This week’s Showdown is between two senior citizens. It’s the Old Man and the Sea versus The Old Man whose in pain when he pees. Seriously, that’s the best I could do with that. Once again, it looks like we have another match up where one of the supposed best movies of the year goes against one of the most ridiculous flicks of the year. I’ll let you decide if the one with “Jackass presents…” in the title is the better cinematic choice.
All is Lost
In All is Lost, Robert Redford is enjoying his time sailing in the ocean all by his lonesome. In a bizarre circumstance, his boat crashes into an adrift shipping container and starts taking on water. The experienced sailor jumps into action to repair his ship and eventually find refuge from the elements that don’t seem to let up.
The interesting part about All is Lost is how realistic Redford’s situation feels and how his response to the disasters is never overplayed, but just feel like instinct for him. To keep up with the realism, Redford doesn’t think aloud or talk himself through a situation. He is silent nearly the entire movie, maybe saying 10 lines throughout the film. Instead of talking an audience through his grievances, you can see the emotions in Redford’s eyes and face. While I’ve never been a huge fan of most of Redford’s work, this movie proves his acting prowess. Few actors could display the nuanced expressions needed to carry a nearly 2 hour film.
Even Sandra Bullock had the benefit of beautiful visuals and George Clooney to help move Gravity along. Redford only has his clearly aging body and the vast expanse of the unforgiving ocean.
This is the drifting movie that many people were expecting of Gravity. That said, it isn’t meant for general audiences. It purposely tests your patience as Redford secures the ship and goes through menial tasks that don’t seem worth your time as a movie audience. Once again, it adds to the realism.
If you’re like me and are terrified of the ocean, seeing this movie will do you no favors. The ocean in this movie is nearly animalistic in its torment of the sailor. Beyond the visuals of the intense storms, this isn’t the type of beautiful movie that Life of Pi is. It’s not even a movie that needs to be seen in the theater. Whether you see this movie on the big screen or at home, the enjoyment will be the same. The reason to see this on the big screen is to see Redford’s performance before he’s nominated for Best Actor.
All is Lost isn’t quite the best movie of the year. However, for as little that happens, it manages to be fascinating as you watch a man deal with his mortality.
Jackass presents Bad Grandpa
For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Jackass crew, all you need to know is that they are a group of misfit best friends who have become wealthy injuring themselves (on camera) on purpose for 20 years now. They released 3 successful movies filled with footage of bizarre stunts, dudity and general moronic behavior. But… they’ve always been good for a guilty pleasure laugh.
In the first scripted Jackass movie, Bad Grandpa, Johnny Knoxville play Irving. 86 year old Irving is looking forward to a life of sexual freedom now that his wife has died. His estranged daughter, on her way to jail, leaves her son with Irving and requests that he is taken to his deadbeat father a few states away. Thus begins the road trip and sketches played before unsuspecting bystanders.
While it’s full of shock value, nothing about Bad Grandpa will surprise you. You won’t be surprised that its rife with scatalogical humor, prosthetics and vulgar language. This movie is straight up “Bro comedy,” meant for the lowest common denominator. I must admit, I gut-laughed 3 times in Bad Grandpa, but they humor stopped just as quickly as it started.
The weirdest aspects of Bad Grandpa were the scripted moments between Irving and his grandson. In a movie that relies on the candid reactions of those being pranked, it spends all too much time trying to make us feel a link between these two actors. Anytime it’s just the grandpa and grandson on screen, the movie comes to a dead standstill. Why this movie tries to pull the Curly Sue ending is beyond me.
This movie is for audience who didn’t think This is the End was quite dirty enough. On the positive side, the grandson is perfectly cast. Also, the conclusion of the movie takes place during the best child pageant ever. Skip this movie unless you’re a bro and want some cheap, guilty laughs.