Monday, May 21, 2007

Shrek the Third... and The Illusionist

Work your magic, boy!This past weekend I was able to fit two movies in... "The Illusionist" on DVD Saturday night, and "Shrek the Third" in the theater on Sunday afternoon. Talk about two completely different experiences! Besides the fact that I watched "The Illusionist" in the privacy of my own home, the most obvious difference between that movie and the third installment of the beloved ogre was that "The Illusionist" is NOT a kid's movie. I don't mean that it had violence or sex or bad language, I just mean that it was an extremely intelligent and complicated movie that leaves you sorting through everything that happened long after it is over. And unlike "Shrek the Third," there were no jokes revolving around bodily functions. Furthermore, despite the fact that Justin Timberlake's latest lady love (Jessica Biel) is in "The Illusionist" (whereas Justin himself voices a character in "Shrek the Third"), all of the acting was great and heavy-weights Ed Norton (one of my favorite actors) and Paul Giamatti rocked the house as always. I highly, highly recommend "The Illusionist." And if you never saw Ed Norton's performance in "Primal Fear" that made him one of my faves, then stop what you are doing right now and go rent it. I challenge you to not get the chills after seeing it!

We gotta milk this thing for all it's worth!Unfortunately, I cannot pass the same judgment on "Shrek the Third." While it was by no means bad, the clever wit and inside jokes that the previous two films have been known for were scarce this time around. I felt like the writers went on auto-pilot for this one... creating a simple story that was predictable and not bothering to fill it out with all of the crafty nuances I had come to expect. However, that doesn't seem to be fazing film-goers, as it broke all sorts of records in its opening weekend. As I went to see it on a Sunday afternoon, I was literally surrounded by little kids who did not understand the concept of keeping quiet in a theater, nor did their parents. We constantly heard requests for more candy, more popcorn, or explanations of what was happening, and my poor friend MB suffered through frequent kicking of her seat, as well. Having said all of that, it was kind of funny to hear the silly laughter of the youngest patrons who always seemed to have slightly delayed reactions to some of the most obvious jokes. All in all, while I was disappointed that it wasn't as good as the other two Shrek movies, it was probably what I should have expected.

Next up on the slate for Memorial Day weekend... Pirates of the Caribbean - At World's End!

1 comment:

d said...

Hey! Glad to see you are writing your blog again!! I just thought I'd check (after WEEKS of seeing the same entry!) and was pleasantly surprised!

I'm glad you saw The Illusionist. I kept meaning to tell you to watching it. I remember asking a while ago if you were going to see it b/c you love Ed, but you claimed you do not like period films. Anyway, I rented it a few months ago and loved it. Ok, that's all, nothing too insightful here. :)