But this was important. Really important. Well, to me. You all will likely think I'm just being silly.
WE SAW MOVIES!!!! Yes, that really does deserve to be in all caps and needs it's own post that I couldn't wait until I had more time to write. So, even though there are lots of things I'd like to talk to you about, instead I'm talking to you about MOVIES, because they are very very important.
There were four movies that came out last week that we wanted to see. And we managed to see all four of them. Let me start by telling you that some really great movies came out this week and you really should see them.
The first movie we saw was The Muppets. This is the movie I was most looking forward to seeing. In the end, I can't say that it was my favorite. But only because there are REALLY GREAT movies out right now. Nat Gertler summed it up really well when he said that it was a great movie if you really like the Muppets. And it is. I love the Muppets, so I loved the movie. If I hadn't been a fan, I don't think the movie would've made me one. All four of us had a great time. There were lots of in-jokes and adult jokes and kid jokes and it works on lots of levels. I'm not a big fan of Amy Adams (yeah, I know, I'm weird, everyone loves her. Sorry. She kinda grates on me), but she was fine in the movie. My biggest complaint was that there was not nearly enough Gonzo or Rawlf. But then, I love them more than is healthy, so I always want more. Both of them were basically reduced to a cameo each. *sigh* Nonetheless, if you are a fan of the Muppets, I highly recommend this movie. It's not the best Muppet movie ever (my personal favorite is Muppets Take Manhattan) but it is lots of fun, and if everyone goes to see it then there might be more. Which, for me anyway, could only be a good thing.
Thing is, I don't really need to tell you that. If you are a fan of the Muppets, you are going to see the movie. You planned on seeing it way before I sat down to write this post. In fact, likely you've already seen it. You had a holiday weekend, you needed something to do, you went to the movies. If you're not a teenage girl, you probably were not that interested in New Dawn (a movie that I have enough disdain for that I'm not double checking that I had the correct title), so if the above is all true. You probably saw The Muppets. When we went on Thanksgiving Day, the house was packed.
Thanksgiving night, we went to see another movie. Arthur Christmas has a stellar (to me anyway) voice cast, despite it being computer animation it comes from the Aardman Studios (Wallace and Grommet's home) and it got a very high score on Rotten Tomatoes which was enough to get our family to check it out.
The bad thing about this movie is that there were four people at the show we went to. And we were them. This could be because it's a "kids" movie and we saw the late show, but, every time I've told people they should see it, they looked at me confused, like, "really? but it doesn't look that interesting."
So let me say this here and now, in no uncertain terms. Arthur Christmas is worth seeing. I was much more emotionally invested in it than I was in The Muppets. Those parts that are meant to make you cry? They worked for me. And it was really funny. The script was awesome. The voices were perfect (James McAvoy! Bill Nighy! Jim Broadbent!Hugh Laurie!). I just can't say enough how good this movie was. It is a perfect little Christmas movie. When it was over, Sky said, "So, we have another movie to add to the list of movies we watch every year at Christmas." I think that all four of us are planning/hoping/expecting to see it again before it leaves theatres. It's one of those movies that just surprises you. All the characters are well honed. You know where the movie is going to go from the very beginning, but it still manages to take you places you weren't expecting. And though it fails the Bechdel Test (there are at least two female characters, but they don't have a scene together) the female characters are pretty awesome.
Take my word for it, go see it. I'm pretty sure you won't be disappointed. Unless you hate animated movies or holiday movies, I guess? It's not doing well. I think that's because people don't realize how great it is. It was not promoted enough, maybe? We saw the 2-D version. Which is really good, because now we have a ready made excuse to go see it again. You see, we have to. We have to check out the 3-D version. If you are in our area and want company to see it, just let me know. I'll take any excuse to go see it again.
On Friday, Game Night consisted of Winter and three of her friends; Sky, Scott, Me and Nat Gertler. We seem to have a new tradition that if Game Night is that small we go to see a movie. Since Winter and her friends were not coming with us, we went to see The Descendants. Hey, live action! Not made for kids! It was a very good movie. We saw it at the local art house, and, as we always do when he is there, wound up talking to the manager for twenty minutes before the show (it's kinda cool when he comes out because he heard our voices when we were buying our tickets. Nice to be appreciated!). This is the "George Clooney is a dad of two daughters who's not been a great dad or husband, but now his wife's in a coma and he has to rally around" movie. Okay, that's not a very good description, but if you've seen the trailer than you know what movie I'm talking about. The trailer makes it look like a comedy. and it is funny. But it's not a comedy. It's very melancholy. Just look what it's about! (Well, I'm not telling you everything, because I hate giving things away, but take it from me, the subject matter is not very happy). If you were thinking of seeing it because you wanted a feel good happy movie, it's probably not the best choice. We had planned on going as a family, but since Winter was busy she didn't come with us. I thought she would like it because it had two young girls as main characters. I'm really glad she didn't come. I don't think she would've enjoyed it at all.
