Movie Watchings 2009 – May

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May, 1st

Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

William Shatner … Admiral James T. Kirk
Leonard Nimoy … Captain Spock
DeForest Kelley … Dr. McCoy
James Doohan … Scotty
Walter Koenig … Pavel Chekov
George Takei … Hikaru Sulu
Nichelle Nichols … Cmdr. Uhura
Bibi Besch … Dr. Carol Marcus
Merritt Butrick … Dr. David Marcus
Kirstie Alley … Lt. Saavik
Ricardo Montalban … Khan
Judson Earney Scott … Joachim Weiss

Synopsis: The Enterprise has become a teaching ship and Captain Spock is in command. When Admiral Kirk is on inspection and takes the ship for “a tour around the block” they get a disturbing call from Dr. Marcus. Someone is trying to get his hands on the “Genesis” project, a secret research project to create life on lifeless planets. But this Genesis device could also be used as a terrible weapon. And Kirk’s enemy is no other than the genetically enhanced Khan. He tried to kill Kirk and take his ship fifteen years ago.

My Opinion: Still a great movie. I really liked how they used the fact that space is three-dimensional, a fact that even especially Sci-Fi shows forget too often. I also liked how Khan used quotes from Moby Dick, but replaced some of the places with astronomical locations. Technically he couldn’t have this knowledge, he was in stasis and shortly after his defrosting he was banned to Zeti Alpha 5. He also couldn’t know that the Klingons have a proverb: “Revenge is a dish best served cold”. But I am willing to overlook that because Montalban was awesome when he said it. 😉
And I loved those close combat scenes, it reminded me of the old battles between sailing ships.


May, 2nd

The Final Countdown

Kirk Douglas … Capt. Matthew Yelland
Martin Sheen … Warren Lasky
Katharine Ross … Laurel Scott
James Farentino … Wing Commander Richard T. Owens / Richard Tideman
Ron O’Neal … Cmdr. Dan Thurman
Charles Durning … Sen. Samuel Chapman
Victor Mohica … Black Cloud
Soon-Tek Oh … Simura

Synopsis: Warren Lasky is a civilian consultant whose task is to evaluate the efficiency of the crew of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz. But shortly after the Nimitz has left Pearl Harbor on December 6th, 1980, the ship encounters an electromagnetic storm none of them has ever seen before. And when they are clear of the storm there are not where they are supposed to be. It’s still December 6th – but 1941, one day before the Japanese Empire started its attack on Pearl Harbor.

My Opinion: What if? I really like the questions this movie asks – whether or not one is allowed to interfere with things that already happened. And I liked the faces of the senator and the japanese pilot when Owens told them what was about to happen. 😀 And I have to say: I love aircraft carries, they are beautiful. And I love it to see planes starting from and landing on them and this movie had plenty of such footage.

May, 3rd

Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World

Russell Crowe … Capt. Jack Aubrey
Paul Bettany … Dr. Stephen Maturin, Surgeon
James D’Arcy … 1st Lt. Tom Pullings
Edward Woodall … 2nd Lt. William Mowett
Chris Larkin … Capt. Howard, Royal Marines
Max Pirkis … Blakeney, Midshipman
Billy Boyd … Barrett Bonden, Coxswain

Synopsis: During the Napoleonic Wars the english “HMS Suprise” has the orders to sink french ships or take them as a prize. But their first battle against the “Archeron” doesn’t go well. The “Archeron” has the better armour, longer guns and is still faster. But Captain “Lucky Jack” Aubrey will hunt her from Brazil to the Galápagos, no matter the cost.

My Opinion: A great movie about naval battles. Since it is a movie from this age there’s very little nostalgia in it. Men get shot, stabbed, they bleed and die. We see the carpenters who repair the ship after a fight, we see the superstition that most of the crew shares, we see how young many of the crew are. It has nothing in common with the “fencing pirates” movies of the 50s and 60s. And it is also set in a great scenery along South America’s coast and the Galápagos islands. I also like the soundtrack very much to which I am listening right now.

