Monday, 8 December 2008

7 average movies everyone else thinks are great

Ah, another over-rated movie list. They are like the unstoppable bug thing from Halo. They keep multiplying with no way to stop them. This is by no means all of the films I deem to be blown out of proportion, rather a selection. SPOILERS

1) Halloween
Its amazing how many defenders this film still has, because anyone watching it now can only see it as tame. Yes, the film pretty much defined the slasher movie template, but it is far from the pinnacle of the genre. It has dated horribly and only seems cheap and ineffective to me, its numerous knock-offs did it much, much better.

2) Jules et Jim
I love a pretentious self-superior french film as much as the next guy, but this mother crosses the line. A seemingly never-ending story of the most un-involving love triangle interspersed with sixth-form level philosophical points. No-one in the world will find this a rewarding experience, seeing as its neither moving, involving and definitely not enjoyable. Despite what that awesome picture might suggest.

3) Mystic River
I'd equate this film with Crash. And while that movie has received the mother of all backlashes, this one got away clean. Both are heavy-handed drama's that feel more like accomplished lifetime movies, with their generalising and simplistic take on things. These flaws are ignored because of a few good performances, and Mystic River has a couple of those but its not enough to make up for its many faults. If mystic river were in high school it would be a C student who thinks he's the smartest guy in the room.

4) The silence of the lambs
Anthony Hopkins Hannibal Lecter is a pretty cool bad guy, but somehow that bought this film 8 Oscar nominations and I think 4 wins. Giant WTF. This is a procedural serial killer movie in its purest form. Take away the A listers and you've got a Charles Bronson movie. And while proper execution can make up for that, se7en is the only masterpiece this genre produced.

5) Finding Nemo
Pixar movies are great, but this and the newer WALL-E are most definitely not amongst the best. Yet they get nothing but ebullient praise from all corners of the earth, presumably for their mawkish unrequited love plots and self-conscious cuteness. For the more cynical of mind, majorly uncool. Give my Toy story, the incredibles or Ratatouille any day.

6) Fargo
I'm a huge Coen fan, but it boggles the mind that this was the one chosen by the critical concensus as their best movie, because Ladykillers and Intolerable cruelty aside its pretty much the worst. Its not bad, just kind of average really. And seeing as The Big Lebowski, Miller's Crossing, Blood Simple and No Country for old men are so much better, the mind is boggled.

7) The seven samurai
Motherfucking three hour and forty minute action movie. That alone is inexcusable, but the rambling and inability to get to the point and a horribly OTT performance from Toshiro Mifune make it not as good as you expect. There are some good things, such as the use of the tragic greatest swordsman in Japan, or the James Coburn character for those who know this film only through The magnificent seven. Skimped on in the remake, that character certainly makes a mark here.

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