Montag, 4. Juli 2011

A month of movies: June.

It's been a slow movies month for me, if only because of the fact that for a large part of it I was extremely busy and for another one and a half weeks on vacation. I did finally catch up on everybody else though and saw two recent DVD releases that have made it into the IMDB Top 250 - and while I enjoyed both (if for entirely different reasons and to a different degree), I cannot quite agree with their rank. But go ahead and read it all:

The short -
Go and see: /
Well worth watching: How To Train Your Dragon (DVD).
Also deserving a chance: The Social Network (DVD), 9 Leben & Joschka Und Herr Fischer.

The long -
The rules: Only movies seen at cinemas during the month referred to in the post title and recent DVD releases (which will be noted as such) are eligible. This excludes films seen on video or television. Also excluded are movies from festivals, which may or may not get treated in separate posts. Premieres and previews, however, are fine. The reviews are listed in alphabetical order. Finally, ratings are given on IMDB's 1-10 scale. These rules, likely to be broken at the discretion of yours truly, solely exist because no rules are fun, and we cannot have that here, now can we?

9 Leben. The struggles of youths who left home to live on the street. These are gripping stories, often shocking, sometimes funny, about their decision that the street is better than their home. Having a simple blank background, putting more emphasis on the people speaking about their lives was an excellent choice on the director's behalf. Having the band of two of them play lengthy interludes was not, however. 7/10

How To Train Your Dragon (DVD release). In depth, it's no "Wall-E"; and in art design, no "The Secret of Kells", but it's fun and energetic and features rather amazing animations. That and the humour make it one of the more entertaining animated movies of recent years. 8/10

Joschka Und Herr Fischer. Joschka Fischer lectures everyone about the German political history of the last sixty years. There are few new insights here, and they only come in the second half of the documentary, which deals with his and the Green Party's rise to and time wielding power, but those are what make this one worth seeing. The elaborate run down of history can only be interesting to those completely new to it. The only thing I actively disliked though is that parts of it look like a vehicle to let Fischer present himself like a dignified elder statesman. 7/10

The Social Network (DVD release). Flashy and loud, which is not necessarily how I like my movies (exceptions notwithstanding), but then again very much suited to the matter at hand. It was fascinating to see how an arguably dry subject could be transformed this much. What I have problems with is the overly artificial construction of dialogue - no one speaks like that - and the blatant sexism - most women in this movie are portrayed as dumb or ignorant and as little else than targets for the men to prey on. 7/10

Previous months of movies: January, February, March, April, May.

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