If you like old Jackie Chan movies, you are going to love Ong Bak. (When I say old Jackie Chan, I mean Police Force, Black Dragon, Drunken Master. Back when he was young and nimble).
Ong Bak is a Thia film staring 28 year old Tony Jaa, who seems to be the heir apparent to Jacloe Chan’s thrown. As the Ong Bak web site says, “No stunt doubles. No computer Graphics. No strings attached.” The plot is silly and simple, but it provides a great excuse for Jaa to do simply mind blowing moves.
You must see the movie Million Dollar Baby. It is best you see it before you talk to anyone who has, or before you have read any reviews that talk about the plot. All you need to know is it is about a woman from a deprived background who wants to be a boxer. It is one of the best movies I have seen in a long time. I can’t remember the last time I was at a movie in which the audience applauded.
The movie is based off the short stories found in the late FX Tool (pen name) book Rope Burns: Stories from the Corner. The short story Million Dollar Baby is the basis of the movie, with many of the other short stories becoming back ground stories in the movie. Much of FX Tool’s wonderful prose is used as narration provided by Scrap (Morgan Freeman).
An interview from a few years ago with FX Tool was replayed this week on NPR’s Fresh Air.
I saw the movie Before Sunset tonight. It stars Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy. It is 9 years later, after some movie which I did not see. It is a very well acted movie. After the first scene the whole movie is nothing more than the two of them walking around Paris talking, catching up on the past nine years and talking about life. It is one of those movies which you love, or would rather poke your eyes out with shrimp forks than watch. There is no middle ground on this one.
It is not reality (but that is not a movies job, to be reality). Off handedly and effortlessly they talk about the big questions of life. Much like the characters in a Douglas Coupland novel, they speak in a way I long to talk. (What is embarrassing, is the fact I am more envious of the cool way they construct language and argument than the actual point they make, which are very thoughtful.) One of the creative forces behind the movie is Richard Linklater. He is the mind behind the movie Waking Life, which explains a lot. It is a movie that I am going to have to own. I am almost tempted to sneak a tape recorded into the movie to record the dialog until it comes out on DVD. In less than an hour and a half they talk passionately and thoughtfully on topics big and small. There are very few relationship in my life in which I have talked on these topics with, much less than in one afternoon. (Again, it is movie, not reality.)
There are lots of things that stuck me in the movie. Most of which were replaced by something new that struck me a few moments later. I am almost afraid of explaining them. It is kinda like trying to explain a sunset or a dream. The word not only don’t do the experience justice, but some how the moment get cheapened by saying it out loud.
I loved her description of doing “good work”. She said once she realized that she needed to be an agent of change in the world (not her words) that she then needed to find something she could make better. It wasn’t a matter of saving the rain forest (something big), but instead finding something important that she could change. Be it local or global. Her job wasn’t to find the whole word (as the protagonist in the book How To Be Good tried to do), but to do what was possible in her plot of the world.
I loved his struggle with their first encounter. He understood (and she did as well, but it is his outward struggle in the movie) that it is possible that there are people that we meet and click with. Some how we find a home in them, with them. When we are young we think that many more of these relationships will come along. As time passes we understand more and more that those interactions, those people, exist in an extraordinary moment. As they are happening we understand they are extraordinary, but at the time really have no clue how extraordinary they really are. There is a wonderful struggle with how to reconcile current life with this moment in the past and what happens when the two collide.
Movie with 50 thoughtful points and those are the two that ring true. No coincidence I am sure.
The Station Agent is a very smart sweet story about finding friendship even when you are trying to hide from the world. One of the best movies I have seen recently.
Hi. My name is Buddy the elf. What’s your favorite color?
You must see this!