I partook in this most excellent blogathon last year and it looks like we’re back for round two in 2015! Wendell of Dell on Movies is revisiting the “Against the Crowd” Blogathon – where us film connoisseurs can vent our spleens regarding overrated and underrated films.
Here are the rules if you wish to take part:
1. Pick one movie that “everyone” loves (the more iconic, the better). That movie must have a score of at least 75% on rottentomatoes.com. Tell us why you hate it.
2. Pick one movie that “everyone” hates (the more notorious, the better). That movie must have a score of less than 35% on rottentomatoes.com. Tell us why you love it.
3. Include the tomato meter scores of both movies.
I really didn’t like…
Garden State (2004) is a bit of an interesting one as it was released at a time during my high school experience where everyone was all, “This film is soooo, like, representative of my complex emotions and inner turmoil”. Teenagers, right? There are a couple of things I like about this film, but on the whole, I have decided through repeat viewings that it is so mediocre, contrived and pretentious that my mind can’t really understand it. It is so twee and self-aware that my brain rejects it like it would instinctively reject images of rotten food or giant spiders. I admittedly like a lot of pretentious stuff, but this one is just intolerable to me.
Zach Braff is mumbly to the extreme and Natalie Portman plays a generic manic pixie dream girl type character, both characters displaying an amazing lack of depth. The story bumbles along at a peculiar pace until it eventually reaches a predictable and fairly melodramatic conclusion. Really not a fan!
There are some things I do like about it though. The soundtrack is pretty great with some fitting song choices, as is the composition of some/most of the shots, with some lovely cinematography by Lawrence Sher. But the overall pretentiousness and shoegaziness of it all is just too much.
I really liked…
It blows my mind that Hook (1991) has a Rotten Tomatoes score of 30%. It actually freaks me out and I refuse to believe it, because for me, this is such a beloved childhood classic. I am sure that most people of my generation will know and love this film, which makes me think that there may have been some disillusioned adults reviewing the film at the time, who didn’t quite understand its magic. Who could forget the amazing food fight scene, the one and only Rufio, the creativity of the Neverland scenery, and Peter Pan’s final showdown with the villainous Captain Hook?
Robin Williams is so great in Hook as the busy father who has no time for his children, but finds through his adventures in Neverland a renewed sense of what it is to be a child and to think from the perspectives of his children. This central premise is surrounded by the Peter Pan story, originally told by J. M. Barrie but with significant embellishments. The script can be generally cheesy and filled to the brim with many and varied emotions, but it is brought to life through the talent of Robin Williams, whose natural exuberance shines through at all times. I also love Dustin Hoffman’s performance. He is nearly unrecognisable as Captain Hook, both scary and funny at the same time.
Hook is surprisingly touching and filled with iconic moments. It’s not a perfect film but it’s filled with nostalgia for me. I also completely forgot that Steven Spielberg directed this. He’s definitely made way worse films (cough).
Will you partake in the “Against the Crowd” Blogathon this year? You have until August 21st to post your choices!