Wednesday, March 28, 2007


Man, I could see a movie every day in this metropolitan area. Sometimes, Sunshine even gets out of class with enough time to see one with me (though this is rare). Today, we met at the Qdoba near Metro Center and ate as quickly as possible before seeing the seven-oh-five show of the Host* next door at the E Street Cinema.* This is the second time I've seen this movie, after the North Carolina premier back in February when it was screened as part of the Nevermore Film Festival in Durham. The Host is a Korean post-giant monster movie, à la Tremors,* mixing equal doses of several genres. It is at once a dark comedy and a biting local and international social commentary. Unlike many of its forbears, especially the kind made in the US, it is also a compelling human drama, resolutely focusing the larger plight--a monstrously besieged Seoul riverfront, and the Kubrick-esque military follies that follow--through the lens of one family struggling to stay together. It is a heartbreaking pleasure to finally be a part of a monster attack. In many examples of this genre, the point-of-view hovers way up with the monsters (a byproduct of the rubber suits and miniscule city models used to make these films, surely), so since childhood I have grown accustomed to gazing pitilessly at the fire and crunch of Tokyo or Manhattan from that aloof vantage. Certainly, this has led to the humanization of the antagonists, rendering Godzilla, et al., into folksy antiheros somewhere along the way. This is not the case in the Host, were the experience of terror and tragedy and humor and monstrosity happen from a human vantage, presented somehow devoid of the camp and smirking self-regard of most domestic attempts in this genre. Recommended. [Cavin]

Then, a 0 sided conversation ensued...

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