The quest for 30 continues.
The Proposition – A nearly perfect movie where… look, let me just describe the plot. An Australian outlaw is captured with his dim-witted brother, and the local military commander tells him he’ll free the dim-wit if he kills his other, deadly brother. Nick Cave can retire from songwriting and write brutal Westerns, and I’d be happy.
Rocky Balboa – Better than I initially expected to be upon learning, nightmare-like, of its existence; only as good as I expected after the last week of hype. Stallone made some artistic choices here (mmm, I love saying that) that I didn’t quite understand. I get that he wanted us to return to the Rockyverse, where the guy who beat Apollo Creed and Ivan Drago is a John Glenn-sized folk hero who still gets approached for autographs. But I didn’t agree with his aggressive use of real world sports promotion. The announcers during the exhibition match, the incredible reliance on ESPN broadcasts, the bitter press conference. I know it was supposed to make the movie seem even more real, but it took me out of it occasionally – that display of Balboa’s and Dixon’s stats before the bout reminded me of the credit sequence of the Mayflower in Best in Show. But I can’t deny how much I liked the idea that Rocky’s Horatio Alger style of athleticism was still the model for how sports should work (Dixon was basically a non-crazy Mike Tyson, right?), and how carefully Stallone brought the saga full circle. I’m still not sure anyone needs to see Rockys II-VI, but Stallone’s instincts were right – this was the way to end it.
Superman Returns – Fantastic. What’s everyone complaining about?
Little Miss Sunshine – And here’s one that didn’t live up to the hype.