Saturday, March 06, 2010

Double Movie Review: “Have You Heard About the Morgans?” and “Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief” (Reruns from Another Universe...)

My oh my... how time flies...

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There always something comforting with familiarity. And “Have You Heard About the Morgans?” the latest vehicle coasting itself on the still-remaining wattage of soon-to-be-has-been Hugh Grant, and the i’m-soon-going-to-be-too-old-to-play-Carrie-Bradshaw Sarah Jessica Parker, gives us familiarity in spades.

Hugh Grant pulls out his not-so-tired-but-all-too-familiar rabbit out of his proverbial hat by playing the puppy who ate the canary but knows he is trying to atone for it by simply being British. This is right opposite Sarah Jessica Parker, who plays a successful, but neurotic and wounded cosmopolitan career woman, whose name surprisingly isn’t Carrie Bradshaw. 
"...the movie was so dumbed down, that ...Sam Elliot, ...isn’t even hiding his boredom and disdain for the script and story..."
The above estranged couple witness a murder while trying to desperately reconcile, then is put in a witness protection program that throws them in some totally town in middle America. This then automatically allows writer/director Marc Lawrence a convenient excuse to throw in rejected jokes he must have from stolen tossed out transcripts of Billy Crystal’s “City Slickers 2” (yes, the bad sequel...). The movie was so dumbed down, that the i’ve-done-much-better-shit-than-this Sam Elliot, who plays the town’s sheriff and witness protector isn’t even hiding his boredom and disdain for the script and story. Of course, the still-hot-at-57 Mary Steenburgen, who plays Elliot’s golden-hearted cowboy wife does her usual effective wallpaper role to practically no effect. Kind of like those pretty vegetables cut up nicely like flowers in Chinese restos. They look nice, make the dish seems more appetizing with them on the side, but as soon as you start digging in, first thing you do is throw those funky things off the plate.

Hugh actually supposedly went sleeping around (in the movie, i mean...), which caused the rift between him and Carrie Bradshaw Sarah Jessica Parker’s character. But living in cowboy country seems to have dulled not only Carrie Bradshaw Sarah Jessica Parker’s brain, but has also made her more forgiving. So they live happily ever after.

Were you expecting anything else?

“Percy Jackson...”

Here’s how it may have happened... Chris Columbus just finished his 2,387th rerun of his old “Clash of the Titans” betamax tape, caught clips of “Narnia” movies on HBO while hopping to the bathroom, then took a whiff of whatever the hell he whiffs, but probably wasn’t what he was whiffing when he made “Home Alone” way back in 1990, nor his Harry Potter movies... then started work on adapting Rick Riordan’s book, “Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief."
"...i couldn't shake off the feeling that i’m watching another “Harry Potter” instalment..."
To be fair, i think the movie’s limitations stem from the limitations set by its source material. And no, i haven’t read the book, nor do i plan to. But while the whole thing seems like a supposedly refreshingly modern take on sliding classic Greek mythology into some “High School Musical/Glee” demographic, i couldn't shake off the feeling that i’m watching another “Harry Potter” instalment.

And while I’m sure Pierce Brosnan just got himself a whole lifetime’s worth of “i’m a total stud” jokes after being depicted as a centaur (half-human, half-horse mythological creature... and yes, the bottom half is the horse-half...), i think he wasn’t properly utilized... but i guess i belong in an age when Mr. Brosnan was always the leading guy, and not some “Qui Gon Jinn” type of character. So sue me... Uma Thurman as Medusa was a funny turn... and while Thurman’s deadpan delivery already reached its peak back in “The Avengers,” it still seems to be fine form... and yes, she’s still beautiful even when decapitated.

I found the “brewing romance” between Percy and Athena’s supposed daughter Annabeth to be a bit forced. Or maybe i’m just getting way too old for this...

Yeah... i probably am...

‘catch you later...

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