Best of the Decade Marathon UpdateThe 40-Year-Old Virgin
Another eye-opener. Last time I saw this film it was just after Knocked Up came out, when the Judd Apatow style was spreading like a virus. I watched the Director's Cut and was let down by the slack pacing and obvious improvisation. These are the most negative aspects of the Apatow style, and you find that laziness on all the bro-mances that followed, with characters seemingly created on the spot. Apatow himself is NOT excluded.
I began my look back at 40-Year-Old Virgin certain that it would not hold up. That all those bad habits would drag down the film. But it was not the case at all. I feel confident saying this film is a modern comedy classic, definitely funnier than The Hangover (which I did enjoy a lot.) I was surprised by the control on display here. Yes, there's a lot of improv, but it's carefully crafted within the story. It feels like it belongs and isn't just actors trying to crack each other up. There's a scene where Paul Rudd brings Carell a big box of porn and you feel two characters are having a conversation, not two actors playing types.
I enjoy Seth Rogan and Paul Rudd, but they've never given better comedy performances that they do here. Nowadays, they're like Eddie Murphy, believing that their improv gifts will lift a lazy script. And sometimes, that's the case. But they're so much stronger with good material supporting them. (I say that as a general rule, knowing that the most obvious bit of improv - "You know how I know you're gay" - is Rudd and Rogan's best scene.)
And what happened to Romany Malco, who is just as funny as the other 3 guys here?
I strongly advise those of you who think Apatow has ruined the modern comedy with a lack of ambition during the prep stage, take another look at this film to see how good it is when done right. I wish he would do the same.There are a handful of films that could rehash a never-ending debate about the film's quality. I don't want to say too much about them. Lost in Translation
I think Lost in Translation has one of the widest spreads of opinion, from All Time Top 100 love to outright venom. I think it's an excellent mood piece with top notch cinematography, editing and music.
I hesitate to post this, but here's my take on the film... Sofia Coppola is not as good of a director as Hou Hsiao-hsien, but Lost in Translation is better than any of the HHH films I've seen.The Dark Knight
One of the most discussed movies in our Spoiler Thread. There are many, many great sequences. The film takes a dip in its final section, with the two boats and that bat sonar confusing the action. It's not the best Chris Nolan film this decade because it's not the best Batman film this decade. Heath Ledger's performance is one of the Top 5 of the decade.
...and it's not as good as The 40-Year-Old Virgin.
My Current List...
99. The 40-Year-Old Virgin
100. The Dark Knight
101. Whale Rider
102. Interstella 5555
103. Dirty Pretty Things
104. O Brother, Where Art Thou?
106. Lost in Translation
107. Blade II
109. X2: X-Men United
I'm still waiting for JSA to arrive, so I've had to jump ahead in the meantime. Stay Tuned for...Hustle & Flow
Into The Wild