So my co-blogger posed this question to me last week as she was writing her post and I felt compelled to give my own assessment of the summer. Overall all, I thought Summer 09’ was pretty good, granted this year’s superheroes weren’t Batman or Iron Man sized (see X-Men Origins: Wolverine, or maybe you shouldn’t see it), but there was still a lot of good fare out there with Hangover propping up June and Basterds and D9 closing out summer with a bang. And while the first three movies are the same as hers, our reasons for liking them somewhat differ.
Here in no particular order are my five favorite movies from this summer:
I’ll come right out and say it . . . I’m a Trek guy. Have been since TNG. Wasn’t crazy about TOS, but I have seen all the movies as well. Two, three years ago when I heard that they were doing a reboot and that JJ was at the helm, I was pretty darn excited and I almost knew that this movie was going to be good. Then it came out in May and I actually saw it–I definitely had mixed feelings the first time. However after the second viewing I really warmed up to it. Reboots are never easy but I thought the way they decided to acknowledge the previous version but in the same token go in a new direction was brilliantly done.
(500) Days of Summer
This was my surprise “I really enjoyed it” movie of the summer. I had no real expectations going into this movie other than it was a possible “chick flick.” However, the situations that Joseph Gordon Levitt’s character was put though are some things that all guys can relate to at some point and made the movie extremely entertaining. From analyzing the minute details of dating and interacting, to being diluted into seeing what you want to see, to being just frustrated with women–it’s all there. I’ll never listen to Hall & Oates the same way again.
Ok, so not only am I a Trek guy, I’m a sci-fi guy as well. When I first saw the teaser trailer for D9 I knew it was going to be an interesting movie. A documentary style movie about aliens landing and our reaction to them. One of the things I loved about the movie was the setting–it was somewhere other than LA or NYC. I think this helped the film in many ways, one because it was a setting most of us aren’t familiar with both in real life and through movies and two, because of the obvious comparison with apartheid. First time director Neill Blomkamp, with a little help from Peter Jackson, really gave us a gem.
While there’s a possibility that a lot of the movie references in this movie will go over your head, that doesn’t stop you from really enjoying Basterds. The way the story is laid out probably makes this Tarantino’s most conventional movie yet. From the opening “act” where we meet the main antagonist of the movie, we know that this guy is good at what he does–and we should hate him for it. The movie’s title is somewhat misleading as the “Basterds” aren’t really the focus of the movie, but definitely still worth watching and exceeded my expectations.
The Hurt Locker
I love war films, especially modern day ones, and when I heard that a new Iraqi war film was coming out, one that actually focused on the conflict on the ground, needless to say I was excited. The Hurt Locker is the modern day war movie we’ve been waiting for. It’s not a commentary on ‘should we or shouldn’t we be there.’ It puts you in the trenches, so to speak, with a bomb squad unit as they go about their daily routine and let’s you see what they go through. Jeremy Reiner’s performance is nothing short of amazing and I’m going to be bold enough to say that if this movie doesn’t get AT LEAST two oscar nominations (combo between picture, actor, director, and screenplay) then Hollywood has officially failed!