This will be another weekly feature. WWW will recommend some of the goodies we are currently watching, whether it be at the movies or on the couch.
The homage to Heath Ledger/Joker The Dark Knight is being garnered as the savior of the summer in the film industry. We are very cautious of hype when it comes to film; too often do we go into a movie that’s ego is so blown up, that we hope for a life-altering experience, and wind up getting some mildly amusing drivel that we forget about 5 minutes after leaving the theater (Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull isn’t the worst, but it’s the first thing that comes to mind). A movie as much about the societal dilemma of good and evil within us all as much as it is a comic book movie, The Dark Knight lives up to the hype. Ledger is phenomenal, as predicted, but look for impressive performances all around (ie. Aaron Eckhart as Harvey Dent). And for God’s sake, see this film in IMAX while you still can.
Once, called by some “the best music film of our generation”, is set in Ireland and follows the story of a fledgling musician who meets a woman that together propell each other to find what they truly want out of life. They even won an Oscar for “best original song.” This is really a showcase for Glen Hansard, which is the lead singer/songwriter for Irish rockers The Frames. This is the little indie film that could; the acting elements seem to only act as placeholders for the musical numbers performed in the film. You might think, “oh, a musical”, but that label would be grossly unfortunate. The raw emotion and stories laid out by the use of song alone are undeniably more effective than the dialogue in most films. I love the fact the that writer did not give the main characters names, they are simple known as guy/girl in the credits, it really immerses you in the story all the more, with the focus on the music rather than characters. All of this was made possible by an indie writer/director with a passion for music (John Carney, who was once the bass player for The Frames), and two first time actors (Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová). An almost perfect film.
Mad Men is the first original series by AMC and catching a lot of buzz for accurately portraying the lives of the men and woman in an advertising firm in 1960 New York City. These people, ladies and gentlemen, are not people you think your grandparents could have ever been; conniving, sexy, promiscuous, and flat out ruthless. All this coming from a time that conjures thoughts of the stable nuclear family, milkmen and unlocked doors at home. Don Draper is the smooth talking ladies man, cigarette smoker, and cocktail drinker that everyone wanted to be back then, but like the times in which they were living, everything seemed perfect only to uncover some nasty skeletons in the closet. Also, I found it funny the writers decided to write a character that was pregnant so they could show her smoking and drinking, things the general public thought did not harm the body back in the 50’s-60’s. While this series might be too “slow” for some, you won’t find much action, try to give it chance, the character development is fantastic.
[Look for a new “What We’re Watching” (WWW) every Friday.]