March 17, 2008

Lenten Movie Picks

The Lenten season need not be limited to watching the very very long The Ten Commandments
by Cecile B. Demile (Did I spell that right?) with your family. In these important days of the Lord's life, it wouldn't hurt to be entertained and have a little laughter.

Oh God! (1977)
It's the first God-related comedy I've watched in childhood, and it has some pretty funny lines. But to tell you the truth, I've forgotten a bit about the movie's story, so I got IMDb to help me:
"Jerry, a assistant grocery manager (John Denver) is approached by God to help spread his message. Reluctant at first, Jerry finally ends up in a court case involving the slander of a popular evangelist."

Funny Quotes:

"It's true. People have trouble remembering My Words. Moses had such a bad memory I had to give him tablets."
"Jerry Landers: I don't even go to any church!
God: Neither do I."

It spawned a few sequels, but... I dunno. I haven't watched them yet.

Bruce Almighty (2003)
There's a chance that you've already watched this, but it's still funny 5 years later. This is definitely the predecessor of the less funny (READ: Horrible) Evan Almighty in case you forgot, but at least it proves a saying that goes somehow like, The first one's always the best.

Oh yeah, story. It's about a guy who works at a news station called Bruce. When he fails to get the position for anchorman, he blames God. So, God meets him in the form of Morgan Freeman and gives him his powers to let him see if he can do any better. He realizes that being the alpha-omega isn't easy, because he has to contend with prayers and whatnot.

Evan Almighty (2007)
OK, maybe I said that it is horrible. But in another sense, the movie's lesson is hard to ignore, as well as its main reference. I mean, the first thing that drew me into watching it is actually Steve Carell who in the first movie was merely a rival.

Anyway, this modern re-telling of Noah's Ark has Evan Baxter, former news anchor, being elected Senator. When Morgan Freeman appears as God again, things in his life screw up because he has to build an ark for the imminent flood. He asks for the people to join him inside, but they think he's crazy (won't we all?). The animals are all set though.

Too bad. There was a bit of comic potential there, but it just didn't cut it. The message is what makes me recommend it though.

One thing you shouldn't watch
Death Note (Anime)
Yes, yes, I've said in Friendster that one guilty pleasure of mine was the rare anime. But hey, I can't blame my sister for being the source of all the Anime in the house (she had an Anime addiction similar to Caryl years ago, and though her interest has waned, she still likes watching it occasionally).

But anyway, it infuses Japanese mythology (the so-called Death Gods, see, that's why you shouldn't watch this during Lent) with modern life.

If you already didn't hear about it when Caryl got her notebook during the exchange of gifts, it's about this guy named uhhh..., what was that? Light? (Ewww) who is an ace in academics and picks up this black notebook plainly titled "Death Note". There are instructions inside, and after reading them, he tries to test if it really works, or if it's just something like chain mail. He writes the name of a criminal on it, and 40 seconds after that, the criminal dies.

Of course, he need a name and a face for the death to take effect, and well, there are definitely a lot of criminals being featured on TV. The police notices that the criminals dying all die in one particular manner- cardiac arrest/heart attack, so they suspect that one person is behind all this. But who? Well, they got this person who lacks sleep called L to help them out. He too comes up with a series of experiments to know how people get killed, and concludes that it's via paranormal means.

This results in a race of wits between the two smart-asses that's surprisingly tense, surprisingly, effectively thrilling and, dare I even say it? A-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a................................ never mind. I'm not watching it anymore, though. Scout's honor. (And in how many months will I watch another Anime? Hmmm.... maybe next year.)

UNRELATED: Play review- Romance In D
We watched it on the last day of showing, and we were lucky.

In a nutshell: Romance-comedies of late may be very predictable, and even though the play almost falls in that category, the comedy part is very much present, and the romance part, a bit late (at least in its lead stars).

I've always loved watching plays, especially comedies performed by Repertory Philippines. However, this comedy is infused with a romantic aspect, and though the audience was going all "Ayeeeeeee" or "Uuyyyyy" when they kissed and rolled around the floor (no really), I think they (the audience) did it jokingly, because I thought it was... a bit late (IT WAS IN THE SECOND ACT FOR PETE'S SAKE!).

Still, you'll love the play for its cast of quirky characters. There's Charles the single musicologist, Isabel the frustrated poet (whose marriage is in shambles), and Charles' mom and Isabel's dad. Yes, that's all of them. And how do they all fit together, you say? Well, it's about Isabel moving in to this apartment. And because she smelled something that came from her oven (gas leak), she checked it. Luckily, before catastrophe occurred, she heard Charles playing his classical tunes loudly next door, so she goes to his room to ask if he can quiet down. Well, he would call 911 because he smelled the gas leak and this happening would essentially save the frustrated poet's life.

But, she still acts like a crazy person, which is why she always visits a psychiatrist (who doesn't appear), especially since her marriage is a bit off. This is why her father, who is visiting for 2 weeks, is staying with her... to cheer her up.

She eventually goes next door to thank Charles and the mutualism starts there.

The play is also all about happy endings since Charles' mother also falls for Isabel's father.

So yeah, it's a bit of a feel good play, but it's not without its humor. Sadly, you can't see the play anymore, since that last part was pretty priceless!

Rating: 7/10 (It's not as L.O.L. as Caught In The Net which was, what?, a hundred years ago???, but the humor's still there. It's pretty predictable however, but at least it's not Hamlet!)

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