Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Spectacular Summer

OK, so I admit that I usually don't see many films in the course of a year. This summer, though, I have managed to catch pretty much every important SF film that has hit the box office (often several weeks after the debut, but still better than past years).

Spider-man III was a very busy movie. I understand, from a story view, why there were so many things going on, but there were a lot of problems with this film. An on-going complaint with this franchise has been the constant killing off of major villains (though in the Green Goblin's case it was inevitable), but alas and alack, there is litle we can do about it.

Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer was a great film. I enjoyed the first F4 movie very much, and was pleased that they managed to juggle the various issues and sub-plots so well. A fun super-hero movie that captured the essence of the Fantastic Four quite well (the idea that they all want to live normal lives in spite of their powers).

The Transformers was a Michael Bay film. Actually, in spite of the fact that Michael Bay is better known for his visuals than for inspired acting direction or dialog, this film is witty, intelligent, and worth watching. The concept of how the Transformers look like mundane vehicles is demonstrated quite well in the film, even though a few scenes require you to put your brain on hold. All in all a solid recommendation on this one.

Harry Potter & the Order of the Phoenix did a great job with its material, but it seemed, somehow, flat. There were a lot of great moments in the film, and the character of Dolores Umbridge was well done, but the fact remains that they seemed to rush this film more than a bit, and most of the characters were given token appearances and little else.

The Simpsons Movie is technically not really SF, but I am going to include it anyway. All I can say is "Spider-pig, Spider-pig, does whatever a spider-pig does, can he climb on a web, not he can't, he's a pig, look out, here comes a spider-pig!"

The Bourne Ultimatum does not seem like a genre film, but since many believe that the Manchurian Candidate is a genre film, this must be also. My one issue with this film is the stupid jittery cameras. It is fine in action sequences, but the camera should not be bobbling all over the place during dramatic scenes as it is distracting, and looks like the film was done by incompetent day-laborers instead of truly professional camera people.

I still want to catch Stardust, Sunlight, Invasion (yes I know it is a remake, but I love the Invasion of the Body Snatchers and all of its remakes and will see this one), and a few other films on the big screen, and I hope to get the chance over the next few weeks.

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