Compare/Contrast Movies: Joker and Parasite

I know what you’re probably thinking. Why on earth would I be spending time writing about two vastly different movies to compare or contrast them. These thoughts started with a discussion between my husband and myself. We both love the Joker movie. We’ve talked about it at length and watched it several times now. We watched Parasite the other night and he felt there were a lot of thematic similarities between the movies. I did not. It led to a rousing discussion that made me think about it and decide to share with you.

Warnings first: Both of these movies will be discussed thoroughly, that means spoilers. If you do not wish to be spoiled, please read no further.

Joker: This movie follows the journey of Arthur Fleck, who will become the famed Joker of the Batman universe. He is a deeply disturbed man. We learn almost immediately that he has hallucinations and we cannot entirely trust what he tells us. The movie follows him through his struggles to be a productive member of society before eventually deciding that society doesn’t care about people like him and he wants to burn it all down.

Parasite: This movie follows a South Korean family who scheme and lie their way into working for a wealthy family, literally becoming a parasite on their lives. But they run into some houseguests that they didn’t expect and it all leads to a violent end.

Obviously, both of these movies deal with classism and how society treats certain fringe elements. In Joker, it is Arthur who is struggling to hold down a job with severe mental illness. In Parasite, it is a poverty stricken family who is willing to do anything to improve their lot in life.

Both of these movies deal with the sociopathic nature of our larger society that wishes to ignore people on the fringes. Ignore the crazy man laughing to himself on the subway, it’s not your problem. Feel free to call your house staff and ask them to help you prepare for a party regardless of what tragedy may have just befallen them. In some cases the party is intending to be cruel, in others they are merely ignorant. The boys who attack Arthur Fleck on the subway are intending to be cruel, the people who look the other way are just trying to protect themselves from a similar fate. In Parasite, the wealthy family is ignorant to the fact that their staff might not be able to accommodate their need because, after all, isn’t that their job? It’s not done out of vindictiveness, it’s done out of a privileged ignorance.

But the ending of these movies is where we have a divergence. And it is also why I believe Joker is the superior movie.

Joker is telling us a very personal story about a man who was let down by his society. Arthur tries. He tries so hard. He goes to see his therapist, until she gets let go because of budget cuts. He goes to work, even though it means getting mugged a lot of the time and then punished for it. He takes his medication, even when it isn’t being managed properly. Arthur is a man who desperately wants to be able to survive in a cruel world. He keeps getting kicked down and every single time he gets up. He idolizes people that appear to have integrity and sets his sights on accomplishing something that will impress them. And they let him down too. Ultimately that is the final straw. When he is abandoned by Thomas Wayne, his alleged father, and Wayne decides to demean his mother while he’s at it. Realizing he spent his whole life caring for his mother when she was his first abuser. Then he is invited to be on the show of his surrogate father figure and realizes that he is only there so the audience can laugh at him. He’s had enough. In my opinion he went to the Murray show with the intention on killing himself, until he realizes that Murray is just one more person who wants to kick him while he’s down and laugh at him. In that moment he decided that maybe he isn’t the problem, society is the problem. And he, Arthur Fleck, is going to give them what they deserve. What they’ve always given him. It’s a heartbreaking cautionary tale for a society that is ever increasingly self-absorbed.

Now on to Parasite. The themes here are largely similar. The poor family seems to be wanting to improve their lot in life, by getting jobs with a wealthy family. But they aren’t doing so in an admirable way. They lie, cheat, and poison the existing staff so that they can take their jobs. Then they sit in their new employer’s home and laugh at them. They mock them and their wealth and decide that they deserve to be ripped off. This family has done nothing to them at this point except give them jobs and be kind to them. But even their kindness is spat on with the comment “must be easy to be nice when you’re rich.” This movie seemingly casts the wealthy family as bad simply because they are wealthy. Later on the family does go some cruel things, like commenting on the poor smell of the father and joking about it…..done in private and shouldn’t have been overheard but it was still not right. When the story ultimately erupts into violence it is not out of desperation, it’s out of anger. Anger that the rich man is more concerned for his son then their daughter, even though their daughter was harmed as a result of their own actions. It didn’t matter that all of this came to pass because THEY attacked people and tried to kill them, no it was the rich person’s fault. And at the very end the movie gives you the message that it doesn’t matter how hard you try, you can never make it. The boy makes a dream to buy the big house and rescue his family from poverty, but it’s just a dream and we’re reminded of what his father said…that not having a plan is better because at least you won’t be disappointed when it doesn’t happen.

