We often miss movies at the cinema, and don’t get to the video library regularly. So, in the new year we decided to start a DVD rental contract. We plumped for Amazon: £9.99 a month for a maximum of six discs per month, three at a time. Not bad!
As a consequence, we’ve seen some good movies lately. And a few not-so-good ones. Here are the verdicts:
The Station Agent: a good little American indie film. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
The Day After Tomorrow: I got this mainly to test out my new subwoofer, and it certainly did that. I didn’t have high expectations, but I actually quite enjoyed it. I will say though that when NY is flooded and frozen and our heroes are trying to save their friend’s life by fetching medicine and also having to run away from a killer freeze, I didn’t really need the bizarre added threat of some bad-CG wolves.
Fahrenheit 9/11: It’s quite sad seeing this after Bush’s re-election (or, rather, first election – let’s not forget he cheated the first time). Michael Moore can be interesting, but he’s a bit base at times. A bit of balance would help. And annoyingly this film was on Channel 4 two weeks after we hired it. One word: Grah!
28 Days Later: Been wanting to see this for ages, and I liked it. Good, clean zombie fun. (NB: They’re not actually zombies, technically.)
House Of Sand And Fog: Oscar winners like this are often quite dull, or at least that’s the impression I get. This was enjoyable though, mainly thanks to Ben Kingsley. It’s funny that I can watch horror films with no problems, but it took me a while to recover after seeing Jennifer Connelley step on a nail. Yuck!
Pitch Black: Another one I’ve wanted to see for ages. This is a really good little sci-fi/horror. I have no interest in seeing the sequel.
Anchorman: Absolutely hilarious. I kept thinking “I shouldn’t be laughing. This is puerile and silly.” It was brilliantly done puerile and silly though, and that’s what matters.
City Of God: A Brazillian Goodfellas. Great stuff!
The Terminal: After Catch Me If You Can I was looking forward to this. However, I found it dull. Avoid.
Super Size Me: I was wary of this documentary as I figured it wouldn’t tell me anything I didn’t know (“Fast food is bad for you and if you eat nothing but McDonalds for a month you won’t be well”) but I enjoyed it a lot. The film-maker is likable and engaging, and there’s plenty of variety in there.
Belleville Rendez-Vous: Technically good I suppose, but I wasn’t impressed with this French cartoon. Avoid this and go for Spirited Away. Anne’s sister Kerry says I didn’t like it because I’m “not very French”. That’s criticism I can happily accept.
The 25th Hour: I enjoyed this Spike Lee “Joint”. Not great, but Edward Norton is good as usual.
Cube: I got this because the new films I’d wanted were out of stock. It’s a decent little puzzle sci-fi film, though I’ve been warned to avoid the sequel.
Layer Cake: The latest Brit gangster film. Pretty good. Not too “Lock Stock”, and with some really good scenes. Good to see Chief O’Brien from Star Trek back on the screen!
So that’s what we’ve seen so far (fortunately Amazon keeps track for me, so you won’t miss out on any we’ve seen!) However, all these were eclipsed by a film we saw on Friday night: The Incredibles. I loved it. All superhero movies should be made like this! It was almost too fast for me to follow (though I admit that may be thanks to the wine). See it (unless you already have).