Tag Archives: Leonardo DiCaprio

The Year End Review: Movies

Let me start off by saying that, if you don’t read this, I won’t hold it against you. I know this list is almost too small to even justifying being written, but I’ve been doing it for a few years now, and as the musical says, “Traaadiiitiooooon!!” I’ll say that I really enjoyed all three of these films and thought they were a cut above the standard A-Team crap we have thrown at us all year long. But still, this list feels a little like it looks the way it does more because of the movies I didn’t see this year rather than the ones I did see. Anyway, keep reading, if you dare!

Inception. It’s nice to see Hollywood taking a chance on an expensive sci-fi flick that actually makes you think, although they probably wouldn’t be if someone like Christopher Nolan weren’t in charge of the whole thing. This one also scores points because it managed to keep Leonardo DiCaprio out of a falling tank, shooting planes out of the sky. It was also one of Ellen Page’s first films that didn’t make me want to hit her. But seriously, folks, although the first half was a little exposition heavy, it was a great story that did a better job of incorporating its action scenes into it than most films. Plus, you can’t go wrong with Tom Hardy.

The Social Network. Everything Aaron Sorkin writes takes place in a sort of heightened reality where people have mountains of raw data and statistics at their fingertips, and almost everything they say is quotable. And if his cocaine habit is the price we have to pay for that, then I’m more than willing to make the sacrifice. I think we all understand that his version of Facebook’s creation was embellished just a little bit, but who cares? We expect that sort of thing, right? Major props to Jesse Eisenberg for snapping out of his Michael Cera funk, and Andrew Garfield, who just might make a proper Spiderman yet.

True Grit. I reviewed this one just a few days ago, so I’m not sure what else I could really add here. I’ll just say that nobody does it like Jeff Bridges. And nobody really does it like Jeff Bridges wearing an eye patch. And why haven’t we seen Matt Damon in more westerns?

I admit that this is a pretty generic list. But it does represent the best of what I saw this year. I don’t get to watch as many movies as I’d like, so some, like The Fighter, Winter’s Bone and Toy Story 3 passed me by. I’d apologize, but none of you are here to read my movie reviews. You check back every week in the vain hope that I’ll start LOSTWATCH!! back up. Well, who knows what 2011 will bring. More movies, definitely. More LOSTWATCH? Definitely maybe.

Can someone tell me what the hell this movie’s about?

On second thought, don’t. I’ll go see it anyway.

“You’re a rat in a maze.”

Hey, everyone! Did you hear the news? Martin Scorsese finally made a really good movie. All I can say is, it’s about time. But seriously, folks, you would think that after so many hits, Scorsese would be due for a real stinker. A movie that’s so predictable and contrived that you leave wishing you’d spent your hard-earned money on Miley Cyrus in I Want it Back. But no, it just hasn’t happened. Some of you may disagree and claim that Bringing Out the Dead with Nicholas Cage fits into this category. Of course, you’d be wrong.

Shutter Island is an adaptation of the Dennis Lehane novel of the same name. Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Ruffalo play federal marshals who are sent to investigate the disappearance of an inmate at a secluded psychiatric facility. Once there, they slowly begin to realize that the purpose of their visit may not be what it seems, and dare I say, nefarious?

Leonardo DiCaprio is to Martin Scorsese what Robert De Niro is to Martin Scorsese. This is the fourth movie the two have made together, and it’s really no surprise why Scorsese likes working with him. He’s a good actor. So much so that thinking of how we used to equate him to Jonathan Taylor Thomas back before his Titanic days just seems silly now. His performance as Teddy Daniels leaves you wondering whether or not he’s the one losing his mind all the way to the end of the film. And while the rest of the cast performes admirably, DiCaprio is the film’s shining star.

Mark Ruffalo as DiCaprio’s partner Chuck Aule and Max von Sydow as the mysterious Dr. Naehring are both welcome additions to the cast, but the roles they play don’t exactly allow them to spread their wings and fly. It was nice however to see Ben Kingsley in a good movie again, rather than some of the garbage he’s been in lately.

The film’s got all the hallmarks of other Scorsese greats. Low camera angles and diffused light really bring parts of this picture to life and show DiCaprio coming undone. While several of the film’s loud gotcha! moments fall a little flat, you’re so drawn into things that you don’t notice it much. At almost two and half hours, you won’t find yourself checking your phone to see what time it is. Well, unless you’re one of those bastard kids who always sits in front of me.