This is the single biggest difference in the message of the two movies. Joker is telling society at large that they have the choice not to create someone like Arthur Fleck. We are shown our failings in stark relief and told explicitly that we don’t have to be those people. Parasite is telling society that it doesn’t matter, the rich people will always laugh at you and it’s useless to try to better your life because you won’t succeed anyway. Personally, I prefer the first message.


Day 1 of Nano and a movie review

The first day of another Nano Wrimo is over! I did not do as much novel prep as I would have liked, but getting a cold 4 days before the beginning of the challenge will do that to you. But I did more planning than I ever have, so I am counting that as a win. I had been struggling with the beginning of my novel, this is fairy typical for me. I struggle with the perfect way to start and so I often will start somewhere in the middle of things and work my way to either end. But as I sat down at the page today it came to me. I knew the most enticing beginning. And then the words started to come. 2,181 words in the bag! Wahoo!


Today, I also went to see the Joker movie. I have been planning on seeing it but with a spouse, child, day job, reviewing, reading, and my million other hobbies, I had not gotten around to it yet. All I really can say is, wow. This movie was unlike any other superhero movie I’ve ever seen. It doesn’t really belong in that genre at all. This is a story about a man. A man named Arthur Fleck. A man that society dropped through the cracks and didn’t even notice that they had dropped him. Everyone knows how the story ends, he becomes the Joker and becomes the greatest villain Gotham and Batman ever face. But how did he get there? That’s the story they were endeavoring to tell.

Part of the mystique of Joker is that it’s never completely clear how he became a villain. Every time he’s asked about it he tells a different story. And it’s never clear if that’s because he’s lying or he’s just so delusional that he honestly doesn’t know. I was worried that by telling this story that mystique would be removed but it isn’t. You are told very early on that Arthur has delusions. So, what portion of his history is the truth? As a viewer, I can’t say for sure. I can’t honestly say which parts were his delusion and which were real, and that was part of the point. Arthur is the forgotten man. The one who society knows nothing about but likes to think that they do.

I think this was one of the best movies I’ve ever seen. It was completely flawless in its storytelling. It was also a profoundly sad movie. I found myself hoping that Arthur would catch a break, finally get ahead, have some shred of hope. And then I would be heartbroken time and again when he was kicked back down. It was a very emotionally heavy movie. It pulls no punches with just how glum Arthur’s life is. I felt emotionally drained when I left the theater, satisfied with the story I saw and sad for the poor character within it. It was an amazing movie, but I am not sure I want to watch it again anytime soon.

More Movie Reviews: The Purge and Pacific Rim

What a horrible day for movies! Both of these were movies that either hubby or I wanted to see in theaters but it just didn’t happen for one reason or another. I am pretty glad we waited for Red Box because honestly they were a waste of $1.20 too! Let’s get down to it then. WARNING: SPOILERS ABOUND FROM HERE ON OUT!


pacific rim

Pacific Rim, a movie about……Transformers. No wait, that’s not it. It’s about…….Iron Man. No wait that isn’t it either. It’s about…..Godzilla. No that’s not right either. It’s the sequel to…..Cloverfield. No, but that is getting closer I think. Actually it’s something of a combination of all of these. And I still have no idea what the whole point of the movie was supposed to be about! I think at the beginning of the movie they talked about dropping a bomb into the portal between dimensions, and ultimately I think that’s how it ended so that must be it. Anyway, alien creatures are attacking our world and so humans created Jaegers to combat them. Apparently they want to colonize our world and they first tried to millions of years ago, we know them as dinosaurs. But the climate was not hospitable at the time. But now with all the global warming and awful things we’ve done to the planet it’s perfect for a take over.

This movie was just soooooooo cliche. Star pilot loses his partner and falls off the map to become an average Joe guy. The young ambitious newbie who struggles with horrors from the past. The general whose program is about to get shut down and has to go seek out the seasoned drop out. When combined with the ambitious newbie they form an unstoppable team who will singlehandedly defeat the evil thing! Yeah, I know. That sounds like every other action movie on earth, and it is exactly like this one too.

