Posts Tagged ‘filmtastic experiments’

Cloverfield

Saturday, February 9th, 2008

cloverfield-movie_poster.jpg
A movie with this much hype is almost destined to be awful, so in this respect, Cloverfield didn’t disappoint that much. The whole premise was kind of an interesting idea– a monster movie told in real-time filmed completely by the people experiencing the movie. However, “real time” can be a bitch, complete with the camera dropping, and multiple shoutings of “OH SHIT!” in every scene. It’s a cool idea, but do we really need to set the story up by having 1/2 hour of the characters having a party and talking about their personal lives and stuff? I wanted every single one of those annoying yuppies to get eaten by Godzilla after seeing about 5 minutes of them.

What’s most annoying about this movie is that it’s basically a love story. Underlying the motive of the main character is to save the chick he loves who is trapped in her apartment and other sappy shit. Come on, when I want to see Manhattan get destroyed by a Brooklyn-Bridge-eating reptile or alien or whatever, I don’t want to have to stop to think about how Love May Conquer All. oh yeah, also, the cast members who get injured along the way seem to make miraculous recoveries a lot. That’s the Second Most Annoying Thing in Cloverfield. When I want to see hipster 20-somethings getting mauled by giant spiders and crashing in helicopters, I don’t want to see them running away from danger at top speeds in the next scene.

What I do want is to find out what kind of camera they had, because it had a spotlight, night-vision, a battery that lasts at least 7 hours, can withstand being dropped multiple times, being in a helicopter crash, nearly being eaten by a giant monster, an explosion, and being buried in rubble. I am so buying stock in whatever company made that!

Frontier

Saturday, February 9th, 2008

FrontierI can’t resist the $1.99 DVD bin as hard as I try. I especially can’t resist a movie that is filmed entirely in a made-up language (“Bulbovian”) and *SUBTITLED IN ESPERANTO* (yes, you heard that correctly). This movie seemed like a dream come true!

This is the tale of two soldiers from Bulbovia, an imaginary Eastern Euopean country that has sent men out to civilize uncharted territory. At least I think that’s what’s going on; the font on the subtitles was really hard to read. Anyway, the soldiers tramp around through the handicapped-inaccessible forest (one dude is in a wheelchair) collecting bug samples and arguing about which species will get named after whom. After hearing the “forest speak” to him, the wheelchair-bound soldier can suddenly walk, and that’s when this film moves from “some guys with a video camera having fun in the woods” to “experimental.” (note: “Experimental” means: no-budget, but occasionally trying to be meaningful and/or artsy)

This movie doesn’t really have a plot to speak of, but it is supposedly based on a surrealist novel called Froktog by Mulnar Typsthat; at least every review of this film mentions that. However, the only thing I can find on this book are references to it through this movie. So… I did some anagrams of “Mulnar Typsthat” thinking that it sounded totally like an anagram of something and came up with “Nasal spurt myth” and “Strut Thy Napalm.” If you re-arrange “Froktog Mulnar Typsthat” altogether, you get “Prank Tart Lofty Mugshot” and “Mostly to prank truth, fag” and “try to fathom slut prank, G” Ah-HAH!

Like any good surrealist movie, things just kind of happen. I’ll just mention some of them: there’s a duel with plucked, uncooked chickens, Sasquatch and what looks like Jesus wearing a Greek theater mask frolic about in meadows, the formerly-handicapped guy (played by Wiley Wiggins, who has an awesome name) starts licking the leaves on the trees and eating the twigs, there’s a guy who wakes up with bugs crawling out of his mouth and finds an abandoned machine shop, Sasquatch and Jesus throw eggs at everyone…

In the end, I actually enjoyed this bizarre piece of filmmaking– it at least had a sense of humor about itself, and I’m totally a sucker for made-up languages.