If you missed Matthew McConaughey in MAGIC MIKE, one of the best films this summer, look for him at Oscar time. Now, a few words about a few flicks still out there as the season slips away:
THE BOURNE LEGACY
Jeremy Renner is no Matt Damon, and can only go through the motions –which are considerable– in the fourth installment of this intricate and propulsive series about a secret government program which creates super snipers– then destroys them. Sounds about right.
BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD
Looks like a myth unfolding on the big screen. A six year-old motherless child (the extraordinary Quvenzhane Wallis) living in the delta bayou on the edge of civilization and the brink of a hurricane. She engages her considerable imagination and resilience and fights for her life, and her family as a great flood and a sea of well-meaning do-gooders attempt to extinguish their way of life. Not entertaining– but startling and unusual.
Laser-sharp Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays a hot-dog bicycle messenger on the ride of his life. I couldn’t wait to see it–but was disappointed in the Keystone Cops ending, which was so lazily plotted that one phone call could have saved the day. But then, I wouldn’t have had an excuse to see more of the most berserk bicycle stunts ever!! Worth it.
TO ROME WITH LOVE
One of Woody’s worst. Not even Alec Baldwin and a scantily clad Penelope Cruz can save this moribund retread as various types slog through romantic misadventures in Rome. Even Rome looks boring. Woody writes, directs, and stars, but has lost his ability to deliver a line. I was in shock– whenever I wasn’t asleep.
The eagerly awaited David Cronenberg film set in a stretch limo and starring Robert Pattinson as a billionaire businessman on his way to a haircut across town. It’s an endless, absurdist, ironic diatribe/meditation on the cannibalization of western culture by commerce– with a prostate exam and some wild sex as metaphors for what what’s happening to all of us. Stultifying.
THE EXPENDABLES 2
The geri-action thriller part 2, starring Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Willis, Chuck Norris, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jean-Claude Van Damme. Not nearly as entertaining as Clint Eastwood sparring with an empty chair.