Archive for June, 2009

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
28 June, 2009

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is the sequel to Transformers. Where Transformers ratcheted up the summer action to ten, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen goes to eleven.

Michael Bay brings his métier to this sequel, raising the bar in all ways. Perhaps because less time needed to be spent on backstory, Revenge of the Fallen packs quite a bit of plot. Bay really puts the characters in jeopardy. Shia La Beouf and Megan Fox reprise their roles admirably. Kevin Dunn and Julie White bring hilarity to the mix. (I love the brownies.) The special effects, including destruction of one of the Seven Wonders, are incredible. Steve Jablonsky‘s score evokes that of the first film.

If you liked Transformers, you will probably like Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen even more. I heartily recommend it as a summer action movie.

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Authenticity
6 June, 2009

Recently I have had occasion to revisit the distinction between facts, truth, and authenticity. One can be factual without being truthful: “I haven’t heard him say he’s upset.” One can be truthful without being authentic: “I haven’t heard him say he’s upset but I read in his blog that he is.” One ought to be authentic, though: “I haven’t heard him say he’s upset but I read in his blog that he is and I think he’s got a point.”

Some people, like politicians and salesmen, struggle to be factual. Most people seem to aspire to being truthful. But I think true character is in being authentic. If being factual is answering the question they asked and being truthful is answering the question they meant to ask, being authentic is answering the question they wanted to task.

Up
6 June, 2009

Unencumbered by a political agenda, Up flies much higher than Wall-E.

The story, by writer-directors Bob Peterson and Pete Docter, returns to Pixar‘s focus on human interest. The setup in Act I is done MOS and subtly enough that kids are spared the heartbreak that adults will feel. Carl, voiced by Ed Asner, is lovably irascible and Russell, voiced by Jordan Nagai, steals the film.

I highly recommend Up for anyone who enjoyed any other Pixar movie.

Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian
6 June, 2009

William Goldman said that sequels are always just about the money. Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian feels like it was just made to cash in on the success of Night at the Museum. Well, that and as an excuse to put Amy Adams in ridiculously tight pants.