Friday, July 06, 2007

Trailer City

* I'm about as excited for The Kingdom as I have been for a movie (non-Transformers division) in months. And raise your hand if you thought for a second during The Great White Hype that Peter Berg might turn out to be an important director.

* Jodi Foster as Batman? Sign me up. This looks about 20 times better than The Dark Knight.

* I'm not sure what I think of the Jan. 18 J.J. Abrams project, but I am kind of happy to know that if you try real hard you can keep something as big as a movie relatively secret. (One AICN talkbacker has already dubbed it The Godzilla Witch Project." I hope that sticks.)

* And I'll bet Wall E is great and everything, because it's Pixar and isn't loaded with celebrity voices (is it a coincidence that the two least good Pixar films are Bug's Life and Cars?), but the robot looks a lot--I mean a lot--like the gyroscope robot sold with the original NES.

That little robot added an extra $50 to the system's cost--which to an 11-year-old might as well have been an extra million bucks. And then Nintendo made two--2!--games for it.

I hate that robot.


Anonymous said...

I'd be a lot more excited about The Kingdom if the trailer didn't (A) Telegraph so much of the plot I feel like I've already read the book, and (B) Spend so much time asking us to admire what appears to be a shot-for-shot refilming of the RPG ambush from Clear and Present Danger that I feel like I've already seen the movie.

The Jodie Foster trailer also deflated my interest in the movie. At the midpoint, when Foster's character draws her gun on the subway mugger, she's holding a semiautomatic pistol but the trailer had to throw in a revolver-clicking sound effect. If you want a telltale "click" for everyone to hear to know that the gun is ready to go off now, give the character a revolver, not a semi. Pisses me off when Hollywood makes that mistake in a movie like this where the gunplay is supposed to be important to the story and convincing to the audience.

But "I want my dog back" might be the action-movie tagline of the year.

Anonymous said...

FINALLY someone in the media is speaking out on R.O.B.

Jim said...

"The Kingdom" looks really awful. Apart from what's already mentioned, I can't imagine why anyone would even think this story, at this moment in time, would be one worth telling.

Whiskey said...

Jim -- the story is worth telling because the fundamental conflict between Islam and the West is not going away.

If anything it is increasing.

And yes, the film paints Muslims as profoundly alien to Americans and all Westerners. Muslims of course are human, but their family formation: polygamist, tribal, cousin-marriage, arranged/forced marriages, bride prices, clan alliances and warfare might as well be from another solar system. Throw in female genital mutilation, honor killings, stoning to death of women, etc. and it's a profoundly alien cultural environment.

One that due to cheap jet travel and the internet might be parking outside a nightclub you're at, or driving into the airport terminal you are at, on fire.

The story is about which "family" or "tribe" will win: the West or Islam's?

That's about as topical as it gets.

Anonymous said...

whiskey: Jim here. For the most part, I agree with you about the clash of civilizations. However, watch the trailer. I could be wrong, but it looks like "Black Rain" in Riyadh.

There's a movie to be told, but this plot isn't the right one. "The Green Berets" is likely the better model, not fish-out-of-water cops blow Saudi stuff up real good.