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Movies worth seeing
December 4, 2012 - April Diodato
After I went to see “The Dark Knight Rises” in July, I didn't go to the movies for nearly three months. There was absolutely nothing to see, not anything a mediocre movie to settle for on a particularly boring evening. While scouring the ratings on RottenTomatoes.com, my go-to source for reviews, nearly everything I had yet to see was certified God-awful. It was one of the longest droughts I can remember.
Now, I know that most people don't go to the movies as often as I do, but since it is one of my favorite pastimes, I'm typically there with my popcorn, bottled water and contraband candy at least once per month. That is why I really look forward to the late fall and early winter, a veritable gold mine for great films. Awards season is approaching, the limited-release gems are finally expanding into local theaters, and there are more movies to see than there is free time. My list of must-see movies far exceeds my theater-going budget, and if yours does as well, here's a helpful guide to what's worth seeing out the films I've been able to catch over the past month or so:
“Argo” – SEE IT. This was one of the best movies I've seen all year. If a film about a CIA agent helping American diplomats trapped in Iran in the midst of a revolution doesn't sound like your cup of tea, see it anyway. It's a wonderful mix of heart-pounding excitement and just enough comedy, with tremendous performances from the whole cast. I'm not a big fan of director/star Ben Affleck, but I had a change of heart after “Argo.” It's playing at the Fredonia Opera House tonight as part of its cinema series at 7:30 p.m.
“Skyfall” – SEE IT (if you're a James Bond fan). Bond's attitude about meaningful romantic relationships could be summed up as “take it or leave it, emphasis on 'leave it'” – and that's pretty much the way I feel about him. At my boyfriend's insistence, we did go to see it (he suffered through “Liz and Dick” with me the following weekend), and it's about as entertaining as a Bond movie as ever going to be. It was very stylish, with breathtaking cinematography and plenty of thrills; it doesn't hurt that Daniel Craig looks so good in a slim-cut suit. Unfortunately, the movie's treatment of women is appalling – Bond can make mistakes, but if a female makes an error, she shouldn't be allowed to do her job anymore. “Move over, honey, this is man's work.”
“Flight” – RENT IT. The marketing campaign for this movie wasn't quite right. The trailer for “Flight” focuses on a heroic pilot's (Denzel Washington) deft handling of a horrific plane crash, despite his hard-partying lifestyle, but that's not really the point -- it's actually an emotional drama about a man's struggle with alcoholism. “Flight” is a film worth seeing, if you adjust your expectations.
“Pitch Perfect” – RENT IT. If you enjoy “Glee” and Rebel Wilson, you'll probably like “Pitch Perfect,” an enjoyable comedy about two sparring a cappella groups. There are some good songs and enough laughs, but the ending is just awful.
“The Master” – SKIP IT. You'll probably be hearing about this movie as the nominations begin, but I found this movie to be unwatchable – it's just Oscar bait. We all rest assured that Philip Seymour Hoffman and Joaquin Phoenix can act without sparing two-and-a-half hours of our lives on this drivel.