Avengers: Infinity War. It was mildly distracting to see the movie’s first major battle taking place in my downtown Atlanta neighborhood, just blocks away. Is this how New Yorkers feel all the time? Thanos is a great villain. Maybe knowing they’d have him around later let them invest more and give him some motivation beyond destruction? I like the several scenes where loved ones are torn between hard choices – Vision and Scarlet Witch, Thanos and Gamorra, Starlord and Gamorra, etc.. My main frustration with the movie was the big Wakanda scenes. We are convinced this is the most technologically advanced civilization on the planet, and they are fighting a crucial battle… with infantry, hand-to-hand? It’s a shame. They could have done something more interesting. The giant roto-tiller machines were cool, though.
Sicario. Second viewing. (The first.) It’s so gorgeous. I wish the soundtrack were more interesting – lots of bom bom bom military stock-issue heavy orchestra stuff. I like how they tell you in the title what it’s all about and then they distract you from it for two hours. Nicely done.
Into the Blue. One of the mid-level ‘00s action/adventure films that holds up. I love some of the cliche characters here. Like, yep, that new friend is definitely going to ruin everything by doing something dumb. You know it instantly. And I’d totally forgotten about Brolin’s role in this. If a movie makes you envy a lifestyle even if it’s not a great movie, it’s still doing something right.
A spread from my forthcoming imaginary book, Hangin’ Out: Up-ending Masculinity in 1980s Cinema. Richard Gere in American Gigolo (1980). Josh Brolin in The Goonies (1985). Michael Keaton in Batman (1989). Kyle Machlachlan in Twin Peaks (1990).
The Goonies. A friend had never seen it, so we had to correct that. I remember a period of my life where I watched this every afternoon for a couple weeks straight, and knew that, any day now, I’d have an adventure, too. It still holds up. I certainly miss the days before VFX when moviemakers would build ridiculous sets. A huge sailing ship, in a large pool of water, in a vaulted cave? That’s still amazing.
You have to figure out different ways to convey ideas. You donÄôt want to over-compensate because the fear is that youÄôre going to be boring if nothingÄôs going on. You start doing this and this and taking off your hat and putting it on again or some bullshit that doesnÄôt need to be there.