Wednesday, August 29, 2012

My Week In Movies - August; Weeks 2 & 3

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days (2012) The third film in the franchise combines books 3 & 4 into one story about summer and responsibilities. There's some pretty solid laughs even if a few of the situations are beyond silly and simple.

The Lion King (1994) What do you need to say about one of the greatest movies of all time? We saw this at an outdoor screening while camping and it's the perfect movie for the venue - seen it 1,000 times so I don't care if the projection is not great but such a good movie that I can sit though it again in less than favorable conditions.

This part really happened!
Pocahontas (1995) I always forget how good Disney's Pocahontas is. It's not quite on par with the masterpieces the studio put out between 1989 and 1994, but it's still darn good. The songs aren't as memorable as The Lion King, but they are a heck of alot better than Disney's next feature "The Hunchback of Notre Dame."

Pocahontas II: Journey To A New World (1998) This is one of the few Disney DVD Sequels that I had not seen, and it was actually pretty good. It turns out (according to my brief Internet research) that this film is a bit more factually accurate than the first film. Pocahontas travels to England to represent her people to the King. There she meets John Rowlfe, who she actually married. However, what didn't happen in real life is that Pocahontas did not take her pet raccoon and hummingbird to England with her. Which brings me to my big beef with this film: How do you take a hummingbird anywhere, yet alone a Trans-Atlantic voyage? And I'm pretty sure even back then you couldn't take a raccoon from America to England. The raccoon would have mated with a British raccoon (with a delightful accent but bad teeth) and started some horrible mutant race of raccoons. Surely, this was not the impression that the Native Americans wanted to make on the world. Also, while I enjoyed the film...the songs are so bad, I'm pretty sure some of them were actually written by raccoons.

Bandolero! (1968) Attention any guy reading this stupid blog! Every once in a while, you just gotta watch a good old fashioned western to put some hair on your chest. I really wish my Grandfather was still alive. He loved westerns, and it would have been so much fun to watch some with him and learn about the genre from him. As it stands, the only things I remember watching with him were The Great Muppet Caper and an episode of Bossom Buddies. Anywho, Bandolero! stars Jimmy Stewart along side Dean Martin, George Kennedy and the beautiful Raquel Welch. Whats' great about this film is that it starts out as a comedy and ends up as a nail-biting action packed western. Stewart helps his brother, Martin, escape from jail. While Dean makes his getaway with Welch as his hostage, Jimmy knocks over the bank and meets up with his bro. Sheriff Kennedy goes after them and the chase in on. Good stuff!

Bikini Spring Break (2012) There are no bikinis on display here, nor is anyone on Spring Break. Sure, they talk about Spring Break and while there might not be any bikinis there are certainly plenty of bras and nudity. A marching band heading to Florida for the National Championships encounters one set back after another trying to get to the big competition. Their antics are fueled by their need to pay for bus repairs. You would think you could call your school and they would financially figure out how to get their students either home or to the big competition. But instead the girls resort to stripping, jello wrestling and any other half naked way you can think of to raise money. The plot is stupid but the script tries to be funny and manages to do so throughout the picture.

In & Out (1997)  A fantastic film, that I hadn't seen in quite a while, that separately lampoons Hollywood and our own perceptions of homosexuality. At 15 years old, some of the film's jokes/references and general attitudes towards gays are a little bit outdated - but the funny is all still there. Featuring an all-star cast, the standout for me has always been Bob Newhart as the high school principal who has to deal with parents and the media when one of his teachers is outed on national television. Hilarious movie from beginning to end!

Under The Boardwalk: The Monopoly Story (2010) The history of how the popular board game came to be is pretty interesting, unfortunately that only makes up a small bit of this rather dry documentary that celebrates all things Monopoly. At the core of the picture is ESPN-style coverage of the 2009 World Monopoly Championship Tournament which gets kind of old after a while. The film really shines when it features memories of playing the game as a kid, collectors of Monopoly memorabilia and an impressive collection of film and television clips featuring the classic real estate game. (Look for an appearance by a certain Modern Stone Age Family!)

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