Friday, February 7, 2014

Perflix of the Day

No new additions to the Perflix list today but there is something I've got to get off my chest.

Avoid Contagion (2011) like the plague.  Directed by Steve Soderbergh (Traffic, Out of Sight, Sex Lies and Videotape) it's a directionless meandering thing that left me scratching my head as to how it ever got made.  You look at the cast, which includes Bryan Cranston, Matt Damon, Laurence Fishburne, Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Winslet and Jude Law, and you think you're in for a treat.  Well, I hate to disappoint you but this isn't even a good use of your time - I wish I could have that 106 minutes back. It was so bad I feel bad for the popcorn I wasted on it.

How in the world someone allowed all of that talent to be wasted is beyond me.  Kate Winslet was killed off with nary a whimper.  Bryan Cranston?  I don't even remember seeing him!  Jude Law's character (a blogger about the pharmaceutical industry I guess?) had to be one of the most annoying of all time.  And poor Matt Damon - all I can say is I hope it was worth it.

The panicky over-editing reminded me of World War Z.  I guess there is something intrinsically difficult about filming a movie about a pandemic?  Trying to do a global story well on a budget would be challenging.  I would think you'd have to go small (like one family dealing with it in small-town America perhaps) with something like this but I'm by no means an expert.

Not worth much more of my time to write about it; just wanted to warn you.  I really liked Traffic and Out of Sight.  Maybe for Soderbergh this was like one of those projects I have at work that I really don't want to work on but I hold my nose and do it anyway because I need the paycheck.

Next up for me:  American Beauty.  Haven't seen it since it came out in '99 so I kept it off the list but I think it's a contender.  I'm sure if anyone cared to comment they'd ask about The Godfather.  Same story...I'm getting to it.

We had a couple sick/snow days here so my 4 year old son just watched The Incredibles (twice) and really liked it.  I only saw bits and pieces of it as I was running around trying to keep him and his brother clean and fed while maintaing some sense of order in the house (which usually means following my 2 year old around and picking up his path of destruction).  The Incredibles looked really good and I'd recommend it sight unseen based on my son's enthusiasm.

That's it for now.

Jeff







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