Don’t get me wrong, not everything about this movie was bad. The effects were very good. The monsters looked awesome. The color scheme of the movie was very engaging. But that was about all it had going for it. It was so boring! I have never been more bored in my life. The characters were bad, the story was bad, the ending was bad, it was just bad! I feel like I wasted 132 minutes of my life that I can’t get back.

the purgeThis movie just pissed me off, it made me so angry. The first reason that it made me angry is that it has such a great premise. And that premise was squandered so thoroughly. In fact, I am pretty sure that I came up with a better idea to execute this premise for a novel than this movie was. Normally I would be concerned about Ethan Hawke because he is just not a very good actor. But I had no problem with him in this movie. Here are my issues:

1. The socialist propaganda in this movie was constant. And I do mean from beginning to end. One of the characters actually says at one point, “You know that this filth is only here in order for our pleasure and purpose.” He was speaking of poor people and homeless people, who of course are only around for the rich people to exploit. That was just one of dozens upon dozens of examples I could come up with.

2. There were HUGE logic fails in this movie. Such as, The Purge was instituted because the poverty and crime problems in the country were so rampant that this was seen as an alternative. But, the rich people don’t seem to be affected by the purge much, they can just get a security system and it all mostly stays in in poor areas of town…which is what they were trying to fix right? Fail.

3. Massive world building problems. According to this movie in 2022 the US has gotten a brand new overhaul in which was decided that for one 12 hour period a year all crime is now legal and people have just accepted this as part of life. That’s only 9 years in the future. The movie gives us no information about why this change took place, how it took place, who was involved, or anything about what happened! Either you need to set this 100 years in the future or give me some damned details about how this happens less than a decade from now.

4. This movie has zero knowledge about recurrent criminals or basic human nature. This movie assumes that all humans inherently have a desire to commit violent acts and murder people. So they decide to give this a socially acceptable outlet and then the violent urges have been purged from everyone’s system for another year. First, most humans don’t secret want to murder people if only it weren’t illegal. And second, criminals who do want to murder people are not going to restrict themselves to once a year.

5. Why was all the crime that took place during this purge murder? No one was interested in robbery, arson, rape, nothing else besides killing? Um, okay. Personally I think I’d head to the nearest bank and get myself some cash. But then I must not be one of these humans that inherently wants to kill I guess.

6. More logic fail. Has anyone considered that after all this pillaging and murdering that the emergency services is going to be overloaded? Is that really a good idea? Guess everyone in law enforcement and emergency services is going to be working overtime.

7. Now for some character fail. The characters in this were idiots. The boyfriend of the girl sneaks into her house before the lockdown for the purge, he says that he’s there to talk to her dad when he can’t run away. Um, listen dude, the guy hates you. Have you really thought through this plan? He can KILL YOU and suffer no repercussions, so why exactly did this seem like a good plan? Oh wait, that’s right because you were going to kill him. Because killing your girlfriend’s father is such a great way to endear her to you forever!

8. More logic fail. If thousands of people are being murdered in every town in the US every year, how exactly is the population sustaining itself. One character actually said that just one street was like “a sea of bodies”. Right, and again I say, how is the population faring well at all?

9. More character fail. Idiot son lets a stranger into the house and they become targets of the people who wish to kill that stranger. Dad originally decides, yeah let’s turn over the stranger to these guys and they’ll leave us alone. They hunt down the stranger (who is black by the way, being hunted by white kids from the prep school and is constantly referred to as “filth”, “homeless swine” and other insulting terms) and get into a tussle. At one point he is screaming at his wife to stick her finger in his wounds to distract him and make him stop fighting. Then the guy finally gives in and says “alright, I get it. Save your family and give me to them.” And all of a sudden he thinks, “no I don’t want to do that! We’re going to save this man and fight until the purge ends!” YOU WERE JUST STICKING FINGERS IN HIS WOUND TO STOP HIS STRUGGLING TWO SECONDS AGO!

