Monday, February 22, 2016

I Saw Inception, Or At Least I Dreamt I Did

Here at the El-Vox ponderosa I've been busy doing various things.  I've been in the process of cleaning up and organizing some of the comics that I've collected throughout the years.  I plan on posting some of those on eBay, which means also I need to learn how to use the site and research a bit on their value.  I've also got some regular novels and vinyl records that I'd like to try and sell as well.  So it's sort of an involved and time consuming process.  In-between all that, I continue to do what I normally do: veg (I'm great at that), watch movies, listen to music, I bought an Xbox 360 lately too, a bit of an unusual purchase for me, and just follow my muse.

The other night I watched the movie, The Martian.  It was pretty good, and I plan on watching it again, but upon my initially viewing it I felt like I enjoyed, but didn't love it.  When compared to the movie, Interstellar, I enjoy that movie more.  Like I said, I need to re-watch The Martian again, and perhaps it will impact me more on the next viewing.  I will say it did have great cinematography, and as some has said, some humor, but sometimes that humor sort of distracted me.  I know it was done to make such a film more palatable for the audience, and at times it did help.  But at times it seemed kind of obvious or there would be a scene, and then a little quip that just felt like, "Oh, we better inject a little cute joke here."  Matt Damon did a good job acting, as he normally does, being the Robinson Crusoe on the planet.   He plots everything as to how to maximize his living on such an inhospitable planet, I assume most of this is fairly plausible as the web says it's more akin to hard science fiction than the fantasy stuff.  Still it didn't totally grab me like I thought it might, but I plan on watching it a second time.  So we'll see. 

I caught the film, Boy Wonder, over the weekend.  I had added it to my queue as it intrigued me by the cover, plus I like those vigilante type movies like: Harry Brown, The Equalizer, some of the Charles Bronson films like Death Wish (at least the first and second one), and so on.  It was pretty good too.  It could have been I had my expectations set pretty low for this one, and it exceeded them. 

Set in New York City the story is told in a non-linear fashion, first told in a flashback to when the main protagonist, Sean (Caleb Steinmeyer), is a young boy.  He and his mother are abducted for some reason and his mother is shot.  I don't think I'm giving away too much of a spoiler by saying that as that's merely the set up.  From there we are brought to the present and the young boy is in high school, witnessing bullying, and all the other things associated with those years.  His dad is doing the best he can to raise his only son, even though he's a broken man trying to put his life back together as well. 

The film flashes back to the past, and switches back to the present many times throughout the film, which fills in a lot of the storyline to help unravel what happened the night his mother was murdered.  The boy, Sean, spends time down at the police station going through all sort of mug shots hoping to find the one that perpetrated this crime on his family.   In the mean time, he finds criminals from these mug shots and takes it upon himself to exact his own brand of justice.  It might sound a bit Batman-ish or like the Punisher, but it takes on a fairly more realistic approach.  While at the police station he befriends one of the female detectives, Teresa Ames (Zulay Henao),  who not only played a convincing role as the detective, but also pretty attractive to look at.  So that's the basic set up, and as I said it moves between past and present and between those storylines it begins to reveal what is happening.  

This film might be considered a low budget film, I'm not sure, but it was handled pretty well.  It had good acting and it was shot and directed well.  I enjoy these type films like Memento that keep you guessing as to what the outcome will be.  It's worth a watch if that sounds appealing to you.

 I also have continued to binge watch the Louie CK episodes.  His brand of humor probably won't appeal to a lot of people.  I'll admit, it didn't with me upon my first watching it.  His humor is blue or more accurately, raunchy.  He doesn't pull any punches with obscenity and situations.  So it's not at all a family sitcom.  I was pretty turned off with the first few episodes I caught off cable TV as he's was onstage doing his stand-up comedy act and talking about wiping his daughter's butthole, and it just came off so crude or whatever.  But the more I'd watch some of the episodes off TV, the more I'd get his style, and for sure it's still base stuff, that's the way he presents it, but at the same time it's also funny, contemporary,  comments upon a lot of different topics like dating in New York City (or anywhere else really), and just dealing with life's ups and downs.  Louie also plays a bit of a sad sack, so things don't often turn out well for him, but that's part of the humor.  All in all though I've gotten some pretty good belly laughs out of the show, and I'm not huge comedy person.

I also started adding some of The Office to my viewing diet.  Again I initially caught these off TV in a hit or miss way off late night, and enjoyed them for the most part, but I'd never sat down and watched them in any sort of linear fashion.  Amusingly you could pick up on the stereotypes and characters, the office politics, the water cooler chats, the brown nosers, the weirdos, etc.  It didn't click with me at all at once either.  I guess you might describe these as delivered in a deadpan fashion, I'm not sure. But it has a certain style, and it works pretty well in its presentation.  I have to admit I've been enjoying a few of these episodes lately.




At 3:06 PM, Blogger Richard Bellush said...

I read “The Martian.” Simply because the movie is noted for being true to the book, I have been hesitant to see it. Somehow I feel I already did.

I haven’t watched Louis CK’s TV show but I’ve enjoyed some of his stand-up, including the SNL monologue that caused him some controversy last year. There is some thought to his routines even when he is blue.

At 11:15 PM, Blogger El Vox said...

It would be interesting to know how you think the movie was compared to the book, but I would imagine it might be one of those things where one would go, the book was better. Both have been fairly popular, but I watch movies more often that read.

Yeah, Louis show is not something I'd normally watch due to the explicit nature of it. But now that I've gotten used to it, he does make me laugh though he does try and stretch the envelope on controversy. He generally pulls it off though. He recently did an interview with Terry Gross on her Fresh Air program:


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