Sunday, December 18, 2005

The Trim Bin #7

- By Wednesday this semester will be a distant memory, and I look forward to writing some reviews I've been putting off in favor of studying or some such foolishness. Look for reviews of The Squid and the Whale, King Kong, and maybe Proof or Syriana (any preference?) soon. Also, Serenity is at the top of my Netflix queue. I promise to be fair.

- Remember the days before DVD, when video was primarily a rental business with lower stakes, and a hit movie would run for months and months? I miss those days - I remember seeing Hook in April 1992 and Who Framed Roger Rabbit at a drive-in a full year after it opened. Back then, there was generally more of a correlation between high grosses and quality - word of mouth mattered. Nowadays, the opening weekend has been elevated to such importance that it's not necessarily the best movie that wins, just the best-marketed.

King Kong
, which made a mere $50 million this weekend, has already been termed a disappointment or a flat-out bomb. I think it was Robert Altman who said that one of the worst things to ever happen to cinema was the dawn of "Top 10" highest-grossing lists on shows like Entertainment Tonight; this is a perfect example of the problem. Peter Jackson made a downright brilliant movie, his best since Heavenly Creatures, but apparently its worth is only quantifiable in popcorn sales. And this is to say nothing for the dozens of worthy movies released every year that weren't as hyped as Kong, that never had a chance. Film is undeniably a business, but unless one has stock in Universal, I don't see why the grosses should overshadow the film itself.

- Love House aired on NBCTC Friday night. Watching our work broadcast with shoddy color balance and lots of noise, I was reminded of how, when I was eight, my career plan was to use Derry, New Hampshire's own WNDS (with meteorologist Al Kaprelian!) as a springboard to filmmaking. I even wrote a letter to Al proposing some ideas for shows - game shows, mysteries, sci-fi, etc. Foamy bastard never wrote me back - you'd think he could at least humor a kid. Anyway, Al, I beat you at your own game.

You can reach Mr. Kaprelian at, if you're so inclined.

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