Woody Allen’s Whatever Works and JJ Abrams’ Star Trek IMAX
I was lucky enough last week to get into a sneak preview of Woody Allen‘s latest film, a collaboration with Larry David, Whatever Works. This was a much anticipated joining of Larry David‘s George Costanza/Curb Your Enthusiasm style of comedy with Woody Allen‘s classic New York City storytelling.
While I enjoyed Allen’s Match Point, his more recent films centering in Europe have fallen short, but with Whatever Works, Allen returns to his native New York and in turn returns to form, delivering a wonderfully funny and quirky film that follows the latter life of a limping genious physisist (Larry David). There is a scene or two that is somewhat predictable, but there were many belly laughs for me and I wholeheartedly recommend this film to anyone looking for Allen at his best behind the camera as writer/director. The duo of David and Allen break a few film conventions here and it feels like a return to Annie Hall form, it is very well done.
Now to Star Trek, first off let me just say, I know this is a late review of the new JJ Abrams Star Trek movie, but I have spent most of 2009 in Grenada where this film was unavailable in theaters, so I haven’t had much opportunity to see this latest JJ Abrams film.
There is a lot about this film that really bugged me. I have never really been a big JJ Abrams fan and his overall filming style just seems to rub me the wrong way. I don’t know if it was the excessive and unnecessary lens flares, the wild and off kilter camera angels, maybe it was seeing the beautiful Winona Ryder play the role of Spock’s mother, it could have been all of these things, but whatever it was, something got under my skin with this film.
Now that I’ve gotten my gripes out of the way… I had a great time with this film. Even with all these things knawing at me in the back of my mind, this film is just a hell of a lot of fun time. As someone who grew up watching Star Trek reruns, the homages to the old series, like Captain Pike, his wheelchair, the fate of the classic red shirt and many many more tips of the hat were great fun. I was exteremly happy with the main character casting as well, placing Zachary Quinto (Spock), Karl Urban (Bones), Zoe Saldana (Uhura), Simon Pegg (Scotty), John Cho (Sulu), and Anton Yelchin (Chekov, by the way, how many times can they script in V-words for this kid to say? It’s great.) in the main rolls were all great choices. It was also great to see Eric Bana completely melt away in his portrayal of Nero. I don’t know how much I liked Chris Pine as James T. Kirk, but that might just be because no one can out Shatner, William Shatner.
Another positive aspect JJ Abrams brings to his films is an extremely interesting conception of alien creatures, the scenes on the ice planet were visually stunning. So, it’s a bit late, but I would definately recommend that any sci-fi fan go out and check out this latest film, especially since there is no way that this is the final installment for this new Star Trek and even though I could do without the lens flares, I am looking forward to the next installment.
No comments yet.