Movie – Zero Dark Thirty: A

zero dark thirtyA
Bigalow captures all the changing politics around the hunt for Bin Laden with detail and intelligence. Even some minor characters seem developed and real. It starts with depictions of torture that manage to avoid sensationalism without making them trivial. It ends with a gripping attack on the infamous compound. The journey between those points didn’t disappoint.

Movie – Coriolanus: B+

I understand wanting to choose a Shakespeare play other than the popular ones, but Coriolanus isn’t the Bard’s best work, at least not in a modern context. The actors were all at their best however, delivering that wonderful Shakespearean dialog perfectly. I think I would’ve preferred the original Ancient Roman setting, since the story is so focused on the politics and government workings of that time, translating poorly to present day.

Movie – Tree of Life: D

As often is the case for me, I didn’t get the hype. Nothing profound was shown, and certainly not stated. The beginning was like a watching a demo reel of IMAX films on space and dinosaurs overlaid with whispered poetry that sounded like a wrist-cutting high-schooler. (Actual lines: “I cry to you. My soul. My son. Hear us.”) Then we’re treated to a bland tale of a boy hating his father told with minimal dialog and artistic camera work, broken up with hyper-symbolic images of Sean Penn wondering (and wandering) existentially. Pretentious and uninteresting. It was nice to see some scenes set in Houston though.

Movie – The Help: B

Certainly nothing profound, but it flowed with that ease movies of the subject seem to have. Most of the central characters seemed fully imagined, but most of the antagonists were quite flat, though perhaps mocking in this intentionality. Good performances but nothing outstanding.