Top 5 Movies On Earth (that I’ve seen so far)…(this year)
Thus far, only Jared and John have put up their misguided lists, so I will confine my derogatory comments to their choices and assume that Brian’s picks will be typically horrific.  That being said, both John and Jared should correct their post names to “How Many Mediocre Movies Can We Pick?”.  The answer in both cases is at least two.  Unfortunately, at this time I can’t comment on District 9, nor Moon.  But I will give each of them the benefit of the doubt, as those are two movies I am looking forward to seeing.
However, before I repudiate their claims of greatness (for some of their movie picks…not themselves…that would be ridiculous even for them), I’ll give mine:
1.  Inglourious Basterds
I love me some Quentin Tarantino.  That being said, while I really enjoyed this movie (even more after thinking about it for a while), I wish there would have been more of the actual Basterds.  I can’t wait to see the uncut version.
2.  The Hangover
Best bachelor-party-in-Vegas movie of the year.  And easily the funniest movie of the year thus far.  Zach Galifianakis was hilarious and I’m thrilled that this movie has caused him to be recognized and signed on a variety of new films.  I still think the film trailed off at the end, and I still wish Heather Grahms’ character was better developed, but it was a good movie.
3.  (500) Days of Summer
I really enjoyed this movie.  It was slightly less funny than I expected, but the story more than made up for it.  The only real problem I had with it was that some of the cool pieces of the movie went just a little…longer than they should have.  They were stretched too much.  For example, the dancing scene.  Excellent scene, great device, but it went just far enough with the blue bird to over stay it’s welcome.
4.  Sunshine Cleaning
Fun, quirky, and Amy Adams…what more do you need?
5.  Star Trek
I hate that I like this movie.  I’m looking forward to it getting bumped off the list.  Please Hollywood, put out some good movies in the next month or two.
Honorable Mentions:  Taken & Coraline
Now, on to the Why I Am The Only Grouch To Have Any Taste segment of our show.  As all of you readers out there (so, pretty much my fellow Grouches) have noticed by now, my colleagues (and I use that term loosely) have been proclaiming the merits of Up and I Love You, Man.  Don’t drink the Kool-Aid.  Both of these were OK movies that completely underwhelmed.
After all their hype, I couldn’t believe the lack of humor in I Love You, Man.   It actually reminded me of Death at a Funeral – short bursts of hilarity sparsely spread throughout a plodding, unfunny plot populated with actually decent characters.  Some thoughts:
The Good
Paul Rudd:  I agree with my fellow Grouches that Paul Rudd has really impressed me in his leading man roles.  I hope to see more of him – just in better movies.  I actually liked him better in Role Models than in this.
Jaime Presley:  I thought she nailed this part.  Every scene with her in it was improved because of her.  One of the few comedic elements in the movie that was actually under-utilized.
Jason Seagal: He has really impressed me in his last couple of outings.  Forgetting Sarah Marshall was one of my favorite movies last year and held up under repeat viewings – no small feat in itself.
Rush montage
The wedding party
Paul Rudd’s constant, horrible nicknames.
The Bad
Paul Rudd’s constant weird accents:  What was up with that?  It was sort of funny once.  The rest of the times it was worse than boring.
The constant abbreviations and “slang” terms:  Never-ending.  Never funny.
Extremely slow to develop.  It’s actually surprising how long they took on developing unnecessary elements and how little they took in developing more interesting aspects.
The Ugly
The lack of chemistry between characters, the lack of plot development, and the inharmonious/cobbled together feel of the entire movie.
Conclusions
Just looking over the past thoughts, one might question why I have such animosity towards the film.  And my response is: I don’t.  I did like the film.  It was fine.  Fine.  There were some good/great characters and a couple of laughs, but it never really came together for me.  How do you not hit it out of the park when you have Rush figured so prominently and you cast The Hulk?
Jared, John, and Brian need to re-examine their definitions of “comedy.”
As for Up, it unfortunately falls into the same category as the other recent Pixar movie – decent movie, but fails to live up to the bar of The Incredibles and Finding Nemo.  Not only that, because it’s Pixar, it developed an enormous amount of undeserved hype.  By far the best part of the movie was the talking dog and squirrel jokes.  Unfortunately, that lasts all of 5 minutes.
All in all, two decent movies that should only be in someone’s Top 5 if they’ve only seen 5 movies this year.

