animation – cinema – design

Romance

Chico & Rita

Hanging out with my friend Tina the other day (no you drugged out hipsters, this one) and we decided to double date at the TCA early in the week.
Spent the day shooting video for UNM and then walked from my office over to the theatre.

My girl was running late and showed up hungry. The ticket office only took cash (fail). So we snuck by our double date and drove down the hill to the grocery store to get our fried chicken fix for the month. Then back up the hill and into the theatre, where we sat down in the middle of a car chase.

This movie could be total crap until that chase and I would still tell you to go see it. See it big, let the colors and the music wash over you and scrub the jaded hipsterness off your soul until you weep tears of joy that other humans are as in love with life as you are and thank God (or whatever) that you’re blessed enough to appreciate the blessings heaped upon you.

I left totally elated and called my homie Oscar immediatly because the blend of 2d and 3d in this movie is pretty much exactry (link to the external world) as he called it at the dawn of our animation infancy. The producing of this movie used the same model that Book of Kells (link) took, which is pretty amazing. By cutting up the story into location sections, and handing those sections out to small animation houses across the globe, they are able to keep their production on schedule, and cover any drastic stylistic changes that may arise from using so many different animators. Because of the location change happens within the context of the story, the minds eye happily throws away visual inconsistensies about style, thinking they are part of the overall narrative of the piece. WHich, with proper planning, they are.

The star crossed love story is one of the hardest to pull off, and this narrative does an okay job of mixing together the lives of two artists who follow their bliss, letting the music and art do the heavy lifting when the script fails. I’ve yet to meet the girl who fights for her man in one scene, wins, then says nothing the next as he’s drunk and being carried home by her rival. I’m sure they’re out there; I just haven’t met them. This script also does a good job of minimalizing the communication methods of the day, and glamorizing the “reflection” period that artists today are going through. We all have access to cell phones with our email on them now, but apparently “letters” and “regular phone” just couldn’t get the job done back in the day. Which is why civilization advanced… I’m sure. And while I’m a big fan of reflection and the celebration of the artists that got us to the mindset we find ourselves in on the day to day, the glorification of that recognition seems to minimalize it in my mind, and it comes out as (upon reflection) a social theme; some kind of grasping last hope that we’ve done something with our lives. I’m a champion of hope, so i’m down, but it stinks of unreality.

All in all, great movie. Go see it. Share it with someone. Kiss them on the way home.

This world we live in, these lives we lead, after all is said and done; are more beautiful than we ever realize. And this film brought that out in me just by viewing it.

****1/2

Coming To America  -DVD-

So I sit down at my sisters house to catch up on reviews when she puts on “Coming to America”
This freaking movie is Eddie Murphy at his very best and the reason Arsenio Hall deserved to have his own TV show. They rip off everything from every good movie, introduce the world to Samuel L. Jackson, and even have James Earl Jones give a Vader line flippantly. The film holds up well over time and offers a tongue in cheek look at american society, as well as black society in america (i suppose, though it should be noted I grew up white in northern New Mexico) and they ape (HA!) every part of what it is to be black in the united states. What’s sad is this is still a pretty good look at american society in new york, also at the sweaters that made Cosby famous. So good it’s got to be Soul Glow.

****-

EVER AFTER

DVD
brothers grim ->wtf? how much grimm shit hit the shelves this year? (1998)  who’s making that money…
This is apparently my girls favorite movie, and after much f*cking about, I finally watched it.  Not bad.

davinci is awesome; with his boat boots and his “you’re a moron” speeches…”  Really fun side character.  There are some weak plot points reguarding the villians of the film, with a specific mis-use of the male badguy; a serious miss in that you could have boosted french morale in order to have the heroine save herself.  Instead we are left wondering why he doesn’t just chase her out of the castle.  Overall the costumes were pretty and the camera work was obscenely gorgeous.  The main problem is that Hotty McHottergirl isn’t nearly as dopey as the script calls for.  This isn’t really a problem.

I wasn’t amazed, and I wasn’t appalled; which led me to believe that I will never really know what the girls I’m dating like at all.
**1/2–

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