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Week in Review: 7/6/14

Movies I Watched in the Last Week

1) Extracted - Did you guys see my review of Anna?  This movie is basically the same plot, only done better.  It's a low-budget production, so there's some issues with the visuals and presentation, and the script could've used quite a bit of streamlining, but even so - I thought this was a fairly compelling movie.  Good one to check out on Netflix sometime.

My Rating:  3.5 / 5

2) Robocop (2014) - I'm impressed that they managed to keep some good satire in their remake instead of just settling for a bunch of stupid computer-animated gunfights.  In fact, my only complaints about this movie are all centered around the computer-animated gunfight crap.  I would even have been fine if they completely dropped the idea of Murphy trying to solve his murder for the sake of exploring corporate shenanigans.  Basically, this remake is two parts clever satire on consumer electronics and American excess, and one part dull cop drama.  Overall, I'd recommend it.

My Rating:  4 / 5

3) Contagion - I'm waffling on whether or not to give this a perfect 5.  There are a few plot threads that don't feel fully realized, but it's a damn good movie.  It's rare to see a film that tries to tackle global-scale issues and actually gives you the right sense of magnitude.  There were no moments in the movie when it felt like there wasn't a horrible, extinction-level event happening.

Plus, Jude Law gives one of the most face-punchingly convincing performances as an asshole that I've ever seen.  That may not sound like a good thing at first, but you really have to congratulate a guy who can be likable in one movie and then go into something like this where you just want to wrap your hands around his throat and squeeze the douche out of him.

My Rating:  4.5 / 5

4) Unhung Hero - S'okay.  I think this one would have received a lot better of a reception if they advertised it as a "mockumentary."  Some scenes are so obviously staged - the part where he sneaks a camera into a sauna and gets "beaten up," for example - that if they were real, it means this guy is living in some kind of hyper reality.  Even so, there's some funny moments here and there and the overall message is a good one.  I'll give it a pass.

My Rating:  3 / 5

Total: 4 Movies

Minutes I Spent Writing in the Last Week

1) Born Loser - About one hour of writing.  Current draft length: 54,000 words.

Total: 1 Hour

The Winner:  Movies...

Even on a 3-Day Weekend, I only got in one hour of good work.  Sadness.