The acting is very good. The script managed to surprise me a bit. Mostly it just made me a bit sad...
So, this one falls into the "I'm glad I saw it. I've thought about it a bit since seeing it. I don't need to see it again, but if someone really wanted to go, I'd be willing." Of the four movies I'm talking about today, it's the one that I don't feel any great desire to see again. Willing to see it again, but really don't need to. Make what you will of that.
The fourth movie we saw was last night. We went to see Hugo. Sky is back at Santa Cruz and Winter wasn't feeling well, so Scott and I went by ourselves. And now we have the excuse that the kids didn't see it so we get to go back and see it again! (we are so clever like that). Thing is, Hugo was not what I was expecting at all. It's a movie about art and life and making things work. And it's beautiful. When we left, Scott said, "it's billed like a blockbuster, but it's really an art-house movie" and it is. The thing about the three movies that I want to see again is that I know that when I do, I will see so very many things that I missed the first time around. They are so full that you can't see it all in one viewing. And Hugo is so beautiful you want to see it again, just to see what was on the screen when you were busy watching the plot (or to see what was happening with the plot when you were marveling at the beauty on the screen). It's based on a book, The Invention of Hugo Cabret, and I'm pretty sure that we met the author of the book, Brian Selznick, when Scott (and he) were winning their Quill awards, so it's really cool to see the book go on to become a movie.
This was another late show that we went to, and it was a Monday night, so I'm hoping that this is why there was almost no one besides us in the theatre.
The movie is very dreamlike and it defies description. The characters are quirky and almost caricatures while also being well rounded, which seems like a contradiction, but somehow, isn't. One of the things that strikes me about the movie is that there are no bad guys. There are people who do things that might hurt others, but we find ourselves sympathizing with everyone to some extent. Even the perceived "bad guy(s)" all have reasons for their behavior that make sense and we find ourselves unable to hate them.
And this is supposed to be a kids' movie! How cool is that? A movie geared for kids that is not black and white but a whole rainbow of personalities?! And though I knew how the movie was going to end from the very beginning, the path to that ending was twisty in ways I'd never considered.
These days, on my birthday, I tend to go to a movie, or watch one at home. There are another half dozen (at least) movies coming out before then that I am dying to see. This means that the movies in this post will likely be gone out of the theatre by then (my birthday's at the end of the year). Unless you all GO AND SEE THEM, so that the theatres keep them for awhile. Or maybe, I'll just assume that there are so many that I want to see that I'll have enough to spend the whole day at the theatre seeing movies (this, by the way, is Ivy's idea of a perfect birthday) that will be coming out in the next few weeks.
I guess I'll just have to find away to see these again before them.
But you should too. And, you know, ask me if I'm available. If I am, I'll join you.
[ETA: (this is extra text that I'm adding before I even post. I'm weird that way) So, our friend Lauren came over tonight. We had dinner and then were thinking about what we could do. We told her that she really needed to see Arthur Christmas and her reaction was pretty much the reaction everyone we've said this to has given us. Which is "really?" We decided the only thing to do: we dragged her to see it. SHE LOVED IT. I tell you this is an awesome movie. We went to the late show, and sadly, again, we were the only people in the theatre. When it was over I asked the person taking tickets. She said that all the shows were that empty.
Seeing it again, I can now say that Arthur Christmas is my favorite of the four movies we saw this week. I will gladly see it again. This time we saw it in 3-D, there were a few places where the 3-D was very cool. If you can only afford one 3-D movie, make that one Hugo cause it's beautiful in 3-D. Either way you see Arthur you will enjoy it. The script is wonderful, and this time I noticed all sorts of things that I'd missed the first time. Next time I go, I'm going to notice Michael Palin's voice, cause I missed it again this time.
Do yourself a favor and see Arthur Christmas. it's way better than you think it will be. Really.]