Burning the Midnight Celluloid

What a year, huh? There were some phenomenal movies that came out in 2011. Tree of Life, Hugo, The Interrupters … and then there were movies that people actually saw! Green Lantern, Transformers 3, Conan the Barbarian … and then there were the movies that were good AND people saw them!

I found myself popping into the local theater more than once (more like a dozen times) to catch the latest Hollywood thrill ride as it premiered in town at a midnight showing over the course of the past year. This made for many a wondrous and exciting experience. Among them were X-Men: First Class, Super 8, and my surprise of the year, Rise of the Planet of the Apes. That was a movie I dismissed initially, solely based on the superfluity of prepositions in its title. I’m just glad they didn’t add another definite article at the beginning of it. Three “thes” in the name of any movie would be a death knell for its box office for sure.

Well, 2011 is gone, baby, gone now. So we say goodbye to a slew of superhero movies, a sparkly vampire movie, and much too much 3-D. In 2012, we will have a slew of superhero movies, a sparkly vampire movie, and again, much too much 3-D. At least we have the option of seeing those 3-D movies in 2-D.

[pullquote]“¦the anticipation is the tantalizing and ecstatic period of contemplation on how great and wonderful a movie could be.[/pullquote]

Also, it’s a blessing that this will be the last in the sparkly vampire saga. Though I’m sure someone at Summit Entertainment will figure out a way to keep making movies about those blood-drinking fiends who hang out in high schools for centuries at a time and make googly eyes at depressed teenage girls.

And there will be more superhero movies. I accept this as an axiom. It’s like Benjamin Franklin said: The only things certain in life are death, taxes, and superhero movies. Granted, this year, we’ll see the Avengers movie, which is a culmination of the two Iron Man movies, the two Hulk movies, the Thor movie, and the Captain America film, working their way toward a climactic narrative in a more ambitious fashion than most Hollywood endeavors even come close to. Granted, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the thing will be any good. It just means the producers over at Marvel Studios have set their sights pretty high with this one.

Rule of Acquisition #62: The riskier the road, the greater the profit.

Ah, 2012. What possibilities, eh? For many movies, this is my favorite time. Better than the memory of seeing them, and mostly better than the deed of seeing the movie itself, the anticipation is the tantalizing and ecstatic period of contemplation on how great and wonderful a movie could be. It is the all-hype appetizer to the full experience.

Seeing teasers and trailers for what is to come whets your movie appetite, and you wonder and daydream about how good a movie The Avengers really will be. You think on what surprises Christopher Nolan could possibly have in store in The Dark Knight Rises. You wonder if Kate Beckinsale will really get naked in Underworld: Awakening. And what the hell is Prometheus all about, anyway? Is Ridley Scott really making a prequel to a 30-some-odd-year-old movie?

Well, I’ve made my New Year’s resolution already, and it will find me at at least 20 midnight movies this coming year. Yes, that’s a lot, but there’s nothing like it, as I’ve said before. And with the brain-busting blockbusters (try saying that three times fast) that are coming out this year, I don’t think I’ll be hard-pressed to find enough flicks to entertain me as they come out this spring and summer.

But I’m also looking forward to finding the little indie films this coming year. Yes, James Brown appreciates a movie that doesn’t have big explosions and transmogrifying aliens. I appreciate a character drama as much as the next man “” especially if it has a little bit of nudity in it.

What can I say? I am what I am.

A Wicked Thought

You ever think about Wizard of Oz from the Wicked Witch’s perspective? I know there’s a whole musical and book about it, but even if you just look at the 1939 classic film, Dorothy starts everything. She kills the witch’s sister and takes her shoes. By what right did she have those ruby slippers in the first place? Those should have gone to the lady’s next of kin, i.e., the Wicked Witch of the West.  Just an observation.

Anyway, that’s all for me for now. Next month, we abandon the month named for the two-faced Roman god of beginnings and endings, Janus, and take a look at the most romantic month of all, which, and I’m sure this is just a coincidence, is also the shortest. Hmmmm”¦

Resolve to do good, my preciouses! 

About James Brown

James Brown
James Brown is not related, affiliated, or representative to or of the estate of the Godfather of Soul. Any similarity is purely coincidental.

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