Random reviews of my family's Blockbuster rentals (i.e. stuff I'd never have sought out myself)
The Last Kiss: Okay. You know when you just can't articulate why you disliked something? And you feel like maybe you have no rational reason for disliking it, but it just bothers you nonetheless? That's how I felt with this one. I know I'm predisposed to hating anything Paul Haggis does, after the debacle of... well, you know. Don't get me started. But anyway, I'm trying to stand back and be objective, and give it the benefit of the doubt. But I just can't seem to shake the feeling of dirtiness.
This film is basically about men doing monumentally stupid things, and women then behaving like psychobitches when they find out. So, yeah. Maybe that's enough reason to dislike it. Too much ridiculous melodrama and less than believable circumstances. The actors do pretty well with what they're given, though I kind of hate Casey Affleck in this, and Zach Braff, while admittedly cute and charming in this way, really annoyed me. It's kind of the same situation as in Garden State, where I can relate to the people and situations on display, but still don't feel like they're doing any work to reach people who don't share their little self-involved post-Gen-X worldview. Whatever. Moving on. Jacinda Barrett as Zach Braff's pregnant wife reminds me of Bryn, my actress from Proof, oddly enough, so I guess that's good, though she's unfortunately saddled with a lot of the more inane over-the-top moments, so I couldn't help but be annoyed with her by the end, too. What's her name from the OC is cute and effective as Zach Braff's temptress. Tom Wilkinson and Blythe Danner are certainly interesting. The acting on the whole is quite redeeming.
But still, I just kept thinking... why? Why should I care? Why can't these people just make better decisions, and stop behaving like children? And why does Paul Haggis things shoving "important issues" and "high drama" in our faces is good storytelling, regardless of the plausibility of anyone's actions? And why do so many others seem to agree with him that this is good writing (hence his annual oscar nominations/wins)? I just don't get it. I don't even want to talk about this film anymore, cause it's films like this one that make criticism seem irrelevant and make want to just say "MOVING ON..."
Verdit: "I found it annoying, but whatever, see it if you want."
So yes, MOVING ON to The Break-Up. Another one I didn't particularly like, but I didn't particularly dislike this one either. Aniston is appealing enough in yet another Rachel retread. Vaughn isn't my own personal cup of tea, but I can't really fault him either (I just think he's boring and kind of gross... decent enough actor, though). I don't think this film was as bad as the reviews suggested (maybe the critics were still reeling from Gigli), but I can't really say I liked it either. I hate that. I hate when I didn't like a film but can't exactly point out its flaws. But alas.
Basically, I didn't find the whole first part of the movie funny, and was kind of ready for it to be over, and then just when the film got sort of serious and I was starting to care about the characters, it just fizzled away into a cop-out ending, and I ended up not caring again. Feh. Again, I didn't dislike it. I was just not enthused. I wish Aniston and Vaughn the best in whatever stage their real-life relationship is in now (I haven't followed it much), but I'd rather not see it up onscreen again. Once was more than enough. As much as a can respect this film on a basic level, there are far better contemporary examples of this kind of "relationship dramedy" genre. This film falls far below the uneven-but-often-hilarious fun of a Knocked Up, let alone the transcendence of an Eternal Sunshine. So is it really worth my time? I don't think so.
Verdict: "Not bad, but not exactly worth your time either. See it if you like Aniston or Vaughn."
Blah. It was a waste of time to write these. I felt the need to work out my thoughts in writing, but I seem to have failed. Has anyone else seen these? What did you think?
Labels: 2006 reviews