Friday, October 01, 2010

Two Movies from 2007

A couple of really good movies:

Juno, of course, needs no introduction.  I saw it on DVD when it first came out, and again on television last week.  I didn’t review it at the time; this has been done better elsewhere, for both its positive and negative qualities.

Still, what a delightful film.  Happy and sad.  Funny and poignant.  Just a joy to watch, whatever you might think of the social commentary.

In contrast, you may not have heard of the movie August Rush.  I hadn’t until this summer, when a friend mentioned it as he played the soundtrack during a road trip.  It concerns an 11-year-old musical prodigy separated from his parents at birth and attempting to reconnect with them through music as they simultaneously try to reconnect with each other.

The first third or so of the movie contains any number of gaping implausibilities necessary to frame the story, but eventually you will stop caring about that in favor of simply wallowing in its unremitting tear-jerkiness.  Maybe I’m a sucker for this shit, but I recommend watching it with a fresh box of tissues, not in front of other guys.


Justin said...

Phi, perhaps I am too jaded, but when I saw August Rush, I was overwhelmed with its anti-White sentiments. It pounds on just about every Magical Negro and Evil White Man trope there is.

Φ said...

Well, at least Terrence Howard wasn't playing Jesus!

I guess casting a black social worker (plausible) as the foil to a Dickensian white hustler (improbable) could seem anti-white, but I didn't get that impression at the time. On reflection, it occurs to me that when Hollywood wants religious people to be "good", it usually makes them black. Like, why couldn't the protagonist have wandered into Redeemer PCA?

Justin said...

Even the little parts and small lessons were tainted. The mean kid at his school, wthe Mean White Bully. The good kid, his street mentor who eventually sacrifices himself fighting to save August, the Cool Selfless Black Boy.

Let's not forget his dad, representing the Drunk Violent Irish Clan.

The Religious and Musical Negros who inhabited that pseud-cathedral, along with that perfect Angelic Little Black Girl, that was WAY over the top.

Oh yeah, and his mom's dad, the Evil Controlling White Father who set the whole movie in motion by forcing her to give up her child.

The ONLY good Whites were the faculty at Juliard. Hmmm, what group are they???

Φ said...

Well, when you stack it all up like that, then yeah, I see your point. But how much of it is a bone thrown to minorities in a movie whose meta-theme is the hereditary genius of Europe?