Saturday, March 26, 2011

Confessions of a Media Junkie - Trial Run

Picked Up Last Week: Playing God, The Manchurian Candidate (remake), The Joneses, Morning Glory, Despicable Me, 17 Again, The Hangover, Beyond the Sea, The Corner

Watched: Inception, Tron Legacy, Doctor Who: Planet of the Dead, Super Troopers, Robot Chicken: Star Wars Episodes I & II, Robot Chicken Season 4, The Closer Season 5

Directors Meme Who's Who #3

Continuing my Directors thoughts, I tackle #3 on my list:

Steven Spielberg

Although my relationship with Spielberg in later years has been rocky, I still look back on those early films with wonder and pure nostalgic joy. Movies like E.T., Raiders of the Lost Ark, and Jaws are staples of most of my top ten lists, and two of them generally come up on my top 5 whenever I'm pressed to make one. He was a great storyteller who was not only proficient with doing large effects movies, but also smaller character pieces. Every time one of his movies opened, it was an event. Even if it stunk at the box-office, we'd still line up to see what was next out the gate, and movies like Hook and 1941 still hold a place for me despite being on most people's cinematic shit lists.

The latter half of Spielberg's career has, for me, been an exercise in self-indulgence, back-patting and self-congratulation. I find Minority Report and A.I. almost unwatchable, The Terminal and Catch Me If You Can alright diversions if only it wasn't for Tom Hanks and, while I have yet to see Munich, War of the Worlds is the only thing that he has made that I have cared for since Amistad, and that's with Tom Cruise in it, of all people.

I also blame most of the problems with the fourth Indy on Spielberg after reading various accounts of the making of the film.

So, there's good and there's bad, but in the end, he was a filmmaker who shaped how I viewed and responded to movies in my more impressionable years.


Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Confessions of a Media Junkie

That's the title that's milling about in my head at the moment. I still haven't done a search on it online to see if someone else is using it, so it may change, but I've been giving some consideration to writing a column, of sorts, here or on another blog (one that I'd create seperate to this one). In it I would do something similar to what Nick Hornby does with his Believer columns, "Stuff I've Been Reading", but instead of books (or exclusively books) I would cover DVDs and Blu-Rays. I'm always buying new discs and do not always watch them immediately after doing so. In fact, they often sit on my shelf for a very, very long time before I even take them out of their wrappers. I do the same with books and comics. The only things I get into right away is music.

So, that might be coming on the horizon. We'll see how things go.