Archive for the 'Movies' Category

No Strings Attached

For the first time since February I recently rented a movie. Two weekends ago we were staying out at my parents house, and after an afternoon party we found ourselves with no plans. We polled the party attendees to find a movie to rent, but very few were actually mentioned. I guess we haven’t missed much in the world of movies over the last six months or so.

Anyway, we all eventually decided on No Strings Attached. I’m a sucker for a good romantic comedy and this did not disappoint. The movie was full of great laughs and just enough of a love story to keep it making sense to the viewers. True there isn’t really any surprise as to how the “no strings attached” relationship was going to end. However, both Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher provide a believable story that was worth the $1 rental price from Redbox.

The Social Network

I finally watched  The Social Network over the weekend.  I’ve always been late in watching movies, but this allows me to pick and choose only the good ones (most of the time).  I’m sure most people have seen this movie by now, so I won’t comment on it too much.  Basically it is a semi-factual story of how Facebook was created, based on the book The Accidental Billionaires, which I may try to read in the near future.  Obviously the movie is good since it and it’s cast are up for so many Oscars.  There are lots of nerdy and techy lines in the movie, which I really enjoyed, but also a ton of comedic lines.  Many people question a lot of the facts in the movie, but you have to remember that the goal here is to entertain, and it definitely does.

One thing that I couldn’t stop thinking about during the movie was how Mark Zuckerberg went from a nerdy programmer in college all the way to creating one of the biggest websites in the world.  I recalled as I was graduating high school that I put together a website for my group of friends so that we could keep in touch while going separate ways for college.  This website was a much smaller version of exactly what Zuckerberg created, only not as fully functional.  If only I could have realized that there are other people out there that would want to keep in touch with their own groups of friends, I could have potentially created something big too.  Obviously it takes a lot more than just an idea, but it doesn’t hurt to dream, right?  Let’s just hope I don’t overlook my next great idea.

Babies, The Movie

Recently we have done a lot to prepare for our little bundle of joy’s arrival.  Our childbirth classes started last Tuesday and will continue for three more weeks.  We are also doing lots of painting around the house, while we still have time to do so.  This weekend we actually sat down for about eighty minutes to prepare in another way, by watching the recently released movie titled Babies.  The subject of this movie has been a hot topic among friends, and this movie came as a fun recommendation.

Babies follows four different children from their birth through about one year of age.  The four come from very different parts of the globe: Ponijao from Opuwo, Namibia; Bayarjargal from Mongolia; Mari from Toyko, Japan; and Hattie from San Fransisco.  Though the environments that these babies are brought up in are very different, they all seem to develop at very similar rates and do pretty much the exact same things.  Though Ponijao spends most of her time in the dirt, she actually appears to be the first of the children who learns to walk.  Perhaps since she is left on her own to get around, she develops the skill more quickly out of necessity.

The movie itself has no narration, no clearly discernible language, just wonderful imagery of the children spliced together.  The intent must be to let the actions of the babies tell the story, which I think the movie does pretty well.  I would have been curious to see if some dialog would have made it even more powerful.  As it is hard for me to relate to the children growing up in underdeveloped nations, I think more information on the daily lives of these people could have created even more of a storyline.  Regardless, the movie was entertaining enough and easily conveys a message that despite differences, children from different cultures are very similar.

Brothers, It’s Complicated

Saturday night was movie night for Kim and me, something we haven’t done in a while.  We stopped by the local Redbox and made a couple of quick selections.  Another couple in line behind us watched as we made our selections and seemed to have something good to say about every movie we took a look at.  After watching the movies that they essentially selected for us, I’m beginning to think that they just wanted us to get out-of-the-way.

First up was It’s Complicated, which Kim looked at first.  The guy behind us remarked that it was actually pretty funny.  After watching the movie, however, I think that he and I have a completely opposite sense of humor.  I thought the movie was terrible, and Kim pretty much agreed with me.  I don’t think it could have been more predictable and the end of the movie seemed to go on forever.  The only redeeming quality was that Steve Martin was in it, which did help the comedy aspect a tad.

Redeeming the night for us was Brothers, a story of war and love.  It isn’t really about war, but the war does play an important part in the early disappearance of the leading man.  Fortunately, his brother steps in to help out his now solo wife and their family.  Unfortunately, he and the wife nearly fall for each other, which leads to complications when the missing man eventually returns to the story.  Not only do they have this love triangle to deal with, the returned soldier is also suffering from the torture and pain he dealt with while overseas.  This proved to be a much more memorable and enjoyable movie to watch than the first choice of the night.  I would watch this one again and definitely would skip It’s Complicated.

Enter The Avatar World

Over the weekend, we finally went out and saw Avatar.  We tried to see it a couple of other times, but the IMAX 3D screening was always sold out.  So earlier last week, I bought tickets for us for the most popular Friday night screening.  Once the lights went down, the movie immediately started, without any previews.  I wasn’t aware that it was the movie and remarked after a few minutes that it was the longest preview I’d ever seen.  Once one of the characters said the word avatar, I realized that we were actually watching the movie.

The visual effects were pretty amazing, right from the start, but got even better when they started showing more of the outside world on the planet Pandora.  The creatures and landscape were so lifelike and the 3D images were superb.  I don’t think Kim was overly excited to see a sci-fi movie, but the underlying love story really helped her enjoyment.  Plus, the 3D has to appeal to nearly everyone.  I would definitely encourage anyone to see this movie, but you have to see it in 3D, and preferably at the IMAX.

