Sunday, May 27, 2007

Yo Ho, Yo Ho

Do you ever have that experience when you go to a theater and you get so wrapped up in the coming attractions trailers that you forget what movie you came to see? And then the feature presentation begins and you've been so overpowered by the seductively engineered previews that you're disappointed when you remember what film you're really sitting down to view? That happens to me all. the. time.

Youngest is a yuge "Pirates of the Caribbean" fan. Youngest is 11. Almost 12 now. Talk about target demographic! He has been dying for the third installment to come out.

My brother is a good uncle. After spending the day teaching Youngest how to pour and level cement (and I'm so very pleased to report that Youngest caught right on and did a fantastic job!) my brother decided a good end-of-a-long-hard-day treat would be a trip to the theater to see Pirates III. Number One Son and I opted to go along for the ride. Though why we chose that option is a little beyond my understanding as we both hated Pirates II. Let me amend that. I can't accurately say I hated it. All 4 times I've tried to watch it I have slept through it. I'll just say it didn't do a lot to hold my interest. So why was I going to see chapter 3?

Settled into our theater seats, lights partially dimmed, audience partially quieted, the previews began. First up was the teaser for "Die Hard Umpteen." Surprisingly, it looks like it would be worth seeing. On the big screen. Maybe not a worthy home rental. Some of the stunts were outrageous and creative and humorous.

Number One and I think a lot alike. He asked me how old Bruce Willis is. He was wondering how many more times ole Bruce could get away with dying so hard. And I had been sitting there thinking how great it is for Bruce and his kids that he was able to sock away another 15 or 20 mil. for retirement.

Next up was the latest installment of what has become the "National Treasure" series. "National Treasure: Book of Secrets" is the newest offering. That announcer voice began by making reference to the death of President Abraham Lincoln as the most famous assassination in history. Number One and I exchanged glances. We would argue that Caesar's assassination fills the top spot on the most famous list. But that's just us.

Did I mention Number One and I think a lot alike? At this point we were both asking ourselves whether all the summer movies would be freshly ground rehashes or whether somebody could come up with an original idea. The answer immediately jumped at us in the form of a promo for yet another penguin movie. Followed by the preview for an animated movie by the makers of "Meet the Robinsons." And "Cars." And "The Incredibles." And "Finding Nemo." And "Monsters Inc." Side of toast with that hash?

Then came that slick, alluring sneak peek at "Ocean's 13." What is it about the Ocean's movies that, though I know it will be a sinful waste of my $9, I can't wait for the release? It's the music that pulls me in. Okay, and maybe some of the hunky actors. But mostly it's the music.

And then I got lost pondering the theory my older kids have about movie music and how we would be ambivalent towards characters and story lines without the score to direct our feelings. I notice this phenomenon especially when watching trailers. That's why I get so sucked in. The images and ideas move too quickly to be subdued by reflective thought and the music is unabashedly manipulative--invariably building to a dramatic climax. By the second or third preview I find myself completely lost in movie world. This explains my habit of forgetting what film I really came to see.

That's the reason that when the lights fully dimmed and the audience fully quieted and I rummaged through the files of my memory I thought to myself, "Oh crap. We're here to see Pirates III."

In spite of my pessimism, it turned out to be not so bad! I enjoyed this picture. I only drifted off into other realms of thought during the drawn out battle scene towards the end. There were some surprises--a few things I didn't see coming. Many of the CG images were spectacular--particularly the starry night and the crabs. And my favorite quote nimbly tumbled from the lips of Jack Sparrow: "Calypso, as a woman, has been scorned. Fury like, hell hath no."

Youngest loved it. Number One and I enjoyed ourselves even at the nearly 3 hour length of it. My brother was numb with boredom and could not wait for the credits to roll. Three out of four. Not so bad.


whitenoise said...

I took my gang on Friday. We were worried that it might be a little too much for the almost-five-year-old. She did some eye-covering, but fell asleep for much of it.

The almost-7 and almost-13 loved it. I thought it was too long and that the crosses and double-crosses were a little too convoluted.

All in all, hate to say it, but I came away feeling disappointed. Too bad, because it should have been a lot of fun.

Kristin said...

I've been hearing lots of folks complain about the convolution of the plot. How sweet that your little one slept through it : ) I think my brother would have joined her ranks if he hadn't been trying to hard to be a good sport for the sake of my youngest : )

Without giving anything away--I have to say my favorite moment of the film was that one brief flicker of real emotion that crossed Jack's face near the end. The only moment in the *whole* 3 hours that any of the actors had anything even remotely near a touching, natural emotion. My two cents : )

Mary said...

You're a better woman than I am, Kristin to have subjected yourself to the torturous experience of Pirates III. I was bored silly by Pirates II. The first one wasn't so bad, but that second one was interminable. I get so tired as well of watching stick figures like Keira Knightly posing as warriors when a stiff wind could pick them up and deposit them conveniently at their enemies feet. Could this woman even *lift* her sword in real life?

Sorry, got off on a tangent.

I'm glad there were parts of the film you enjoyed. I know your youngest had a wonderful time with you and the others.

Mary - shamefully, but eagerly, awaiting the release of both the Die Hard and Ocean flick.

whitenoise said...

Us country-mouseketeers are waiting for new content.... ;-)

Kristin said...

"country-mousketeers" awww, you made my day : )

A couple things are percolating . . . Haven't had much time lately.

CheekierMeSly said...

Indeed, we country-mouseketeers are bereft! Take it from me - objects at rest tend to stay at rest. n' stuff.
(tsk, tsk, whitenoise ... looks like I should ask Grammar Girl to do an episode on We vs. Us, eh? "Colour", my *ss!)

whitenoise said...

Which colour? And, brush or roller?

(Yeah, I saw the comma. Eats, Shoots, and Leaves, and all that. Us back-woods, rednecks ain't as dumb as we looks...)

Influencebad said...

Just wanted to say that I definitely hear you when you talked about watching previews then being disappointed when the feature presentation actually starts. ^_^ That happens to me every single time I go to the theater. Except for ONE time. When I went to see '300' (greatest action movie ever made, BTW) I was so excited to be seeing 300 that I didn't care about any of the previews. ^_^

Still haven't seen Pirates. I'm trying to decide if I'll just wait until it comes out on video. I loved the first one, but was so brutally disappointed in the second one that I go back and forth about whether I even care about seeing the third.