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Tag Archives: Dendy

Robin Hood

Robin Hood is a bit of a marathon, and if you have a comfortable seat and a few hours to spare, it’s a vaguely worthwhile pastime. Unlike other renditions of the myth, this film draws its impetus from political machinations, and lets go of the story’s usual plebian roots. Surprisingly, this is actually a good decision, as it provides not only a novel context for the story, but also broader relevance.

Russell Crowe plays his typical alpha male with a softer side, only this time with a funny accent. This novelty is complemented by extremely modern dialogue; making the film in many ways a counterpoint to films of Shakespeare’s plays that place sixteenth century dialogue in a modern setting. This is the opposite; playing twenty-first century dialogue in a twelfth century setting, with the added irony of a post-colonial actor playing the Old Country’s chief hero. My strange little mind would like to have heard Crowe’s cultivated Australian accent placed into the context to see what other meanings could be derived, but of course that wouldn’t do so well at the box office, would it?

And the box office is what this film is made for. It is formulaic, rudimentary and appeals to the same values as every other film about underdogs made in the last couple of decades. It does absolutely nothing to distinguish itself from that genre, and sits somewhere in the middle of Ridley Scott‘s very palatable aesthetic.

Of more note than this film is the venue I saw it in. Perth’s Picadilly Cinema is a quaint venue, reminiscent of Canberra’s Electric Shadows. That’s all well and good, but this film needs chairs with a higher back and a clearer view of the screen. I came out with a sore neck and tired knees. Every city, especially Australia’s western mecca deserves a Dendy or a Limelight.

A good film, but a bit meh.

 

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Hancock

Had a great trip to Canberra’s fantastic Dendy again last night, to see Hancock. Cheap Tuesday, and it was busy with hundreds of baby boomers lining up to see Mama Mia! and I ended up in the wrong line, feeling like a complete idiot when I realised that there was no one within cooee of my age in the queue. It was a relief, however, to find that we could walk right into the appropriate cinema and not have to jockey for decent seats.

Hancock is a good piece of cinema, but very light. It’s one of those films with a great premise that kind of falls down when the story should be getting interesting. You could see that spot at the end of the exposition and the conflict where the writers—Vincent Ngo and Vince Gilligan—suddenly realised that they don’t know where they’re going with this story. It’s good, but the best bits are in the trailer. Wait for the DVD.

I’d like to give them ten points for trying, but this is one of those unfortunate films that has fallen victim to the Hollywood movie machine. The idea was fresh and new, which is more than you can say for most American films this century, but the execution just didn’t cut it.

I just wish we had opted for Ten Empty instead. Oh well.

 
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Posted by on Wednesday, 16 July 2008 in American Film, Film

 

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