Match Point-- Good, but not as good as the hype would have one believe. The audience was packed, and enthusiastic. Worth seeing if you have not done so.
Capote-- Again, the theater was packed. People are starved for entertainment around here, it seems. I thought this was very good. Perhaps because I had lowered expectations...which is the ideal state to be in when going to a film, so I've discovered. It made me want to finish In Cold Blood (something I never have gotten around to). Wonderfully acted. The best film I've seen this year.
Brokeback Mountain--finally arrived here belatedly (Do I smell a whiff of homophobia in Elmwood?) Much hyped. I got there to find a line to buy a ticket...and standing room only in the theater. The crowd was very mixed. My enjoyment was hampered by the claustrophobic seating and the fact that I was about 2 feet from the screen, but all in all, quite nice. It took some liberties with Annie Proulx's story, but thankfully, it was not overdone. That was my worry.
The Squid and the Whale---I liked this film. It took me a while to get into it, but, by the end, it had me. The theater was nearly deserted. It's a shame too. The acting was wonderful. Laura Linney and Jeff Daniels are great. Despite the dysfunction, I still idealize hyper-literate families. I always have. Even though I've actually come into close contact with a few and know how very crazy they can be, they are so radically different from the environment that I grew up in, that I think it's almost inevitable that I should idealize them.
Shopgirl---Claire Danes is winsome and adorable. The film is not. But that's not to say it's bad. It's just not that good. But Claire Danes + depression + evening gloves (has to) = something good, right?
Rent---Having no preconceptions, I thought it might be good. I was very wrong.
I assume (hope)the broadway production was much better, because this was one of the shlockiest, most overblown pieces of claptrap that I think I've ever seen. There was an even shlockier, more overblown, piece-of-claptrap performance being put on behind me, however. Two post adolescent, slightly plump, retro goth girls, emoting, weeping vociferously, clapping, and singing along throughout the film. That much was worth the ticket price.
King Kong-- God, what's with the freaking dinosaurs already! Very, very long.
The ape is cute however.
Memoirs of a Geisha--I'd read the book (found it not so good). The movie was almost camp, sort of a Showgirls in Kyoto, but not quite. (Too bad, too.) Lovely costuming however. Visually beautiful in every way. Rather like Cold Mountain, beautiful and almost as emotionless. My mother (with whom I went) claimed to like it, but upon my casual quizzing her, had absolutely no clue as to what the plot was. I can't fault her at all.
Tristan and Isolde--Utterly horrible, bloodless, deadly dull dreck. Totally miscast. Lovely costuming, however. The first film I've ever actually left before it finished.
Walk the Line-- (or "Ray, Part Deux") Actually, pretty good. Nothing original here, but decently done. Very safe. I'm no fan of Ms. Witherspoon, but she did a good job making June Carter come alive. Joaquin Phoenix was also very good. The acting was superior to the writing, I think.
The Chronicles of Narnia--as the Narnia books, much like LOTR, were pretty formative in the developement of my delusional psyche, I was half looking forward to, half dreading this film, especially when I heard Disney had its sinister hand in it.
I was quite disappointed. Too much CGI...too much British lisping. Years ago, BBC did a better tv version, I remember, of several of the Narnia books.