I got to cheat a little this week and see something I would have watched before most of you have the chance to watch it. When I was back in high school, I somehow managed to get on a mailing list and would get passes to screenings fairly regularly. I guess I was in their valued demographic at the time, something I’ve long since moved beyond. I’m not quite sure then how I ended up being offered passes for The Croods — maybe they assumed by my age that I’d have kids who’d be interested — but I hope more such opportunities come my way. Yeah, it’s a marketing tool, but it’s still neat to get in on something ahead of the curve, and at no cost other than time.
From the looks of things, time won’t be the only price you pay if you go see Admissions. I love me some Tina Fey, but it seems she’s best served when she has a hand in the material she’s performing. Baby Mama and Date Night were both modest hits, in the kindest sense of the word, but I don’t think those are anything that she’s going to hang on the wall and point to with a whole lot of pride. Meanwhile, Paul Rudd keeps trying to break through and just can’t seem to catch on, regardless of how loved he is in some circles. Don’t see this changing things much though.
I’ve read some reviews that have positively gushed over Spring Breakers, and I just can’t seem to find myself mustering much enthusiasm over it. There’s an overall unpleasantness to it that’s kept it at arm’s length for me. I suppose that’s part of the point, as a few reviews have made mention of how it’s more a critique of our aimless youth culture than the seeming celebration the poster would suggest. But nothing about this film has really got me motivated to see it. Most likely a failing on my part rather than the film’s, but hey, it’s called “What I’d Watch,” not “What I Should Watch,” so there you go.
And now here I go getting excited about a film that most likely is not going to be anywhere close to good, but is probably going to be a blast nevertheless. Say good-bye to my credibility. But really, who wouldn’t want to see Gerard Butler crack open some terrorist heads to play Die Hard in the White House? So yeah, Olympus Has Fallen may not be as good as Die Hard, but honestly, if it gets in spitting distance of Under Siege, I’ll be happy. I’ve always liked Butler, even if his taste in roles has been pretty horrid, and after having overdosed on The West Wing for the past month, seeing the White House get destroyed may be a great palate cleanser.
Finally, even though I’ve already seen it — and perhaps because of it — The Croods takes the top spot this week. I’m not ready to stick it up there with the Pixar pantheon, and it’s maybe a notch or two below How to Train Your Dragon as DreamWorks’ best, but it’s still a totally enjoyable film with some great visuals and humor. Honestly, I’ve read some reviews that seem more derived from what the reviewer expected to see based on the trailers — which did the film no favors — than what was actually up on the screen. But that’s what tends to happen with animated films that aren’t from Pixar. You’re like that undefeated college football team that was un-ranked in the pre-season trying to get into the national championship game; you’re in a hole before you even started.