10. More logic fail. If all these people are getting killed, who is handling the inevitably large number of orphans? Do they go into a government system? Are they left to fend for themselves? How is the government handling the influx of bodies on one hand, the declining population with another, and an exponential number of orphans with a third hand?

11. Final logic fail. I am expected to believe that for one night everyone can run around killing each other and then the very next day go back to normal and socialize as if nothing happened. It wouldn’t work that way. People would be scared and suspicious of everyone, because they might be coming to kill you on the next purge night if you trust them too much.

11. Okay, I thought of another logic fail that I just can’t let go. Why does this movie assume that most violence is stranger violence? Last time I checked, if you are going to be murdered the vast majority of the time it will be someone who is close to you. So is locking yourself behind steel doors and walls with your family for 12 hours really a good idea? Seems more likely they’d be the ones to kill you than some stranger outside.

I just can’t get over this movie. It made me so angry! I am going to write my better idea right now to make me feel better.

Movie Reviews: Oblivion & Side Effects

Not very often do I do movie reviews, I leave that to my husband who does plenty of them at the dinner table. But we got both of these movies as RedBox the other night and the contrast between the two was astounding so I had to comment. And let’s just get one thing straight right out front, Side Effects was my pick. Oblivion was my husband’s pick, I am not a fan of Tom Cruise and made quite the face when he suggested it. Oh and there will probably be spoilers, so walk away now if you don’t want to be spoiled. Anyway, onward!


Side Effects

Side Effects is a psychological thriller released earlier this year. It stars Jude Law, Rooney Mara, Catherina Zeta-Jones, and Channing Tatum. The film centered around a young woman who was prescribed a brand new, and fictional, drug for her depresion called Albixa. She experiences some rather intense side effects from the drug and ends up murdering her husband while sleepwalking. If you are like me and not a fan of Channing Tatum you’ll be happy to hear that he plays the husband, so he’s not around for long. This movie did a great job in making me feel sorry for poor Emily. She had everything and it was all ripped away from her. She miscarried a baby, her husband is imprisoned for insider trading, then he gets back out and she can’t bear to tell him how depressed she is because she wants to start fresh with him. She drives her car into a brick wall in what appears to be a suicide attempt and thus our story begins. This starts her on a rocky path to find the right medication with minimal side effects and she insists on continuing to take Ablixa even after she starts sleepwalking. Unfortunately for everyone it is in one of those sleepwalking episodes that she stabs her husband to death and is put on trial for his murder. But everything is not as it seems in this world.

This was a very devious little plot. Admittedly I found myself getting a bit bored in the beginning because it seemed like not a lot was going on. But once the story got started, holy crap did it get started. After that, the plot twists and turns were thrown at you quicker than you can process. Even though part of the plot was a teensy bit predictable I think it was meant that way. We were supposed to be yelling at Jude Law that she’s a lying sack of garbage and not to listen to her. That kind of predictable little plot point made it so that the real twist was totally unexpected. At a certain point in the film my husband and I just turned to each other and raised our eyebrows in unison as if to say “well that was different!”.  It didn’t even end there either. It got weirder and darker after that turning point too.

This has a current score of 84% fresh on Rotten Tomatos and I think that it is richly deserved. This was a delightfully dark little film.



OblivionOblivion is a sci-fi post-apocalypse flick starring Tom Cruise and Morgan Freeman. It occurs in the year 2077 where the earth has been attacked by people/creatures they have dubbed “Scavengers”. The “Scavs” blew up the moon which sent the Earth into chaos with flood and earthquakes destroying half the planet within hours. After those initial hours it turned into all out war with the world eventually turning to the only logical solution…nuke the hell out of the other half of the world. All remaining humans have evacuated Earth to Titan, one of Saturn’s moons. Tom Cruise stars as Jack Harper who is a technician (Tech-49 to be exact) that is tasked with repairing the drones that are protecting the ocean borne fusion power generators before he and his partner will finally be evacuated to Titan as well. At least that’s what I thought the plot was. Then I read a synopsis and apparently the people of Earth have evacuated to the Tet, a space station orbiting Earth, and the generators are only to be used until they have enough power to make the trip to Titan. I honestly don’t know which is correct, the story was so convoluted that my husband had a completely different third idea of what the plot was. So this one might have to remain a mystery.

