Leo Dicaprio Can Act? Since When?

Hola folks -
So I have been slacking on the comics lately, so I thought I’d give you a few spoiler-less reviews of movies and tv I’ve been watching.

One of the worst movies I’ve seen this year was “Shutter Island” starring Leonardo DiCaprio, screenplay by Latea Kalogridias based off the book by Denis Lehane, and directed by Martin Scorsese.

The movie seemed a waste of a decent cast, with Leo DiCaprio finally finding some acting chops, Mark Ruffalo doing his ‘underplay the role’ thing, and Ben Kingsley being his usual brilliant self. The entire cast, from the extras on up, were amazing. But even the superb acting couldn’t carry the film, which suffers from a poorly written script.
Nothing could save Shutter Island from the convoluted yet completely predictable plot.  Ten minutes into it, I guessed the ending – I mean, it’s a guy going to an insane asylum for the weekend, where creepy things are happening and nothing makes sense. Anyone who has ever seen a mystery movie or any thriller of the last century should be able to tell you exactly what direction the film is headed in. It’s a story that’s been told time and time again, which is fine in the entertainment world as long as the story is told well. Unfortunately with ‘Shutter Island,’ the story is jumbled with useless facts in an attempt to draw out the conclusion, and throw the audience off the path to the obvious ending. It’s a two and a half hour film that could have easily been edited to ninety minutes; in my opinion, a shorter cut would have made this an enjoyable movie. The plot would have still been predictable, but at least I would have enjoyed that time instead of wanting to gouge my eyes out from boredom.
I suggest you Netflix it, but don’t watch it. Just snap the DVD in two when it shows up in your mailbox, as a favor to the rest of the world.

I went and saw “Inception” yesterday, written and directed by Christopher Nolan (best known from the new Batman franchise), and starring Leo Dicaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page, and Ken Watanabe. For the first time in a very long time, I actually enjoyed myself at the movies.
As you can tell from the commercials, the effects are awesome. I enjoyed the visual aspects of the film, mainly because it actually looked like a film – not a cartoon. While the majority of screen time is spent in “dreamland,” the effects weren’t overdone; I never thought about CGI or blue screens or any of those things, because everything looked so real.  Cities looked like cities; beaches looked like beaches, but only with the slight twistedness that we’ve experienced during REM sleep.
The writing is stellar – I was actually impressed, which is a big deal because I’m a picky snob. The screenplay is smart, the characters remain likable even when you want to smack the crap out of them, and the plot is believable, leaving no question unanswered (that is, if you are paying attention to the dialogue and the flow of events).
And DUDE! Joseph Gordon-Levitt actually looked and sounded like he finally hit puberty. Awesome. And the costume designer needs an award, because his suits were fabulous. Mr. G-L looks very tasty, and is actually acting (even thought the part isn’t that much of a stretch).
note: The picture of JGL and Claudia Schiffer below has absolutely nothing to do with the movie – but it was too cool of a pic not to share. Grin

Leo also puts forth a decent performance – enough that I actually forgot that he was Leo Dicaprio. Ken Watanabe is, well – Ken Watanabe. Most of you will remember him from “The Last Samurai” and “Batman Begins.” He’s cool, he’s smooth, and makes you want to hang out with him – if you weren’t afraid he’d stab you.
So, “Inception” is worth going to the theater to see.

In the realm of television, if you aren’t watching “Louie”,  you’re seriously missing out. The show is written, directed, produced, and edited by comedian Louis C.K. The show has by far some of the funniest and most uncomfortable moments in television history. Check it out on Tuesdays on FX.

Also check out “Luther”, a dark psychological crime drama on BBC starring Ibris Elba as a police detective in London. The writing on this show is great, and I actually gasped and shouted while watching. Plus, Ibris is fine as hell, and the theme song is by Massive Attack.

Ok, I think that’s it. Check back next week for reviews and updates on random comics I promise I will finish reading…

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