What I Love About the Movies: TAKING A CHANCE

May 2, 2008

Last night, i picked up a copy of DICK starring Kirsten Dunst, Michelle Williams, and Dan Hedaya as Richard Nixon (hence the title). I remember when this movie was released, and I remember it getting some very good reviews. But, truth be told, at the time, I just didn’t feel like spending my hard earned money about the Nixon Watergate scandal-even if that movie was a comedy.

I don’t know why I didn’t see this movie sooner. I was smiling and nodding within the first fifteen minutes, and when I wasn’t smiling with recognition, i was almost on the floor. Just as an example, Dunst and Williams’ characters keep making cookies laced with, shall we say, a special ingredient? They call them “Hello Dollies”, and they are the hit of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. So much so, that when Leonid Brezhnev pays a visit and samples them, he leads the Russian and American delegates in a hilarious rendition of “Hello Dolly”. I also found myself smiling and laughing at the way these two handle Woodward and Bernstein. In short, DICK was a movie worth watching.

As you may have guessed, that got me thinking. How often has that happened? Well, lately, it’s been happening a LOT! Take I AM LEGEND. I am not very fond of mutant movies as a rule, but I AM LEGEND is just fantastic! Will Smith does an incredible job of carrying most of the movie alone. And it is genuinely scary without being gory. Any movie that can scare me without using blood, guts and gore definitely scores points in my book. Then there’s THE SEEKER. THE SEEKER is a fun quest adventure about a teenage boy who must defeat a dark prince by locating element crystals before he does. The boy keeps leaping from his present location to a time in the past each time he locates an element. To make matters worse, he only has three days!

The next thing I did was try to remember the first time I had this experience. I think I have it nailed down to the night I rented AUSTIN POWERS. Like DICK, this was a movie that had gotten some good reviews, very good in fact, but I just wasn’t interested. So, I rented it, and I just roared with laughter as I watched Mike Myers take on two of his now most famous characters. It’s no surprise that I was among the first in line to buy a ticket for the sequels. I wasn’t disappointed. I think I laughed even louder at the sequels. That’s probably because by the time the sequels were released, Myers KNEW these characters, and the way they behaved.

The moral, then, my faithful readers, is that you just have to take a chance sometimes on a movie that you’re on the fence about. You may just discover a modern classic that you’ll recommend to everyone for weeks.

POST SCRIPT: It WASN’T Austin! I can’t believe I forgot about taking a chance on YELLOW SUBMARINE! It’s one of my favorite stories. It was Thanksgiving weekend, my junior year in high school. WLVI was the only Boston station that ever seemed to have the airing rights. So, The Satturday of Thanksgiving weekend, they ran it again. i decided to watch. After all, I’m a Beatles fan-I should familiarize myself with their movies. The animation style blew me away. Although it would be 12 years before I’d get to see how the colors popped on the screen. The jokes came fast and funny, and the songs, well, need I say more? I got my sister to watch it with me a few months later, and she loved it as much as I did. I think this was also the first movie I started quoting with other people.


One comment

  1. Hi !! .!! Happy Thanksgiving!! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚
    Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, and every year I like to get into the mood-extend the holiday, when it were-by reading “Thanksgiving novels.” For example, those stories are mostly about family and friends, about coming together to heal old hurts and getting thanks for the gift of love. . ::
    Have You Been Much better Off Today Than You Were 3 Years Ago?

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