November Movie Preview (uhh, view?) 2011

M: Welcome to the November Movie Preview, or as it will be for the movies that opened last weekend, the November Movie View.  I’m putting this one on E, she usually reminds us when it’s time to start writing up the monthly previews, and C and I got no such reminder this month.  I can’t imagine (Good Wife) what she might be doing (Good Wife) with her time (Good Wife).

E:  And without big sis to boss you around, it doesn’t get done?

M:  Well, that is your role in this little trio, you should know that by now.  And C’s taking too long, so we’re posting without her, she can comment after if she wants.  Anyway, on to the November slate with some things that we are REALLY excited about, and no, I am not referring to Twilight.

November 4th

Tower Heist

M: This stylish action-comedy with a spectacular cast is one of the films I’ve been excited for from the November slate.  It looks like a version of Ocean’s Eleven, but one where the folks scheming to make the big score have no clue what the heck they’re doing, which is always fun.  Word on the street is that Eddie Murphy is back to being fully hilarious, which is always fun to watch.

E: Really?  I have two words for you: Brett Ratner.  My interest stops there.  At least I no longer have to watch him produce the Oscars – but I’m definitely not going to seek him out!

M: That’s pretty harsh for the guy that directed Rush Hour, The Family Man and the pilot of Prison Break, all of which were really good.  Oh, and he wanted Eddie Murphy for Rush Hour instead of Chris Tucker, which would have made it legen…. wait for it… dary!

A Very Harold and Kumar 3D Christmas

M: When I first heard of this I was told that it was titled “Harold and Kumar Save Christmas,” which led to a very entertaining discussion about whether or not they should remake all the old Ernest movies with Harold and Kumar, and then wondering if this is already the second movie on the way to that, since Guantanamo Bay could be considered their version of Ernest Goes To Jail.  As long as Neil Patrick Harris is still involved I think they should go for it.  Know what I mean, Verne?

E: The reviews are actually quite good.  Put that in your pipe and smoke it. (You know the title characters would…)

November 11th (aka 11.11.11)

J. Edgar

M: I’m a fan of Clint Eastwood, Leo DiCaprio and sweeping, epic biopics.  This involves all three, and is about a man (the titular J. Edgar Hoover) who rose to power in his twenties and stayed there for his entire life.  That’s just not done in the world of politics.  Personally, I thought DiCaprio was really good spanning generations portraying Howard Hughes in The Aviator, and while the movie had flaws I thought that overall it worked.  The look and feel of this reminds me of that.  Put all that together, and I’m looking forward to seeing the telling of this story.

E: I don’t like DiCaprio as much as you do – in fact, I used to hate him – but the man gets cast in all these movies that I like.  I don’t know what to do about that.  It hits pretty nearly every Oscar button there is (bio pic, serious topic, Eastwood, DiCaprio) so I’m sure I’ll see it, but I’m not exactly excited about it, either.  Hoover seems like a really dour character to spend two hours with, don’t you think?

M: He does, but I don’t know if that’s just perception, which is part of why I’m intrigued.  Oh, and the liking DiCaprio this is such a strange thing to me.  Much like Johnny Depp, early in his career I couldn’t stand him, but somewhere along the line he flip-flopped, with his acting skills overtaking his looks as the reason people went to see his movies.  That was the point I switched to being on board, and he hasn’t really disappointed.

Immortals

M: I know I’m still at least bordering on the target demographic for this movie (or at least I like to think my age is still bordering on this demographic!).  I’ve always been a fan of Greek myths, and with the recent Percy Jackson books (emphasis on *books*, not film) have gotten into them again.  I love movies that are visually stunning, and in general like the Frank Miller-300 look and feel.  That all said, I have absolutely no interest in this mess.

E: Blech phooey.

Jack and Jill

M: Did I say that Immortals looks like a mess?  In comparison to Adam Sandler playing twins, one of whom is female, it looks like Lawrence of Arabia.

E: Dumb and dumber.

M: No, Dumb and Dumber was really funny.

Melancholia

M: So, apparently the buzz around this movie is more about whether or not director Lars von Trier’s claims of being a Nazi and sympathizing with Hitler were in jest or were serious.  The movie itself has generated some Oscar buzz for Kirsten Dunst, which is pretty remarkable, and is apparently about a giant rogue planet being on path to collide with and wipe out the Earth (which, even to my sci-fi loving brain, doesn’t seem so likely).

