Sunday, November 18, 2012


Why can't Jennifer Aniston find a decent movie to star in? Not that Management was indecent, or even that bad, but it was just . . . okay. Which is the assessment I would give every other Jennifer Aniston movie I've seen. Some have been sweet, some have been funny, some have been entertaining--most have been a mix of all three--but there's not an Instant Classic or even a New Favorite among them. Well, Office Space is a contender. But I argue that it's the script of that movie that is the genius of its soul, and Joanna the Waitress could have been played by any number of cute twenty-something actresses.

Anyway, Management is not Office Space. But it is somewhat sweet and somewhat funny and, for what it is (a cautionary tale against feeding a stray puppy that you don't really want to keep), it's a relatively worthwhile way of helping to pass the time while folding laundry or washing dishes.

By the way, is it just me, or does Steve Zahn look weirdly like Michael J Fox in this picture?

Monday, November 12, 2012

Julie & Julia

I wasn't overly excited about watching this movie. I vaguely remember hearing it was boring or dull or slow or something along those lines. There's just something about women finding and following their passion that sounds like it belongs in the same category as an "extraordinary true story" or a "heartwarming experience" or . . . or . . . I don't know, some other sappy cliché about inspiration that would be used to describe The Blind Side.

So I was surprised to find that I actually enjoyed this movie. And even more surprised to feel I could not stop watching it. I was sure there was something wrong with me. Because it actually was inspiring to watch Julie and Julia find and follow their passions, and under normal circumstances I don't do inspiring.

Speaking of inspiring, how could this movie not make me want to blog again? And really (I swear!) this had nothing to do with harboring an absurd hope that my blogs will ever turn into anything more than a trivial pursuit for me. Instead, it was all because I was reminded of how much I enjoy blogging purely for the sake of blogging alone.

An observation: Meryl Streep is so affected in this movie. It would have been really annoying if her portrayal wasn't so perfect an impersonation of the real Julia Child.

And something I learned: Did you know that if you don't dry meat, it won't brown properly? Now I know why I've been rinsing my chicken and patting it dry all these years.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

The Slums of Beverly Hills

This is one of those weird little comedies that's more depressing than funny. It doesn't veer off into drama territory, fortunately, but it's definitely not one of those feel-good movies. And I'm kind of surprised they didn't just call it "Breasts," as that body part seems to be the major theme. (Though I must warn you, if you're now planning to watch this movie based on that statement, you'll probably be disappointed. I didn't say it should have been called "All Breasts All The Time.")

And I just realized that the reason I didn't see Alan Alda anywhere in this movie is that he and Alan Arkin are actually two different people.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


Can't remember when I first started watching this one (it has to have been months ago), but I just now picked up the last 15 minutes of it. I also can't remember what I thought of the first 81 minutes, but evidently they weren't enthralling enough to keep me going until the end. So, all I can think to say about this movie now is that it's strange to see Vince Vaughn in a time before he was puffy and unattractive. I almost didn't recognize him.

Strangely, though, I was halfway tempted to watch the movie again just to see the swing dancing scene (which I couldn't remember at all, but it was mentioned during the last 15 minutes of the movie). I always did like those GAP ads. I wish I could dance like that! But hey, YouTube to the rescue. Now I don't have to watch the movie again.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

License to Drive

Man, this was a stupid movie. Maybe if I'd seen it when it first came out (I was fourteen!) I would have loved it. But now that I'm old and crotchety, I guess I'm well past the age where I might have appreciated this drivel. It's certainly nowhere near Clueless caliber.

Dull plot and lackluster script aside, not even The Coreys were enough to rescue it for me--not least because they weren't anywhere near as cute as I remember. Although I suppose it shouldn't bother me a bit that I no longer find teenage boys attractive.

The best parts about this movie: Corey Haim's old, pregnant mom (who, by the way, I recognized from The Princess Bride; I wish she'd had the same line in this movie: "I'm not a witch, I'm your wife!") who reminded me of me, and the fact that now I can remove License to Drive from my netflix queue. One down, 290 to go . . .

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


According to netflix: "Natalie is high school royalty, but her status crumbles when she falls for--and soon befriends--new guy Keith, who seems to be hiding something." So sue me if I was surprised and disappointed to find that Keith's secret wasn't more sinister, though I suppose I should have realized this as the movie was labeled an indie drama rather than a psychological thriller. At least this wasn't a Nicholas Sparks Shameless Tearjerker like A Walk To Remember, even if (as it turns out) this is the same story with the roles reversed. I may never forgive my friend Kristy for tricking me into going to the movie theater to see that one. Funny thing, though: I think that same friend Kristy looks a whole lot like Natalie in this movie.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Middle of Nowhere

I'm knocking movies out of my netflix queue one by one. I think it's possible that I've finally reached the point where I am watching movies more often than I'm adding to my list of movies to watch. Obvs this is not because I'm watching so many movies; it's just that it seems (though I'm sure this isn't possible) that all of the great (and good, and even merely mediocre) movies are either in my queue already, or I've previously watched them.

So. This is the story of a somewhat unlikely summer friendship between college hopeful Grace and poor little rich boy Dorian who has fallen on hard times. They meet through their soul-killing jobs working for a local water park, and bond through their scheme to rake in the money by selling pot.

Consider Middle of Nowhere another mediocre movie. It's Adventureland without the comedic timing of Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig . . . it's Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist without the lovely Kat Dennings . . . it's Star Wars without Han Solo. (OK, right. This movie is nothing like Star Wars. But if it were, it would be missing that essential ingredient.)

Funny, I seem to remember I really liked Anton Yelchin in Charlie Bartlett. But here he was just sort of meh.