Random Thoughts on Movies: Prince of Persia and Robin Hood

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time

It’s a movie based on a video game. How much are you expecting from it? Remember Super Mario Bros.? Mortal Combat? Tomb Raider? Doom? This is a notch above, but just barely. Game creator Jordan Mechner served as a producer and storywriter, so it looks at times very much like a live-action video game, with improbable logic and impossible physics. The story is about video-game level as well. Really, all this movie lacks is a controller. Gemma Arterton is pretty hot.

Rotten Tomatoes.com: “It doesn’t offer much in the way of substance, but Prince of Persia is a suitably entertaining swashbuckler — and a substantial improvement over most video game adaptations.” – 39% (Rotten)

Entertainment Weekly: “As sword-and-sandal fantasy movies based on videogames and starring a buffed-up Jake Gyllenhaal go, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time goes pretty well.” – B

Random Thoughts: Meh. It was OK for what it was.

Robin Hood

I wasn’t particularly keen on seeing this, but my son and his buddy wanted to see both of these movies, and they played as a double feature at a local drive-in. I volunteered to drive.

About 90 minutes into it, they were ready to leave. I didn’t argue. We were not Merrie Men.

Rotten Tomatoes.com: “Ridley Scott’s revisionist take on this oft-told tale offers some fine acting and a few gripping action sequences, but it’s missing the thrill of adventure that made Robin Hood a legend in the first place.” – 44% (Rotten)

Entertainment Weekly: “As you meander through the dense, dark forest of high-minded murk that is Ridley Scott’s Robin Hood, here are a few things that you won’t be seeing: a scene in which Robin Longstride (Russell Crowe) steals from the rich and gives to the poor. A scene in which he dons a disguise to win an archery contest, or gets Friar Tuck to carry him across a stream, or leaves the Sheriff of Nottingham fulminating in his boots. A moment when Robin’s men behave in a way that could remotely be described as ”merry.” A rousing sword fight. A pinch of lightness, frivolity, comedy, adventure, or – wait, I think this is the word I’m searching for – fun.” – C-

Random Notes: Rent the Disney version instead.

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Random Thoughts #4 (Birthday Edition)

On September 21, 2009, I became a 58-year-old kid. I still think (and usually behave) like a teenager, and I like it that way. Life’s too short to be stuffy and serious all the time.

Related Random Birthday Thoughts:

  • Man, I seem to be seeing a lot more scalp every morning when I comb my hair.
  • I don’t need to feel embarrassed any more if I forget something; it’s pretty much expected of me.
  • I used to be obsessed with dying. Now I’m obsessed with living. Makes for a happier me.
  • The cute girl who rings up my groceries…she’s not smiling at me because she’s flirting; she’s just being friendly to the nice old man.
  • I feel lucky because I saw Elvis and the Beatles live in concert (not at the same time, obviously); got to see Dan Marino and Joe Montana play in their prime; was able to realize my dream of visiting London and Liverpool in June of 2001; and made some wonderful friends throughout the years.
  • I feel sad because I remember where I was and what I was doing when the Kennedy brothers and John Lennon were gunned down; I realize that modern sports heroes are playing less for love of the game then they are for love of enormous paychecks and self-glorification; since 9/11/01, I will never again be comfortable spending more than a few hours at a time on a plane; I’ve lost too many friends to drugs and violence.
  • When I was younger, I felt that the music I listened to was the best ever made, and the stuff my parents listened to was lame. Now I feel that the music I listened to when I was younger was the best ever made, and the stuff my son listens to is just so much indecipherable noise.
  • It’s depressing to know that the various aches and pains I experience are not temporary. Arthritis, degenerative disc disease, and pinched nerves don’t just clear up on their own.
  • I will probably never marry again. I’m old and set in my ways; I like coming and going as I please, and not having to explain myself to anybody.
  • That being said, it’s nice to have somebody around to experience things with, somebody to talk things over with, and somebody to say goodnight to.
  • I hate being serious.
  • I have doubts that I’ll ever earn my Black Belt. My body is just not co-operating. However, I will keep trying. I will not give up.
  • Rock and roll and Disney has kept me young. Thanks to both of you.
  • And thank you for listening to an old man ramble! Doo wah diddy diddy!

Random Thoughts #2

Ya see, this is why I don’t promote my personal brand and monetize this here blog thing. It’s been over a month since I’ve made any entries. Not that I can’t find anything to write about, it’s making the time to do it that’s my problem.

Anyway, a few random comments to catch things up:

• The computer problem outlined in my last post has been resolved successfully. I did have to install a new hard drive (and, naturally, strip a screw while putting everything back together, which resulted in one of the plastic cosmetic covers sticking up ever so slightly higher than the other). And I did blow $80 on a data recovery program that didn’t work for me (my own damn fault; I didn’t read the program description close enough to notice that it would not work on a striped RAID array). But with a step-back-and-rethink and the help of a wonderful free program called Pandora Recovery, I was able to recover the photos, documents and most of the music I’d lost. And I now have two 500GB external that I back up everything to on a regular basis.

• I loved loved loved the season finale of Lost! I had kept all Season 5 episodes on my TiVo, and went back and rewatched the entire season, and found it quite satisfying (although I’ll miss Elizabeth Mitchell terribly). I have complete confidence in the creative team that the Final Season will cement Lost’s place in TV history as one of the best series ever.

• The 24 season finale, however, seemed oddly disappointing to me. A bit of a let down, really. Don’t get me wrong; bad 24 is shelves above most other dramas, but after 23 rockin’ hours, the ending left me cold. It didn’t rock my world. The Season 7 DVD set was available to buy the next day, though. (Lost? You hear that?)

• Go see Up. After careful reflection, I think it’s my third favorite Pixar film (nothing can replace Buzz and Woody on my list). The story has always been Pixar’s strength, and this one is no exception. It’s a life-affirming message that applies to everyone. Well, everyone except for the young girl sitting a few rows behind me who loudly told her mom that she didn’t want to watch this movie anymore. But I bet by the end of the movie she was glad her mom told her to shut up and watch (or was that just a wishful thought I had?).

• Next gen iPhones are rumored to be available Monday. Still going back and forth as to whether or not I want to take the plunge. OK, you got me. I want to take the plunge.

OK, Loyal Reader. That’s enough for now. I shan’t wait another month to post again. Good bloggers post daily. Let’s see if I can do that.