I know I have mentioned this before that D and I watch a lot of movies. We have a year (a literal year) full of Fridays at the movies to look forward to. I have made the mistake (twice now) of asking him what movie comes out this Friday. This starts him on reading The List. The List is a list of select movies opening every Friday from now through some time in August. This is D's year. D's year at the movies. I actually kind of wish he were here right now so that he could relay the list to you. That way you could fully understand. Regardless, Sucker Punch comes out this Friday, and Paul came out last Friday, and, slightly shockingly, Jane Eyre was the movie that made The List the Friday before that (Never mind that Jane Eyre didn't actually come out anywhere and still hasn't made it to our town. The fact that it made the list at all pacifies my heart).
We watch a lot of main stream, well attended films. However, we also watch a lot of incredibly great, tragically overlooked films. I am going to talk about two of them today.
Number One: Monsters.
Monsters is an alien movie. A wonderful, beautiful, socially conscious alien movie. It was filmed on location with a minimum amount of set creation, and with only two hired actors. Other than the films two leads, everyone in the film was found on location (though there are some U.S. soldiers in the film, so I am not sure this is 100% true) and are uncredited.
Monsters is set in present day. An alien infestation has contaminated most of Mexico and parts of South Texas. The movie centers around a photojournalist and the daughter of the man who owns the paper trying to make their way through the infected zone, back to the United States. The story focuses on effects of the infestation on the lives of the native peoples, and on the relationships that have developed/altered due to this new menace. They show very little of the actual monsters, and when they do the monsters are breathtakingly beautiful. This movie is not scary, but rather suspenseful. It is wonderfully filmed, and highlights some of the most beautiful parts of Central America. It also was shot, in part, in devastated Galveston, TX. My sister and I went to Galveston a couple of months after Hurricane Rita, and I recognized it in this film. Kudos to movie makers for utilizing existing devastation rather than spending millions to simulate it.
I suggest this movie for everyone. Whether you like sci-fi or not. It is a fabulous, epic, classy, glorious film.
Movie Number Two: Mic Macs.
For anyone who enjoyed Amelie, or City of Lost Children, or A Very Long Engagement, or any of Jean-Pierre Jeunet's wonderful films, Mic Macs is your new favorite movie. It is in French (because he is French and makes French movies) and, while I know foreign language films deter people often, I think that is silly.
It is a film about an unassuming man whose entire life has been shaped by two major weapons manufacturers in his town. He is adopted by a troupe of eccentrics living together in a garbage dump and, together, using their skills, they decide to wage war on the two men responsible for all these weapons.
If you have seen any of Jeunet's other films you know that he has a panache for gadgetry. He likes sight gags, jokes, and puns. He employs actors for their unusual abilities (or faces) and uses them in his films to the best possible outcome. This movie is silly, and hilarious, and moving, and wonderful.
So, there you are. Movies reviewed and suggested for your pleasure.