Monday, June 17, 2013

The film just made me happy

I was in New York City and had a couple hours to kill. I was considering just walking around and enjoying the nice weather, or even try out CitiBike. Then I remembered, Much Ado About Nothing is shown in select theaters around the city! I was happy to find a theater showing the movie, only a mile away from where I was.

I was ridiculously excited about this movie; so much so that I was getting anxious during the 20 minutes of trailers.

The "home movie" feel was present from the beginning of the movie; I mean, ignoring the Lionsgate and Roadside logos/credits (what is that called?), the title sequence was mostly plain text on black background. In all honesty, I was a bit worried when the movie started. I wanted to love this movie so much that I was afraid it wouldn't live up to my expectations. I only know of two adaptations of the play: Kenneth Branagh's movie and Catherine Tate-David Tennant's play, and I've enjoyed them both.

This film didn't start well for me; the black & white and the Shakespeare language took longer than I wished to get used to. The slight movements of the camera, while goes in line with the "home movie" feel, also distracts me from the scene sometimes. I spent the first few minutes trying to get used to the film itself.

However, once you're in, you're in. This has been mentioned a number of times during interviews with cast and creator, and I should have believed it. And I was in awe the moment Amy Acker delivered her first of Beatrice's long monologues. Acker was really amazing throughout the movie. And I now understand why Joss decided to kill off Fred on Angel to bring in Illyria instead. I also adored Alexis Denisof, who I think should be in more films I can watch. Side note: I'm so happy that he decided to join Twitter; I can now read tweets in his voice and it's wonderful. Wes and Fred got their happy ending this time. And I now want to watch Angel again.

My favorite lines from the play:
The world must be peopled. When I said I would die a bachelor, I did not think I should live till I were married.
I'm happy that Denisof's delivery received big laughs at the theater. Also receiving big laughs: anytime Nathan Fillion and Tom Lenk appeared on screen. Those two were hilarious! The coat mix-up and car key scenes were simple yet brilliant comedy, and I'm happy to learn that it was Fillion or Lenk themselves who came up with them. The comedic performances in this film were quite impressive. Actually, the performances in general were great. Sean Maher being all evil? Yum!

This scene of this picture -- the picture that was released with the movie's announcement a while back -- was very funny. And I love that they used this still when they announced the movie because it doesn't make sense; it doesn't point to Much Ado About Nothing at all. Or does it, with the play being about nothing and all.


As Joss mentioned himself, the play is pretty ridiculous in the sense that a father, who by all accounts is a good man, would rather his only daughter die than shame their names, without proof other than some men's words. During that part, I had to force myself to see past the absurdity. The Beatrice/Benedick scenes that followed made up for it, though.

I left the theater happy, and even fuller of admiration of Joss Whedon and his regular Whedonites.

Seriously, I need to rewatch Angel and follow Wes from being his adorable foolish self to his badass hero self. I can't wait for the next Whedon work (which is very likely to be Avengers 2, not until 2015).

[Side note: I should go watch movies by myself more often]