“I caught The Hangover at a screening in London a couple of weeks ago, and it really was a great little comedy,” says HE reader James Smith. “Zach Galifianakis is superb, and the sequence in the [end] credits is fantastic — the night they can’t remember is finally seen through digital camera photos (although I overheard a few studio people say at my screening that a couple of frames featuring a blowjob won’t be in the final released version).
“It doesn’t reinvent the wheel, but you wouldn’t expect it to. It’s loud and it’s stupid, but not derivatively or in a way that would make someone as notoriously pissy as yourself (like me!) irritated that it’s pandering to the masses. Sometimes a movie comes along with enough belly laughs to see you through an evening and part of the next day, and The Hangover does just that. And I’m saying this as someone who didn’t like Old School.
“I disliked only two things. Bradley Cooper seems to be chewing gum through the first hour and it really pissed me off. And Ken Jeong is playing a strangely camp Asian gangster and the characterisation seemed to play to the crowd a little too much. A bit too broad for my liking, but I chuckled with a hint of guilt a few times.
“I’ll be doing a full review for Little White Lies, a beautifully designed movie magazine I think you’ll love. Check it out.”
“Swift and sure, Drag Me to Hell unfurls in vertiginous, comic-book frames, like a long-lost issue of Tales From the Crypt” writes N.Y. Times critic Jeannette Catsoulis. “Neither small humans nor smaller animals are exempt from the carnage, which is orchestrated by director Sam Raimi and his screenwriting sibling, Ivan.
“As for Alison Lohman, she suffers the indignities of the genre like a champ, morphing from mouse to hellion as her expiration date approaches. And while no one will mistake her journey — whose title sounds like a desperate plea from the director’s fan base — for a masterpiece, the movie has a crackpot vitality that breaches our defenses.
“In films like Darkman and the thematically similar Spider-Man 2, Mr. Raimi revealed a gift for merging the human and the fantastic, sustaining poignant love stories in the midst of horror and revenge. His talent is greater than this, but for now this will do.”
Catsoulis is an excellent writer and critic, but how come Scott and Dargis fobbed this one off?
“The obvious solution is to brand ‘new IMAX’ so customers know what they’re getting,” Roger Ebert wrote the day before yesterday. “Call it IMAX Lite, IMAX Junior, MiniMAX or IMAX 2.0. Or call the old format ‘IMAX Classic.’
“Hey, that worked for Coke. Significantly, a lot of exhibitors favor specifically identifying the new format, perhaps because they’re offering something better than on their other screens, yet getting flack from customers because it’s inferior to IMAX Classic.
“One reason exhibitors are friendly to IMAX is that the company is spending money to convert the target theaters. The exhibitors themselves, however, are expected to pay for an upgrade to the latest 3-D technology. Everybody is short of money these days, and both formats offer an excuse for a $5 surcharge.”
Okay, yes — an intriguing taste of Terry Gilliam‘s The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus. But where’s the clip featuring Heath Ledger that anyone who’s even half interested in this film wants to see? To think that someone actually thought things through and said, “Yes….this is the clip we’ll make available.”
“Republicans have to know how bad this is for their party — especially given the shifting demographics in America. The Hispanic vote was a deciding factor in Obama’s win, so the last thing the GOP needs is to be alienating Hispanic voters. BUT THEY JUST CAN’T HELP THEMSELVES!
“It reminds me of Robert Downey Jr.‘s quote after his umpteenth drug relapse: ‘It is like I have a shotgun in my mouth, and I’ve got my finger on the trigger, and I like the taste of gun metal.’ The GOP attack dogs have an electoral shotgun in their mouth — and they’re addicted to the taste of it.”