Sunday, March 17, 2013

Confucius vs. Mel Gibson

Kyle visited this weekend, so Friday night we ended up watching an usual double bill:  Chow Yun Fat's 2010 Chinese period piece, Confucius, and Mel Gibson's Get the Gringo

We started with Confucius, which we watched as we ate take-out Chinese in a revival of our old Chinese & Chinese tradition.  Somewhere around the ninth hour of the movie, we realized that it was going to give The Assassination of Jesse James by I don't care will this movie ever end!?! a run for the title of most boring film ever.  (Jesse James won it by a week, though both clocked in a little over 17 years in length).  In the course of slogging through Confucius we learned such important life lessons as

  • Don't dive into a frozen lake to retrieve scrolls.
  • Don't follow Confucius if you ever want to have fun again.
  • If you are following Confucius and having fun, someone in your group is about to die.
  • When in doubt about how to defeat an enemy, spout an enigmatic line and leave while the enemy is still confused.  
All useful rules, no doubt, but they don't make for much of a film.

When we'd celebrated a lot of birthdays and the movie was finally over, we knew we had to watch something with gunfire and explosions, so we took a chance on Get the Gringo

Mel kicked Confucius' butt.

The movie was surprisingly good, a solid B film.  Most of the time, the events that were about to happen were not immediately obvious.  The acting ranged from passable to quite good, the pacing was solid, and Gibson did a decent job in the lead role.  From the opening scene onward, the film careened along its plot arc like an ether-addled Hunter S. Thompson transported to a Mexican prison instead of Las Vegas.  Not by any means a top-drawer movie, Get the Gringo is nonetheless good enough that we were both glad we'd seen it.

If you have to watch only one of these movies, Gringo is definitely the one to pick. 

No comments:


Blog Archive