Saturday, August 30, 2008

Independence Day, Special Edition

I just got done watching the Special Edition of Independence Day. This is truly a sci-fi classic. I consider it one of those movies that doesn't break a whole lot of new ground, story-wise, but which perfectly executes a specific genre or story arc.

I think it really holds up over time. But then, it doesn't hurt that Bill Pullman, Will Smith, and Jeff Goldblum are all totally hot in it.

I enjoyed a lot of the new material. Having seen the movie several times, I recognized most of it. Just for example, there was a sub-plot with Russell Casse (Randy Quaid) and his children, a sequence with Jasmine (Viveca Fox) making her way to El Toro AFB, and the global coordination of the final airstrike.

Best of all, they at least attempted to explain how David Levinson (Goldblum) could hack into alien computers.

Friday, August 29, 2008

David Duchovny enters rehab.

Here is the text of an Associated Press article found on Yahoo! News.

LOS ANGELES - David Duchovny has entered a rehabilitation facility for sex addiction. In a statement released Thursday by his lawyer, Stanton Stein, the actor said he did so voluntarily, adding: "I ask for respect and privacy for my wife and children as we deal with this situation as a family."
The actor's publicist, Flo Grace, confirmed the rehab report, which first appeared on
She and Stein both declined to elaborate further.
Duchovny, 48, plays a sex-obsessed character on the Showtime series "Californication," which earned Emmy nominations for casting and cinematography. The show's second season begins Sept. 28. Showtime had no comment Thursday.
The actor appeared in the film "The X Files: I Want to Believe" earlier this summer. He has been married to actress Tea Leoni since 1997. They have two children.

My first thought was not about the irony of Hank Moody's behavior on Californication, but about Fox Mulder's infamous porn collection.

God bless you, David, and good luck. This one is a bitch, I have friends who can attest to that personally.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

RDJ takes on TDK

Okay, this is NOT going to become a Robert Downey Jr fanblog.


HOWEVER...he recently made some pretty bold statements over at Moviehole about The Dark Knight. I first saw this reported at Yahoo! Here's an excerpt in case the link eventually goes away:

"My whole thing is that that I saw 'The Dark Knight'. I feel like I'm dumb because I feel like I don't get how many things that are so smart. It's like a Ferrari engine of storytelling and script writing and I'm like, 'That's not my idea of what I want to see in a movie.' I loved 'The Prestige' but didn't understand 'The Dark Knight'. Didn't get it, still can't tell you what happened in the movie, what happened to the character and in the end they need him to be a bad guy. I'm like, 'I get it. This is so high brow and so f--king smart, I clearly need a college education to understand this movie.' You know what? F-ck DC comics. That's all I have to say and that's where I'm really coming from."

I can't say that I agree with him about The Dark Knight. I thought it was extremely well-done—specifically the story, the performances and the special effects.

At the same time, I can actually see Downey's point. In being so ambitious, TDK stumbles in several places. The script tries to do too much. The intricate twists and subplots and the fast pace threaten to overwhelm the human significance of the things that happen. Chaos is overcome by human decency, but it leaves such misery in its wake that it still ends up seeming more powerful.

I honestly enjoyed Iron Man more, at least in the conventional sense. Like Batman Begins, it tells a classic origin story, straight out of Joseph Campbell. That story was executed perfectly, and given a heartbreaking (pun intended) contemporary angle. It also had a humor and a warmth that was missing from The Dark Knight.

One could argue that Iron Man was the less pretentious film, but then, I found The Prestige more pretentious than TDK by several miles. If you believe that all stories hav “messages” whether they mean to or not, then both of these movies may have messages that we need right now. In the case of Iron Man, it's “It's never too late to change”. Iron Man 2 is likely to follow the TDK mold in that it will veer into darker territory, but that is more likely to concern Tony Stark's lingering personal demons.

Unfortunately, in making these statements, Downey leaves himself open to charges of sour grapes. He certainly has a vested interest in Marvel Comics at this point. The fact is, though, this summer was going to belong the Jo—I mean to The Dark Knight no matter what. Headlining the second biggest event movie is an accomplishment in itself, as is bookending the main event...and he has accomplished both.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Pop Culture Update

* Robert Downey Jr. has been cast as the lead in an upcoming Sherlock Holmes movie. Despite finding widespread skepticism on the internet about the involvement of Guy Ritchie, this long-time fangirl of both Downey and Sir Aurthur Conan Doyle is ovejoyed.

* Speaking of Ritchie...his spouse Madonna drew fire this weeked, for concert imagery that seemed to compare John McCain to Hitler and Barack Obama to Mahatma Ghandi. It is difficult to know how exactly this came across without having been there, and I suppose that I understand the point she was trying to make. At the same time, I find both comparisons to be tasteless and excessive.

* Johnny Depp, Jude Law and Collin Farrell have donated their earnings from their new movie, "The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus", to Matilda Ledger, the daughter of their late co-star, Heath Ledger.