And I am back with “For Your Renting Pleasure,” a supposed-to-be-weekly post that made it maybe 2 weeks tops before fizzling out. My bad. For those of you who don’t remember this is basically a compilation post of movies I watched that week of the non-new-release variety, whether they be rentals, watched through the Netflix instant queue, or what have you. This week we’ve got Last Night (2010), Wind Chill (2007), and The Good Guy (2009).
Last Night (2010)
Drawn in thanks to the cast headed my Sam Worthington and Keira Knightley, Last Night follows these two as they play a married couple during a weekend that could potentially alter their relationship from now on. With the temptation of adultery coming to both in the form of an old love to Knightley (played by Guillaume Canet) and co-worker sharing a business trip with Worthington (played by Eva Mendes), a strong factor in whether or not this film will appeal to you is just how strong your opinion of infidelity is. Personally I spent the whole film thinking “No! No! Don’t do it! Don’t do it! Remember your marriage! You love each other! Don’t do it!” and scowling at the mere presence of those providing the temptation, but the truth to the story and relationships, and the sadness of realizing this truth, kept me from hating it on a moral standpoint. Also, something that I cannot say for many films of this sort that this one managed to pull off was that in the end I really wasn’t sure as to what future I wanted for these characters because it is debatable as to which relationship is right for them.
Final Grade: B-
One thing that most actors’ resumes have in common is the inclusion of a horror film that may or may not have great potential. This is exactly what Wind Chill is for Emily Blunt, but what started out as something I was going to write off became something that I quite enjoyed for its creepiness, great use of a small set, and characters. The story follows two college students (Blunt and Ashton Holmes) as they drive home for Christmas break, taking a questionable “shortcut.” What starts as a horrible idea due to the snow covered road and lack of fellow cars traveling this stretch of forested land quickly becomes an “I told you so” moment when they have an accident that they cannot drive out of. While stranded on this stretch of forgotten road, they must deal with suspicion between the two (since they are strangers and not exactly people I would be best friends with on a good day), a -30 or so wind chill, and recurring memories of sorts haunting this valley.
The biggest selling point for this one is that the set up and story feel a lot like a premise for an early episode of Buffy, and will remind you as such post accident, minus her slaying and pun fu, of course. So if you were a fan of the show, I would definitely give this one a chance.
Final Grade: B-
Yet another classic romantic comedy set up of a girl (Alexis Bledel) in a relationship with a guy (Scott Porter) who may or may not be a good person, only to meet another guy (Bryan Greenberg) who likes her and she may start to feel something for as well, but she is still in a relationship so things can’t happen. The one thing this film does have going for it on this front is that Greenberg is adorable and is definitely someone the female romcom fans can cheer for because he is not a complete dbag like a lot of the other males in the film. With that in mind, the supporting cast is nothing to care for as both the male and female lead in the couple have a group of friends of their own, though the characters and dialog probably hinders any ability they had to shine in the moments they have on screen. And some of the girls have annoying voices…
The biggest compliment I can give The Good Guy is that though bringing comparisons of an in-film book to the story of the movie is nothing new, it does speak to how the first scene (which comes later in the film timeline wise) sets up an assumed understanding as to how the film will get there, though as we watch it, what we assume is obviously not the truth, and roles reverse in a sense.
Final Grade: C- (AKA consider watching it only if you have nothing else to watch because it is on the instant queue, and thus free)