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Monday Movies: Labor Day Edition

My movie viewing this week was limited to the following:

  • Little Murders — after a bad run of 70s movies, finally one I enjoyed. It felt like an American remake of The Discrete Charm of the Bourgeoisie or one of the “crazy” Godard films — or more recently, the films of Roy Andersson.

In other news, I’m heading back to Kalamazoo soon and wondering whether I should go without cable TV (and an actual TV) during the quarter. I’m definitely leaving the TV here for the weekends, as The Girlfriend’s computer has a blown speaker and therefore sucks for watching movies. I was thinking about getting a new TV there, which we could then switch out when I move back. Having the TV was definitely a major component in my sanity last year, but it seems like an indulgence, especially since I don’t know what I’ll be doing for money after my contract is up (and should therefore be saving). I can probably make do with just the computer, right?


September 6, 2010 - Posted by | Monday Movies


  1. I saw Romanza Criminale (King of Crime) and liked it a lot:

    Comment by Earnest O'Nest | September 6, 2010

  2. I just got back from watching Scott Pilgrim. What a tedious, stupid and shrill piece of crap.

    Comment by jms | September 6, 2010

  3. what a coincidence, i watched The Discrete Charm of the Bourgeoisie last week and was thinking how funny and kinda like dated and what if somebody would make its remake set nowadays, would the dreams be very different etc
    sorry, AK, for the last weeks fit, i try to be less annoying
    what i like about fb is that i can correct myself however without spoiling people’s day

    Comment by read | September 6, 2010

  4. Given that the TV post has moved blogs and taken on an exclusive “Mad Men” feel to it, I’ll highjack this post to discuss “Bored to Death.” When the show was new, I said that its title was true to life: watching the show made me nearly die of boredom. This time around we’ve persevered past the third episode and, last night, we make it to the sixth, which was truly funny–it’s level of comedy approached “Flight of the Conchords.” (Well, maybe not quite: “Flight of the Conchords” is rewatchable; I’m not sure “Bored to Death” is.) Anyway, with this episode, the guy from “Cheers” became significantly less annoying–very few references to his strange, old man sex life–as he descended into the world of the more or less average person. (Although I feel as though the characters could only afford their lifestyles if they had trust funds, but I guess that isn’t uncommon among many living in Manhattan.) Anyway, when the guy from “Cheers” said, “What’s a Subaru?” and then later “So this is the Subaru?” we had struck comedy gold. The episode previous to that wasn’t so bad, in retrospect, the one with the Russians. Russians are almost always funny on TV. All they do is drink, dance and fight–they are like the Irish on TV, but with better accents.

    More topical, we watched the first few minutes of “Robocop” last night, a movie neither of us had ever seen. The “set-up” to the movie was actually quite good, even if the production and execution was not. Should it ever be “OnDemand” or if “NetFlix” ever actually arrives in Canada, we’ll be sure to watch the entire series.

    Comment by Craig | September 6, 2010

  5. I watched the Hamlet with the divine Asta Nielsen as Hamlet as a girl, and Hamlet Goes Business, which had some great gags, but was otherwise kind of confused, I thought. And I saw, but did not hear, Amarcord (it was projected with subtitles but without sound as the band Citta di Vitti, named for Monica Vitti, played Nino Rota tunes).

    Comment by ben | September 6, 2010

  6. The comparison of Little Murders, which I have seen, to Discreet Charm, which I have not but wish to, intrigues me; can you, Adam, perhaps expand on the nature of the resemblance?

    Comment by ben | September 6, 2010

  7. I downloaded and watched a few films of the “Jesse Stone” series. Well, one of them, the one where the young cop comes out of coma, felt a lot like Twin Peaks.

    Comment by abb1 | September 7, 2010

  8. Ben, It has a similar surreal feel, plus it links together violence and family life.

    We watched Falling Down yesterday, which I’ve seen before and The Girlfriend hasn’t. I think all Tea Partiers should be required to watch it.

    Comment by Adam Kotsko | September 7, 2010

  9. I almost had a D-FENS moment two weeks ago.

    Comment by Hill | September 7, 2010

  10. I found myself watching Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves because I wondered why the summary judgement now seems to be that it was awful, but I remembered liking it and being in a movie theater on its opening night in a theater full of people who seemed to like it enough.

    It turns out I must have been taken in by the opening night buzz movies often have. Its summary judgement is that it was awful because it was. Just terrible. Even offensive at parts.

    Like when Alan Rickman’s character was trying to rape Maid Marian as he tried to force her to marry him and they decided to add all these little jokes to the process. It’s like they said, “Well, having a rape scene in a movie with the tone we’ve established is a little harsh so maybe we can make it funny.”

    Comment by Matt in Toledo | September 7, 2010

  11. Ratatouille, which I liked a lot and seemed like a much more liberal approach to Brad Bird’s themes of barriers to expressing talent. I still get in fights with people who love The Incredibles without reservation.

    I finished Code Inconnu, which was a boring movie wearing the clothes of an interesting movie. Movies in which very different people intersect each others’ actions across borders, not always aware of their effects on one another, run the risk of being histrionic, e.g. Babel. This movie should have taken that risk here or there.

    Christmas in July, a Preston Sturges morsel (68 minutes!) containing a fascinating centerpiece in which a man is accused by various parties of cheating to win a prize of $25,000. The fascinating thing is that the blame pattern goes upwards, against certain tendencies in American life: the neighborhood cop defends him to the owner of the department store where he spent the money, and then the department store owner defends him to the capitalist whom he supposedly bilked.

    Comment by k-sky | September 7, 2010

  12. IIRC — Robin Hood Prince of Thieves was the one where the Saxons rise up when they find out that the Norman conquerers are some kind of devil-worshiping death cult, right? I admit I have to kind of admire a movie that’s willing to go way out on a limb like that.

    Comment by jms | September 7, 2010

  13. And The Damned United, which wasn’t at all the sports movie about scrappy underdogs I expected it to be, but a scattered bromance between an extremely insecure wanker and his best friend.

    Comment by k-sky | September 7, 2010

  14. No, it’s the one where Kevin Costner rescues Morgan Freeman in some dirty, disgusting Muslim jail and they share good and bad times alike together–all the while helping Costner bone that lady who is now on “Law & Order: Criminal Intent.” There are, of course, a number of hilarious cross-cultural misunderstandings, usually based upon Morgan Freeman’s strange beliefs, gadgets, and his oddly shaped sword.

    Comment by Craig | September 7, 2010

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