2004-03-25 - 5:29 p.m.
Mystery Men/The Royal Tennenbaums
and now my take on two Ben films I have recently seen (in fact, not more than two days ago):
First, we have 'Mystery Men'. This movie is seriously groovy. I know it didn't exactly get the best reviews, but let me tell you, the way I see it, this film is simply far too cool for those critics to get. It's very funny, providing a plethora of quotable scenes, has great characters and a fun storyline (and we must not forget the glorious sexual humour). 'Mystery Men' does a wonderful job of mocking all those super hero films that seem to be so popular now a days, and while those can be a blast as far as they go, it's highly refreshing in my opinion to see something that is not trying to be a blockbuster (while at the same time giving the subtle apparence that it is). 'Mytsery Men' is by far the coolest "super hero" film I've seen, and it is definitely one of my very favorite films Ben's acted in.
Now, on the completely opposite end of the spectrum, We have 'The Royal Tennebaums'. What can I say about a movie which purports to encourage compashion for our canine brethren, yet glorifies dog fights (or at best, simply shows it to be a somewhat naughty pastimes enjoyed by the michevious yet well meaning)? The transgressions of this film do not end there, however (though in my opinion, that's the worst). For one thing, it co-stars Gwyneth Paltrow, who I have to say, I am not overly fond of (though I could have enjoyed the film more, despite her being in it, had other factors not been present). For another, it is beyond boring. This film feels about two hours longer than it really is. I actually had to take an intermission and go do something more interesting for a while, lest I be lulled into slumber. Furthermore, 'The Royal Tennenbaums' has a serious identity crisis. Is it a comedy or is it a drama? Who can say? I certainly can't. My best assumption is that it's satirical, attempting to mock truly serious drama of a similar nature, but it simply doesn't work, as most films of this satirical genre, though often subtle, are obviously poking fun. While watching 'The Royal Tenenbaums' I seriously did not know half the time whether I was supposed to laugh or cry (which I realize is somewhat cliche, but in this case, very true). Some may be tempted to state that perhaps I did not enjoy this film because I'm not mature enough to understand it, or some such thing, but my feeling is that I didn't enjoy this film simply because it truly sucks. However, I will say one good thing about it; the movie gave Ben a chance to really show his acting ability as I'd never before witnessed, and it confirms my view that he is not simply a two bit comedian who's gotten by on his family name, but a truly talented actor, who deserves to be recognized as such.
Getting - Better