I’m not sure if I am going to have my film reviewers membership card yanked for saying this, but The Brothers Bloom was one of the most delightful, entertaining films I have seen so far this year. That’s right, no complaints, no “but…”, just a straight out positive review of a film that works beautifully on so many levels.
I have to start by saying that I’ve seen a number of films shown in the IMAX format, but have never seen a commercial feature film in this format. Since the screen is so much bigger than a traditional movie screen, I find it a bit fatiguing to watch IMAX movies, so the idea of watching one for two hours or more is a bit daunting.
There’s something about war that inspires people’s imagination. Whether it’s the sword fight of a film like Captain Blood or the archery of Robin Hood or the sheer firepower of Battle of the Bulge, warfare has long been a favorite subject for Hollywood.
I’ve written before about the Curse of the Sequel, and when you’re doing a fourth installment of what we modern film people call a “franchise”, it’s doubly difficult to have a film that’s interesting, engaging, and consistent with the mythos of the earlier movies. It can be done: the new Star Trek movie is an example of a great addition to a huge franchise. It can also be messed up, as was the case in the lackluster X-Men Origins: Wolverine.
Since Battle of the Smithsonian is the sequel to the popular film Night at the Museum, I should start this review by saying that I really enjoyed the first film and own a copy of it. My kids really like it too and we’ve watched it at least a dozen times.
Just got back from a preview screening of the new Tom Hanks / Ron Howard movie Angels & Demons, based on the book of the same name by Dan Brown. You’ll remember Dan Brown because he wrote the extraordinary best seller The DaVinci Code.
I got an interesting question in the mail:
“I am not very familiar with your website but I came across an article you wrote about the increase in violence in cinema while doing research for a paper I have to do. I found the article very interesting and was wondering if I may ask a question to you. I am a student at the University of Notre Dame and am writing a paper dealing with violence in movies. Specifically, if violence in movies is ruining the art form of cinema. I would love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Thanks.”
This is a very interesting topic, and one that I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about.
The answer is easy, however: violence isn’t ruining cinema, it’s part of the evolution of cinema. The question instead, perhaps, is whether it’s evolving in a good direction or not.
Continue reading Are movies too violent, or is cinema just evolving?