May, 20th

Clerks

Brian O’Halloran … Dante
Jeff Anderson … Randal
Marilyn Ghigliotti … Veronica
Lisa Spoonhauer … Caitlin
Jason Mewes … Jay
Kevin Smith … Silent Bob
Scott Mosier … Willam the Idiot Manchild

Synopsis: Dante is a convenient store clerk who isn’t supposed to work today but has to come in anyways. Together with his friend Randal who works at the neighbouring video store he philosophizes through the entire spectrum of topics while unwillingly “serving” customers. When they don’t work (which they mostly don’t) and don’t philosophize they play hockey or drive to a wake or talk to friends and girlfriends. And so the day goes by…

My Opinion: I got the idea of watching this again when I stumbled across the “ABC” dance video of Clerks II. It’s funny how a movie is able to not to have an actual story and still be very entertaining for 92 minutes. I have always loved the part where they discuss the morality of destroying a Death Star while it’s still under construction and thus having a lot of external contractors like roofers and plumbers are on board. 😉

Clerks II

Brian O’Halloran … Dante
Jeff Anderson … Randal
Jason Mewes … Jay
Kevin Smith … Silent Bob
Jennifer Schwalbach Smith … Emma
Ben Affleck … Gawking Guy
Trevor Fehrman … Elias
Rosario Dawson … Becky
Scott Mosier … Concerned Father
Kevin Weisman … Hobbit Lover
Jason Lee … Lance Dowds

Synopsis: 10 years later. The Quick Stop has burned down and Dante and Randal are “working” in a Mooby’s fast food restaurant. But not much longer. Dante will marry in a few months and he will move to Florida. Today is his last day. Randal plans to give him a going-away present in form of a “donkey show”. But apart from that there hasn’t been much change. Jay and Silent Bob are still selling drugs in front of the store and Dante still feels that he hasn’t found his purpose in life yet.

My Opinion: A nice continuation of their story and when you watch both movies together you see the parallels they put into it much more clearly. And I really liked the addition of Rosario Dawson who was great as Becky. It was also great that Silent Bob who always had the one big speech per movie didn’t know what to say this time: *theatrical pause* and then “I’ve got nothing.”. 😀

The movie posters were also hilarious:

May, 21st

Big

Tom Hanks … Josh Baskin
Elizabeth Perkins … Susan
Robert Loggia … MacMillan
John Heard … Paul
Jared Rushton … Billy
David Moscow … Young Josh

Synopsis: Josh is a 13 year old boy who loves to hang out with his best friend Billy. But he’s also starting to get interested in girls and when he’s humiliated in front of the girl he likes he just wishes to be big on a Zoltar magic machine. And his wish is granted. When he wakes up, he’s an adult who has to flee from his own house. Billy helps him to find a room and a job in New York City. Then they start to search for the Zoltar again. But life as an adult isn’t as terrible as it seemed in the beginning.

My Opinion: It’s a nice comedy flick which I enjoyed very much. Tom Hanks is a great actor who can play like an innocent child as well as his more serious roles, like The Green Mile or Saving Private Ryan. And Elizabeth Perkins was great, too. They were a great it-wasn’t-supposed-to-be couple and I especially liked the scenes where she tried to hit on him and he reacted like a 13 year old. 😉

There still one thing I can’t get out of my head. I am aware that there are more movies out there like this (e.g. 13 Going on 30 from 2004). And even though I have seen the extended edition now I still have the following image in my head: After Josh had become a kid again he goes to school again and sits in his place when a new red-headed school girl comes into class and gets seated behind him. He turns around and she smiles to him.
I don’t know from which movie I got that scene but I always associate it with Big.

Son of Rambow

Bill Milner … Will Proudfoot
Will Poulter … Lee Carter
Jessica Hynes … Mary Proudfoot
Neil Dudgeon … Joshua
Jules Sitruk … Didier Revol

Synopsis: Will Proudfoot is growing up in a very strict christian society. He isn’t even allowed to watch documentaries in school. Lee Carter is the troublemaker of the school who makes pirate copies of theatre movies. When their paths cross nothing will be the same. Together they make their own movie where Will is the son of Rambow and Lee plays Colonel Trautman. But their secret comes out and suddenly everybody wants to have a role in it.

My Opinion: It’s a funny film with funny being not in the “hilarious funny” category but more in the category of “decent humour without forgetting that it wants to tell a story”. Even though the actors were children (who did a great job) I had the feeling this movie carried a sentimental tune similar to the one in Be Kind Rewind. I also liked it that the movie had no problem with switching to a more serious tone after the accident when you don’t know what has happened to Lee.

June