Last week was a big two movie week for me, I snuck out and saw Wanted by myself, and we took Kaylin to see Wall-E, which I believe based on her constant talk about Wall-E since, is her all time favourite movie.
Wanted currently holds the title of second best comic movie (after Iron Man) of the summer, and Wall-E holds the title of best movie of the summer (and second best Pixar movie of all time) for me personally.
Wall-E is getting rave reviews all over the interwebs, and I have to give my own thumbs up to this most excellent of flicks. It may very well be a perfect movie, a great little protagonist, an awesome co-star, a thought provoking message, and a terrific ending makes for a fantastic little film which I can’t wait to own on DVD. When you look at the leaps and bounds that Pixar has made since their feature debut with 1995’s Toy Story to what they can do today it’s absolutely mind boggling. The really amazing thing is that they’ve yet to stumble. Cars wasn’t my cup of tea, but it was a good movie for what it was. I’ve only watched part of Ratatoulie, but what I saw was amazing.
Wall-E on the other hand is better even than my favourite Pixar movie, The Incredibles. From the opening short, which is absolutely hilarious, to the end credits which show what happened after the movie ended, Wall-E is top to bottom goodness.
What I really liked about it was the unique storytelling that they employed. There are very few words in the entire movie, and it isn’t until the humans are introduced in the last act that you really get dialogue, but these little robots who communicate with little other than beeps and R2D2 like sounds, still manage to get the plot across.
We took Kaylin to see Wall-E, and we were a little worried how she’d feel about it. This is her fifth movie in a theatre (The Bee Movie was her first, Alvin and the Chipmunks was her second, The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything, her third, Horton Hears A Who her fourth), and she was still awed by the “big screem”, and of course she loved munching down on the popcorn. After she told us that she was only a little scared, but she really loved Wall-E and EVE-A (which is how Wall-E pronounces Eve). Char has even become Eve, while I’m Moe, and Kaylin’s Wall-E in her little pretend world. We bought her a little Wall-E action figure which she loves to play with.
I went out and caught Wanted on Monday night by myself (leaving the house at 10:00 for the 10:15 showing, getting at the theatre at 10:10, and still getting a great seat), and it more than lived up to my expectations. Directed by Russian filmaker Timur Bekmambetov, it is based on the comic by Mark Millar and JG Jones. While the comic deals with a secret society of super villians who take over the world, the movie deals with a secret league of assassins.
The flick brings in some new parts to the mythology, like a loom which decides who needs to die to balance the scales of fate, and presents a slightly more humane look at the assasins.
In the comic the characters are pretty much without remorse, they kill senselessly, and in one particularly unsettling scene Wesley goes into a police precinct and kills all of the cops for no reason at all. Senseless violence like that is Millar’s reaction to 90’s “grim and gritty” comics, and I get that they’re establishing that the Fraternity has eliminated his moral compass (although he vomits after the act, indicating that he still has some morality left in him), but it seems a little too much.
Luckily most of that stuff has been taken out of the film.
James McAvoy is terrific as Wesley, and you pretty much believe him as an “Office Space” type drone worker. Angelina Jolie seems amused throughout the entire flick, like she’s enjoying the spectacle, but isn’t really committed to anything.
Of course Morgan Freeman is spectacular as always. The man has the kind of voice that would sound good reading the ingredients listing of a bag of sunflowers.
All in all, I’d give Wanted a hearty thumbs up, and while it’s not quite as good as Iron Man, it’s almost at the same level.
I’d really like to get out and see Hellboy, but I don’t think it will happen this week unless I again sneak out some night. It’s getting terrific ratings, and could be a little sleeper summer blockbuster.
This Friday night when Char and I see the Dark Knight, all of the other movies I’ve seen this year will be completely forgotten.