This sort of thing gives pause to many Spring Hill residents, including Jonathan Duda, a city alderman. Mr. Duda said he had the same concerns now as he did last year when a man identifying himself as a Nigerian king — a claim viewed skeptically by everyone from the State Department to the Spring Hill police chief — was received with a ceremony on the steps of City Hall.
HOW IS THIS NOT A CHRISTOPHER GUEST MOVIE
ANGEL STORIES, these are Angel Stories. Tiny stories. As tiny as distant stars across the face of heaven. Like those twinkling lanterns in the night sky, these stories shine just as brightly and serve as guide posts for the sailing ships of the human heart.
These are Angel Stories told by children who have experienced the brush of tiny white wings. Their contact with Angels have set their hearts to shining so brightly, their radiance can push back the darkness and guide their footsteps through life and light their way toward Heaven when it is time, at last, to find the way home.
Oops, forgot this part.
Anyway, what else. Oh yeah. Make sure to check out the interactive feature which details the guy’s other plans. It is all gold.
I understand why the promos said that Sucker Punch was like Kill Bill meets Inception, but here is a more productive comparison: it is like Showgirls with fight sequences. Also, it is like what you imagine hyperspace to be like in Scott Pilgrim, it is like Black Swan but unashamed about its campiness, and it is not really all that different from, say, Crank. It was certainly not perfect, but it was still pretty great. (A grain-of-salt note before we proceed: while diving home, we discussed how Sucker Punch was totally what we wanted Black Swan to be, and I understand that the latter won a few Oscars, so, you know, YMMV.)
Maybe there’s a question of authorial intent here. We have come to hate Zach Snyder, and we want to use him as a way to talk about “fanboys” and their negative influence on movies. But remember when Showgirls came out and we (and by “we” here I probably mean “straight people”) wanted to use it as a way to talk about Joe Eszterhas and Paul Verhoven and how movies were too sleazy and trashy? Which seems pretty silly now! It seems more likely to me that we seize on the most extreme example of a particular trend as a way of talking about that trend. The problem, though, is that the most extreme example is not really a fair representation of the trend. Instead, it tends to be so over-the-top that it edges, intentionally or not, into camp. And while we can complain about Sucker Punch on the basis of Snyder’s well-known geek proclivities, it seems more fun to think about whether or not it’s worth watching regardless of its exemplification of a worrisome trend. And hey, I think it is!
The Kill Bill comparison is so useful that apparently every reviewer decided to ignore it. Sucker Punch is deeply referential, but instead of referencing respectable movies, it references video games. And so it gets trashed rather than praised for its references, maybe because movie reviewers aren’t familiar enough with video games to be able to differentiate a theft from an homage. It’s not exactly like Snyder was trying to hide his use of game imagery, and even I, a casual gamer, knew enough to realize that he was being pretty sly by, say, having the samuri in the first action sequence actually strap on a standard-issue minigun. Of course, these action sequences were the problem with the movie, and they got tiresome because Snyder, too, failed to really understand how games work. It’s not fun to watch someone else play a game, especially if they always win. Failure and difficulty are a big part of why games are fun. It was neat to see the grammar of games used in movies so explicitly (in a very Scott Pilgrim kind of way), but it got awful boring by the end, especially when the non-fight stuff was actually fairly effective.
Because yes, I liked Sucker Punch.
A post with references to both Crank AND Showgirls merits an auto reblog.
If Barthel went one step further and mentioned Crank 2 instead of the original (which I think is explicitly campier and thus, better - THAT GERI HALLIWELL CAMEO), I might have started doing backflips of joy here.
Things I liked about Win Win:
- Paul Giamatti. That’s never not in the “like” category (even when you don’t see his face like in The Nanny Diaries - yes, I saw that). I will never tire of his mopey ass.
- It’s nice to see a teenage character with a troubled home life who doesn’t have an attitude problem.
- It avoids sentimentality (for the most part). Probably not very easy when it comes to the plot of this movie.
- The National’s “Think You Can Wait”, the song that plays over the end credits. Never hurts to add Sharon Van Etten.
Things I didn’t like:
- Jeffrey Tambor vanishes into thin air during the last quarter of the movie.
- The final scene. You’ll see what I mean.
- Giamatti ages about ten years during the span of the movie. Props to the makeup department?