Iron Man 2 – yeah, well…

Iron Man 2 (2010) by Jon Favreau

It’s been a while since I have seen it but I still wanted to write something short about it. It was good – and that’s all one can say about it, I guess. It was as good as the first one but not that much different if I remember correctly.

The thing is: I really like Iron Man / Tony Stark. He does not have super-powers, per se, he is a snob, he is a little like Batman. But (and it is one of those huge BUTs that deem capital letters necessary), so, BUT I never liked Batman. Strange, I only found out that I don’t like him when Christian Bale played him the first time. Don’t get me wrong, I have liked Christian Bale since I first saw him in Henry V but I don’t like Batman… he is too serious, takes himself to serious. Tony Stark on the other hand is a snob and he is constantly mocking himself and everybody around him. He’s snarky and cynical. And of course, Robert Downey jr. is a brilliant actor (so brilliant, in fact, that one has to wonder why he is playing a superhero and not Shakespeare).

The cast is great, too. We have Downey and Paltrow (I am not necessarily a fan of Paltrow’s but there are movies where I can stand her and this is one of them), and Scarlett Johansson (always stunning and a good actress) and Samuel L. Jackson – and to see those two together again after The Spirit is really great, they are an unlikely pairing but a good one (and yes, I am aware that The Spirit is quite a silly movie but who says silly is bad – I loved it… and Eva Mendes!), Mickey Rourke, Don Cheadle and Sam Rockwell.

What put me off  a little were the faces of both Mickey Rourke and Garry Shandling. Ouch. Plastic surgery is really a sad admission to one’s vanity and it looks painful. I don’t think that it’s worse with men – or women – I think it is always ill advised. I mean, if you have two noses in your face or are so disfigured you cannot live with yourself, or it is actually affecting your health (women can get serious problems with their back if their boobs are to big and I sympathize) then it is okay but getting older is not something to fret about. We are all getting older – go deal!  And let’s face it there are few women more sexy than Meryl Streep…

Okay, good movie…

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The Invention of Lying – and the birth of all religion

The Invention of Lying (2009) by Matthew Robinson and Ricky Gervais

So, I went to a mystery movie preview last night (that’s when they don’t tell you the movie you are going to watch – it’s less expensive and fun if you do not happen to come across a film with an actor you abhorr, i.e. Tom Cruise). I did it the first time and I must say the concept actually scares me. Back in the days I dreaded going to the movies without knowing what I was going to watch, especially when I was meeting someone. I always wanted to make sure beforehand that I would not be coerced into something I didn’t want to watch. Consequently, going to a movie where I didn’t even know what I was going to watch while already having paid for the ticket is close to a heart attack for me. Just imagine what would happen if I came across a really bad movie.

But I got lucky (with the movie, you perverts!). I remember having seen the trailer once which did not make much of an impression, I guess. But the movie… I mean, just like the next person, I love an English accent and Ricky Gervais certainly has one. But it was not only him, it was the idea:

Imagine a world where nobody can lie – and then there is this average guy who suddenly can. And he tells people lies not only to gain something from it but sometmes just to make them a little happier… a good guy, mainly. Of course, his ability also makes him rich and popular. A fellow we all could be because we would do it for others as much as ourselves…

I loved that the main character sometimes stumbled, that he makes the right decisions when to lie and when not and that he learns when he errs. In the beginning, for example, he tries to lure a woman into bed by telling her the world was going to end if she didn’t have sex with him – and, of course, she believes him – but that was a mistake since she is so hysteric and focused on saving the world that he fakes a phone call with someone to tell him it isn’t necessary anymore – the world is once again save. I also loved that the woman was played by Stephanie March…

Speaking of the cast… we have Ricky Gervais, Jennifer Garner, and Rob Lowe in the leads – and then some: Tina Fey (hilarious), Edward Norton, Jimmi Simpson (as representative of Coca Cola), Jason Bateman, and Philip Seymore Hoffman in small but wonderful roles.

It is interesting to note that before Mark (Gervais) starts lying there seems to be no religion whatsoever. Then he tells his mother about an afterworld while she is dying where everybody gets a mansion and meets all there friends and loved ones. As the nurses and doctor hear it, too, there is an uproar in the community and finally the whole world as Mark invents the “Man in the Sky” who talks to him only and told him about the afterlife. It is really wonderful to see how the people are willing to believe in a higher power that gives them mansions and want to condemn the same power for letting babies die of Aids. A woderfully thoughtful comment on religion.

The movie does not dwell too long on the newness of telling the truth in every situation – it is funny in the beginning but would have been tedious if it was the only thing the movie was about – but rather follows the plot early on. Of course, the plot is about boy meets girl (Jen Garner) and how he is supposed to get her when she wants the best compatible mate to have beautiful kids with, i.e. Rob Lowe. But it is charmingly done and of course, his love-interest comes around (though I think it a little insulting that women seem to only be able to make up their minds at the wedding, in front of all their loved ones… it’s been done often enough now, don’t u think?)

Okay, I liked this one. It’s a comedy that actually deserves to be called comedy.

I blog – it’s what I like to do

I am currently involved in four blogs – one of them is almost over, as is the semester here in Tulane, New Orleans. Another one will end when I am back in Germany, so two left. And this is the one where you will find “movies ‘n’ stuff.”

I love the movies, I love going to a theater, smell the popcorn, drink my Cab yellow, and watch a movie. Any movie, really. Yes, I watch bad ones, too, and I will tell you about them, too. Let’s face it, our taste when it comes to the celluloid screen is not impeccable and sometimes we just happen to sit in a very BAD movie. It happens. Sometimes we sit in a good movie and then there are those in between and beyond.

I will try not to retell, I will try to criticize. I will try not to drool over my favorites, I will try not to break anything if I accidentily should walk into a Tom Cruise-movie (it would be more likely to be kidnapped into one of those than me accidentally walking into one, actually). But I will tell… the good, the bad, the rest.

I am a rather opinionated person and I am not necessarily nice but I also try to be polite and I hope you will grant me the same courtsy if you leave a comment. This said, enjoy the read.