I hated this movie, it was SO BORING! Tom Cruise’s characters is a whiny bitch through most of the movie. Seriously, stop reminiscing! I get it, you miss old Earth but it ain’t coming back pal so get over it already. I was immediately suspicious that things were not as they seemed when Jack Harper says it had been 60 years since the end of the war….yet he remembers Earth from before the war and doesn’t appear to be older than say 40. Yeah, something was not right about that. But the movie was so horrendously boring that I quickly forgot about that bit of dialogue until I thought about it after the movie had ended. Here’s the things that bug me about this movie:

1. Jack Harper is a clone, yes a clone. There is no colony of human beings and there are no attacking Scavs. What attacked the Earth was the Tet, which appears to be some kind of artificial intelligence complex. They captured Jack Harper and his partner (the red head, can’t remember her character’s name) and cloned them. The Scavs are actually the only remaining human beings on the planet who are trying to bring down the Tet. Okay, with me so far?  Apparently Jack Harper was recreated as thousands of clones and those clones are the ones who launched and won the war on Earth.  Now they have new clones of Jack and what’s her name to keep everything in order and try to exterminate the rest of the humans. Still with me? Don’t get too cocky, it gets worse.

2. If they have thousands of clones of Jack who were, and I quote, “mindless killing machines”…why did they not continue to use those clones? They were apparently perfect mindless soldiers. Where did they go? Humans lost the war so they couldn’t have killed them all, where are those clones now? And since they were so effective at taking over Earth there would be no reason to deactivate them or kill them so I repeat, where did all these clones go?

3. The Tet tells Jack that he and his clones have a “history of insubordinanation”. Okay, that explains why he goes rogue all of a sudden but why didn’t he before? Some might argue it was because in this case his old wife from Earth was back and it prompted him…well then what history of insubordination could there have been? And if Jack keeps rebelling, why is the Tet, which was smart enough to annihilate Earth, not smart enough to alter the clone so that this doesn’t keep happening? If Jack keeps tapping into the original Jack’s  memories then why not make the next Jack clone a “mindless killing machine” like the old ones?

4. At the end of the movie we see that Jack has impregnated his wife before he killed himself for the greater good of humanity so they have a daughter. Why do clones need to reproduce? He was created to maintain the drones, and we know he was screwing the red headed clone so how were there not more little clonelets running around? Why did the Tet create the clones with the ability to reproduce? Why is that necessary?!

5. Oh hell, I don’t even know what five is because I’ve gotten so pissed off about numbers one through four.

6. If the Tet can create clones and had thousands of drones that are not in use, wouldn’t it be more logical to just replace the drones that are getting attacked? Why do you even need the clones to repair them? Just make more drones and then you don’t have to worry about Jackclone and his “history of insubordination”! Complete and epic logic fail.

7. This movie borrows 95% of it’s plot from sci-fi movies that are much better than this one was. I suggest watching Tron: Legacy, Blade Runner and Planet of the Apes instead of this crap..just to start.

In closing, the 54% rotten rating from Rotten Tomatoes is all you need to know. Believe the 54% they are not lying.


I don’t particularly feel like doing a book review tonight.  I’ve had a lot of other things going on and thoughts running through my head about stuff so decided to run with that.  Let’s begin with movies I’ve seen lately…


The Host

Color me underwhelmed.  I read the book and quite enjoyed it.  Twilight was always a guilty pleasure, like a soap opera, for me.  You know that it’s awful and ridiculous but you can’t help but reading it anyway.  I found The Host highly superior to Twilight and loved the “bigger picture” aspect to the plot.  Unfortunately the movie came off as cheesy, corny, and nothing more than a teenage love flick.  The conversations with Melanie and Wanderer made me do a snortgiggle with how silly they sounded.  The plot was glossed over and it was all about how the alien finds penises that she likes and suddenly her entire existence makes sense.  Um, really?  That’s all you took from the book?  Because that’s sure as hell all that came across in the movie.


