Thursday, July 06, 2006

Over the Hump

Is it me, or are we just about done for summer movies? Can you honestly tell me that you're looking forward to anything that's coming out between now and September?

Me neither.

And that's sad. Summer used to be a three-month-long Christmas, full of new, spangly, gift-wrapped movies opening every weekend like, to steal Woody Allen's words, a magnificent vagina. Now, what have we really got to look forward to from now until Labor Day?

Lady in the Water: Someone really needs to lock M. Night Shyamalan away for a long while and when we let him out, force him to direct someone else's material. I mean, really? Narf-women at the bottom of pools? C'mon. Spike Lee used to be as big headed and ego-mad...then he made Malcolm X and Clockers and Inside Man and they were good. And written by someone else.

My Super-Ex Girlfriend: Someone really needs to lock Ivan Reitman away and just never let him out. At all. Just retire on the Ghostbusters money.

Miami Vice: I'd like to give Michael Mann the benefit of the doubt, since he's never made a bad movie—really, ever...kinda remarkable, isn't it?—but there's a stink coming off this worse than the week-old coffee grinds that Colin Farrell's assistant dug out from the whiskey puke that was covering it.

Talladega Nights: I just can't do it. The flop sweat is so evident from the trailer, I've no real desire to see the film itself. That's the problem with the insular world that Will Ferrell has created for himself: He's got enough power to make movies that he thinks are drop-dead funny and never has to run the material past anyone else. Who might tell him that it just...sits there.

World Trade Center: It might be terrific, it might be an abomination, who knows? But I'm not excited to see it either way. And not even pseudo-curious like I was with United 93.

Snakes on a Plane: I think this is gonna suck. Truly and for certain. Because they're trying too hard to embrace that which can only come through accidental genius. You can't plan to make a good-bad movie, it just has to happen organically. There's no design for a film like Commando...only random magic.

And that's the summer, skipping a few l'il flicks like Clerks II (you know what you're gonna get, by and large), Little Miss Sunshine (sappy Sundance fave that isn't actually very good but will be a sleeper hit), a handful of CG-kid-flicks (Barnyard, Ant Bully, Monster House) that feel a little average, and one genuine potential surprise: The Descent, which could pop like only a real gut-smart horror flick can.

I miss the summer.


Ken Lowery said...

Give 25th Hour its due. That may well be my favorite Spike Lee movie.

That said, this summer has been really disappointing. Miami Vice may be the only one I'm looking forward to on the big screen -- I'll see anything Michael Mann does -- but I see ads for Little Man and basically I just want to murder someone.

The arthouse is faring a bit better. Who Killed the Electric Car? is vastly entertaining, and I hear good things about Strangers with Candy. But what I'm hearing about A Scannery Darkly is a little disappointing...

marc bernardin said...

I knew I forgot one Spike flick, and that was the one I was thinking of. I knew it had a number in it, but kept on blanking after Girl 6. "Champagne for my real friends and real pain for my sham friends" is a toast I'm dying to have an occasion to use.

I've missed the two docs I'm supposed to see, An Inconvenient Truth and Who Killed the Electric Car, but I've never EVER run to the theater to see a doc...just as good at home is my motto.

Ken Lowery said...

Usually I'm the same, but every Friday brings more stuff to the multiplex I have little-to-no interest in seeing while the Angelika or the Magnolia gets in stuff that, even if it doesn't succeed (like The Lost City), is at least a hell of a lot more interesting than John Tucker Must Die. Just about the only thing I'm looking forward to now is The Black Dahlia, because I'm a big James Ellroy freak... but as far as I know that's still filming.

Any idea what Spike Lee's up to next?

marc bernardin said...

Besides some documentary for HBO, Spike's a little off the radar. Which is strange for someone coming off a hit like Inside Man, not to parlay that into something else...

Then again, he is Spike, and his own drummer seems to be leading him off the beaten path.