Friday, July 16

Movie Face Off!

So, in the past 24 hours, I have seen both Zombieland (yes, I know I'm behind the curve on that one) and Inception (hopefully ahead of the curve, although it wasn't in IMAX or 3-D or whatever other fancy features it comes with). And you know what? There are some interesting parallels between the two. Let's discuss!

Before we begin, though, let's establish what each movie is about. Zombieland is simple--a nation (America) is overrun by zombies. It's up to a fearless foursome (or something like that) to outwit the undead and live happily ever after. Inception is a bit more complex. I couldn't tell what it was about through the trailers that I only half-paid attention to, and even after seeing it I'm not sure if I understand completely. But that's part of the allure of the movie. The (very) basic premise is the ensemble cast bands together to go into people's dreams, and then wreak various types of havoc to try and obtain information.

The first parallel between the two movies is a set of established rules. In Zombieland, these were rules for survival. Things like checking the back seat, wearing seatbelts, and, to keep your sanity, enjoying the little things. Throughout the movie there are about a dozen mentioned, and several more are named via promo. In all, 33 rules (at least it's assumed, since that's the highest number mentioned). Not too shabby. In Inception, meanwhile, the rules are more about what goes on in the dreamland. For example, if you get injured, it causes great physical pain. Much like in the real world. So getting shot in the leg would hurt. Makes sense. But if you die in your dream, you simply wake up. If you were to be shot, you'd actually prefer to have the bullet go into your face instead of your leg. Assuming you wanted to wake up, that is. As the movie goes on, more "rules" are revealed, and they start to get a little more twisted and far-fetched, which of course makes sense in a science-fiction film, and also leads me to my next parallel.

Ridiculousness. Each of these movies gets more ridiculous as it progresses further into its respective plot. In Zombieland, that ridiculousness is meant to be funny, and oh, how it is. Inception's increasing level of absurdity I don't believe is meant to be humorous, but there were scenes I was actually laughing out loud just due to the sheer ludicrousness of what I was witnessing. Spiderman-esque fights, rules that seemed to be made just to tie up loose ends, and that sort of thing. Which is fine, I understand a movie of this nature can't stick completely to standard logic. I think what irritated me the most, though, was how the film took the "it was all just a dream" paradigm and embellished it quite a bit. It just seemed like it was a cop-out sometimes, though. I'm not saying it's a bad movie, and it certainly tickles your brain with its creativity, but some of the fight scenes look borrowed from The Matrix, and actress Marion Cotillard's (she plays DiCaprio's character's wife) accent goes back and forth from Americanized English to her native French. But maybe I'm just nitpicking.

Either way, both of these movies are worth seeing, even though Inception carried on for a little bit longer than it should have, and the ending caused our local tall friend Putzi to say, "That's unbelievable. I'm so mad right now." But the entire movies tosses out misdirection, and juxtaposes reality and the subconscious together, so he shouldn't have been too surprised.

Wow, I don't even know how much of that made sense. I guess that's what I get for trying to type this in a dream, and in that dream I was already within another dream, which was someone else's dream, and...

Joey's Bad Joke of the Day
What can you sit on, brush your teeth with, and eat soup with?
A chair, a toothbrush, and a spoon!


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