I’ve heard people talking about the movie’s ending. If it’s not a surprise, then people say there was a lot of build-up and ultimately no payoff. If it is a surprise, then people say it wasn’t really because they saw it coming from a mile away. Whether or not you — the naive moviegoer — enjoy it will be entirely due to personal preference, so there’s not a lot I can say about it.

What I can say is that Shutter Island is a film that’s got the entire package. You can look at other movies like this month’s Wolfman and point to things that really could have been handled better. And I do think there’s a difference between personal preferences of what you like and dislike and things that truly could have been done differently. There will be people who don’t like this movie’s ending, but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t good or that it could have been done any better. If the end of the movie had shown DiCaprio kicking down the doors to Ben Kingsley’s office and saying, “That’s it! We’re shuttering down this island! Hehe! Cuff ’em, Chuck,” then you could say that it could have been better handled. But as it is that isn’t the case. Basically all this distills down to the argument that there are too many people out there who don’t recognize good movies when they see them. Film snobbery? Perhaps. True anyway? Definitely.

Shutter Island is a great blend of noir and psychological thriller. It was a film that I found disturbing and heartwrenching and in the end very appealing. Remember in Gangs of New York, Brendan Gleeson’s big club that he marked notches on every time he smashed someone’s head in? Well, this film is just another notch in Martin Scorsese’s big club, and a testament to what a great director he is. While others lose their fire and do things like launch Indiana Jones through the sky in a refrigerator (seriously, WTF?), he’s still pumping out hits. And if they’re half as good as this one, he can keep them coming. A

TRAILER MONDAY

People got their first glimpse of James Cameron’s Avatar at this year’s Comic Con, and people are already complaining that the movie’s aliens and giant robots don’t look real. The question we’re asking is, why is James Cameron putting aliens and giant robots in a live action remake of Once Upon a Forest?

The teaser trailer for Christopher Nolan’s Inception isn’t giving anything about the movie away. I can give you a hint, though. The working title for the film was The Sweaty and Disturbed-Looking Leonardo DiCaprio. Discuss.

If you ask me, it’s about time they made a movie about underage girls falling in love and having crazy sex with zombies. Enough with all of this vampire crap, you know? Wait, there’s nothing like that in Zombieland? Amusement parks? Right. Amusement parks… Wasn’t Sunday’s True Blood great?

5 Things We Love About Movies With Guns – The Departed

This week, we take a look at the movie that finally won Martin Scorsese an Oscar…

1. Cocaine and women.

What is it about the cocaine that makes people want to get on the floor and roll around in it? And as long as you’ve got it, it doesn’t matter how baggy and wrinkled your skin is, women will do anything you ask them to. It helps if you throw the cocaine in their face and tell them to do something humiliating. Movies show us this and we know it to be true.

2. Vera Farmiga

One thing The Departed brought to our attention was the delectable Vera Farmiga. Vera is tasty and spends most of the movie looking adorable (this applies only to The Departed and NOT to some of her other films). I’d gladly feed her Lemon Chiffon Cake at my study group while we discussed the Signet Society.

3. Boston accents.

“Sahgent, we need ahl of youhr undahcovah agents’ names if weah gonah take down Cahstello.” All the majors did a great job learning that crazy mish-mash Bostonians call English, except for Jack Nicholson, who we love so much that he could have filmed all his scenes in his Joker makeup and we wouldn’t have cared.

4. Dignam

Lazio: Without asking for too many details, do you have anyone in with Costello presently?

Dignam: Maybe. Maybe not. Maybe f**k yourself. My theory on Feds is they’re like mushrooms. Feed ’em s**t and keep ’em in the dark. You girls have a good day.

Although he dazzled us in Fear and Planet of the Apes, Mark Wahlberg really broke out as Sgt. Sean Dignam. He reminded us all that the F-word is more funny than it could ever be offensive, and that just when you think the bad guy is going to get away, you can always sneak into his apartment and shoot him in the head. Which brings us to…

5. Getting shot in the head.

Make it stop! Were you rooting for Matt Damon? Leonardo DiCaprio? The black guy from K-Ville? It doesn’t matter, because everybody eventually gets shot in the head! Yes yes, Martin Sheen was dropped from the top of a building, but in the movie’s deleted scenes someone walks past his body and shoots it in the head, and is then immediately shot in the head.

Something we missed? Write us at fuggidup@yahoo.com.