Tag Archives: J.J. Abrams

Armageddon (1998)

Michael Bay has survived every epithet in the Movie Critic’s Mean Word Handbook. We’ve called him a “hack” and a “bullshit artist.” We’ve called him “the Devil,” “the Antichrist,” and even honored him with the title “American Uwe Boll.” All of these characterizations are false, missing the quintessence of Bay. In their rush to (rightly) condemn the man’s aesthetic failings, critics have miss the essential and obvious point: Like a great many evil things, Bay is first and foremost a creature of the late 1990s, an artistic distillation of that time, with all the glory and the horror that implies. Continue reading Armageddon (1998)

Star Trek (2009)

It's the Enterprise...kinda, sorta.I knew this would happen, if for no other reason than that this is the eleventh motion picture in the Star Trek franchise/canon.

Good Trekies will know exactly what I mean by this broad, sweeping generalization. Ever since William Shatner ran Star Trek V into the ground odd-numbered entries in the series have always been looked upon with suspicion, if not outright derision. I suspect The Final Frontier is itself responsible for this prejudice, but no matter. Tonight’s entry reaffirms its basis in fact, along with all of my worst expectations. {More}

Cloverfield (2008)

I feel remiss letting the one big budget, theatrically released daikaiju movie of 2008 pass by without comment. I have no illusions about the utility of these comments, however. Every fan on the Internet has already seen the film and come down fo’ it or again’ it. Instead, I plan to cut a path straight through the ambivalent center. My hope is this vantage point with throw Cloverfield‘s good and bad sides into stark relief allowing us to have fun. This is, after all, supposed to be entertainment. Not the Second Coming of Godzilla. Not the Third Coming of the Blair Witch (God help us if it is). Cloverfield is neither of those things, in spite (or perhaps because) of the fact that it was probably sold as such.

“Probably,” hell. This is one of those movies where you can almost hear the producer making his pitch over the first reel, no commentary track required: “Okay…it’s Godzilla meets The Blair Witch Project…with creepy bugs thrown in for good measure. And I’ll do it all for under twenty-five million. I’m telling you, we can’t lose.” Unlike the film’s characters. {More}