Friday, February 22, 2008

You've come a long way, baby

I hate to be the Netflix evangelist, but their unlimited Online Viewing can be indispensible when snowed in and/or trying to avoid Econ readings. In the past few days, OV also provided key kinds of escapism.
  • Nostalgia. Unfortunately, though, it was nostalgia for the days when my parents made us watch every pre-1965 movie ever made.
    Seven Brides for Seven Brothers is supposed to be a modern/musical take on The Rape of the Sabine Women. It takes place in the Northwest in the late 19th century, which is why I think La Madre foisted it on us in the first place. I hadn't seen it in, like, 15 years.

    Let's just say the gender roles and attitudes are very 1950s. Much like the time I tried to watch the modern/musical take on The Taming of the Shrew(which, strangely, has the same lead actor), I ended up wincing half the time. If I focus on the gender politics, I just get irate, so I won't.

    The songs are not very memorable. However, the choreography is great -- there are really creative dance sequences incorporated into rural tasks like barn-raising and chopping wood. And, like most 1950s musicals, the costumes in the dance scenes are bright and colorful and fun to watch.

  • Movies your friends with vastly different taste recommend. Movies you wouldn't be caught dead watching, except that they have Matthew McConaughey so you find them secretly very appealing.
    Ahem. I actually ended up liking How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days. Not loving it, but liking it well enough. I started watching it wanting to hate it because I don't tend to like cheesy pop romantic comedies, whether they're marketed towards men or women. They're just not my type of flick. (Cheesy historical implausibilities, now....)

  • The plot is kind of a cliche: a women's magazine writer tries, as the title implies, to lose a guy within 10 days of starting to date him, by becoming the nightmare clingy girlfriend. (An aside: I fail to see how that would be allowed. Don't magazines have IRBs?) Her mark, however, happens to make a bet that he can make any woman fall for him within 10 days. Implausibility ensues. But it's funny. Seriously, I thought I would absolutely abhor it, and I ended up laughing out loud half the time. The thing I appreciated most about it, especially after the sexist musical barrage, was that both the male and female leads were tricking each other, so neither was getting hoodwinked more than the other. It usually pisses me off when that happens. But in this one they were equally lying to each other, so, um, I guess that makes it better?

    Kate Hudson was HILARIOUS. And Matthew McConaughey was, well, Matthew McConaughey....

And afterwards I even felt inclined to read 4 chapters of Regulatory Econ! A long way, indeed.

No comments: