Cinema Digest 2013 – Week 30

The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra (2001)
lostskeleton_strangle

This flick mimics Ed Wood’s cinematic ineptness faithfully. The actors are wooden and deliver stilted dialogue as if they’ve just heard the English language for the first time, the cinematography is framed awkwardly and sometimes out of focus, and the story completely ludicrous. The gag does tend to get old at times but a funny, cleverly written script helps it from being unbearable. Perhaps I’m one of the few who would notice, but their decision (perhaps necessity) to shoot on video, rather than film, really hurts the “classic” look they were going for.

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The Man in the White Suit (1951)
whisu

Though best known for his role as Obi Wan Kenobi in Star Wars, Sir Alec Guinness was also a great comic actor. In The Man in the White Suit, he plays a man who invents a new kind of material that never wears out and never gets dirty. Soon, he’s got both the wealthy business owners and the lowly laborers after him in an effort to stifle his invention and keep economic balance. The clever satire and dry wit keeps us laughing while also giving us plenty to think about. The politics are complex and nobody’s really the bad guy as all parties have equally valid points.

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The Wolverine (2013)
wolverine

Walking out of the film, I felt that it was just fine. Not bad but not great either. But upon further reflection, I think this might actually be at least on par with the first couple X-Men films. The emphasis on Logan’s personal journey and the smaller stakes (saving one person rather than the world) is so refreshing to see in a superhero movie these days. Hugh Jackman is still giving it his all while the rest of the cast is mostly really good with just one or two really rotten apples. Though not fully fleshed out, the contrast between Wolverine’s animalistic rage and Japan’s culture of respect and tradition is interesting. And it’s wonderful to see a major studio film with a Japanese setting where most of the main characters are Japanese rather than Americans. It also continues and concludes some of the plot threads from earlier X-Men films so it feels more like part of a whole than a random, standalone film. It’s unfortunate that the climax resorts to the usual mess of CGI fights and sloppily delivered villain motivation but overall, I think this is a more than worthy addition to the X-Men movie franchise.

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The One (2001)
THE-ONE-2001_portrait_w858

The plot is pretty dumb, it doesn’t really hide the fact that it’s liberally lifting elements from other sci-fi/action films, the acting is mediocre at best, and there’s too much CGI in much of the action. All that said, some of the action is pretty damn cool, I personally liked some of the “parallel universe” aesthetic (and the warping effect), and I was never bored by it so it’s just under a “worthy” rating for me.

Now, let the bodies hit the…

FLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOR!

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