Monday, January 15, 2018

50. 2/100: Adventureland

Adventureland. Dir. Greg Mottola. Perf. Jesse Eisenberg, Kristen Stewart, Ryan Reynolds. Miramax, 2009. Film.

Watched: January 6, 2018

I wanted to watch this movie because of the cast. I fell in love with Jesse Eisenburg when I saw him in Now You See Me 2. The Now You See Me films are some of my favorites to recently be released. I also will admit to loving Kristen Stewart. Something this 100 movies project is going to reveal about me is my inner teenage girl and nerd girl tendencies. I'm not going to be embarrassed by this though and, in fact, I feel like the pop culture teenage girls like has a deeper level of quality and worth than it gets credit for (which is a blog post for another day). Anyway, I feel in love with Kristen Stewart when I saw her in Into the Wild and have been following her work since then. I'm also a big fan of Kristin Wiig

Adventureland is about an ivy league college student who has to find a summer job. He gets a part time job as a game manager at the local amusement park called Adventureland. This is set in Pittsburgh but I love it because there is also an Adventureland in my home state of Iowa. Anyway, the employees at Adventureland bond over pot, parties, and musings about the meaning of life. my boyfriend calls these kinds of films "slice of life" movies because it just shows a glimpse into a person's life. It could continue on forever and the plot is character driven rather story driven. I thought the characters where quirky and fun and there were some moments of real humor that made me laugh out loud. I'm a tough crowd when it comes to comedy so any film that gets me actually laughing is pretty brilliant. 

I would gladly watch this film again. 

4 darts out of 5

Monday, January 1, 2018

49. Film 1/100: Logan

Logan. Dir. James Mangold. Perf. Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, and Dafne Keen. Twentieth Century Fox, 2017. Film

Logan is set in a time when the mutants of the United States are apparently outlawed. Logan lives with Charles Xavier in a bunker in the southern U.S. and he works as a limo driver. Days are spent caring for Charles who suffers an unknown brain disease that causes seizures dangerous to those around him. Logan is approached by a woman claiming to have information on a new set of child mutants and requests his help. Following her is a set of bad guys who want to kill the little girl she's protecting. Logan is then put in the position of protecting the child after her caregiver dies, and must get her to a safe location in North Dakota. 

This movie has gotten great reviews from my friends and family, but I'll be brave and have an unpopular opinion on this one: I didn't like it. A common argument for it's "brilliance" is that it "transcends the superhero genre." Yes, it is different from a standard "super hero" movie, but I argue that it isn't really a super hero movie at all. It doesn't fit the genre. It isn't changing or transcending the genre because it's not functioning within the genre to begin with. This film is a dramatic tragedy with sci-fi elements. It's in the realm of Hamlet but nowhere close to being as profound. 

For a film that was more than two hours long, there wasn't much of a story. I was left with a lot of unanswered questions that could have been easily answered had the plot been a bit more complex and interesting. Why are mutants in hiding in the U.S.--what shook out politically? Why does that hospital need to build an army of mutant soldiers? What are they fighting for? Why does that dude have a bionic arm? Do the kids actually make it across the border? What is this brain disease Charles is dealing with? All questions left unanswered. 

Ultimately, the heavy does of sadness without comic relief, and the long plodding plot with unanswered questions pretty much guaranteed that this is a film I'll never watch again. 

2 darts out of 5