The Couch Potato Report – May 8th, 2010
This week The Couch Potato Report peels love, numbers, the tooth fairy, an imaginarium and Private RyanÖon Blu-ray.
I have a little bit of everything for you this week, and Iíll start with the French film SOMEONE I LOVED, starring the very beautiful Montreal born actress Marie-JosÈe Croze from THE BARBARIAN INVASIONS and THE DIVING BELL AND THE BUTTERFLY as a woman one man wishes he had left his wife for.
The movie begins with Pierre sharing a secret with his daughter-in-law, a secret he has kept for twenty yearsÖhis love for Mathilde, for whom he didnít dare abandon everything, as much as he wanted to. Instead, he choose to stay with his family and walk a safer and more familiar life path.
This is a story about a man who wanted to, but didnít dare.
SOMEONE I LOVED is pretty good, but I would have liked it more had it given me more answers to itís many storylines, so I donít recommend it to everyone, just people who like Foreign films.
Now, if you do like Foreign filmsÖand you donít like action moviesÖwell, then this next release ñ also from France ñ is one you should ignore.
However, if you do enjoy a movie with LOTS of action, do not miss DISTRICT 13 ñ ULTIMATUM!!
DISTRICT 13 ñ ULTIMATUM is the sequel to the great 2004 film DISTRICT 13. These very entertaining films feature Parkour, the physical discipline of training to overcome any obstacle within one’s path by adapting one’s movements to the environment.
Now I could go into the plot details for youÖbut I think the only think about this sequel that matters is how the action and fights are. Well, they are great!!!
DISTRICT 13 ñ ULTIMATUM is a fun and entertaining action film that I really enjoyed!!
France is a great country, I have almost always enjoyed my time spent there, cinematically and otherwiseÖbut we are off to Italy now, but before we goÖplease allow me to teach you a word in German.
In English, nine is a number, the one that comes after 8 and before 10.
In German, neinÖspelled N-E-I-N means no.
Now that you know that, if you asked me if you should see the musical NINE starring Academy Award winners Daniel Day-Lewis, Judi Dench, Nicole Kidman, Marion Cotillard, PenÈlope Cruz and Sophia Loren, along with Academy Award nominee Kate Hudson, and Grammy Award winner FergieÖ.I would have to say.
NINE is about a world-renowned filmmaker who is struggling to write his newest project, while looking to figure out his professional and personal relationships with his wife, his mistress, his muse, his agent, and his mother.
That is the plotÖbut this is a musical, so no matter the plot ñ for me ñ the songs have to be good.
So, does NINE have good songs, memorable songs, songs that you will be singing long after they are over?!?
Now, I love movie musicals, I love this cast, and some of the Italian locations are beautifulÖbut this movie is boring and the songs are nothing special and so in the end, NINE is for people who absolutely need to see every musical that gets released, or are huge fans of one of the stars. OtherwiseÖjust skip it!!
But, look on the bright sideÖyou now know a word in German!
Nope, NINE is nothing profoundÖand neither is THE TOOTH FAIRY, starring Dwayne ìThe Rockî Johnson, Ashley Judd, Billy Crystal, Julie Andrews and Stephen Merchant from the television series EXTRAS.
Personally, I am still not sure how Ashley, Billy, Julie and Stephen ended up in this movie about a career minor league hockey player who becomes the tooth fairyÖbut I was prepared to watch it with an open mind ñ since I love them all ñ and I donít even mind The Rock, he has made a few good films ñ but this one doesnít try hard enough to be anything special, and in the end it isnít.
Some young kids might enjoy THE TOOTH FAIRYÖmight.
And thatís the tooth.
You know what movie always makes me happy, makes me think of my youth, and how much I love that rock and roll music?
The 1979 cult classic ROCK AND ROLL HIGH SCHOOL!!
P.J. Soles from STRIPES stars as one of a group of rock-music-loving students, who ñ with the help of music legends The Ramones ñ take over their school to combat the oppressive administrators.
