Thursday, June 9, 2011


I have seen two movies in the theater in the last 2 weeks-- that's a new record, I think!  Here are my thoughts on them:

Pirates of the Caribbean 4 (something about "stranger tides")

I went into this movie with very low expectations.  Let me go back a little and explain myself.  I loved the first Pirates movie, it was fun, swashbuckling, Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom goodness.  It also made me crave going to Disneyland.

I really loved the second film, which I saw 3 times in the theater-- also unprecedented.  It was such fun to watch and funny and the special effects were amazing, and the music was breath-taking and the story was even good!

I went to the third film VERY excited to see it, with way-too-high expectations.  I was severely disappointed.  It had some good things, but I thought the whole Calypso storyline was stupid, and I DESPISED the ending... stupid Flying Dutchman... anyway, I didn't like it very much.  I only saw it the one time, until a few weeks ago when we had a Pirates marathon in advance of seeing the newest installment in the film series.

Going in, I thought, "Well, I'll give it a look, hopefully it won't feel like a waste of my money..."  but I was pleasantly surprised.  I really enjoyed Penelope Cruz as Blackbeard's daughter.  I loved the Ian McShane as Blackbeard, he was excellent-- perfectly cast.  I liked Barbossa's storyline, his affiliation with the British Navy and where that went.  The mermaids were fascinating-- vampirish beauties with magical tears.  I did miss the old crew of the Black Pearl.  The only one who returned (besides Jack Sparrow, obviously) was his first mate, Gibbs.  All in all, a good, stand-alone movie.  Lots of fun!

Today I went to see "Thor" with my sisters.
 It was also very, very good.  I am not a comic book fan, and I don't even pretend this is the best movie out there, but it was a lot of fun to watch and, I think, VERY well directed.  For one thing, when the film flips from Earth to Asgard, it is perfect.  I wasn't left feeling like I wanted more of one or the other storyline, nor did I feel like the scenes were too short.  It was very well cast as well, I haven't really enjoyed Natalie Portman since her dull, boring performance in the Star Wars movies, but she was cute, funny, honest and likeable as Thor's mortal love interest, Jane.  The script was tight, the acting believable and the direction (by Kenneth Branagh) was clean and moved the story along quickly.  I've always liked Branagh.

My one complaint about this movie (and I know, DC Comic fans probably have more than one) was that Thor's change from an arrogant, loud, war-seeking brute to a peaceful, loving, giving, selfless man was a little too fast.  That being said, however, if they had taken time to have his character development move slowly, the film would have been too long and the action scenes too far apart.  It's fine as it is, for what it is supposed to be: an action-super-hero movie with some seriously blue, blue eyes...  Probably digitally enhanced... My brother in law was teasing us about 3 married women going to see "Thor" together, but we really didn't go to look at Chris Helmsworth.  I don't really know that I find him all that attractive, but he was great as Thor.

It took me a while to wrap my head around the whole DC Comic character of Thor, because I had heard some small amount of Norse mythology in my youth, and I couldn't quite reconcile in my mind a God becoming a super hero.  But it worked.  It worked very well. For me.  Like I said, I'm not really a comic book reader, so I didn't have a lot of background on this story, so I enjoyed the film a lot!


spidey-fiend said...

Very disappointing Stephanie. Thor is a Marvel Comics character. Check with Adam before writing comics stuff. Also go see captain America. Also marvel and also good stuff.

Steph said...

Ha ha, sorry, brother. I stand corrected. :)