Archive for December, 2011

Wednesday Faceoff: The Adventures of Tintin vs. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo vs. Mission Impossible 4

Posted in Friday Faceoff with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 21, 2011 by judsonw


The holiday season seems to be becoming another summer when it comes to studios releasing high budget, high expectation vehicles. The only difference this time of the year (besides the freezing weather) is that most of these movies are high quality as well. For whatever reason, most likely the approaching date of the Oscars, Hollywood seems to save all its best films until the end of the year. Christmas this year brings 3 huge movies.

The Adventures of Tintin (76% RT rating) is a little confounding. On paper, it should be a surefire hit. It’s a Steven Spielberg film, it features a world famous character, and it’s Hollywood’s next step in the motion capture craze (following Avatar). However, I can’t help but think this movie is going to bomb hard. Why? Well one, Tintin is a phenomenon everywhere in the world….except America. If you went up to 10 people on the street a few months ago and asked if they knew who Tintin was, 2/10 would say yes. And that would be lucky. Spielberg makes me a little excited to see this, but the motion capture makes me hesitant. Everything I’ve seen so far seems…off. But, still, it’s freaking SPIELBERG! How amazing is it that he’s releasing 2 films in one month?

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (84% RT rating) is definitely as popular in America as it is on the rest of the planet. After a critically and financially successful Swedish version a few years ago, David Fincher steps in to follow up his masterpiece The Social Network. Many people have neither seen or heard of the Swedish film of this story, which is a shame. It’s a solid film with one intense performance by Noomi Rapace as the title character. So I keep asking myself…what’s the point of remaking a film that’s already great? If it was any other director, I’d be skeptical. Instead, I’m pumped.

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol (93% RT rating) has every reason to be great. The first three films are all excellent action flicks backed by talented directors. The new installment is helmed by the critically acclaimed director of such Pixar hits as The Incredibles and Wall-E. So why are expectations so low? It may be that 5 year gap between films. Or maybe Tom Cruise’s demise into one of America’s most despised celebrities. Nonetheless, the buzz on this movie is incredible. And all I hear is to see it in IMAX, IMAX, IMAX. Not the digital LIEMAX at your local AMC, but a real IMAX theater that you’ll probably find at an aquarium or air and space museum. Not since The Dark Knight have I been blown away by an IMAX experience, so fingers crossed for this one.