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Shuffling to the weekend

Today's films:

(finishing Galaxy Quest)

Dawn of the Dead (2004)

Galaxy Quest was okay. I liked all the actors but the writing of some of gags was very weak and the special effects were crap. I'm sure some of the space effects were interesting at the time but it was at the time in movies when CGI stood out in an ugly way. The main villian is either a puppet or CGI and it's really bad. It's mouth doesn't make the right shapes for the words it is saying to the point it was distracting. It's a fun movie but it would have been better if it was made 7-10 years later.

Dawn of the Dead

Not sure why but I had an urge to see the Zach Snyder Dawn of the Dead tonight. Zach Snyder is a nice enough director, especially when he is adapting someone else's material. When this movie came out in 2004 it seemed to be at the start of fast cuts in movies and more and more zombie movies with Shawn of the Dead and 28 Days Later coming out within a few years of it. I liked how this movie was styled back when it came out but my friend Pat said he didn't like the fast cuts.

On this viewing I found I didn't like the quality of the film it was shot on. It was one of the first vividly colored films I remember seeing, color correction was invented in the early 2000's and this was one of the first of the brightly colored films we see. When I saw the second Thor movie the other day I realized a certain bright red in that movie doesn't show up in movies before a few years ago because it's a product of color correction (fixing the color in the movie by feeding the film into a digital editor where the colors can be adjusted in specific parts of the screen so that every color can be more crisp that when it was shot. This also allows for skies to be nicely colored and contrast with the bottom of the screen or to have bright blues or greens next to bright reds or yellows). This bright red is so jarring, and amazing to see on a subconscious level because it's so rich that film could not pick it up as well before and it's a uniquely new thing the brain is surprised to see. The problem I found in Dawn of the Dead in this film is that with the color correction they also used a kind of film that made the movie look like a soap opera at times. If it was just a little more grainy or had a few more rich black colors the movie would look like it fit in with older movies.

It's an interesting movie because of the problems and problem solving and that zombie movies seem to be the most interesting protrayal of suburbia in film. It's not the best zombie movie of its time, oddly that goes to a comedy, Shawn of the Dead, but it's not a bad movie. It's a movie from another time which feels odd to say for a movie years after the turn of the millennium. It's a movie I must have seen while in college but I don't have a specific memory of it being from the time in my life I was in college or just after.


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