKY clean. I don’t know if they ran they film negative through Purell or rubbing alcohol before they sent it to be edited or what. But there is not one swear word, zero violence, and zero kissing. That’s right. There’s a barely legal hunky cowboy and you don’t even get to see them kiss. Sorry to disappoint all you twelve-ies.
  • But because of the Disney sanitation of this film all of the jokes have to come from over the top, slap stick bits. And these bits go on FOR-EV-EVER. You just sit there and go this wasn’t that funny and it just keeps wandering off into further unfunnydom.
  • In fact, the only thing questionable about this film is the way Hannah Montana dresses. She looks like she shops in the skank section of Forever 21 who probably smells like a combination of 2 different Victoria Secret Body Sprays. I’m relieved that cowboy Travis prefers Miley to Hannah. It sends a message you young girls out there that you don’t have to dress like a tart to impress a boy.
  • Why is it that movies with a secret identity eventually unravel over a double booked dinner date (a la Mrs. Doubtfire)?
  • With out giving too much away this movie had one of the most intense emotional scenes to involve a revolving door that I have ever witnessed in a movie. I don’t want to say too much but it had me in tears I was laughing so hard.
  • Billy Ray Cyrus. It is impossible to watch this movie and not think of that Annie Liebovitz Vanity Fair spread of the two of them nuzzling. I simply can’t trust a dad with a soul patch with a teenage daughter. Especially a dad who has found a way to use his daughter’s success to his own career advantage. I’m not sure who is a creepier Dad-ager him or Joe Simpson.