March 23rd, 2009

The Day the Earth Stood Still:  I have not seen the original.   I liked the premise and the story and it was more engaging than I thought that it would be.   Reeves plays a very wooden character well that is not really sure about being human, but this is a typical Reeves performance.    This movie also plays on an interesting idea that John Cleese of all people, expands upon very well.  Without giving too much away, you have a sense about how any alien being would see the human race if it had to deal with our leaders and our military.  Time and time again, in ET, Starman and others you see our true colours only shown by who we are and how we react than by our over-protective government.  I liked this movie and was glad that I watched it.   I thought that it was touching when the boy took the alien to the meeting place nearby and made a request that only he could make.   It’s a nice moment.

Hulk:  So in re-making this movie you have a solid cast, with Norton, William Hurt and the underutilized Tim Roth.  I do really wish that Tim Roth did more work, since he plays such a good villain.   But then you try and make the Hulk the hero and a more tragic hero, without ultimately making it ‘tragic’. I think that the problem is that the viewer has no real feelings or sympathy for the green monster and that makes it fall flat. You also go through the first movie with the beginnings of the Hulk in the opening credits which now you presume that the viewer already gets and accepts.  Banner now is being mercilessly tracked down, and he’s trying to prevent himself (or his blood) from being turned into a weapon. And yet in the end he accepts the need for utilizing his alter ego as a weapon. Norton was very involved in this project but I am not sure why. The fight scenes are still like watching King Kong on a computer game.  The final clip of this was just pure cheese, and I am presuming that we are talking about the Hulk and Iron Man getting together here (God I hope not).  I would like to see Norton stick to meatier material here, and utilize his real acting talents.  They are wasted on this material.   Liv Tyler, what the heck has happened to you? – or is it just me that thinks her overbite has gone into surreal mode.

Oddly enough I have seen Jennifer Connelly is two recent viewings with Pollack and The Day the Earth Stood Still and she would have been better in reprising the Hulk role than Tyler.

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