Take This Waltz
Directed by Sarah Polley
I wasn't sure what I was walking into when I got advance screening tickets to this film. Set in Toronto, Take This Waltz is about a young married woman who is infatuated with her neighbor across the street and endeavors to start an affair with him. Though played with great aplomb by Michelle Williams, there was something...icky about the whole scenario. At it's heart, though, lies the truth: that even shiny new things get old. And while I couldn't drag my attention away from the inconsistencies of the Toronto geographical landscape (sorry, Sarah, I know you live here, too), I did leave the theater thinking about the movie a lot, which is rare for me.
Directed by Steven Soderbergh
It's kind of an old, but classic tale: a male stripper with a heart of gold just needs a chance to turn his life around. Meanwhile, he guides a lost nineteen-year-old thrust (ahem) into the world of male stripping and plays Obi-Wan to his er...very naked Luke. (Yeah, that went somewhere I didn't want to go...) I went for the sheer camp factor, but instead, I got some really awesome dance performances. The sexual aspect of the stripping faded quickly for me. Channing Tatum has some serious talent and gets to show it—and his fabulous abs—off in this wildly fun but sometimes sobering movie. Good times were had.
The Hurt Locker
Directed by Kathryn Bigelow
Finally got around to seeing this movie, mainly due to my current obsession with Jeremy Renner. It was everything the critics promised it would be: taut, intense, unflinching, with performances that had me wanting to curl up into a ball and hide for a while. Renner was at once stunning and terrifying in the role of Sgt. James. If nothing else, this movie will make you appreciate the hell our troops go through.
The Dark Knight Rises
Directed by Christopher Nolan
This was the nearly perfect cap to Nolan's Batman trilogy. My only gripe about it is that the writing for most Batman movies always comes off as a little campy. But part of the appeal of superhero movies is the absurdity that surrounds masked crusaders. I don't want to have to think too hard at a movie featuring a guy who sounds like Scooby-Doo flying around in a cape. Which is why I exited that theater with a big smile.