Saturday, December 19, 2009

"Carriers" movie review

This movie gets 5 stars for Chris Pine alone!

Carriers is about a group of friends struggling to survive in a world stricken by a deadly plague. As they travel cross-county to seek refuge at an old, isolated beachside hotel, they have to figure what is the biggest enemy--the flu or themselves?

Carriers takes some hints from a lot of post-apocalyptic films. There's no stealing or ripping off; this movie applied the 'lessons' learned regarding battling viruses that have no cure and keeping one's loved ones safe from the rotten part of humanity.

There's a little bit of social commentary regarding the way we isolate ourselves from one another, and the more blatant avian/swine flu references, but it's negligible, and the viewer can easily get lost in Chris Pine's eyes once more...

The movie starts with Brian, his girlfriend Bobby, Brian's brother Danny, and his platonic friend Kate, cruising along, musing about the rhetoric of breaking rules when there's no one to enforce them. They come across a stranded father (Yum-tastic Christopher Meloni from Law and Order: SVU) and his infected daughter. Confrontation ensues, and they all end up traveling toward a supposed safe haven, with the infected kid and her dad in the back of the SUV behind plastic.

Bobby breaks one of Chris's rules. Rather than own up, she hides it, and tension erupts between all four when they begin to contemplate loss and love and being completely alone in a dying world.All through the first half of the movie, Kate barely speaks, barely responds. At a makeshift memorial, something visibly clicks inside her head. There's a shift in action when wall-flower, mousy Kate suddenly usurps the alpha-bitch position.

I loved the subtly of that ease into power. Granted, I hated what Kate's character became by the end of the movie, but the way her passive-aggressive tendencies came out and influenced everything that happened. She wanted to survive. It wasn't until the worst happened that she realized that. She acknowledged her losses, finally, and grabbed ahold of what was left. Control and Danny. While Danny didn't let her control him directly, sweet, quiet Kate turned into a manipulative hootch.

Chris Pine took Brian's character--the requisite brute of average intelligence that plows through everything with a bottle of beer in one hand and a smart-ass remark in the other--and did a remarkable job in this movie. Piper Perabo played Bobby, and the chemistry between the two of them felt natural and made the group dynamics so much deeper. There's a moment during the movie when you just groan, Oh no, not that!

Carriers will stick with you. It's not scary, not much of a thriller, although it's got some tense scenes and a really gross dog scene, this movie is a great example of character development, and of a character-driven story.

Chris Pine did an awesome job as Captain Kirk, and with this movie, he's gained another sturdy foothold.

"Deadline" movie review

Everyone who had a role in this movie was obviously instructed to do everything in 1/2 time. Walking, talking, moving, breathing... The director, producers, and anyone involved in the making of this film need to back AWAY from the Shamalayan project reject pile. The movie had potential. That potential died about 45 seconds in. I appreciate a slow, artsy thriller. This? This was a waste of film, time, and money. And collagen (good grief, at the height at which Britney Murphy's lips are swollen! She went straight from the doctor to the set!). Murphy picked a stinker this time. She played her character well--the nutjob stressed out by a domestic violence incident, deadlines, and hiding her lesbian tendencies, but that was about the only decent thing about this movie. SPOILER ALERT! (not that it matters!) I love movies with a good twist. Those of you who swear there's a twist, you people got it all wrong. there IS no twist. Perhaps there MIGHT be, but it's a lack of good screenwriting that destroys the twist before it has time to even curve.

Obviously, ALice is nuts. She's concocted this entire story--which is obvious when the other girl reads the script at the end. It's a word for word play of what has 'happened' to Alice--all in her head. Then, at the very end, with parts lost somewhere in another plothole, you see that Alice has been obsessing over the ambiguous lesbian friend--filming her while she sleeps and saying creepy things.

The director wants you to THINK it's a supernatural thriller, that there are ghosts, etc, but it's just a movie about a schizoid chick. It's completely botched by the lack of a good writer/s. This could have been pulled off, ala Secret Window, I said, BAD WRITING. It's not the ending that's slapped on or badly written, it's the bulk of the story that isn't fleshed out. They focused on cinematography and atmosphere, rather than in storytelling.

Could have been a good movie. Even for a Murphy flick! (dear Lord, we haven't forgotten the abomination that is "Ramen Girl", have we?)

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Book trailer for Winterborn finally ready!

Check this out...I'm pretty proud of it! It's not perfect, but it's the results of playing with Photoshop and Flash for nearly seven hours. Check it out!