Inside Llewyin Davis: follows a struggling musician for one week in the 1960s New York folk music scene. This film drags. This film is boring. Nothing significant happens. The Main guy is a total ass-hat (stubborn, unlikeable). There’s around 35 minutes of full-song renditions – it’s like a huge folk-music shaped penis being rammed down your throat (and into your ears) around every 10 minutes. Some sections just didn’t know when to end – like the trip to Chicago; it feels like you are in the car with them, but for all the wrong reasons. There are a couple of jokes sympathetically flicked at you every 20 minutes or so to keep you interested, but they’re too few and far between. The only saving grace is that Oscar Isaac (literally comes out of nowhere) and puts every fiber of his lifeforce into the role, and you totally believe he’s there, slogging it out, blaming everyone else and living a groundhog week. From around 30 minutes in I felt like the cat in the movie’ trapped with a douchebag and looking to throw myself through a window at the first opportunity. My final line in the A Serious Man review was: “Very difficult to watch, unless you’re a diehard Coen fan or were Jewish in the 1960s.” – and I’m going to be a lazy toad and change that to “Very difficult to watch, unless you’re a diehard Coen fan or love 1960s folk music.” Talk about niche movies…
Tron Legacy: 3D – sequel-ish rebooty mish mash, in relation to the original sci-fi epic Tron; and almost 30 years in the making. First off, the story is atrocious, convoluted and a shoddy excuse to bombard your eyes with cutting-edge special effects. Not necessarily a bad thing as the CGI is great, and there’s plenty of sly little nods to the definitive Sci Fi flicks; Matrix, 2001, Blade Runner, original Tron etc. The 3D element (particularly in the computer) was impressive and added to the big, loud, bold & fast action sequences. I enjoyed how the Technical/I.T./Computing terminology and detail is still tight, however this is a bit of problem because the film tries to balance this (appealing to the sub-culture of computer geeks – like the original) with a blockbuster movie – which was alienating to technophobes as it doesn’t hold back with the jargon. The story also relies on viewers seeing & understanding the original to fully ‘get it’. Bridges is alright but essentially plays a watered-down PG version of the Dude. CGI Bridges was so life-like that I bet some people couldn’t tell he wasn’t real. Oh, and Michael Sheen was ridiculous as a Bowie rip-off. The Daft Punk soundtrack was spot on; booming and atmospheric in all the right places. Despite the visual opulence, for an epic big-budget studio film it all feels quite hollow, and purely there for aesthetic reasons / franchise-based ticket sales. Other than the action sequences (essentially graphically updated from Tron), and a couple of scenes that make you think “awesome!” there’s not a whole lot else to take away from Tron Legacy.