die another day
george harrison's grave

james bond

Hurray for Chris, keeping the Blog Flame burning!

I haven't seen the new James Bond movie yet. I have seen all the others, though, if that makes me an expert. I love Michelle Yeoh a lot more than Chris does, but I wouldn't give Tomorrow Never Dies 8 on a scale of 10 in my most generous moments. Anyway, I just wanted to respond to Chris' Halle Berry comments.

Halle Berry has a Best Actress Oscar for Monster's Ball and a Best Actress Emmy for Introducing Dorothy Dandridge. She was also brilliant in Jungle Fever, to name another of her films. Chris claims that Halle Berry is doing a bad acting job in Die Another Day. The evidence? She doesn't weigh enough, she doesn't have any muscles, she doesn't look like she is strong enough to do her stunts, she doesn't look like her stunt double, and she doesn't have very many lines.

I have to say, it sounds more like Halle Berry is miscast than she is a bad actress. When I read "You call that acting?!!" I anticipate some juicy rips on Berry's acting chops or lack of same. But there's not a single mention of her acting in Chris' post.

Now, not having seen the movie, I can't say if Halle Berry is any good in it. I like her acting OK, was happy she won an Oscar even though I wouldn't have voted for her, don't generally give her much thought. But she's in the movie for one reason and one reason only: so they can use the shot of her in the orange bikini in the ad campaign. She does that part of the job just fine. Expecting anything else from a James Bond movie seems a bit hopeful to me.

A few years ago, Robin and I watched them all in order, including Casino Royale. Remembering again I haven't seen the new one, here are Steven's fave Bonds:

Best Bond Movies (in chronological order): Dr. No, From Russia With Love, Goldfinger, On Her Majesty's Secret Service
Best Villain: Klaus Maria Brandauer in Never Say Never Again
Best Bond Girls: Ursula Andress, Diana Rigg, Michelle Yeoh
Best Bond: Sean Connery
Most Underrated Bond: Timothy Dalton
Worst Bond Movie: A View to a Kill

As for another movie I haven't seen, Real Women Have Curves, I'll note that Chris' comments, which put "predictable" and "unbelievable" and "acting wasn't exceptional" on one side and "good message" on the other side, didn't make me want to see it very much. If I've got to choose between quality and a good message, I'll take quality.

And, to throw in a couple more items, at home we're watching Sports Night (it's more preachy than I remembered, just as good, though), and tonight we watched Lord of the Rings, which Robin hadn't seen before. This was the new extra-half-hour version that's part of the also-new 4-disc DVD. Won't matter much if you didn't like the movie in the first place, but the picture quality is the best of any DVD I've ever watched; it becomes the new "stick it in the machine to show off our teevee" disc of choice.

I can't shut up! Here's a few more quickies, from recent Netflix rentals (yes, I'll watch anything):

Fallen Angels: lesser Wong Kar-Wai
The King Is Alive: lesser Dogme
Notorious C.H.O.: see above comments about quality and message. Her heart is in the right place, her message is a good one, but with this film, just like the previous one, she's not really very funny. Her timing is crappy, is what I think is the problem. Love her Mom routines, though.
The 'Burbs: I don't get contemporary comedy
Powerpuff Girls Movie: Good for fans; I am one
Dog Soldiers: Obscure recent Scottish werewolf movie, plenty of homages to the Evil Dead films, great gory fun