A movie log formerly known as Bookishness / By Charles Matthews

"Dazzled by so many and such marvelous inventions, the people of Macondo ... became indignant over the living images that the prosperous merchant Bruno Crespi projected in the theater with the lion-head ticket windows, for a character who had died and was buried in one film and for whose misfortune tears had been shed would reappear alive and transformed into an Arab in the next one. The audience, who had paid two cents apiece to share the difficulties of the actors, would not tolerate that outlandish fraud and they broke up the seats. The mayor, at the urging of Bruno Crespi, explained in a proclamation that the cinema was a machine of illusions that did not merit the emotional outbursts of the audience. With that discouraging explanation many ... decided not to return to the movies, considering that they already had too many troubles of their own to weep over the acted-out misfortunes of imaginary beings."
--Gabriel García Márquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude

Saturday, December 5, 2009

What I'm Watching


Up

Like so many Pixar films, particularly
WALL-E and Ratatouille, this one packs much of its charm and inventiveness in the beginning. The setup -- the life together of Carl and Ellie -- is enchantingly and touchingly done, and the initial scenes of the house escaping from the ground and soaring through the city are lovely. I particularly like the moment when the balloons cast their multicolored shadows on the walls of a room whose window it's passing. But when the story devolves into the usual hair's-breadth adventures, it feels a little routine. Still, I can't fault the imagination of writers Pete Docter, Bob Peterson and Thomas McCarthy, the voice work of Ed Asner, and the extraordinary animation.

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