You know you're in for a mind-bendy metapalooza when you go to see a Charlie Kaufman movie. Since capturing the hearts of critics with his dizzying dark comedy Being John Malkovich nearly a decade ago, Kaufman has been fairly consistent in his subject matter, bringing his distinctly dreamy surrealism to meditations on love, identity, art, fame and mortality. His latest, Synecdoche, New York, is a continuation of this odyssey, though infinitely bleaker and, if possible, even more complex to unravel than his previous offerings. As a friend put it perfectly when we left the two-hours-plus screening, by comparison it makes Adaptation seem like Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.
When we heard that America Ferrera's TV show Ugly Betty was getting cancelled, we were happy for her, because that meant the talented actress would be able to go off and do something a little more challenging and less goofy than Betty. At the very least, the beautiful Ferrera would no longer be saddled with braces, big glasses and garish clothes. But her latest movie doesn't give us a lot of hope for the future. In the snoozingly titled Our Family Wedding, Ferrera plays a bride-to-be whose impending marriage is threatened by her father's rivalry with the father of the groom, who is Black, and also Forest Whitaker. Hilarity ensues, grandmothers faint and Whitaker and Regina King have a cake fight. Basically, the movie looks like a rehash of several other terrible films (Guess Who?, The In-Laws), and we had hoped that Ferrera was better than that. Here are some things we'd like to see her do in the future, all of which we might actually be interested in watching, unlike her latest movie.
It seems that I owe MWoP blogger Odie Henderson a dollar. Odie swore to me that Pineapple Express would not beat The Dark Knight at the box office this weekend, that in fact Batman would stay perched on his high gargoyle until Tropic Thunder came along. While that latter part remains to be seen, it does seem like my estimation of Seth Rogen and James Franco as Bat-breakers on a par with any of Arkham Asylum's inmates was incorrect.