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Review: Adaptation


Hmm—one of the few drawbacks to the tabbed browsing in the new version of Safari is that it's too easy to lose track of a window and accidentally close it, and thereby to (for example) lose a half-written journal entry.

So I'll start over. Tonight, following Tim & Heather's lead, went to see Adaptation with Susan at that East Bay movie theatre where they serve you dinner (and alcohol) in the theatre. It's a very odd and very interesting movie. I liked it quite a lot, but didn't love it as much as some folks have. The multi-level self-referentiality is very nicely done. I'm astonished that this movie was written, and even more astonished that it got made; the idea is not exactly what one might call commercial. But I suppose Being John Malkovich gave Jonze and Kaufman the leverage they needed.

I was going to say this was Nicholas Cage's best work in years, but then I realized I hadn't seen anything of his since '97-'98, so I can't judge that. But he did a very good job. I totally didn't recognize Chris Cooper, though I liked him a lot as usual.

Afterward, we stopped by Tamara's party briefly, but there weren't many people we knew and we weren't in the mood for crowds anyway. But we did look through a way cool book of animal origami—step-by-step instructions on how to make origami Tyrannosaurus rex, frogs with toes, spiders, giraffes, etc.


Jed, when's the last time you really enjoyed a movie? I keep reading your "I saw 'X', but I didn't like it as well as everyone else who saw it" reviews. Do you like anything these days?

Don't get him started on Lilo and Stitch...


Lilo & Stitch was my favorite movie of the past few years. It had flaws, but what doesn't? It's definitely in my highly-recommended category.

That one got an 8 on my idiosyncratic 1-to-10 scale. The last time a new movie got higher than an 8 was Strange Days (best film of 1995, but very problematic to recommend, due mostly to an extremely hard-to-watch rape scene); that got a 9. There aren't very many 10s. (See my movie list, which I haven't updated in a couple years. Some day I'll turn it into a database.)

Movies that I've rated 7 (which means I liked them quite a bit; recommended but perhaps not highly recommended) in the past couple years include: Bend It Like Beckham; The Sum of All Fears; Minority Report; Fellowship of the Ring; Monsters, Inc.; State & Main; O Brother, Where Art Thou.

I've been seeing an average of about 25 movies a year lately. Looks like about half of those (call it 12 a year) get a 6 rating, and 2-3 a year get a 7 or higher.

Note that I tend to make critical comments even about things I like. I very rarely make unreserved recommendations, and when discussing any given work I'm more apt to comment on the aspects that I didn't like than the aspects I did.

Looks like I don't agree with you on many of your ratings, but I also really enjoyed Strange Days, and not just because of my Ralph Fiennes fixation. Angela Bassett is pretty damn hot, too. :)

Bassett in Strange Days -- oh yes, those muscles, jesus...

Total agreement about Bassett. I really want to see her do more action movies. See my note from last December about kick-ass female action stars.

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