Dumb fun while avoiding the summer sun

August 7, 2006

I have been on a sort of vacation the last few days. I visited an old friend in Cleveland, and we decided to kill some time at the old second run theater, trying to avoid the recent burning heatwave. It’s fifty cent tuesdays so we checked out some flicks that we probably would never see for more than fifty cents. All in all, it was good fun and relaxing.

The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0463985/)

Put your brain on cruise control! (I couldn’t wait to say that) The second return of the male adolescent, testosterone fueled franchise brings faster cars, furious racing, and foreign women. This time around Paul Walker didn’t even join up, perhaps a sign of this series’ decline (hopefully). In any case, the movie provides some thrills, and I was actually impressed to see that the racing seemed mostly real – I had thought there would be gratuitous computer effects.

The movie is ridiculous with the American protagonist’s heavy southern twang and his Japanese nemesis: a punk nephew of a Yakuza boss. I laughed a little when I saw the Yakuza gangsters looking disgruntled while holding bats and chains. But that’s not what we came to see right? The “drifting” or tire-damaging slides of the cars was pretty exciting, and in the end worth two quarters of entertainment.

Poseidon (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0409182/)

While not “boatloads” of fun, Poseidon provided periodic “waves” of entertainment (Don’t hate me for saying that).  It’s good to see Kurt Russell run around again, and Emmy Rossum is a pretty eyeful herself.  The movie has all the usual dangers, flames, rising water, tiny suffocating passages, deep chasms, electricity, etc., and it’s all on one boat.  It’s exciting to see these passengers try to escape, and it’s a quick paced ride as the movie doesn’t drag a la Titanic and other disaster flicks.  Although I enjoyed Poseidon moreso than Tokyo Drift (I don’t care for cars much), I can see many people seeing it the other way around.  Poseidon is the old school mindless action, and it’s done right with a name like Wolfgang Petersen helming the project.  Dripping with computer effects, the movie is pretty fun to watch.  Like Tokyo Drift, it’s basically harmless loud noises and flashing lights to pass some time.

2.5 – 3 Japanese import models sinking in the ocean out of 5

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