Monday, May 19, 2008

Movie Weekend

Now don't let me get your hopes up, no I did not get to go to the movie theater (although I should be able to see the new Indiana Jones movie next Saturday).

I did, however, watch three movies with my wife on Saturday - as for the first time in a long while, there was nothing truly scheduled to do for the weekend.

I, of course, allowed her to select two of the movies (I had originally intended to watch four films, with each of us picking two, but we watched Lost instead).

The first movie she selected was No Reservations. A movie starring Catherine-Zeta Jones, Aaron Eckhart and Abigail Breslin.

To me, a lot of these romantic comedies are pretty predictable, and this movie was no exception. The concept is usually always the same - someone can't find love, then someone comes into their life who at first they can't stand, but end up falling in love with that person. In some cases other plots are thrown into the mix, such is the case with No Reservations.

Zeta-Jones plays Kate, a very successful chef at a restaurant in NYC. She has substituted love, family and friends to become a world-renowned chef, and so far has succeeded in her goal. A wrench, however, is thrown into her life's plan when her sister and niece come to visit - but before arriving, are involved in a car accident, which the sister doesn't survive.

Of course, Kate is forced to play the role of mother to her departed sister's daughter, Zoe (played very well by Breslin). Not truly knowing the first thing about parenting, Kate fails miserably at trying to reach her niece.

On the work front, however, things have begun to unravel as well, as when Kate returns from her short hiatus, the restaurant has hired another chef to work with her - a sous-chef named Nick (Eckhart). Being the perfectionist that Kate is, having the fun, singing Nick in her kitchen is working her last nerve, and although she begins to fall for him - asks him to leave when she learns that he has been offered her job.

The ending, I will leave a mystery to those wishing to see it, but again it's pretty easy to pick up on. I would give the film a 3/5 ranking, due to the fact that it kept me somewhat interested throughout, and that I feel Breslin is an amazing young actress (lookout Dakota Fanning).

The second movie was a movie that I was able to choose (and Erika decided to take a nap), so I chose The Bourne Ultimatum.

This movie stars Matt Damn, Joan Allen, Julia Stiles, David Strathairn and Albert Finney.

I wanted to see this movie last year in the theater, but again life comes at you, so I was unable to. It is, presumably, the final installment of the Bourne Trilogy (although there is a chance for another).

This installment continues to follow Bourne (Damon) as he tries to track down what happened to him. In the previous films, we learn that Bourne is an experiment to create flawless military personnel, and Bourne was the first prototype.

Something, possibly the experiment itself, has created Bourne to have amnesia, so therefore has no recollection of who he actually is, or how exactly he became who he is now.

Slowly, he has been putting pieces together despite the CIA trying desperately to not only keep Bourne a secret, but to stop him entirely. Stiles plays Nickey Parsons, a former CIA member who in the past had been trying to stop Bourne, this time lends him a hand in trying to track down where he has come from. Pam Landy (Allen) continues her pursuit of Bourne, but after learning the plans of current leader Noah Vosen (Strathairn), she too begins to help Bourne - and expose the secrets the CIA have been hiding.

Bourne tracks down the leader of the Blackbriar project (or what created him), Dr. Albert Hirsch (Finney). Hirsch explains who Bourne was, but that it was him that volunteered for the project, he was not forced. During his escape, Vosen gets a shot off at Bourne as he falls 10-stories into the river below. This is where the franchise leaves it up to the imagination - is this the final installment, or will we see another.

I give this movie a 5/5. It was very well done, kept me interested throughout - mostly because I had become interested in Bourne through the first two films, and wanted to see where it was going - and the action was pretty intense.

The final movie that Erika and I watched on Saturday was Mad Money.

This movie stars Katie Holmes, Queen Latifah, Diane Keaton, Stephen Root and Ted Danson.

Out of the three we watched it was my least favorite, although I am glad I watched it once. It had a nice premise, but for some reason it didn't work as well for me.

Bridget (Keaton) is a high-class type of woman, who suddenly learns she can't afford to live in her house anymore and has to cut back on her expenses due to her husband, Don (Danson), losing his job.

She is forced to get a job at a local bank as a custodian, where she immediately becomes interested in what is going on there. The bank collects old, worn out money and destroys it, so that new money can replace it in the economy.

On a trip out shopping, Bridget gets the idea of how to rob the bank of some of this money. After all, it's going to be destroyed anyway, why can't she have it? Or, that was her thinking. So, she recruits Nina (Latifah), who works in the shredding department, and also lives in a rough neighborhood with her children - so she wants the money to get out of the neighborhood and get her kids into a better school. Also recruited is Jackie (Holmes), who lives in a trailer with her husband, and at work delivers the bins of cash to Nina to be destroyed.

Everything was working wonderfully for the group. They would install their own lock on the bin (done by Bridget), then after getting the number of the bin Jackie would take a bunch of money out and throw it in the dumpster (out of camera view), then deliver it to Nina. Nina's part was to remove the lock, and replace it with the original.

But, they got a little greedy. Despite having enough money for Bridget to keep her house, Nina to get out of hers and pay for her kids tuition - they still wanted more. And this is how, they end up getting caught.

The ending is pretty interesting, but I will not spoil it. I will give this movie a 2/5. It was good, but again something seemed to be missing. I am not a huge Holmes fan (especially from Batman Begins), but I thought she delivered in this role. And Danson, again proves to be a talented actor. I can't understand why he doesn't get more roles in movies.

So there was my movie weekend. Still have lots more to view of course - but I should have a review of Indiana Jones next Monday.

Other things that happened this weekend: We finally had our second softball practice, and it's a good thing too as our first game is Tuesday. There was a huge fire on Chapman Street (the street perpendicular to us) on Saturday night, which Erika and I were in the group of people watching on the street corner. My sister and her fiance got a Wii, so we played Mario Kart with them last night for a little bit online.

I guess that is basically the weekend. Not too busy, but we had some fun and got to relax a little.

1 comment:

  1. Dude... out of three movies, you get one pick... and your wife decides to take a nap during your one pick, while you had to watch No Reservations and Mad Money? Totally unfair :P .

    Plus, Bourne Ultimatum was cool. I loved the cell phone talk-through chase.