Well, I was a bit loopy last night. Anyway: movies. No real spoilers for either, but might not make much sense unless you've seen them.
Thoroughly enjoyed it. I'd seen all the "prequels" save for the Edward Norton Hulk, and I'm not sure that one counts, anyway. My favorite by far was Thor (and not just because of Chris Hemsworth's arms), and I'm a little sad that Natalie Portman didn't have a cameo in this one, but at least they acknowledged her character.
I approach Joss Whedon's stuff with caution. Never got into Buffy or Angel, loved Firefly, got gutted by Serenity because Joss loves to destroy everything that is good and happy in the world. One the one hand, that makes his stuff unpredictable, but on the other hand FUCK YOU, YOU KILLED MY FAVORITE CHARACTER. Ahem. Also his fans are the very definition of batshit, and his dialogue can sometimes get almost cutesy-bantery, if that makes sense. But I thought there was a good balance between the one-liners and serious stuff.
Adored Loki, even more so than I did in Thor. Actually, I kind of thought he was a whiny little shit in parts of Thor, but somewhere between this script and Tom Hiddleston's performance, they got in the perfect sense of you-don't-know-the-hell-I've-been-
I don't really ship anybody (well, except for Thor/Jane, because sometimes canon het is good, okay?) but I love that all the characters got their moments. Thought Hawkeye got a bit slighted, though, having his brain hijacked for most of the movie -- and I'm definitely interested in the Clint and Natasha backstory. Mark Ruffalo was an odd (not bad, just odd) choice for Bruce Banner, but I liked the fact that he sees himself as a scientist and cringingly refers to "the other guy." Maybe that characterization came from the Ed Norton movie, I don't know. Come to think of it, Ed Norton's an even odder choice for the Hulk. Is that movie worth seeing?
Okay, one spoiler. (skip) No way is Coulson dead. I expected that to be the post-credits reveal, but the shawarma thing made me laugh for, like, five minutes straight, so I dealt. But he ain't dead. I watched The X Files for nine years: no body means he's not dead. Hell, even if there was a body, he might not be dead. To sum up: Coulson, not dead.
So, yeah, probably not going to get into Avengers fandom, but it was a genuinely entertaining movie and did I mention Chris Hemsworth's arms? And how his Australian accent would slip adorably every now and again, but fuck it, because maybe that's how they talk in Asgard?
Dear Movies: not every foreigner/alien/otherwordly being has to have some form of a British accent. Australian would be okay. In fact, Australian would be great. Just sayin'.
Anyway, Dark Shadows. Never watched the TV series, though I know they used to show reruns on the Sci Fi channel (no, I'm not going to call it "SyFy," because that is just stupid). Entertaining movie, though I thought the main conflict between Johnny Depp and Eva Green's characters got a bit tiresome by the end. Loved the playful use of 70s music and clothes, though, and Michelle Pfieffer, Eva Green, and Helena Bonham Carter were all awesome. Why is Michelle Pfieffer not in more movies these days? She should be in more movies. Somebody get on that.
However, the biggest thing that bugged me was something that a lot of movies do in which the two characters in Twu Wuv are only that way because the movie tells you they are. And in this case, like usual, you have no idea why the guy loves the girl, other than that she exists and is pretty, and therefore it is Destiny. Yes, establishing that would have required more exposition, which was already a little clunky and rushed, but Johnny Depp's narration literally says "and then I fell in love with Josette" and that's it. From that, we're supposed to believe that all the torments he suffers afterwards are worth it, because Twu Wuv, dammit.
Still: Johnny Depp vamping around (literally) is never not Good Times. Don't get me wrong, he has made some truly shitty movies (ever seen The Astronaut's Wife? DON'T), but he's at a point in his career where he can pretty much pick the characters he wants and how he wants to play them, and nobody says "Heeeey, you might want to roll back the weirdness factor a notch or two." In fact, I'm pretty sure Tim Burton's constantly egging him on. Maybe that will eventually get stale, but for right now, it's a hoot. And maybe it's the pancake makeup, but he really might be ageless.
Only one book tonight.
Day 11: A book you hated – American Psycho, Bret Easton Ellis
I may have gone off on this rant before, but what the Book Meme demands, I must give. Yes, we get it, Patrick What's-His-Name describes fashion and music in the same dispassionate tone as he does mutilating and murdering women, and it’s a satire on the 80’s "me" culture, but good GOD, does it need to go on for several hundred pages? I can’t believe I actually forced myself to finish this book. The sadism that is supposed to be “satirically” misogynistic comes off, to me at least, as actually misogynistic in a gleeful, look-what-I-can-get-away-with-writing way. Ugh. Sick, pointless, and yet also (intentionally) boring. Why does this book exist?