This week in Daily Proposition, we’ve suggested a few things that involved staying in, such as reading, watching the teev and … watching the teev some more. But folks, it’s Friday. Time to mix things up a little. So take off the moccs, put on some nice slacks and head to your local cinema for a movie.
Crikey cinema buff Luke Buckmaster makes the what-to-see/what-not-to-see decision pretty clear cut.
In one corner, there’s In the Loop, a film about a snarky alternate universe that’s “stuffed to the gills with words”. It’s about politics, sure, but more than anything it’s a platform for vicious diatribes that “flow like streams of venom from the mouths of twitchy people who incessantly argue, bicker, bitch and berate each other”.
It’s wickedly funny and acted with furious teeth-grinding pizzazz, as if lines of methamphetamine the size of hot dogs were mandatory in between takes. Few films are anything like it. One critic astutely dubbed it The Office meets Dr Strangelove; throw in a twist of Hollowmen and a plethora of profanities and that’s about as good a comparison as you’re gonna get.
Director Rob Marshall’s follow-up to his leg-kicking, Oscar-snaring adaptation of Broadway behemoth Chicago is Nine, an Italian soft p-rn musical with virtually no Italians in it. When Fergie belts out one of the more rousing numbers, Be Italian, roaring like a plump toothless tiger determined to prove she’s still capable of swallowing a man whole, Marshall and co would have done well to listen to her advice. Nine is about as Italian as a Pizza Hut meal deal.
Side note: It does sadden me as an unrepentant musical geek that Nine is, in Luke’s words, “as bland as plain tofu, the proverbial star fish in bed”, but no doubt I will end up seeing it anyway, because it is in the musical geek’s code that musicals must be supported, no matter how egregious. Someone in Hollywood made a musical! Flock to it people. They like us, they really like us …
It’s why I watched the film version of RENT recently, originally supposed to be directed by Spike Lee (cool) who, after creative differences, was replaced by… Chris “Home Alone and the not-so-good versions of Harry Potter” Columbus. Leading man Roger, think Bon Jovi-lite, does have a so-bad-it’s-great Mexican desert rock-out moment at the end though. Only for the die-hard.
For those wanting a cringe-free musical experience, Avenue Q — Sesame Street on steroids — is on in Adelaide right now til February 7. After that, it’s heading to Brisbane.