Warm Bodies

I am 50/50 on this one.  I haven’t read the book and perhaps that was part of the problem, I can’t be sure.  Some parts of it were very funny and I really enjoyed it.  But it had a few sticking points that I couldn’t quite get past.  For example, R kills her boyfriend.  No I meant that literally, he ate his face off in front of her.  R tells her this and she just shrugs and says “well, I suppose you’re a zombie and so it makes sense.”  Wait…what?  He ate your boyfriend’s face, you brush it off and then start falling for him?!  What is wrong with you!  I also had a lot of unanswered questions at the end, but since it’s part of a series I suppose that’s the reason.  At the end, this was entertaining and a decent use of my time but nothing amazing.


Chernobyl Diaries

I should have known.  Please, everyone who warned me, feel free to scream “told you so!’ from the nearest building you can find.  This one isn’t new, but I wanted to see it and saw it on a movie channel recently and decided to give it a shot.  What the fuck was this piece of garbage?  Sometimes, I can look past factual inaccuracies for the sake of a story.  Unfortunately for this movie, there was no story so nothing was preventing me from laughing at the absurdity.  Here’s the problem.  I watched a show about Chernobyl that was filmed in 2009-2010 (around the same time as the film) and discussed all the things that have to be done to prevent danger to visiting people.  This film ignored all of those.  Let’s just take a look here:

1. The area around Chernobyl is set in rings that are fenced, locked, and guarded 24/7 by military personnel.  You have to show signed forms proving that you have permission to pass and, even then, if the guards there don’t like it then they can refuse you entry for any reason.  In this film, these tourists just hired someone to take them to the site and they just drove right into town.  Uh huh, okay.

2. After passing the final checkpoint, everyone is required to wear a head to toe radiation suit in order to protect them from the radiation unless you will be there less than a few hours.  Even this suit is not 100% and you are only allowed to stay for a certain time until the radiation saturation in your body starts to rise too much and then you have to leave or risk radiation poisoning.  Workers who are trying to restore the area are only allowed to work 5 hours a day for a month before they have to take 2 weeks off.  In the film, everyone was there in their street clothes for over 24 hours (maybe closer to 48, it was hard to judge) before showing any signs of radiation sickness at all.  In fact none of them showed any signs of radiation issues until they walked into the reactor itself, which is obviously the most dangerous area.  That’s not even close to being possible.

3. The batteries on any electronic equipment will be substantially impacted and their batteries drain much more quickly.   Not in this film!  In this film they all had cell phones that were fully functional the entire time…did I mention this was like 24-48 hours?

4. While some animals do live in the area surrounding Chernobyl, they are usually affected by the radiation and rarely do they live in the actual city since there’s not much there.  According to this crappy movie, bears wander in and out of buildings all the time, and there’s a pack of dogs that are in the city full time attacking people.

So those are my factual problems.  But the story just sucked apart from that.  Apparently they are attacked by radioactive people who are now…cannibals I guess?  I’m not sure if they were supposed to be workers who died there or tourists who’d died…I just don’t know and I don’t care.  Here’s the reasons I should have known better:

1. It’s from the same people that brought us the demon chicken of Paranormal Activity.

2. It’s from the same people that brought us the “all male characters are narcissistic dicks who really need to die” of Paranormal Activity 2.

3. It’s from the same people that brought us “we can’t even bother to read a plot summary of our two previous films so we’ll just make it up as we go” of Paranormal Activity 3.

4. They are also the same people who brought us “we don’t really have a story but we want your money” of Paranormal Activity 4.

5. Oh and it’s the same people responsible for that horrendously bad TV show The River (ripped off Destination Truth frame for frame in the series premiere).

6. It’s the same people that gave us “worst ending ever” Insidious.

7. And of course its the same people that tortured us with “even the preacher wasn’t this preachy on Sunday” Area 51.

I am disgusted with myself, I admit it.


Now on to weird stuff….

So I was listening to The MVP podcast today, old episodes but I heard this ad for a different podcast.  It’s tagline was something to the effect of:

Mermaids, vampires, werewolves.  What if those mythical creatures were not only real but were one creature?

Um….okay.  If I read that on a book cover I’d probably start giggling and put it back down.


And in TV news….

