Continuing movies seen in February:

25. (332.) Bad Day at Black Rock (1955)
I'm not going to lie: I chose to watch this movie because it is homaged by a Knight Rider episode. I never quite got a handle on the character Spencer Tracy was playing, but I enjoyed the film anyway.

26. (333.) Hop (2011)
Yee-ouch. Imagine if the executives at Universal became determined to make a multi-million dollar Easter movie they could merchandise to kids, and they just didn't care if they didn't have a script worth shooting. Yeah. Sorry, Russell Brand, but if you want to go over big in America, you'll have to do better than this dreck.

27. (334.) Another Earth (2011)
I watched the first half of this "sci-fi" movie back in, what, October? I finished it in February, and it is emphatically not a sci-fi movie, but a figurative allegory for an unanswerable metaphysical question. Think of Donnie Darko without the evil bunny or Patrick Swayze, and you'll begin to realize just how much having a Patrick Swayze in your movie can add to the slow but necessary bits of exposition.

28. (335.) My Life as a Dog (1985)
Christmas Story meets Wes Anderson. Films tend to mythologize the coming-of-age stories of young boys as simultaneously tragic and magical. I really don't have a good handle on my own formative years, but I don't remember an over-abundance of either tragedy or magic. There is just no way that shit like this happens in real life.

29. (336.) Welcome to Mooseport (2004)
I did not know this as I was watching it, but this was the last movie made by Gene Hackman, who has officially retired from acting. (Oh, Gene, you're still young at heart. Come back to us!) It's a simple, unencumbered comedy that I found very enjoyable despite my dislike for Ray Romano.

30. (337.) Imagine That (2009)
I didn't know this movie existed before I watched it. If I told you that it is exactly the kind of uninspired by-the-numbers movie that Eddie Murphy makes these days, I think you'll know what I'm talking about. At least it was better than A Thousand Words (watched last month).

31. (338.) The Deer Hunter (1978)
This has been on my "watch this if you get a chance" list since I first learned of its existence in high school. For years I wondered how a movie with De Niro, STreep, and Walken, a movie that won 5 Academy Awards, could consistently fail to cross my path. Now I know that there were 3 reasons it is so elusive: A) It is 3+ hours long, far too long for broadcast television. B) There are ample graphic scenes of games of Russian roulette that are, frankly, strongly unpalatable. C) This is probably as dark a movie Hollywood could ever make, about America's loss of innocence in the Vietnam era as illustrated by the lives that were damaged by the experience. It's really a very good film, probably forever assigned to that mental category labeled "good films I never need to see again" alongside the like of Natural Born Killers and Birth of a Nation.

32. (339.) Hesher (2010)
Remember up above where I said "films tend to mythologize the coming-of-age stories of young boys as simultaneously tragic and magical"? Ditto here, too. Gordon-Levitt never fails to impress, this time as a heavy-metal Jesus.

That's not all! One more February movie post to come.

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To be continued...

 

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