In a previous post I included a link to my column about "The Pacific," which I hope you gave a chance. And will continue to give a chance, since it's a cumulative show, gaining force the more you watch. I, meanwhile, took a break from some other tasks to catch "The Green Zone" with the bride at a matinee on Saturday. There was a small, somewhat older crowd in the theater, but the big draw at the multiplex was "Alice in Wonderland." You could chalk that up to kids going to a matinee but the weekend box-office returns found "Alice" still strong and "Green Zone" opening poorly. . . .
And, frankly, it wasn't a movie I cared to see again. Am a fan of Matt Damon and of his "Bourne" movies, two of which share a director with "Green Zone." But while this movie charges along energetically, the story's pretty weak; the audience should be ahead of the major twist, the characters are thinly drawn (especially a reporter played by Amy Ryan) and the conclusion would have worked in a '70s movie -- you'll know which one -- but here just felt silly and pointless.
Tonight, the bride and I watched "The Hurt Locker," which she had not seen, on DVD and I was reminded again of all the fine things in that movie -- the intensity of it, the uncertainty, the fullness of the main character (played by Jeremy Renner), the effectiveness of the story-telling, which seems aimless but adds up to a lot. Interesting to see it after "Green Zone," too, since the movies overlap in some ways, including a key character in "Green Zone" getting name-dropped in "The Hurt Locker." But "Hurt Locker" is great, uncompromising filmmaking while "Green Zone" knelt to commercialism -- and, if the weekend returns are an indicator, did not even satisfy that god.