Our trusty reviewer Regarding is busy moving across the country and meanwhile, I have watched few things that have been worthy of noting, but here are a few things I can recommend/ish that I have watched in the last two weeks.
1. Rango (2011) the Johnny Depp-voiced animated movie about a lizard sheriff, you know the one. I feel like this movie will be a classic for weird too-precocious children with fucked up sense of humor, perhaps what, say, Fletch was to people my age. Except it is supposedly a kids movie. But there is a quick but sort of elaborate joke about a mole’s prostate. The jokes and hallucinatory narrative and cultural references are for 27+, and the moral is about the corrupting force of power and the onward march of capitalism.
2. the first half of Fletch: We own two or three DVDs and this is one of them and everytime my sister comes to visit us we say “You haven’t seen Fletch?! OHMYGOD WE ARE WATCHING IT RIGH NOW!” and then she realizes she’s seen it everytime she has come to visit it, making it slightly farther before falling asleep each time. I think, now, on my, perhaps 20th viewing of the movie since it came out it’s finally starting to be less funny and Chevy Chases fame seems strange to me, though the Harold Faltermyer score really gets stuck in my head. Another revelation is how much Gang Gang Dance’s new record bootlegs the Faltermyer synth sound.
3. American: The Bill Hicks Story. I have found movies about BIll Hicks to be more watchable than actual long form stand-up concerts. This one has a lot of old footage and family and friends narrating and they use a lot of new school animated techniques to fill in the rest, reenactment style, which could be a little over the top at time, but it’s better than some faux Ken Burns slow pan of a still photo business. It’s the basic trajectory of his career and his life, his addiction, getting sober and then his death at the height of his career. If you are a fan at all, you know this already and you’ll recognize some bits from Flying Saucer Tour, etc., but it’s still enough new info that it’s worth watching.
4. The Story of Pixar (2007): I am about halfway through Anthony Lane’s too snarky story-of-Pixar in the New Yorker and was like “fuck it” and dialed this up on the Netflix instant. I am pretty sure this documentary was made or funded by Pixar. It’s very much like “They worked so hard, for two years… and gee whiz, they won an Oscar! for creating the magic! that was Toy Story!” and then some wacky animator men ride around their wacky offices on razor scooters. It’s very Nerds Make It Big. It just made me want to skip to then end and watch Finding Nemo again.