Saturday, October 24, 2009
Ailes, besides just being a bad person, is quite simply the least telegenic man in America if not the world.
(Or, "Make your choice...")
Objectively speaking, Saw VI has gotten the best reviews of the series since the original.
Doesn't matter. Apparently, Saw V didn't just blow, it blew almost half the ticketbuyers out of the theaters.
Mermaid: Mermaids are also known as Sirens. These creatures were beautiful women who tricked sailors into becoming completely entranced by their haunting voices and found death soon after. Not all stories of Mermaids are about gentle loving sea people. They are mystical, magical, and extremely dangerous. They have a way about them that brings anyone they are around to seem enchanted. They are very mysterious creatures and to meet one... Would mean certain Death. Let the song of the Sea fill your soul, for you are a Mermaid.
Friday, October 23, 2009
Ok. Obviously, I'm going to do most of my talking about Saw VI with people who, oh what is the phrase, care.
This isn’t most of you. But having put you through more than a few posts about it over the past few months, I want to record a few, more general thoughts, here.
It may be the biggest mistake the Saw directors, screenwriters, producers and/or studio have made that they decided to start making each film dependent on your having seen all of those that came before.
One reason why this may be a mistake is that it would seem to explain why the series has peaked at the box office, at least domestically (not that it isn't still making a tidy profit).
Not unreasonably, there are fewer and fewer people who want to watch what now amounts to about nine hours-plus of material in order to enjoy a horror/suspense tale fully.
The other problem is that those of us who have watched that material...know how much the latest batch has been diluted...which is considerably.
Financially, the series may not have reached the point of diminishing returns, creatively, it has. Especially so far as the characters. One obvious example will suffice:
We've gone from knowing almost nothing about Jigsaw at the end of the first movie to knowing so much about him that we literally know the name of his insurance carrier (to say nothing of his ex-wife; the name they were going to give their baby...).
The problem is: It shouldn't be about these characters anymore. It should be about the ideas. As you know, the reason I've thought all along that Saw was qualitatively different from your Friday the 13th's and so on, is because there were ideas, and a psychology, at the center of the gore.
But as the series has gone on--and I'm more convinced than ever this is down to the departure of co-creator/writer/star Leigh Whannell--those waters have grown ever shallower.
...you may not believe this given the forgoing, but I actually thought much of the movie Saw VI was fantastic. If I gave out-of-10 rankings, I'd give it a five, maybe even (coincidentally enough) a six.
It benefits in part from the fact that Saw V, I can be frank having reconsidered it after a year, really kinda blew. That movie was essentially three good scenes strung together with filler and more filler.
VI has more good scenes than that, and (at least some of) the ideas that fit them together are worthy of John Kramer's lovely insanity.
One of these is, in essence, to treat the decision-makers of society as they treat those whose lives they affect. That's believable as a Jigsaw "game."
As director, Kevin Greutert does a much better job than V's David Hackl.
I believed how it ended, all right, it was the bits we had to slog through to get there that worried me...
One difference is Greutert's maintaining of an extraordinary; horrible (meant as a good thing in this context) tension and suspense.
Greutert is the series longtime editor, so I expected the storytelling to be improved, but he also gives us one or two splendidly (again, in this context) disturbing images.
Unfortunately, VI has one or two of the most idiotic, laughable "traps" in the series so far. Why idiotic and laughable? ...you don't care, just take my word for it-this post is already longer than I intended it to be. But it speaks to a larger failure in the film:
More than a few of the worst things about it are the things forced on it because it's a Saw film: The increasingly haphazard; "ironic" traps; the need to fit that damn Billy doll into every movie; the tying up of loose ends that didn't need to be tied up (the title quote to this post is a reference to that, but one more time, you don't care) and, last but not least, that twist ending.
To be scrupulously fair (Jigsaw would want it that way), I should add that one or two of the traps, you could make a case, are some of the best since the first film.
In closing, I want to say that for the most part, the actors keep up the higher standard that, I also maintain, Saw requires.
Tobin Bell, of course, continues to cast a long shadow, and it's more than understandable the filmmakers want to put him in as many good scenes as possible. But I think it's time for him to step back.
Still, he is better served here than either of the actors playing Jigsaw's warring apprentices. Costas Mandylor's character may be the most inconsistently written character in the whole series (although he does get the spotlight in one of the images I mentioned above, and the film's best joke).
Shawnee Smith is disappointingly wasted. (Again, why? You don't care. Just trust me.)
New-to-the-series star Peter Outerbridge actually does a great job, and also bears, I am not the first person to notice, an uncanny, startling resemblance to Peter O'Toole.
But...Betsy Russell. Oh dear.
Russell is a sexual icon for men like me who went into our puberty in the '80s, and she remains a beautiful woman. Her first starring appearance in the Saw movies (following a brief dream/flashback John Kramer has during brain surgery in III) came in Saw IV.
There, she was able to keep afloat a certain ambiguity about what and how much her character knew. In V she was part of the filler (more of a prop than anything else).
Now in VI, she is given one of the series taglines. But, her character stripped of ambiguity, as an actress, Russell shows a lack of the oomph previous actors given the line have had.
(She's also engaged to one of the Saw producers.)
Whatever the plan for Saw VII, I hope it goes back to focusing upon what John Kramer's plans were, not upon the people who shared them for their own intents and purposes, whatever they might've been.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
But in looking around to see if I could, I found there's an all-female sketch troupe in Southern California called "Tomboys in Fishnets." I like the name, I like the idea...I just wish I could say they made me laugh...
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
But still. A curvy figure w/hard nipples, a green top, and a leopard-skin skirt?
Good god, woman, have some faith in yourself...
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Of Dita Von Teese
In, shall we say, certain lesbian scenarios
Also, in the nude
And the other woman in them is a Playmate named Alley Baggett
...somehow, I don't think you'll mind looking at them.
Dated as they may be.
Seriously, that dame is beautiful.
(w/thanks to The Superficial.)
You Speak British Slang
British Slang: 50%
Aussie Slang: 25%
Canadian Slang: 25%
New England Slang: 25%
Southern Slang: 25%
Prison Slang: 0%
Monday, October 19, 2009
Kristen Bell wants to hate Megan Fox — but she can’t!
The Couples Retreat actress says she’d probably end up being friends with the “witty and smart” Transformers star.
I certainly don't disagree that any of their choices (of those with whom I am familiar) are worthy of praise.
the women of Mad Men,
Kristen Bell, and Jennifer Carpenter.
All do very interesting work.
As underrated actresses go, and expanding the field to include movies, I'd add: Drew Barrymore
(check Mad Love sometime),
The women of Friday Night Lights, from Connie Britton to Stephanie Hunt,
and, of course, Tara Reid. No, I'm kidding about that last one.