Friday, December 24, 2010

movie time

"You ready, Pop?" my son asked about a half an hour before the movie was due to start yesterday. I muttered something about being too early, but he countered that there would be traffic. And besides, since being on time is an old habit of mine ... I hustled into my clothes, checked my wallet for money, and away we went, him in the driver's seat.

And we were early -- early enough to see why movie theaters are losing their appeal. Once seated, for a solid fifteen minutes, we watched advertising clips. Nothing but advertising ... for cars, for food, for malls, for debilitating diseases. Finally, the theater darkened and we were treated to another five or ten minutes of advertisements of movies to come. None was coherent or let you know what the story might be about. Instead it was a pastiche of boobs and bomb blasts and cryptic one-liners uttered by pretty male actors who needed a shave and were therefore, somehow, Alpha-male tough guys who got the girls with the boobs.

I am a sucker for stories, so I never stop being amazed at a movie industry that fails to tell the story that will bring me back and extract my money. It's as if what happens in any given story doesn't matter so much -- it's how it looks and the technology it employs that counts. Talk about dumb and dumber! Who doesn't like being carried away by intellect and emotion ... swept up in some suspend-disbelief panorama? Who doesn't like to be shown the world in another way, to be surprised?

Is it a surprise that bombs go boom or girls have boobs or the hirsute hero needs a shave?

Abraham Lincoln once said, "You call fool all of the people some of the time and some of the people all of the time but you can't fool all of the people all of the time." I guess Hollywood is satisfied with "some of the people."

The movie, called "The Fighter," was pretty good -- had some good characters and plot lines. The fight scenes were OK too, but it was the entire arena of the film that was more credible. "It took me a while to get into it," my son said, "but after that, it was really good."


  1. I don't know. I think there are still some great movies out there. Though, I agree that the whole movie going experience isn't as romantic as it used to be. I've grown away from the action flicks that used to entertain me so. Sometimes they do get it right though. Inception for example. That was good, and a thriller too. Not to brag on Decaprio, but have you seen Shutter Island? I thought that was a really good movie. Also, some of the effects available to modern movie makers has enabled some creative artists to work in new ways. I like some of the kids movies like Monsters Inc etc... I do miss the hand-drawn cartoons from the old days though.
    I guess, if I'm trying to make a point, there are still good movies being made all the time. But the movie GOING experience has gone down hill.