Friday, June 22, 2012

Rent these - or not?

Smile is an English language foreign film set in Morocco. A group of multi-national college students set out on a camping trip in the 'haunted' Atlas mountains. Among them is a journalism student whose camera is stolen; luckily she's able to replace it with an instant camera she buys at a creepy antique shop. 

Why a serious photographer would be content to replace an expensive professional camera with a cheap instant version is never explained. 

Alas, there's something funky about said camera, and one by one the people it photographs meet gruesome deaths. 

Is it a good film? No. Is it awful? No. It's pretty much stuck in 'neutral'. 

I grade it a C-

Rango is a cowboy-lizard cartoon featuring the voice of Johnny Depp. It was predictable but entertaining. The best part? The evil snake. *That* was some wicked animation. 

Grade: B

The Wild and Wonderful Whites of West Virginia is a documentary that follows a West Virginia family of misfits and criminals for a year. I've heard a lot of great things about it, but I wasn't impressed. Heck, I was a little bored. Heavy drinking recreational drug users with a flair for occasional violence and a criminal record? Big deal.  I've known plenty of 'em myself. 

Grade: C

I was never a fan of Arnie's Conan, so I was expecting less than nothing from the new Conan The Barbarian

Well, shiver me timbers, I was wrong. Color me impressed. Oh, it's a popcorn flick of no value to society. But it's a fun waste of 'time better spent helping your fellow man'. 

One thing I still don't understand about this genre. You say there's a magic mask that brings evil into the world? Yikes. Oh, but the bad guy was killed eons ago and the mask was shattered. Whew. Wait, you saved the pieces of the mask? Why? You scattered them around the world? Ooookkkkaaay. I guess that sort of makes sense. Sorta. Kinda. Hold on, there's a prophesy saying someday the pieces will be reunited and evil will reign supreme? Ah, well in that case DESTROY THE BLEEPING PIECES. 

Still, a fun romp. 

Grade: B+

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