Saturday, April 25, 2009

Movie: The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008)

My greatest regret is that I couldn't watch this movie without comparing it to the original, made in 1951. The original was fantastic, given the year it was made. The 2008 version was slightly different. Well, maybe more than slightly. I have tried to think about it without comparing it to the original, and I think it's probably a pretty good movie on its own. I could be terribly wrong, though, because I see that viewers both on Netflix and on IMDB haven't rated it very highly. Of course, there's no way to know whether those people are comparing the two versions or not.

There will be some spoilers, so stop now if you don't want to read them.

First, I wanted to slap the kid silly. What a little shit. My attitude didn't change as the movie went on.

Second, the purpose of Klaatu's visit is slightly different in the new version. He's more hostile. His purpose in the original version was to warn humans, not to destroy them. This is probably the main thing that makes the original better than the remake. The giant robot's purpose is also different, which makes sense because he's there with Klaatu. But if you don't like a hostile Klaatu, then you're not going to like a destructive robot. And I sure didn't like the method of destruction. A zillion tiny "metal" bugs that eat everything? That was just weird.

And the last-minute change of heart of just about everyone was unconvincing. Seems that Klaatu would have had to have seen more than he did to redeem the entire human race.

Another Movie: Howard's End

This movie reminded me of a poorly done version of a "romance novel." It seemed a little choppy at times. The acting was good, but I just didn't like the movie very much. It was surprisingly nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture in 1992, as well as several other categories. I guess I just didn't get it!

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