Monday, July 9, 2007

DVD: My weekend in movies

The best thing about my weekend is movies. Indeed, it's usually the best thing about my week. Once again you might call me sad, but this is my vice. I think it's a far better one too than say alcohol, drugs, smoking or anything naughty like that. My vice is also my passion, and I wouldn't change it, not for anyone or anything.

People are often astounded when they find out I watch 2 or 3 movies a week at the cinema, then as many as 10 per week on DVD or VHS. It's just what I do.

This weekend I watched one of my all time favourites, Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), and a new favourite, The Frighteners (1996).

The romance! The action! The witty one liners! Raiders of the Lost Ark has it all! When this movie came out, I was 2 years old. (yah, yah do the math). I must have seen it not on VHS, but when it came on television for the first time. Back then, it would have meant a few years in between. I know that when I watched the movie I ran around humming the theme song and used a piece of rope as a whip, my Mommy told me so. She had to protect my little sister using her body as a shield. Good times, good times.

Karen Allen, who plays love interest Marion in the movie, has all but disappeared from cinema but I think everyone is hoping for a cameo in Indy 4. According to her IMDB page, it isn't so. However, this could be due to privacy issues. She was great in Raiders and it really is a shame we haven't been able to see her in more leading roles. Harrison is charismatic and handsome in his role as Indiana Jones and basically set in stone the lovable rogue with the fedora and whip. The image is burned into my memory forever.

I don't know how any movie involving Stephen Spielberg AND George Lucas (old Lucas, not 2007 crazy Lucas) could have sucked. Raiders will go down in history as one of the best adventure films ever. Followed by two very adequate sequels, Raiders of the Lost Ark remains in my top 10 movies of all time. Even seeing it after all these years, and even with a couple of dodgy special effects, I still love it just as much as I did when I first laid eyes on the man who would become cinema legend.

I'm not going to say too much about The Frighteners, as I have clearly written too much already. It's directed by the now ultra-famous Peter Jackson and stars a not yet visibly sick Michael J. Fox. The movie is a dark-ish comedy/horror about a ghost-hunter who isn't what he seems. The film follows a mystery and the title character's quest to rediscover himself. It's cheesy, over the top and REALLY enjoyable. It's one of those guilty pleasures, like the Cadbury Hazelnut that I'm eating right now, but the Frighteners delivers entertainment.

I was surprised at the excellent CGI and special effects, but a tad disappointed in the use of the 'OTT token black guy'. The Frighteners was never going to be an Academy Award winner like Lord of the Rings but it's a welcome rainy day movie. I'm compelled to add it to my dvd collection, which you might not think is saying much since that includes titles like "Short Circuit 2". I say it is. Rent it and see what you think and let me know by commenting this entry. Go on, what are you waiting for?

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