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Saturday, February 23, 2008

In Bruges (***)


"They're filming midgets!"
In Bruges is hands down the best movie I've ever paid $14 to see. $14 is what it costs to see a movie in Los Angeles at the Arclight on a Sunday night. I could hardly sit down from the ramming my ass got. Still, In Bruges was a much better movie than I expected. I expected one of those jump-cutting, incoherent Guy Richie shoot-em-ups I normally can't stand. Instead, In Bruges turned out to be an engaging tragic comedy, or comedic tragedy, depending on how you look at it, about two Irish hitmen forced to hide out in Bruges, Belgium, after a job on awry. While Colin Farrell spends the entire movie shitting all over Bruges, the movie shoots the fairy tale city of Bruges so beautifully, they should practically have travel agents meeting the audience at the door when the credits roll. In Bruges is also unexpectedly a Harry Potter supporting cast reunion with Brendan Gleeson (Mad Eye Moody), Clemence Poesey (Fleur Delaceur), and Ralph Fiennes (Voldemort) all present, all doing excellent work outside the confines of Hogwarts. Fiennes in particular has a ball doing his best impression of Ben Kingsley in Sexy Beast. He hasn't played anyone this barking mad evil since he shot Jews from his balcony in Schindler's List. Meanwhile, one of my favorite character actors Ciaran Hinds shows up and didn't surprise me in the least by dying violently. In the last few years he's been bloodily killed in Rome, Munich, and now In Bruges. I'm still wondering how he managed to not bite it in Miami Vice. Speaking of Miami Vice, Colin Farrell usually chafes against the heroic types of characters he plays in American films, but In Bruges allows him to play closer to himself: a boyish, cocky, Irish rogue, with surprisingly deep emotions when he isn't drunk on beer and cursing up a storm. Farrell was better than he's been in forever here. In Bruges has pretty much everything: a lovely European setting, dark humor, heaps of blood and violence, sexy European girls, and midgets. Drunk midgets, midgets high on drugs, midgets getting punched in the face. Actually, it was all just the one midget.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Smallville 7x10 - "Persona"

Previously on Smallville: A lot of crazy shit. 

Supergirl arrived. 
Lex cloned his dead brother and made him Editor of the Daily Planet. 
Lex's dead brother's clone started boning Lois Lane. 
Jimmy Olsen broke up with Chloe and has the hots for Supergirl. 
Lana's been spying on Lex. Brainiac returned. 
Supergirl found out her father Zor-El was a skeez who wanted to bone Clark's Kryptonian mother Lara. 
Lara and Zor-El show up at the farm. 
Zor-El bamboozled everyone and tries to take over the world. 
Clark stopped Zor-El but was trapped in the Fortress of Solitude by Jor-El for some reason. 
Supergirl has amnesia and is missing. 
And then a long break. My head is about to explode from writing all that.

And now finally a new episode last night. Featuring a Bizarro/Brainiac team-up and the first time anyone [Bizarro] referred to the BRAIN InterActive Construct as "Brainiac."

That was one of the most absurdly entertaining hours of Smallville ever. This show is so ridicuIously over the top, I'm eating this crazy shit up.

Let's count the hilarity:

1) Lana choosing Bizarro over Clark even just to fake Bizarro out get him the blue Kryptonite. The realization that Bizarro was pretty much raping her for weeks. Then Lana and Clark's touching bedroom moment with the unspoken distance between them because she really did prefer Bizarro's twisted devotion to Clark's hot/cold attention. It was missing the dialogue:

Clark: Was he better than me?
Lana: Yes!

However, the little detail I really guffawed at was that Clark wears the same striped blue pajama bottoms that Bender wears on Futurama.

2) Chloe's reactions to everything, Bizarro, Lana, Bizarro and Lana planning to move to Paris, and the real Clark trying to convince her it's really him. She's seen too many versions of Evil Clark to fall for one bullshitting her.

3) The dialogue from Clark: "Jor-El trapped me in the Fortress. He freed me to stop the phantom." So, Clark, you're not angry Jor-El trapped you in the Fortress to begin with?

4) The fact that Clark palmed the blue K before putting it in its lead case. And it didn't take away Clark's powers -- why?

5) Poor Dax-Ur. Loved it. Everything about it. So absurd. The fact that Jimmy Olsen from Christopher Reeve's movies got a promotion to Kryptonian in Superman mythology. The ridiculously enormous blue Kryptonite stone on his bracelet. The fact that he lived decades as a human incognito then all of a sudden another Kryptonian and his BRAIN InterActive Construct show up at his garage door. And that's all she wrote for Dax-Ur. I also liked the description that Dax-Ur was "one of Krypton's greatest scientists." Of course he was. So was Jor-El. And Zor-El. How many more of "Krypton's greatest scientists" are gonna show up on this show?

No, the very best thing was the demise of Grant Gabriel/Julian Luthor. Did Lex hire Joe Chill to do the honors of shooting his clone brother dead? Because that death looked really, really familiar. It's a shame neither Grant/Julian or Lionel wore a pearl necklace.

Damn it, when's Kara coming back?