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Old August 16 2011, 12:15 AM   #642
Harvey
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011

123. Rear Window (A-)
124. Captain America: The First Avenger (B)


Rear Window: One of the classic Alfred Hitchcock films, although I would rank Psycho and North by Northwest slightly higher. Really, the only problem with the movie is the relationship between Grace Kelly and Jimmy Stewart. It's difficult suspending my disbelief that a 46 year old Jimmy Stewart would be of any interest to a 24 year old Grace Kelly, especially considering the way he demeans her throughout the movie. This ends up being only a minor complaint, though. It's still quite a good movie, at times both funny and suspenseful.

Captain America: The First Avenger: This is a good superhero movie, but it's also one that never manages (nor tries) to transcend the rather conservative conventions that govern the genre. It is helped along by a strong cast, with Stanley Tucci being the standout (the movie isn't as good once his character is killed), but Tommy Lee Jones does good supporting work and Chris Evans is perfectly good in the title role. The premise, of course, is a bit silly (Whether he's in his fancy costume or not, Captain America would be dead meat in those bright colors, shield or otherwise), but this was never going to be serious drama.

What I'm not especially fond of (and this has been discussed to death in the grading thread) is the film's insane momentum towards getting Steve Rogers to the present day. I'm not convinced a WWII-era sequel would have much to offer that wasn't a retread of this film, but the quick montage of action scenes and the sudden turn of events at the end of the movie seem more like the momentum of marketing (and The Avengers) than natural narrative progression. I also find the racially integrated unit that Rogers rescues/assembles to be a bit hard to swallow given the historical context of WWII, but they hardly have a chance to be in the movie before it's over, so, whatever.

I've seen 135 movies this year. Slowly but surely catching up...
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