ROCK AND ROLL HIGH SCHOOL is one of those movies that if you loved it when it first came out, or when you first saw it, you will love it nowÖand if you have never seen it, and you like movies about rock, roll, rebellionÖor The RamonesÖthen this is a must see!!
ROCK AND ROLL HIGH SCHOOL is being released as part of a cult classics series from filmmaker Roger Corman and it ñ obviously ñ covers rock and roll. Another release in the series is the 1983 Punk Rock film SUBURBIA about kids from the suburbs who run away from home and take up a minimalist, thieving, punk music filled lifestyle in Los Angeles.
Admittedly, this Punk movie is nowhere near as good as the Rock ën Roll one, but if you loved it when you first saw it, or just love Punk Music, then it too is a must see.
Both SUBURBIA and ROCK AND ROLL HIGH SCHOOL are considered Cult ClassicsÖ films that have acquired a highly devoted fan base after not doing so well upon their original theatrical release.
I expect that this next film will also become a cult classicÖI certainly liked it.
My friend, this week THE BLU-RAY BEACON shines on THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS.
Directed by Terry Gilliam, who also gave us BRAZIL, THE FISHER KING, 12 MONKEYS and was a member of Monty Python, this is the film that Heath Ledger was working on before he died, and it is also the film that Johnny Depp, Jude Law and Colin Farrell stepped in to finish for Heath, out of respect for his work and career.
Ledger plays a member of a traveling theater company, lead by the aforementioned Doctor.
PARNASSUS ñ having made a deal with the Devil ñ takes audience members through a magical mirror to explore their imaginations. It is Heathís job to get them through that mirror.
THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS was partially filmed in and around Vancouver and it is quirky, odd, dark, admittedly it is waaaaaaaaaaay out there, and isnít for everyone.
But I found it engaging from start to finish, and I really enjoyed itÖespecially in High Definition on Blu-ray, where it looks and sounds as out there as I expect Terry Gilliam wanted it to be, and comes with some great Special Features.
If you have enjoyed Gilliamís work in the past do not miss your chance to go inside THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUSÖand I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!
We started off The Couch Potato Report this week in France, and weíll end it there as well so I Can tell you that SAVING PRIVATE RYAN is now out ñ and looking and sounding fantastic ñ on Blu-ray!!
SAVING PRIVATE RYAN is about a group of soldiers who go behind enemy lines to retrieve a paratrooper whose brothers have been killed in action remains one of the best films to never win the Academy Award for Best Picture!!
If you love war movies, and have been waiting for a reason to get a Blu-ray player, this is it!! The intense opening 27 minutes depicting the Omaha beachhead assault of June 6, 1944 is filmmaking at itís finest!!
This whole movie is fantastic, it is a true classic!! If you have never seen itÖI highly, very highly recommend itÖespecially on Blu-ray where it comes with a whole second disc full of extras!!!
SAVING PRIVATE RYAN, THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS, ROCK AND ROLL HIGH SCHOOL, THE TOOTH FAIRY, the awful musical NINE and the great action film DISTRICT 13 ñ ULTIMATUM are all available now on Blu-ray and DVD.
The pretty good Foreign film SOMEONE I LOVED and the Punk Rock postcard SUBURBIA are available now, only on DVD.
Coming up on the next Couch Potato Report
Mel Gibson is back on screen in EDGE OF DARKNESS, weíll head off to France for the very entertaining film A GIRL CUT IN TWO, catch up with DR. ZHIVAGO and THE KARATE KID, ESCAPE FROM LOS ANGELESÖand try and avoid a TIDAL WAVE!!
I’m Dan Reynish. I’ll have more on those, and some other releases, in seven days.
For now, that’s this week’s COUCH POTATO REPORT.
Enjoy the movies and I’ll see you back here again next time on The Couch!
The Couch Potato Report – May 8th, 2010