Wednesday, October 3, 2012

A Snow double feature after all

It's been a pretty snowy week for me in terms of the films I've seen, but it should have been even snowier.

Having watched Snow White and the Three Stooges early last week for Getting Acquainted, I had planned to return home from a weekend away to a Sunday night double feature of Mirror Mirror and Snow White and the Huntsman. When finished, I figured I'd know all that there was to know about the character of Snow White.

Unfortunately -- or perhaps fortunately, because it might have been just too much Snow White -- Snow White and the Huntsman was not yet available from Redbox, at least as of Sunday. I swore I'd seen it in there, but at least not at this kiosk, I hadn't.

So I rented Lockout as the double feature partner for Mirror Mirror instead. And as it turns out, Guy Pearce's character in Lockout is named ... Snow.

Funny how things like that work out.

I don't have a lot I want/need to say about Mirror Mirror. It had all the Tarsem touches and some inspired moments, but was underwhelming overall.

I do, however, have a couple observations about Lockout that I thought were sort of funny.

1) Twice in the credits -- both at the beginning and at the end -- it describes the movie as "based on an original idea by Luc Besson." Who is also executive producer and one of the screenwriters (along with the two directors, James Mather and Stephen Saint Leger. In the credits, he spells out the word "Saint").

What strikes me as funny is that Besson required two separate shout-outs to it being his original idea, even though he was already given a screenplay credit -- and even though the idea is not original. In case you didn't know, Lockout is Escape From New York in space. It's almost like the film even courts the comparisons. Instead of the president being held hostage, as in New York, it's the president's daughter here.

Come on, Luc. Put a leash on that ego.

2) My second observation doesn't have anything to do with Lockout itself, but it's where I first noticed a funny phenomenon:

The standard anti-piracy message at the beginning is directed not at our sense of guilt or shame, but at our sense of civic duty.

The message before the movie starts says "Piracy is not a victimless crime," and below that "To learn about how piracy affects the economy, go to"

Nice. No longer are they trying to make us feel bad for the artists, studios and other creative entities who lose profits when movies are pirated. They realize that tactic is about as sympathetic as rooting for millionaires against billionaires in any labor dispute in professional sports.

No, they want you to know that if you illegally copy this movie, the effect will trickle down to your neighbor losing his job.

Hey, whatever works I guess. 

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