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Let's Go to Prison (2006)
More subtle than you'd think...
There are movies that follow a relatively obvious plot. There are movies where you expect every plot twist ten minutes in advance. This certainly is one of those movies. But then, why would you go see a comedy looking for gripping plot lines? This is one of those movies that would have bombed, in the wrong hands. Given an average director and a mediocre cast, this movie would have been barely watchable. But under the care of Bob Odenkirk and a trio of skilled actors, it turns out as one of the funnier movies of the year.
Let me be clear about one thing: this movie is all about subtle, dry humor. The situations are, on their own, intentionally not funny. Played a different way, many of them would be downright terrifying. But the way the actors carry themselves through it, their timing, their facial expressions, bring out the absurdity of the serious script.
If you go into the movie expecting it to hit you in the face with everything it's got, you may be disappointed. But if you go prepared to pay attention and catch the nuances as well as the broad strokes, you'll barely stop laughing.
Total Recall 2070 (1999)
The story is based in the same world as "Total Recall" starring Schwarzenager, but the cinematography and style borrow much more from Ridley Scott's "Blade Runner". Moody and atmospheric, the visual style alternately recalls the smooth yellows and browns of Gattaca, and the stark contrast of film noir. The script is vague, stylized, and occasionally hard to follow; in short, everything that you find in a classic Philip K. Dick story. The soundtrack is moody and atmospheric, and certainly a cut above the average sci-fi film.
To be clear: this is not an action film in the way the original Total Recall was. There are no exciting chase scenes, and gunfights are rudimentary at best. This movie is a revenge mystery in the tradition of film noir and Blade Runner. Most of the movie is dialog and character interaction.
If you're looking for an action adventure, you probably won't like this movie. But if you want a new interpretation of PKD's world, done in a style very similar to his own, this movie fits the bill. Personally, I enjoyed this much more than the original Total Recall.