Movies by Stats: What you should be watching….

Guest Blogger: Andrew “Stats” Roach: Watching all the crap that falls through the cracks so you don’t have to.

Ladies and Gentlemen, today’s subject is time travel. Everyone has a favorite time travel movie, mostly due to the overabundance of them being pumped out of Hollywood’s teat. Most of you are probably fondly remembering Marty McFly’s elegant qouffe or Terminator’s glistening pectorals. Well I’m hoping I can offer some soon to be (not really) classics that have probably slipped right past you while you were watching something like In Time. We get it: Time is money. Here are my quick takes on two time travel movies you should see. (Brevity in light of spoiling)

                Our first entry is Primer (2004). Winner of the Grand Jury Prize at 2004’s Sundance, Primer tells the story of two friends’ misadventures after accidentally creating a time machine. There are a lot of things to LOVE about this movie.* It was made independently by lead actor/director/writer/producer/editor Shane Carruth who had no former credits to his name** and was actually an engineer.  He made this movie on a budget of just 7,000 dollars (!!!!!!) and you wouldn’t know it from watching. It’s also widely considered the most realistic and genuine portrayal of time travel to make it to the silver screen. And as such, the moral and ethical implications of time travel are completely engrossing, relatable and entertaining. And all of that praise is not to exclude a fantastic script, decent acting and a rewarding movie experience.

The movie sits at 72% according to Rotten Tomatoes for a couple of reasons. The first is the realism. Shane Carruth chose to make his film as realistic as possible. This means that at times the language used to explain the aspects of time travel will fly way over your head. Many reviewers complained that the film is confusing, not in a Pirates of the Caribbean way but in a Bioinformatics way. And while this is all true, you should be able to follow along without having a brain aneurism. Other reviewers took points off for poor supporting acting which while true, shouldn’t take away from the great story.

 Grade: 65 (20-80 scale)  Verdict: Please see this so I can talk to somebody about it.

* One of the things I loved is that one of the characters looks like the guy from Tomcats. You know who I’m talking about***.

**See this before his next film A Topiary starts getting made. It’ll make you cooler I swear.

*** It’s okay you can admit you’ve watched Tomcats.

Disclaimer:        The next movie is a Spanish language movie. I know a lot of people don’t like foreign movies because they don’t like to read and watch at the same time or some nonsense. All I can say is to give it a try. Even if you’ve already tried, try again because you’re excluding yourself from a lot of great movies.

                Our second film is Los Cronocrimenes (Time Crimes) a 2007 Spanish language movie directed by Nacho Vigalondo (Nachooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo). Time Crimes (87% Rotten Tomatoes) is another low budget picture and the feature length debut of its Director. It follows the story of Hector (Karra Elejalde) as he lets his curiosity (read: Voyeurism) literally land him in a time loop. Time Crimes is in large part a thriller which uses time travel as its main plot device and at times is even a little scary/creepy. And although there are some convenient plot points, the movie keeps moving and quickly draws your attention to the story at hand. All of this makes for an enjoyable movie that will keep you entertained until the end.  

                One of the best, or maybe worst, indicators for the success of a foreign movie is the inevitable American remake. An American remake of Time Crimes has been thrown around as far back as 2008 with David Cronenberg initially in talks to direct. The remake talks cooled for a long time but recently Steve Zaillian (writer: Schindler’s List, A Civil Action, Gangs of New York, Moneyball, Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) has been talking about doing a low budget remake. But why wait? Think of how cool you’ll be when you tell people how much better the original is and how long ago you saw it. Fart.

Grade: 65 (20-80 scale)                     Verdict:             See it, it’s just reading it’s not going to kill you.

Honorable Mention

Triangle (2009) features a great performance by Melissa George( 30 days of night) and Liam Hemsworth (Brother to the God of Thunder and the one that dated Miley Cyrus. I’m very upset that I knew that. Sometimes I don’t know what I’m doing with my life). Triangle takes place in the Bermuda Triangle, duh, and is more of a horror movie but time travel is featured; which is about all I can say without spoiling anything. Triangle sits at 82% on Rotten Tomatoes and is worth a look.

Grade: 55 (20-80 scale)             Verdict: Not as good as the other two but worth a look.

-Guest Blogger-Andrew Roach


~ by ATOM on February 22, 2012.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: