Saturday, October 25, 2008

Kisses (and Opportunity) Blown

And Nathaniel (c'est moi) has reentered the building. A quick thank you, round of applause, kiss blown, genuflection, what have you to Erich, Thom, Adam, James, Jason and Campaspe who filled in for me while I was away. Read their blogs. I love doing so.

Acidemic "deadpan satire and intellectual savvy..."
Planet Fabulon "a galaxy of glamour, camp and kitsch"
Club Silencio, "cinematic obsessions and (one-sided) conversation"
Out1 Film Journal "film from the inside out"
My New Plaid Pants "nonsense incarnate"
...and the classic film call of the Self Styled Siren

I had all six of these generous souls on my mind last night in my hotel room. I imagined them breathing a collective sigh of relief and packing their mental bags to exit my blog --or maybe that's just because I was packing my bags in the hotel room and I tend to project.

I should have been thinking about Hancock since it was playing on the telly. But it wasn't giving me enough to think about. If we must have a new superhero film each month why not more risky ones? At first I said to myself 'this is more interesting than the critical drubbing had led me to believe' but then I would lose interest again quickly, so... maybe not. I couldn't even decide if it was cocky about itself or worried that it wasn't quite pulling its high concept halves (thirds?) together. The danger of making movies with behemoth stars like Will Smith now (or Tom Hanks ten years back) is that they will cover up a myriad of sins. It's easy to get sloppy, derivative or lazy when you know it'll work without much of a push in other areas. Whosoever the audience loves the audience will (mostly) forgive. Tom Hanks could talk to a volleyball for a couple of hours on a deserted island with no film score and nobody minded. Will Smith can be an unsmiling a**hole for an entire film because the audience will fill in the blanks. They know him so well they'll force the goddamn charm upon him. Perhaps that's an unfair comparison because Cast Away was a good film (well 2/3rds of it at least) and Hancock is... not. But you get my point?

For those of you who saw it in the theater (it's on DVD next month) I'd love to hear your thoughts as it's fresh in the mind though it's a jumble [The Incredibles ÷ Spider-Man + (Superman˚÷ Bad Santa) x Mr & Mrs Smith³ =Hancock ?] and so is, frankly, the mind: Hopped up on thousands of room service calories I was whilst watching it. Hotels are pure evil. They will cover up a myriad of sins. It's easy to get sloppy. You can talk to inanimate objects for hours and nobody minds.


Glenn said...

Hmmm, I'm sending respects to Jennifer Hudson and family. Such a tragedy, no? Can't even imagine it.

Glenn said...

Sorry to be off topic, but having just read about all this today and not having seen Hancock I just thought I'd throw it out there.


tough crowd lately. nobody so much as welcomed me back.

Re: the Hudson tragedy. I heard last night and it's hard to imagine something more terrible.

Pedro said...

Welcome back, Nathaniel!

I saw Hancock at the movies in the summer but, quite frankly, I don't remember it so well (maybe I prefer to talk to inanimate objects, too). What I remember is that it had some plot holes that I pointed out to my friend during the movie (she is a big Big Willie fan, so she will see anything he is in), and she was pissed with me.

Glenn said...

Oh, welcome back! sorry. teehee. Hope the trip was lovely or... whatever it was you were doing *looks suspiciously*

Actionman said...

I loved Hancock. It was the kick in the ass that the genre needed. I hope they make a sequel but only if Peter Berg comes back to direct.

Unknown said...

I think Hancock is terribly underrated. Not a masterpiece of course, and with some cheese here and there, but I thought it was fascinating and features one of the best sequences of 2008 - the run away from the hospital at the end. Yeah, Iron Man and The Dark Knight are better, but Hancock wasn't bad at all, not even mediocre, it is actually in the top 10 superhero movies ever made, probably. Way over both Burton's Batman if you ask me ;)