This is a follow-up to my very first post from last year and to review most of the films I saw this past summer. Also, coincidentally, this is post No. 1,000. Sweet.
Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs - This is the third film in the "Ice Age" franchise and another film thrown into the 3-D mix. I enjoyed the first film and can honestly say the I don't remember much of the second (I just remember it not being that great). This film, while taking the plot straight from "Journey to the Center of the Earth" with some "Moby Dick," is actually entertaining at some points (I chalk all the real humor to the new character Buck, voiced by Simon Pegg). Also noticed there was a lot more Scrat (the squirrel creature who loves nuts) in this film than in the others. Guess the filmmakers realized he was a popular character.
District 9 - This is one good film. It is unique and amazingly made for its low budget. Even the documentary style of the film isn't too bad because the perspective switches from that to narrative cinema several times throughout the movie (especially during the awesome gunfight at the climax). If you are any kind of sci fi fan this is a must see.
(500) Days of Summer - This is not a romantic comedy. This is not a chick flick. It is a story about life, love and relationships. The film jumps around a lot over the course of the 500 days, but first time director Marc Webb is able to make the story understandable to the audience. Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel are just great actors and have very good chemistry in this film. If you're tired of those giant Hollywood blockbuster films and just want to relax, this is the perfect movie for you. There is even a song and dance number (I loved it even though I am not a fan of musicals).
Inglourious Basterds - Quentin Tarantino is a fantastic director and his newest film fits in perfect with all his others. Why? Because of the amazing dialogue. Though "Death Proof" is not high on my list of Tarantino films (besides the car chase scene it was all dialogue), "Basterds" has a good enough blend between dialogue and action to satisfy the audience. Not to mention that almost all the dialogue is used to create tension in many of the scenes so you can't look away. A story well told in Nazi occupied France.
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen - I did not like the first "Transformers" film because I thought it could have been a lot better than it was. I did not have much hope for this next film and that is a good thing because now I am just pissed off at Hollywood. I'm sorry, but special effects do not make a movie. Yes, the effects in the film are phenomenal. But the plot, acting and pretty much everything else was like nails on a chalkboard. Right now I can still not even explain what happened in the film. Again, this movie could have been so great (giant freaking robots, c'mon), but everything just fell through. Doesn't matter though because it has made tones of money and I know a third film will be coming out. If they can get rid of the stupid humor in the next one, so many people will like it (and parents will actually want to bring their kids to see it too).
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - Holy cow, they are getting older. Things are finally coming to a head in the Harry Potter franchise as the next two films will deliver the final book of the series. As for this sixth installment, it mixes the ever-present darkness with lots of light humor about relationships. A fine addition to the franchise but it is merely a stepping stone to the grand finale that will be the "Deathly Hollows."
G.I Joe: The Rise of Cobra - I was expecting this film to be along the line of "Transformers" and suck, but it actually turned out to be an entertaining popcorn flick. The acting and plot (though still not the best) were way better in "G.I. Joe" than "Transformers" (but the latter film wins with tons better special effects). The constant action will keep you entertained instead of having a few action scenes spread out with a bunch of stupidity. Yo' Joe!
Angels and Demons - I thought this book was better than "The Da Vinci Code" and I came up with the same result with the films. While I believe the movie would have been better if it had stuck more to the book (the villain was entirely changed), it still had a better story and more action than "Da Vinci Code."
Gamer - A film with an interesting concept but failed to really deliver. The movie is more like a really geeky teenager's dream of the future. The concept seemed really cool and I was hoping to see how the interactions worked between the people being controlled and the people doing the controlling, but sadly that was left out to capitalize on the crazy action and sexuality. Too bad since the film is pretty short and the payoff at the end isn't that great.