A fireman entrusted with burning the nation's books has a crisis of conscience.
Directed by Ramin Bahrani
Starring Michael B. Jordan and Michael Shanon
Initial Review by Jon Kissel
HBO’s original programming, consisting of series, movies, and miniseries, have a clear laggard in that trio. The movies don’t have anywhere near the cultural persistence that either series or miniseries have, despite HBO’s considerable marketing and development prowess. The standard format for feature-length films are adaptations of real events, and the strictures of sticking to history don’t let the actors do much more than impressions of well-known figures while the directing is utilitarian A-to-B event tracking. These are sometimes great, like the you-are-there history of Path to War or Conspiracy of the early-aughts, but have lately been Al Pacino in a series of bizarre wigs or make-up as he trolls for Emmy awards by playing disgraced public figures. Literary adaptations are more comfortable in the miniseries category (Empire Falls, Olive Kitteridge), and after reading the Wikipedia plot description of Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, that may have been the better route. Ramin Bahrani attempts to cram a lot of plot and character motivation into 100 minutes, and ends up exchanging believable arcs and actions for ostentatious camera movement and bludgeoning political satire. If this is the art that survives the Second Civil War, we’re in trouble.
I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore is a terrible title. I always hated calling How I Met Your Mother HIMYM but then I typed it two three times so from here on I’ll refer to this movie as IDFAHITWA. Shit, that sucked too - “this movie” - Perfect!
This movie is about Ruth, a nursing assistant played by Melanie Lynskey who embarks on a vigilante mission with neighbor Tony (Elijah Wood) to find who broke into her home and stole her computer and grandma’s silverware. Ruth is introduced as a fairly depressing character without much going for her, crappy house, bad neighborhood, lonely, weird neighbors, etc. When she is robbed and police do nothing it is a breaking point for her to seek justice. Ruth describes her brand of justice as not wanting people to be assholes anymore. That’s a big ask but a noble one. Between plaster casting a footprint in the garden and using her find my laptop app she is able to eventually track down the perpetrators with the help of Tony who joined primarily it seemed because he was into the chance to bust out his weaponry towards the aim of moral justice.
I’m not a fan of the review style that breaks down scene by scene and retells the story so I’ll end by summarizing- a string of events featuring multiple laugh worthy gags and a few oh shit moments and one very predictable gun malfunction lead this movie to a satisfying conclusion.
Brilliantly weird, A-.
Watching this movie in 2016 for the first time is a bit hard because since this movie came out, at least 40 more movies have dropped with the exact same premise and even some of the exact same scenes. None of them were particularly good so I wasn’t expecting much from this movie except good acting and I believe that’s what I got.
The movie starts out showing the Gallagher family as they get ready to go to a party and that’s basically all we get of them being a family. There are a few quick 2-3 minute scenes throughout that show them together, but none of it really does anything. It doesn’t really show them as a happy family rather than a group of people that are together.
Glenn Close is the highlight of the movie. She takes a slightly boring character (Crazed woman) and makes her intriguing, but all that Glenn does for the character doesn’t fix the movie. Alex has no real backstory or reason given as to why she went so crazy. What was it about this one night stand that made her snap? Was this built-up over years of bad relationships? There’s just nothing more given to us than she had a miscarriage and her father died of a heart attack.
Overall this movie is not great. I’m sure it was good and people loved it back when it came out in the 80’s, but watching it now it’s pretty mediocre with some really good acting. I’m giving the acting an A-, but the movie at most can get a C+.
I’ll give it a C.
Also I think the alternate ending was much better: https://youtu.be/GY_NQK7rJrY
Side Effects was a mystery thriller that took viewers on a topsy - turvy, psychological path. The direction, writing, and acting was something the MMC has yet to appreciate in that kind of genre and it was something the group needed to view.
“You have quite the imagination.” But sometimes, you can have a little too much.
First off, I praise the accomplishments of the crew of Escape from Tomorrow for using “guerilla” tactics to secretly film a motion picture at the Walt Disney parks. Reading on Wikipedia, cast members kept scripts on their phones and used simple equipment that tourists would record home movies on. I’m also glad a dark movie like this was filmed in black and white. Disney is quite the colorful place and it definitely would’ve had less of an effect.
JUST SOME IDIOTS GIVING SURPRISINGLY AVERAGE MOVIE REVIEWS.