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T2 Trainspotting (2017)
I loved the first movie. I knew the sequel couldn't live up to its energy and originality, but I was still disappointed by this film. It just felt conventional, as if the filmmakers wanted to tell stories of what the characters SHOULD do, rather than what they WOULD do.
Oprah Winfrey tells people to be their best selves; what I liked about the original is the filmmakers had the courage to show people being their worst selves and living with the consequences. This film felt too clean, too Hollywood. It felt like a movie made by people with money and attorneys and brands.
If you loved the first you'll want to see this one, and you may not be as disappointed as I. But I have a feeling you'll find it hard to remember anything that happened in this movie a year from now.
While watching this movie, my doorbell rang. I ran to the door, hoping it was Coffin Joe there to show me MY death, thereby saving me from watching the rest of this awful movie. Alas, it was the pizza guy, and he didn't have a gun that shot sparkles. I gave him a twenty and told him to keep the change, but he didn't say anything profound like "the change shall be kept, but the change kept within your soul will be your change", or anything. He just said, "thanks." What a bummer. Last time I order from that place.
Anyway, I wanted to watch until the end, but that orgy scene - the LEAST erotic scene ever shown on film (unless skinny, pale, hairy Brazilian guys in bikini briefs swilling vodka and saying sexy things like "let's make love" turns you on) - caused me to switch off. Honestly, this movie is a LITTLE bit funny...but it drags on for so long that the camp/humor is drained. And it's only 80 minutes! Just awful.
The Alcohol Years (2000)
Awful but amazing
I saw this film the other night on the Sundance Channel. In the first ten minutes I said to myself, "this could be interesting". In the next ten I said, "OK, you had a lot of sex as a teenager. I get it. Time to move the film forward, give it some direction, tell a story." In the next ten I said, "Wow, she really isn't going to talk about anything else, is she?" And I spent the remainder of the film wondering how a grown woman could have so little self awareness that she sincerely believes that everything she's ever done in her life is so fascinating that it deserves to be memorialized on film.
The film is a series of interviews which go as follows:
Man 1: You were very promiscuous, Carol. Woman 1: You had a lot of sex. Man 2: Everybody wanted to have sex with you. Woman 2: You were incredibly beautiful.
And that's it. For forty-five minutes. No introspection, no deeper meaning, no plot, no humor, no characterization of anyone or anything except the filmmaker. She sincerely believes that a series of interviews with old friends telling her how much sex she had in the early 80s is, all by itself, an interesting subject for a film. Amazing.