Thus far, only Jared and John have put up their misguided lists, so I will confine my derogatory comments to their choices and assume that Brian’s picks will be typically horrific.  That being said, both John and Jared should correct their post names to “How Many Mediocre Movies Can We Pick?”.  The answer in both cases is at least two.  Unfortunately, at this time, I can’t comment on District 9, nor Moon.  But I will give each of them the benefit of the doubt, as those are two movies I am looking forward to seeing.

However, before I repudiate their claims of greatness (for some of their movie picks…not themselves…that would be ridiculous even for them), I’ll give mine:

1.  Inglourious Basterds

I love me some Quentin Tarantino.  That being said, while I really enjoyed this movie (even more after thinking about it for a while), I wish there would have been more of the actual Basterds.  I can’t wait to see the uncut version.

2.  The Hangover

Best bachelor-party-in-Vegas movie of the year.  And easily the funniest movie of the year thus far.  Zach Galifianakis was hilarious and I’m thrilled that this movie has caused him to be recognized and signed on a variety of new films.  I still think the film trailed off at the end, and I still wish Heather Grahms’ character was better developed, but it was a good movie.  I think the combination of Zach, Ed, and Tyson (along with a naked chinese man) pushed it up into the #2 spot.

3.  (500) Days of Summer

I really enjoyed this movie.  It was slightly less funny than I expected, but the story more than made up for it.  The only real problem I had with it was that some of the cool pieces of the movie went just a little…longer than they should have.  They were stretched too much.  For example, the dancing scene.  Excellent scene, great device, but it went just far enough with the blue bird to over stay it’s welcome.

4.  Sunshine Cleaning

Fun, quirky, and Amy Adams…what more do you need?

5.  Star Trek

John is still wrong.  But, I hate that I like this movie.  I’m looking forward to it getting bumped off the list.  Please Hollywood, put out some good movies in the next month or two.

Honorable Mentions:  Taken & Coraline

Now, on to the Why I Am The Only Grouch To Have Any Taste segment of our show.  As all of you readers out there (so, pretty much my fellow Grouches) have noticed by now, my colleagues (and I use that term loosely) have been proclaiming the merits of Up and I Love You, Man.  Don’t drink the Kool-Aid.  Both of these were OK movies that completely underwhelmed.

After all their hype, I couldn’t believe the lack of humor in I Love You, Man.   It actually reminded me of Death at a Funeral – short bursts of hilarity sparsely spread throughout a plodding, unfunny plot populated with actually decent characters.  Some thoughts:

The Good

Paul Rudd:  I agree with my fellow Grouches that Paul Rudd has really impressed me in his leading man roles.  I hope to see more of him – just in better movies.  I actually liked him better in Role Models than in this.

Jaime Presley:  I thought she nailed this part.  Every scene with her in it was improved because of her.  One of the few comedic elements in the movie that was actually under-utilized.

Jason Seagal: He has really impressed me in his last couple of outings.  Forgetting Sarah Marshall was one of my favorite movies last year and held up under repeat viewings – no small feat in itself.

Rush montage

The wedding party

The Hulk

Paul Rudd’s constant, horrible nicknames.

The Bad

Paul Rudd’s constant weird accents:  What was up with that?  It was sort of funny once.  The rest of the times it was worse than boring.

The constant abbreviations and “slang” terms:  Never-ending.  Never funny.

Extremely slow to develop.  It’s actually surprising how long they took on developing unnecessary elements and how little they took in developing more interesting aspects.

The Ugly

The lack of chemistry between characters, the lack of plot development, and the inharmonious/cobbled together feel of the entire movie.

Conclusions

Just looking over the past thoughts, one might question why I have such animosity towards the film.  And my response is: I don’t.  I did like the film.  It was fine.  Fine.  There were some good/great characters and a couple of laughs, but it never really came together for me.  How do you not hit it out of the park when you have Rush figured so prominently and you cast The Hulk?

Jared, John, and Brian need to re-examine their definitions of “comedy.”

As for Up, it unfortunately falls into the same category as the other recent Pixar movie – decent movie, but fails to live up to the bar of The Incredibles and Finding Nemo.  Not only that, because it’s Pixar, it developed an enormous amount of undeserved hype.  By far the best part of the movie was the talking dog and squirrel jokes.  Unfortunately, that lasts all of 5 minutes.

All in all, two decent movies that should only be in someone’s Top 5 if they’ve only seen 5 movies this year.

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