E: Yeah. I don’t know. There are a lot of pretty young things contending for Best Actress this year (Dunst, Felicity Jones, Elizabeth Olsen, Michelle Williams, etc.) against iron-fisted Ms. Streep herself, so it’s going to be tricky to anticipate which of them will get in (and so which movies I need to see in the theater).  I generally make a point of avoiding von Trier’s work, but this does look very beautiful.

November 18th

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1

M: Six words, a number, a colon AND a hyphen?!?!  Now that’s a movie title!

E: There’s nothing more magical than a movie that starts with a starry wedding and ends with a baby eating its way of out its mom’s tummy.

M: As for the movie, in my opinion you’re better off just reading C’s PSA from a couple years ago.  Of course, I’m not a 35+ year-old woman who likes to drool over pubescent boys (which, if the genders were reversed, would be considered amazingly creepy).

Happy Feet Two

M: This just in from the land of Movies That Didn’t Need A Sequel, it’s Happy Feet Two!  Seriously, didn’t the first one (mercifully) end with Elijah Wood’s little penguin bringing about world peace by tapping his penguin feet?  Personally, I prefer this penguin movie.

The Descendants

M: The director of Sideways, a sort of Sideways-esque setup, George Clooney and… Matthew Lillard?  Somebody cue the Sesame Street “one of these things is not like the others” music.

November 25th

The Muppets

M: Woo hoo!  Wait, no, that doesn’t appropriately convey my excitement.

WOOOOOO HOOOOOO!!!!  

Okay, that’s more like it.

E: What he said.

Hugo

M: I’m not sure what to make of this yet.  It looks like a visually stunning, and potentially just overall stunning, film.  However, it’s animated, ostensibly a kids movie, is in 3-D, and is directed by, of all people, Marty Scorcese?  I mean, the guy that brought us classics like Goodfellas, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, Gangs of New York, Casino and The Departed?  Not only is there not a kids movie on his resume, there isn’t a kids moment in any of his movies.

E: I think it looks stunning. It’s not animated, though.  Where are you getting that?  They don’t make a lot of really good live action films for kids, and I applaud Scorcese for stretching himself here.

M: Hmm, perhaps I was mangling it together with Tintin.  My bad.

E: Yeah, that one’s motion capture.  I’m kind of excited about that, too.

Arthur Christmas

M: It’s kind of amazing that the movie industry is actually waiting until after Thanksgiving to release the first real Christmas movie of the year (no, I do not consider the Harold and Kumar movie to really be a Christmas movie!).  They are so behind the times.  Sheesh.

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5 comments on “November Movie Preview (uhh, view?) 2011

  1. MMGF says:

    I think I’m with E on J. Edgar. It’s getting surprisingly weak reviews (so maybe we won’t have to see it, E!) But I do think it looks like of heavy and drawn out. But, who knows.

    Jack & Jill has a 2% fresh rating on rottentomatoes.com. Out of 52 reviews. This guy keeps it from getting a 0%, somehow giving it 3 out of 5 stars. http://www.mediamikes.com/2011/11/film-review-jack-and-jill/?_r=true Go figure. (Didn’t Eddie Murphy lose an Academy Award for this kind of role? Why do these movies keep getting made? If they’re consistently making money, then I genuinely fear for the artistic future of this country.)

    Happy Feet (1) was so much fun. Happy Feet 2 is clearly a money grab. I don’t know anything about the story, but it doesn’t even feel right to do that movie without Brittany Murphy. Just makes me sad.

    Hmm. I haven’t seen a movie in months. And not because I haven’t wanted to. I keep waiting for all the GOOD movies to come out. Maybe December will be better…? (Not that I don’t have THE MUPPETS (!!!!) this month!)

    • E says:

      Would we really be so luck as not to have to see J. Edgar? It just looks so depressive. And when you read these interviews where the director and star talk about what an enigma Hoover is to them and how they don’t like him, well, you just have to wonder how compelling their version could be. It’s hard to make a movie about someone when you’re neither in his corner nor out of it…

    • E says:

      And, you know, I haven’t seen a movie in ages, either. You and I will have to remedy that!

  2. Gina says:

    Can’t wait for “The Muppets”!

    Also, I’m hearing amazing things about a new movie called “The Artist.” (C may have seen me writing about this on my LiveJournal.) It’s starting out with a limited release, which I hope becomes an unlimited release very soon!

    • E says:

      Gina, I’ve been hearing glorious things about The Artist since it swept away audiences at Cannes – super excited about seeing that when it makes its way here! I’m glad to hear the roll out is beginning in the not too distant future. Just the look of it… The lead actor, at least in my mind, has something of the look of our grandfather to him. Partly it’s just the pencil thin mustache and the hair, but that’s not all.

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