Afternoon Matinee

How times have changed. I rarely visit the cinema during peak time any more. I used to be a regular with my dearest friend Pav at the Reading Vue, without fail most Friday evenings for the 8pm screening of the latest blockbuster in their biggest screen (4). We got to the stage, that we even knew the best seats to pick in the auditorium. However, that was many years ago. Now, I tend to visit the local multiplex (Empire Slough) on a Tuesday evening, when they have their Super Saver deal (£2.95 per a ticket, rather than £8.50 plus on a weekend).

Looper is a movie that came up from nowhere if I am honest but then I have not exactly been feeding my film addiction via blog or social media. The truth is that beyond the major Hollywood blockbusters, I tend to be very selective on the movies I go to the cinema. Two hours is a big investment of my time. We saw the trailer, while going to see the recent remake of Total Recall, with my wife Michelle and my brother-in-law Steve. We had seen the original on DVD the previous week and I was surprised my wife had not seen it before. Although released in 1990, it is an ultra violent 1980s gun fest, with Schwarzenegger with all the corny lines. Such a one dimensional actor but we love him nevertheless! I felt a little disappointed with the remake, perhaps because it changed so much of the source material (I mean original Verhoeven movie, not the Philip K. Dick novel). Perhaps my expectations were two high, particularly with Colin Farrell in the lead role but I thought it gave a moderately average performance, I was disappointed in Jessica Biel and Kate Beckinsale. I wanted them to have the similar level of showdown on Mars as Sharon Stone and Rachel Ticotin. Never mind, it was a good action flick but perhaps the 29% rotten rating over on Rotten Tomatoes is somewhat justified. Sometimes, a classic is a classic for a reason. It is untouchable, Hollywood please do not continue in your reluctant vain to remake classic movies from our teen years.

The trailer for Looper had me hooked, I have always loved the idea of time travel and this felt like a revised take on Twelve Monkeys and parts of The Terminator. It was going to be interesting to see Joseph Gordon-Levitt lead a movie and see how he would cope with the staring aside a legend such as Bruce Willis (even if his star has faded in recent years). We decided to head over to the cinema on Saturday, to catch a Saturday matinee performance. The cinema will not be as busy and we beat the rush of a full-on Saturday night at the movies. There is a reassuring feeling leaving at 6pm, to get home at a decent time, rather than 11pm. I am officially getting old. God help me! We chose Uxbridge, as the movie was yet to be given enough screen time in Slough. Plus, to be fair, I have got rather bored of my local multiplex and longed for a change of scenery. Uxbridge is only a few miles away and although an Odeon (therefore no Pearl & Dean) it fitted the bill. We chose the 15:30 showing and had a light lunch (sandwiches) while in the auditorium.

It was a fantastic movie, with much more drama than science. The story is all character led and the time travel is just part of the dilemma the participants face. I would not describe it as The Matrix for our decade, that is going rather too far, but it is an interesting action movie that makes you think about various aspects of life. I would highly recommend it to you, it makes a change from some of the movies that have been released in recent months and is actually quiet entertaining. You will have to get over the fact that Joseph’s appearance is drastically changed to ensure he resembles as a younger Willis. Go in with an open mind, there are quite a few twists and turns and some unexpected plot devices. For any feel that requires an ounce of intelligence, pay attention to the opening few minutes, as the foundations of the plot are set. I suppose with any movie, it is about setting your expectations low and coming out surprised, as I was. However, it is unfair to compare against 1999 The Matrix, this is more a drama than a science fiction.

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