Monday, July 23, 2012

Movie Monday - Archery Season (?)

In the past couple of weeks, I've seen more movies with archery as plot points than... well... ever. How many movies? you ask. Two. Which was one more than I should have watched.

Let me get the griping out of the way, first.

What is with "The Hunger Games"? Why is it a hit? Why are we supposed to be cheering for 12- to 18-year-olds when they kill each other? Who decided that these were good books and should be made into movies? Yes, cinematically it was well done. Yes, the acting was very good. Yes, I probably would have liked it better if it was adults. Yes, it reminded me of a cross between "The Running Man" and "The Lottery." No, I'll never get those 2 hours back.

(Although... Truth be told... I spent those 2 hours - and about 30 minutes more - having dinner and watching the movie with a couple of good friends, so I'm okay with the time spent. I just wish I hadn't been spending it with that movie.)

Oh. And I went to a book club last week where we talked about the movie and the books. I started to see why the books have such a following. But, no, that doesn't mean I'm going to read them or watch the movies when they're made.

The other arrow-filled movie was much more on target. (See what I did there?) I really enjoyed "Brave." I liked the main character and her relationship with her family (especially her mother). I liked the animation and the 3D-ness of it. I liked the plot and the music and the animation. Have I mentioned the animation?

This is a Pixar movie, so we know that the animation is incredible before it even starts. But then you start to hear about it and see it and it's just amazing. The main character's hair took something like 500 different pieces of programming to get it to move just right. And then there's the fabric of the "costumes." No one is wearing smooth flat fabric. Everyone has bumpy, woven, rough cloth. In great tartans. If the world of "Avatar" had been done by these folks, it might not have re-made me hate James Cameron.

Sure, there were some odd moments. I didn't love some of the humor aimed at the younger audience members - but they probably didn't love some of the grown-up stuff, either. Overall, it was a win.

So... Ratings:

"Hunger Games" - B. The movie, itself, was really well done. But the plot and the "world" it's in... I can't give that an A.

"Brave" - A. And not just because "A is for Animation," but because it's just that good.

OH. And "Brave" has a short film at the beginning called "La Luna" which is absolutely amazing and was Oscar-nominated last year. Probably worth the price of admission all by itself. THAT I would give an A+ to.

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