I finally brought myself to watch the series finale of Fringe.  I wanted to shake all tv and movie execs (and maybe a few authors too) who screw up endings and go “THIS IS HOW YOU END A FUCKING SERIES!”  It was so great, I laughed and I cried and I was surprised and then I cried because it was over.  I absolutely loved it.  They couldn’t have ended the series better in my opinion.  The way they take you to that scene that we’ve seen so many times over the course of a season and you are hoping and praying that it ends differently.  And finally, after so much agony, you see Peter’s daughter land in his arms and then….*sniff* oh man, here go the tears again.  *wipes eyes* I think I should stop talking about it now, I’ll start ugly crying soon.  You know, the kind of crying where your nose runs down your face and the neighbors can hear you two buildings away and you just don’t give a damn.

Bourne or rant, we’ll find out!

I am not sure whether this post will turn out to be a rant or more like a review, so I’m not calling it either.  I’ll let you fine folks decide.  So there’s the skinny:

Yesterday I spent some time with my family, my mom and brother.  We went to lunch and my mom and I went shopping the sales at Macys.  Sales is the only time I even go INTO Macys, let alone buy stuff.  I needed some new jeans and I managed to get a few pairs of $90.00 jeans on sale for $14.00.  That is what I call a deal!  Anyway, we decided that we wanted to go see a movie.  My brother and I tried to convince mom to go see The Possession, but she doesn’t like scary movies the way we do.  I tried to argue that she’d fall asleep by the time the previews were over anyway, so what did it matter what movie it was, she didn’t bite.  So instead we decided to see The Bourne Legacy.  Now, I really have no feelings, either negative or positive, on the franchise itself.  I’ve only ever seen The Bourne Identity, and it was enjoyable enough despite starring Matt “Fat-Face” Damon in it.  I am not a fan of his.  And yes that is my nickname for him, usually I just shorten it to fat face Damon.  Seriously did you see him in Contagion?  Even emaciated and close to dying he had chipmunk cheeks!  Anyway, I digress.  But this movie does not have him in it, and it DOES have Jeremy Renner and Edward Norton.  Ed Norton is on my shortlist of top 5 favorite actors ever, so I was happy to agree to see this movie.

Basically here is what it’s about.  The Jason Bourne fiasco is spreading too much light on the Treadstone project, and by association the other related projects that have spawned from it.  When information about the connection between these programs surfaces in the public, the CIA decides to eliminate the program entirely.  They decide to kill the scientists involved and eliminate the subjects of the experiments.  Their goal is to wipe out all evidence of this project and give the public time to move on and then they’ll start over.  Everything goes according to plan until Aaron Cross gets lucky and isn’t killed along with the other agent he was with.  He figures out what is happening fairly quickly and decides to make a run for it.   There’s only one problem, he is required to take 2 kinds of pills (green and blue) every day or the enhancements made to his physical and mental capabilities will revert back to how they were before the project.  He goes looking for the one remaining scientist involved in the project before they can manage to kill her, to convince her to get him more pills.  And let the adventure begin.

I actually quite liked this movie for most of the film.  It was even good enough to keep my mom’s attention and for the first time in at least a year she didn’t fall asleep during a movie.  I liked everything about this movie…..until the end.  I don’t know about any of you but I prefer my books and movies to have a beginning, a middle, and an end.  There is a right way and a wrong way to do a cliffhanger in either a novel or a movie.  This movie was not the right way.  We spend most of the movie in chases and running around, which was fine.  But then we get to a point where Aaron Cross sends a message that this isn’t over to the government who wants him dead, they escape an assassin and plot their next move…and end credits!  Seriously?!  We were right in the middle of the climax of the story and then it just ends.  They might as well have put a message on the screen, “The end…of part 1, come back next year and give us more of your money when you’ve completely forgotten how badly this one ended.”  It irritated me to no end.  There was no resolution, there was no ending.  We were right in the middle of the action and it just….stopped.  I hate it when books do that, I hate it equally when movies do that.  This movie should have left me curious about what happens in the next movie, but another movie shouldn’t be required for me to get the end of the story.  It left a bad taste in my mouth and I have no desire to see the next movie because they’ll just end it the same way so that they can squeeze as many bucks out of the public as humanly possible by dangling the rest of the story in front of their noses.  What happened to storytelling!?  Did you just forget that stories are supposed to have endings?  Seriously!

