Monday, February 6, 2012

Movie Update 38

Hey, how about I write a little bit about some movies I saw recently and then you can decide whether or not you agree with me.

Lethal Weapon 2

I have to admit I kind of miss movies like this - big summer blockbusters that don't rely on high concept science fiction to get their thrills. It's not that I don't like science fiction, obviously, I just miss action movies that aren't about superheroes or robots or vampires or whatever. Lethal Weapon 2 isn't even that spectacular - it's just a solid buddy cop movie with a enjoyable rapport among the main characters and some fun, bloody action scenes. But that's all it really had to be. I'm glad I watched it.

Peggy Sue Got Married

I don't know how many times I can keep saying that Francis Coppola had a strange career after the 70s, but it's still true. Back to the Future got the lasting attention, but Peggy Sue Got Married is another time traveling 80s high school comedy thing, starring Kathleen Turner as a woman who loses consciousness at her 25th high school reunion and wakes up as a 17 year old again, determined to make different choices and not even sure that any of it is actually real. The movie plays up the drama a fair bit and is less wacky than most movies of its sort, but its highlight is definitely Nicolas Cage, from his hair to his bizarre voice to his whole demeanor. Odd, but more fun than most of Coppola's other odd movies.


I believe this is the final film from AFI's revised version of the 100 best American movies that I've seen, and it's a pretty good one. Alan Ladd stars as the titular character, a gunman who tries settling down with some farmers out West, but finds he is unable to escape his past when they get increasingly harrassed by men who want control of the whole territory. There's an annoying kid who comes close to ruining the movie on a number of occasions, but it manages to survive as a classic example of a solid but not great 50s Western.


Another fine example of a blockbuster action movie that didn't need an impossible concept to work, although it does rely pretty heavily on a gimmick. I know I'm one of the last people to see this movie, and I don't need to tell you what it's about, but I will say the movie does a pretty good job of adhering to a traditional and workable story structure despite a great deal of it taking place on a speeding bus. There's very little in the way of real human on human violence, but due to the clever exploitation of the plot's strange circumstances and the chemistry of the main cast it remains exciting for most of its duration. I liked it more than I expected to in any case, and Keanu Reeves' bad acting is in fine form.

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