As usual over the holidays, I saw a few movies, some of which I wouldn’t have seen had family not been involved:
- Loving is the true story of the couple at the center of Loving v. Virginia, the court case that made interracial marriage legal nationwide. It’s slow-moving, kinda like Drive with the long pauses for silence during dialogue, but otherwise really good, if you’re into that kinda thing. Ruth Negga, Uncle Owen from the Star Wars prequels, Michael Shannon, and for some reason Nick Kroll star (Kroll’s fine, he’s just an odd choice for a serious movie). I didn’t even recognize Uncle Owen until after, he captured “redneck of few words” perfectly. There are older men on the more “rural” part of my family that he could be confused for.
- Allied is kinda meh. Robert Zemeckis seems more interested in making fancy shots with mirrors or with other special effects than in servicing the story or characters (although the ridiculous “rolling the hospital bed out into the streets so Marion Cotillard can give birth in the middle of the streets of London lit by anti-aircraft fire during the Blitz” scene might have been in the script). The elaborate shots are distracting in a lot of places. There’s a pretty decent story in there somewhere, but I think it needed a different director and someone besides Brad Pitt. I’m normally fine with him, but a lot of the heavy lifting is on him to sell first that he really falls in love with this woman, second that he refuses to believe she’s a traitor, and third that he’s starting to doubt her.
- Mascots is a Netflix original that’s been out for a while, but I just got around to it. Another of those Christopher Guest things where a bunch of people are really passionate about something not many people are passionate about, in this case, sports mascots. A lot of the usual suspects appear: Fred Willard, Ed Begley Jr., Parker Posey, John Michael Higgins, Bob Balaban, Jane Lynch, Stiffler’s mom, and Guest himself. I was mostly fascinated by Susan Yeagley who is a perfectly nice looking That Girl (she was the Sweetums lady on Parks and Rec), and here she’s a little bit white trash-y, and I found her really hot. Anyway, overall not the best of Guest’s improv-y movies, but there are quite a few laughs.