We didn’t even get a good sex scene either.  All they ever did was hold hands and tend to each other’s wounds.  Well they were about to get it on when the credits started rolling, but hopefully they waited till they were somewhere a little more private than the deck of a boat where there are children present.  But we didn’t even get a kiss.  That wouldn’t have made the ending good, but it might have eased the pain a little.

Prometheus aka Alien 0.5

Warning: This post may contain spoilers for the movie Prometheus.  If you do not wish to be spoiled, please read no further.





Alright, now that everyone has been properly warned, let me begin by saying that I really really wanted to go see Prometheus.  The previews made it look spectacular!  The premise and the idea of it really excited me.  And I had heard it was set in the same world as the Alien movies, although director Ridley Scott insists it is not a prequel to Alien just set in the same universe.  So, when it was suggested last night at dinner that we go see a movie, this is what popped into my head.  I went and bought the tickets and grabbed a drink and suffered through the terrible previews, anxiously awaiting the brilliance.  And… never happened.

But allow me to start with the good things first.  The effects were great, I really liked everything I saw on screen as far as special effects and CG go.  And the settings and surroundings were fantastic.  The locations they used were stunning.  And it has Charlize Theron, one of the most perfect human beings on the planet.  Unfortunately she didn’t do much except walk around in neoprene and acting pissed off.  So men, go see this, you get several hours of Charlize Theron in neoprene!

The first bad point is how horribly predictable this movie was.  We, humans, find proof of an alien race that they believe created human beings.  So, like the morons they are, decide to go find these creators and find out more about them, kind of like a search for the deadbeat dad that never pays child support.  And these dummies actually expect to be welcomed with open arms!  If humans are going to be this dumb in the future we’d be better off exterminating ourselves now.  But I digress.  They get funding from a man who is terminally ill and wants them to go find these creators even though he’ll be long dead before they arrive at the alien planet.  But he sends along his cyborg David, who is like a son to him, to oversee things and help them.  At this point it doesn’t take a genius to assume that this man is not dead and that David will be the saboteur of the mission.  I know I guessed that, and if you did too then you’d be correct.

More horrible predictability came along when, after being infected by David, the male scientist sleeps with the female scientist.  Again, if you guessed she gets pregnant with the alien baby you’d be correct again!  If you further guess that she’ll perform her own cesarean to remove it then you are really racking up point here!  So David releases the bad aliens and people die.  Then they discover that these aliens are the ones who killed the creators, except for one.  And surprise of all surprises, their funder is on the ship and perfectly alive!  And he wants to meet this creator with David’s help and ask them to make him immortal.  Yes, it’s dumb I know.  Then we get an Empire Strikes Back moment when the ship’s captain (or whoever Charlize Theron was supposed to be) cries in this man’s lap about how the natural course of life is to die and the new generation take over and we learn this is her dad.  I was honestly expecting the line, “Luke, I am your father”.  It was supposed to be dramatic and it was just laughable.

Needless to say the creator alien kills funder man and tears David’s head off and then starts up his ship to go destroy earth.  The aliens that killed the creators were going to be brought to earth to exterminate the humans they created.  In the typical sci-fi movie moment, the rest of the survivors on the ship decide to sacrifice themselves to disable the creator alien’s ship and save earth.  Female scientist is not in the ship at this point, and spends an hour of the film running around like a marathon runner even though she just gave herself a cesarean and has staples all across her belly.  The ship crashes and David (remember he’s a cyborg so he’s not dead) tell her that creator alien is still alive and coming after her.  She traps it with baby alien who is not so baby anymore.  Then she collects the pieces of David and tells him that he is going to help her pilot the other alien ship to go find the race who created the creators.  Because she wants to know why they changed their minds about earth.  Again, I couldn’t help getting the “Why did daddy abandon me!’ vibe.  They fly off into outer space and we discover that baby alien has impregnated creator alien, and the new spawn is….wait for it…..this is really good… I promise!…..the aliens that are in the movie Alien!  Okay, so maybe it wasn’t that good, sorry.

Also, I am very concerned with Ridley Scott and his obvious penis envy issues.  Most of the aliens look like penises and repeatedly shove themselves down people’s throats and inject something toxic into their body which makes them explode.  Did that sentence make anyone else uncomfortable?  I was too!

Overall this was a very disappointing movie and I really wish I could have asked for my money back simply because it was bad.