Check us out in our stylish glasses!

Extreme Pizza And A Movie

Friday night, Kim and I decided to stay in, order some food, and watch a movie.  After debating between sandwiches and pizza, we decided on pizza and ended up ordering from Extreme Pizza.  We knew we wanted a couple of different pizzas, but couldn’t decide between four different styles.  We finally decided to get all four, utilizing the half and half option.  Each of our selections were tasty, but I think my favorites of the group were the California Cactus and the Drag It Through The Garden.

As for our entertainment, we watched the Hurt Locker from our cable service On Demand menu.  “Forced to play a dangerous game of cat-and-mouse in the chaos of war, an elite Army bomb squad unit must come together in a city where everyone is a potential enemy and every object could be a deadly bomb.”  The movie was full of suspense and  action.  Though it is a war movie, it’s not overly graphic or gory.  Kim and I both really enjoyed watching this movie and would definitely recommend it, if you haven’t seen it.

Warren Miller’s Dynasty

Friday night, Kim and I headed to the Paramount Theatre for the latest Warren Miller movie, Dynasty.  Kim organized a group of 25 for the movie and got great seats for us.  Not only do people generally enjoying watching the movie, it’s also a fun way to get pumped up for the season with the loud sold-out crowd.  Not to mention the free lift tickets that are included with each ticket.  However, I didn’t think this movie was as good as in years past.  I didn’t feel that the skiing was nearly as good as it’s been in the past, and there were very little snowboarding segments.  Though one of the better segments of the night featured ten-year-old Alexis Roland, who appeared to be a better snowboard than me.  Another good segment showed the disabled mono skiers at the X Games.  Most of the other segments showcased beautiful backdrops, so if nothing else it was cool to see some other resorts across the globe.

New In Town

So we had our first snow of the year on Saturday. It wasn’t anything serious, but there was a light dusting that stuck to the non-pavement areas. The thing that was scary was the temperature, which stayed in the 20s for most of the day and never made it above freezing. Kim and I never made it out of the house the entire day. We ordered enough pizza for both lunch and dinner, and caught up on all sorts of recorded TV shows. Eventually we ran out of things to watch and decided to get a movie from On Demand.

I was expecting to see some great movie choices, but we were quickly disappointed and realized that we recognized very few titles. I let Kim pick a movie, and after scrolling through the list over and over she finally found one that caught her eye called New In Town. She said that her mom had seen it and enjoyed it. I think her mom enjoyed imaging how out-of-place Kim must be during her work trips to the small towns in North Dakota, Minnesota, etc.

The premise of this movie is that an executive of a company, played by Renée Zellweger, moves from Miami to a tiny town in Minnesota to oversee a plant reconfiguration. The comedy of the city girl in the small rural town starts almost immediately when she is not prepared for the blistering cold of the north. And though the movie is very predictable, especially her  romance with the guy whom she hated at first, the jokes make it a decent movie for a snowed-in night.

Did Caesar Live Here?

I finally took a trip to the movie theaters to see The Hangover on Saturday evening. The way that everyone around me was constantly talking about it weeks ago, I figured I was the last one in the world to see it. However, the theater had a decent sized crowd. So unless these folks were watching it for the second or third time, I wasn’t alone in my lateness.

Kim and I took our bikes over towards Cherry Creek, and after a nice patio lunch at the Cherry Cricket, we decided to catch the last matinee showing for the day. Fortunately our lunch came with a few beers as well, so I felt we were in the right state of mind for a good funny movie. And The Hangover did not disappoint either of us. I won’t go into any detail of the movie, since most have already seen it, but I would recommend it just as many others before me have. I actually hope to see it again sometime in the future, which I don’t say too often.

After the movie was over, we had plenty of time left in the evening so we stopped by a redbox on the way home to rent another. With a line forming behind us, we quickly decided on I Love You, Man, hoping to continue the laughs from before. Though not as funny as our first choice in the day, there were plenty of laughs watching the main character in his search for a best man for his upcoming wedding. If you haven’t seen this one, it’s worth the dollar rental from redbox, or free rental.

The Need For Speed

Nearly two years ago, Kim and I attended our first Film on the Rocks presentation. And last night we attended another sold out movie screening, the last of this year’s season. Once I heard that they were showing Top Gun I knew that we would be there. Not only has this always been one of my favorite movies, it also happens to be one of Kim’s favorites as well. In fact it is the only movie that she can quote better than I can.

We met up with some friends in the parking lot to have a few beers before hand. Just after the sun started to set we made our way inside Red Rocks and discovered that the seating area was completely packed! There were two areas down front where part of the screen was cutoff, but we decided to sit there anyway. Eventually the staff removed some ropes that were setup for a VIP area, and we moved over to nearly a full screen view. The nice part was that the sound was deafening in our closeup seats. In fact, parts of the movie could have been louder than any music note I’ve ever heard inside the venue.

We stayed for the entire movie. I was happy doing so as I can’t recall the last time that I actually watched Top Gun all the way through. All of the flight sequences were amazing with the loud sound and excitement throughout the crowd. There were lots of cheers and even a wonderful singalong to You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’. Watching any movie at Red Rocks always turns into a great time with the large sold out crowd. I would attend more of them throughout the summer if it didn’t mean a late night. Since the movie didn’t start until well after 9pm, it was about midnight before I finally made it to bed. But it is well worth it, at least once a year.