Thursday, November 30, 2006

Daniel Clowes is a genius

Ghost World
Rating: 9.98

Daniel Clowes is a genius. How's that for a compliment? He really really is. Ghost World is basically the story of two female friends, played by Thora Birch and Scarlett Johansen (right at the start of her popularity) who are trying to figure out what to do with themselves after high school. They are anything but mainstream, but even that description seems too cliche. They are also growing apart as friends, as Enid (Thora) is the more, um, weird and detached of the two. She hooks up with Steve Buscemi, who is more than twice her age, and even weirder and more detached. The results leave her questioning where she is going and what she is doing. Don't we all. The best part of this film are the side characters. Like the guy who likes to hang out at the local Kwiki Mart drinking a 40 and practicing his nun chucks. Hilarious. The book is not an exact adaptation of the wonderful graphic novel it's based on, but, regardless, it's a must see for anyone who finds humor in the minutiae of everyday life.

Art School Confidential
Rating: 7.0

This one's not as good as Ghost World, but worth seeing. Anyone who's attended art school, dated someone who has attended art school, or even hung around an art school knows that there is humor in the whole "I care not for society therefore I rebel." attitude. Turns out people are the same, no matter what school you attend.

Jerome is a freshman at some nameless art school. He encounters drawing class model Audrey and becomes obsessed with her pretty early in the film. He feels she is his muse, and uses her to create what he believes is beauty. However, no one else seems to notice, and instead the school fixates on the popular guy's lame creations of pop art knockoffs. Meanwhile there's some guy on the loose who is strangling young female students. Soon Jerome decides to use this backdrop to play into the absurdity of what is recognized as art, with some predictable consequences. Like Ghost World, the side characters make the movie interesting. For example, John Malkovich is Jerome's self absorbed art teacher. And My Name is Earl's Ethan Suplee plays Jerome's flim student roommate who is obsessed with making a documentary of the serial killer. It's especially worth watching if you enjoyed the graphic novel.

Warning: There is nudity. Not that it matters, right?

Be afraid! Be very afraid!......of global warming

An Inconvenient Truth
Rating: 6.0

OK, this isn't one to choose for your Friday night date movie, unless you and your date are both AL Gore fans. An Inconvenient Truth is basically a documentary about the threat of global told by Al Gore. The film is mostly Gore speaking to an audience about why they need to act NOW about this crisis. Now, you may or may not be an Al Gore fan. But the evidence he presents sure does make it hard not to be scared for the future of our planet. The one thing he neglects to speak in length about is what exactly we can do about it. He spends a lot more time explaining the new temperature graph or chart he has on the screen. For that reason, I didn't find his movie that satisfying. However, it's hard not to rate it over 5, since it is such an important topic.