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Phil & Kellie Go To The Movies GRAND FINALE – Twilight & RiffTrax

The Twilight Movie Poster

Twilight, the inexplicably pervasive cultural phenomenon

Alas, we have reached the end of the series. The notes on movies Kellie and I watched together have run out. To give the series the grand send-off it deserves, we present a double-feature review! Today we cover the first film of the egregious Twilight saga as well as introducing you to your new favourite way to watch movies, the downloadable comedy commentary website  RiffTrax.

Curious as to the massive and inexplicable popularity of Twilight, Kellie picked the book up at Chapters and read a few pages. Describing it to me later she shook her head sadly and concluded, “It’s just a Mary-Sue“. I was unfamiliar with the term so she explained, “A Mary-Sue is basically a wish-fulfillment fantasy for the author or reader to read themselves into the lead role.”

So in deciding to watch the movie, rather than commit ourselves to 122 minutes of vamp-o-phile delusional fantasy, we decided to download the Rifftrax comedy commentary for the film and to watch both together. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on December 15, 2009 in Movies

 

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Phil & Kellie Go To The Movies – Harry Potter & The Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter & The Half Blood Prince

The Potter Formula gets stagnant.

Kellie and I prepared ourselves for this particular cinematic outing by re-watching all the previous films. They tend to blur together in one’s memory and before starting we could only recall them thus:

  1. Chris Columbus’ simplistic and direct transposition of the 1st book, with incredibly painful acting
  2. Chris Columbus again with slightly less painful acting and a big snake
  3. The 3rd film, which actually had some character of its own, wherein Sirius Black is introduced
  4. The 4th film, cluttered and sloppily directed, in which Voldemort returns and kills the guy from Twilight (my favourite scene of the whole franchise)
  5. The 5th film in which, having realized that killing off characters is a huge draw to readers, J.K. Rowling kills off Sirius Black. Also, there was that big sequence with the shiny balls.

Subjecting ourselves to the Potter-athon proved more arduous than we’d anticipated, and by the time we slumped into our seats at the cinema it was difficult to distinguish the latest episode from those that came before. They’ve clearly spent the last 5 films perfecting the formula and the latest instalment doesn’t diverge from it at all. It’s rolled cleanly off the assembly line having satisfied those in the Blanding Department of Warner Brother who are minding the golden goose. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on November 15, 2009 in Movies

 

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Phil & Kellie Go To The Movies – Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen

If only this movie could transform... into a better movie ! (19% on the Tomatometer)

If only this movie could transform… into a better movie!

Before we begin, I’ll apologize for the hiatus. Moving to Australia takes up quite a lot of one’s time, you see. I would also like to take a moment to acknowledge the loss of my movie-going partner. The team has split up, the glory days are over. There are enough notes for a few more reviews, and then I’ll have to start calling these reviews by another name, I suppose. But Kellie, they’ll never be the same without you.

On To The Review!

After the mediocrity of Transformers 1 destroyed the halcyon memories of my childhood days, I decided to set the bar low for this one. Very low. Upon entering the theater my expectations were that I was going watch 2+ hours of robots beating each other up. I was not disappointed.

However, if I’d had any other standards at all, like… oh, say a coherent plot, intelligible narrative structure, or even the tendency for a series of events to obey the natural laws of cause and effect, I would have been sorely disappointed. The action of Transformers 2 is (for a PG-13 rated film) of a disturbingly adult nature while the dialogue treats you like a child, and the plot treats you like a drooling imbecile. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on November 8, 2009 in Movies

 

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Phil & Kellie Go To The Movies – Up

The latest from Pixar continues their fine tradition of 'uplifting'
Pixar’s latest is tremendously
uplifting…nyuk nyuk nyuk

C.S. Lewis once famously observed that, “a children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.” Herein lays the kernel of wisdom on which Pixar have built their stunningly successfully empire.

Pixar clearly understand that while the ostensible purpose of children’s stories is to entertain children, the true power lies in making adults feel like children again. And I don’t mean ‘feel as if they have become children again’ but instead to return adults to a simpler, more optimistic world when we used to live in when we viewed our surroundings through the same uncomplicated lens that our children do.

‘Up’ is the latest in Pixar’s industry-dominating series of computer animated children’s films and it is another fine demonstration that with a good idea, simply executed, a small cast can  dreams can come true and adults can feel like children again. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on July 13, 2009 in Movies

 

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Phil & Kellie Go To The Movies – Terminator Salvation

Terminator Poster

caption

The Terminator franchise has always left me feeling out of phase with everyone else.

I was 8 years old when T2, which seems to be the touch-stone for the ‘cannon’ of Terminator, hit theaters. While many my age and the young teenagers in the grades above somehow got to see it, my parents wisely decided it was not for my eyes. When I finally got to see it for myself several years later the industry had caught up to T2’s incredible special effects, and to this day I still don’t see much difference between it and the rest of Arnie’s back catalogue.

As for the other Terminator movies, watching T1 gives me the same sense of deja vu as Ridley Scott’s Alien; you already know what’s going to happen not because the film is distilled from a formula, but because it’s the original formula which enough unoriginal filmmakers have since lazily bastardized into mere templates for their own work. As for T3 ? Well… lets just let that sleeping dog lie.

Now along comes Terminator Salvation, which is suffering under the critical eye and the disappointment of fans, and again I seem to have missed the boat because, frankly, I quite enjoyed it.

Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on June 10, 2009 in Movies

 

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Phil & Kellie Go To The Movies – Star Trek

The Future Begins

JJ Abrams' franchise reboot is visually stunning and highly entertaining.

The first time I ever cried in front of Kellie was because of Star Trek.

It always resonated with me that one of the preconditions of Roddenberry’s great adventure was that humanity had not only united when faced with the discovery of intelligent alien life, but that our better qualities had come to the fore. We became peaceful explorers and builders, not warriors or conquerers.

I grew up watching Captain Jean-Luc Picard courageously explore the stars, steadfastly maintaining his (and by extension, humanity’s) integrity; consistently doing what was right in the face of insurmountable odds, never just what what was easy. Discussing this with Kellie one day, I simply burst into tears at the beautiful simplicity of Roddenberry’s vision of what we could can become.

So, going to see J.J. Abrams’ reboot of the classic franchise, I wanted more than just star ships, space battles, sci-fi gadgetry, alien oddities, and the original crew. I wanted to see that stalwart and uncompromisingly brave vision of humanity.

Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on May 16, 2009 in Movies

 

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Phil & Kellie Go To The Movies – Wolverine: Origins

Wolverine #1

Frank Miller's Wolverine

As I’ve previously mentioned elsewhere, when I was just a wee sprog I lived 2 houses down from the Polkaroo, who had a vast and exhaustive comic book collection in his garage. I was allowed to borrow from it, and I’d spend whole afternoons rummaging through boxes like a mad pirate searching for treasure.

And I found it. I’ll never forget the sense of absolute wonderment that crept over me when I discovered all 4 issues of the 1982 ‘Wolverine’, Logan’s first ever title series (written by the great Frank Miller no less!). Wolverine has been a personal favourite ever since.

As for Kellie… when we first started dating 9 months ago I noticed that she had a copy of the Wolverine: Origins novel next to her bed. It’s still there. ‘Nuff said.

So you see why Kellie and I both had quite high hopes for this movie, Wolverine being near and dear to both of our hearts, particularly hers. Sadly we both left the theatre feeling vaguely unsatisfied. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on May 6, 2009 in Movies

 

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