As we all ease ourselves into the weekend, it is perhaps appropriate that I take a look at three very different movies, all of which are available for rental (or purchase) on DVD.
None of these films is nearly as epic as Cloverfield, nor do any of them come with animated animals like the upcoming Kung-Fu Panda, but they each have a little something special to offer all the movie fans in the audience.
The three flicks being reviewed today are The Omen, Hard Candy, and Idiocracy.
The Omen is yet another in a long history of horror movies that combine the paradoxical cuteness of children with the fury and fear associated with the Devil. Even though I am not a Christian myself, I totally dig movies that dive into religion and address the issues of good versus evil. The premise is that the young boy above has been possessed by some sort of demonic spirit. Ironically, the name of the child is Damien. While this movie does touch upon the occult and there are a couple of moments that might make you jump, there just aren’t enough thrills or insight in this film to make it worthwhile. The anticlimactic conclusion is particularly disappointing.
Hard Candy is a seriously disturbing movie. It stars Ellen Page of Juno fame, but don’t expect her character to be quite as whimsical. Hard Candy approaches the topics of child pornography and child molestation, with Page’s character trapping a man who she believes is guilty of both (the promotional poster has a girl in a red hood standing in the middle of a bear trap). She goes so far as to take the man hostage and threaten to castrate him herself. The subject matter is clearly taboo, but this film is incredibly thought-provoking. You may or may not like it, but one thing is for sure: you’ll be talking about Hard Candy the next day. Highly recommended.
Idiocracy is the quirky creation of Mike Judge, the same man that brought us King of the Hill, Office Space, and Beavis and Butthead. In Idiocracy, a remarkably average soldier is cryogenically frozen and they neglect to unfreeze him at the end of the experiment. He wakes up 500 years in the future in a world where everyone has gone stupid. All the “smart” people in the world pursued their educations and their careers to the point where they failed to procreate. All the “dumb” people, however, did it like rabbits and reproduced in monumental numbers. As a result, this remarkably average soldier awakens as the world’s smartest man. The humor is crude (a future television show is called “Ow! My Balls!”) and the story isn’t the best, but the message portrayed in Idiocracy is one that we should all take to heart.