Every once in a while, I come across a really decent movie. What do I mean by decent? Well, it might be predictable and cliché, but can still be well-acted and have moments which redeem the whole film to me.
This last trip to the library I picked up a movie called Orphan. And it had a few diamonds in its rough.
Yes, it was predictable and cliché. Yes, they went ahead with the OTTBF, as all Hollywood movies seem to. And yes, there was that crappy, stupid, formulaic “Oh the killer’s not quite dead and makes one more lunge for the femme fatale!” moment at the end. And those things DID hurt the story, in my opinion.
But it also had a brilliantly scripted and acted scene in which a mother tells her deaf daughter a bedtime story in ASL. And the beauty of that moment, with a great subtle score and excellent cinematography made for a fantastic bit of celluloid (though I saw it on DVD so there wasn’t any celluloid to rate).
The rest of the movie was set off by bits – the creepy little actress’s performance was good, the tension building over the course of the movie, things like that – but it also fell down a lot. The way the parents fell apart didn’t fly in my book at ALL, and the disagreements they had were less than believable.
But there was that one bit, that one scene, which made the movie worth watching and enjoyable. It immediately endeared the audience to the characters and left them in position to root for the right people.
Another tidbit this weekend was called They Came Back. I picked it up thinking it was a French zombie film. What I found instead was something which held me in rapt attention all the way through.
I kept waiting for the chomp moment, for the horrific gore to spill over the screen, and instead I found a movie which told an interesting story about grief and loss and dealing with it. Very good stuff.
I also watched District 9, which, despite the ridiculous “oppression” statements, turned out to be pretty good, and just a touch sad. Well worth a watch despite the occasional gratuitous gore shot. The actors carried the day on this one.
Just little nuggets of good things found in what might otherwise look like a dung heap. And on that note, because I know how Hollywood is about everything, I am so skeptical about the American remake of Let the Right One In (called Let Me In) due out in October. The OTTBF especially frightens me.
Hope y’all have a great weekend.