Time for some movie revues.
We finally got around to seeing It’s Complicated. I say, “finally got around to” because the reviews weren’t bad, just not very good, and I must learn not to give such credence to our local reviewer. But we’d seen enough previews of it in the theatre as well as on television that a nude Alec Baldwin didn’t do much for either of us. Thus our reluctance. I’m glad we finally went, though, because it was two hours well spent with popcorn and Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin. Meryl Streep is one of those actresses who just doesn’t seem to give a damn about the passage of time. She’s willing to show us all her warts and wrinkles and times around the block and still manages to come across as sexy and attractive despite the nose and that stuff I just mentioned. And Alec Baldwin was fine as the off-again on-again lover lusting after his old wife. This must also have been the first time I’ve ever appreciated Steve Martin. Way too often in the past he relied on that really stupid guise that so turned me off. But here he stuck to the straight dramatic role of the other party pursuing Streep. Good for him. Good for It’s Complicated.
After nearly three weeks of exclusive showing at only one theatre, Harkins had the good sense to move Crazy Heart to its other venues. If ever there was a shoe-in for best actor, Jeff Bridges is it. I thought Clooney had a lock on it for Up in the Air, but Bridges picked his locker. He literally became Bad Blake, stinking of automobile sweat, bottled urine, what looked like about five packs of cigarettes a day, and booze, booze, booze with the vomit that goes with it. This was a really simple story, so much like Tender Mercies with Robert Duvall it could have been its twin brother. The media is touting Maggie Gyllenhaal for best supporting actress, but I don’t think so. Hers is a sort of tagalong performance riding on the greasy locks of Bad Blake. Not that she’s not good, mind you. But if Bridges’ performance were just so-so, so too would hers have been. Whew! I’m not sure that last makes any sense.
And here’s another disagreement with our reviewer. Mel Gibson’s Edge of Darkeness opened yesterday to a luke-warm review. We went to it expecting another kind of bang-bang revenge flick like the Die Hard series with Bruce Willis. You know, lots of implausible blows from fists and steel bars and whatever else comes to the hand of the bad guys, blows that have little or no effect on the physical well being of the hero. The action sequences in Darkness were much more realistic. Gibson, as the aging Boston cop, was tough in the fight scenes, but also wily. Despite a few holes in the logic, this was a very satisfying action film, and Mel Gibson is back on track with his audiences.