I have always found 2010 a more satisfying movie experience than 2001, which I get the impression you're supposed to like so's to not be thought of as a pleb who didn't do film studies in college. Yes it's great as a bit of film-making, but it's cold, soulless and bleak, with 2010 condescending to its audience by trying to make you care about what happens to its characters. The bit with the monoliths swallowing Jupiter shit me up when I was a nipper, and as an adult I found the Cold War trappings to actually lend the film a kind of alternate-reality whimsy it didn't have at the time. Not sure where SBT's getting 'sultry Russkies' from, either, as apart from a female crewmember who shows up scared shitless at one point and then pretty much sticks to the background for the rest of the film, there's only Helen Mirren and she seems more of a stereotypically pragmatic Soviet officer (a traditionally male role) who's well aware of the one thing most people tend to overlook about the Cold War - that the Soviets were simply the other superpower
and not actually our enemies.
The most recent films I can recall seeing are Tangled
, Never let Me Go
and Masters of the Universe
. Never Let Me Go looks great, but (and I shan't spoil the specifics of the story for anyone who hasn't seen it as it's worth a gander) asks too much of its audience in letting a lot of obvious and important questions go unanswered, not least "what does Joe Bloggs make of that
situation?" in a world where it's 2011 and people still don't approve of genetically modified food
. These are called 'wallbangers' in the trade, and usually denote some sticking-point in logic so huge it spoils the rest of the story, and the abandonment of logic for emotional manipulation falls rather flat for me when the rest of the film is so devoid of warmth or anything approaching personality in the main characters. For others this might not be an issue.
Masters is a great bit of camp, though admittedly little to do with the originating franchise. It stars Tom Paris from Star Trek Voyager, one of the annoying ones from Friends, one of the Universal Soldiers, Bruce Willis' wife from Last Boy Scout, the principal of Marty McFly's school in Back to the Future, her with the wonky eyes from They Live, and Frank Langella doing the impossible by playing Skeletor both too campy and yet somehow not campy enough at the same time. It's a dumb as fuck film, but really hard to dislike given its main failings aren't so much the story as instances of ambition outstretching the film's effects budget and the cast's abilities as thespians. Innocent fun, though, and not nearly as homoerotic as you might
Tangled is a good movie, but very, very firmly aimed at young girls as a collective marketing demographic. Some spectacular use of 3D here and there help it, but you get the impression that the script isn't quite filling in the holes you expect it to, with the lead couple not entirely convincing and the male lead not showing anything to support his later heel/face turn beyond that being what you expect of the film at that point.
I'd mention The American, too, but I nodded off a couple times during it and probably missed if I was right about that serial killer in the background being Clooney's character
, but I nodded off during it and felt that worth mentioning. Seemed alright, though.