Saturday, February 25, 2012

Movie Reviews: Priest and Cowboys & Aliens

I don't get out to the theater much, and when I do the films usually have chipmunks or animated toys. I did manage to see 2 movies today that I've wanted to see for a while now, thanks to Netflix.

First up was Priest. I love a good vampire movie. This one had some nice twists to it...post apocalyptic future, alterna-history, what-if type scenario with an odd religious element. I understand it was based on a graphic novel series. I'll have to look for those. The movie was action packed and fast paced. A little TOO fast paced, actually. I thought they moved the story along way too rapidly. There were some things I think the film makers could have lingered over. The origins and early battles of the Priests. More back story on the main characters. Build more slowly to the climax on the train. I was left feeling like I'd been rapidly smacked in the face 50 times and it just suddenly stopped. Reeling. Left to process what I'd just seen. Still rates 3.5 out of 5 stars on my awesome meter.

Next came Cowboys & Aliens. When I first saw the title of this movie, I thought, "Wow, that's a really stupid idea." Then I saw the trailer for it. Harrison Ford? Really?! So I added it to my queue. It starts out like a gritty western. The story sucks you in. The aliens show up and you finally start figuring things out. I like how the film maker left the audience feeling as clueless as the main character was (he had amnesia.) We know as much as he does. Which is almost nothing...except we know the aliens are going to show up sooner or later. The movie title told us that much. Again this was another alterna-history/what-if type scenario (I love those) that does a great job of answering the question What IF aliens landed on our planet like 130-150 years ago

We movie viewers have all been raised on sci-fi and comic books. The folks in the film had NO frame of reference except the bible to try and explain what was happening to their town. I instantly knew the guy was wearing a weapon with a proximity detector. He didn't. He sure figured it out soon enough, but they did a great job of leaving you wondering where he GOT it from. Bonus, the movie made me cry at 2 points. Amazing acting job on the part of Adam Beach. I remember him from Law & Order: SVU and the movie Windtalkers - plus a bunch of other stuff. He's yummy. Ahem. Oh! So anyway, I give this flick 4.5 out of 5 stars.

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