Responding to comments | The Moviegoer

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Responding to comments

Posted By on Thu, Oct 12, 2006 at 6:11 PM

Oliver Stone writes,

Again, another sad comment about Hollywood. No. 1 "The Departed" is out, but most of this list is STILL TO COME. There are 10 weeks left in the year. What did they do for the first 42 weeks? I know the answer, but the answer isn't what I want: they wasted our time. Forty-two weeks of mostly waste. Then, we'll cram in 15-plus movies you "must" see in the remaining 10 weeks. I know it's not your fault, Moviegoer, it's just a system that sucks. So much of what they put out in those first 42 weeks could have been flushed down the toilet.

While I agree that we all have a right to be frustrated, it's hasn't been a "wasted our time" kind of year in the way, say, 2003 was.  There have been some really good films that have screened here in Little Rock.  My list would include: Little Miss Sunshine, Quinceanera, Miami Vice, A Prairie Home Companion, The Illusionist, Hollywoodland, The Devil Wears Prada (Meryl Streep's performance at least), Half Nelson, and An Inconvenient Truth.  I have not seen either 9/11 film, but have heard great things.  I did see The Last Kiss and it didn't bother me nearly as much as others, which is to say that I didn't feel my time was wasted.  Idlewild, according to my friend David Koon, was good.  I did not see it.  I haven't laughed as hard as I did in Talledega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.  All that being said, yes, it is frustrating that all of the better (which is often equated with "Oscar-caliber") films are held until November and December.  Many are out in bigger cities, like Little Children which I'm desperate to see.  Still, look for Little Miss Sunshine, An Inconvenient Truth, and The Departed (maybe A Prairie Home Companion) to be around come Oscar time.  Ryan Gosling is Oscar-worthy-brilliant in Half Nelson, by the way.

Armchair Critic comments,

Sofia Coppola is, like, the most overrated of Hollywood's overpaid directors...and that's, like, saying a mouthful. (Have you ever heard the woman SPEAK? I thought she was doing a Valley Girl impersonation until I realized she was just, like, talking.)

I wouldn't call her that, necessarily.  I thought The Virgin Suicides and Lost in Translation were both excellent.  They were both low budget films.  I'm also giving her a little space because surely she too realized what a bad decision casting her in The Godfather Part III really was.  I had a chance to see a screening of Marie Antionette but I missed it because of technology (my blackberry went dead and I got the message too late).  Two critics I respect, David Edelstein of NY Magazine and A.O. Scott of the NY Times have given it favorable reviews.

Anonymous responds,

One good movie does not a career make. Coppola needs a stronger showing on her next film outing--and a tighter studio budget.

Let's wait and see.  Her next project hasn't been announced yet.   And I do think you have to give her a little more credit for The Virgin Suicides.  Still, I thought Marie Antionette would bomb, but it appears the bad reviews from the early foreign festivals were a result of the Euros being pissed because there's no guillotine scene.  Ok, there's probably more history there.  Still . . .

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