Sunday, August 8, 2010

Eric Bird Capsule Reviews

Leap Year - F

It's supposed to be a romantic comedy. The film's main issue is that it's neither funny nor romantic. What's worse is that it could've easily been both if it weren't for the motivations behind the two leads. Amy Adams' character is colossally stupid (going to Ireland to propose to a rich guy who had no intention of proposing to her) and Matthew Goode, whose original motivation is money, stays with a girl he has no reason to like and, in reality, probably cost him far more money than he needed. And what on earth is John Lithgow doing in this movie?

Oscar Potential: Zero.

The Book of Eli - B-

Call it the result of low expectations, but I enjoyed this film. Denzel Washington is a man motivated solely by his faith. Usually in modern movies, this character would be the bad guy, so it's refreshing. There is a wholly unnecessary and unbelievable twist at the end, which is intended to show the extent of Eli's faith, but mainly succeeded in making me cry "bullish*t!" But it's a solid movie from the Hughes Brothers and rarely dull.

Oscar Potential: Zero.

Youth in Revolt - B

Gee. Michael Cera in a movie about an awkward teenager. Haven't seen enough of those. It's a shame he's played this character so often in a short time because, outside of Juno, this is the best one. And Cera has a terrific supporting cast to work with Zack Galifianikis, Jean Smart, Ray Liotta, M. Emmet Walsh, Fred Willard, Justin Long and a terrific, against-type turn by Michael Cera (see the movie and you'll see that wasn't a mistake on my part.) The film is sometimes too quirky for its own good and never laugh out loud funny, but very watchable.

Oscar Potential: Zero.

Valentine's Day - B

Although it fails to be the American Love Actually it desperately tries to be, it does have some very funny moments and story twists you don't see coming, which is refreshing for a romantic comedy these days. A few story lines too many. Some that don't get fleshed out nearly enough. Some that drag way too long. Some funny play on the celebrity of its mammoth star cast (Taylor Lautner, of all people, has the funniest self-referential joke). If you watch the DVD, check out the deleted scenes. Some very funny cameos (Dwight Howard and Penny Marshall, especially) that landed on the cutting room floor.

Oscar Potential: Zero.

No comments: