Sweetie: First up this week we have the Criterion release of Sweetie, a film directed by Jane Campion (The Piano, Bright Star). Sweetie is the story of Kay a strange girl that is obsessed with the meaning of things. So much that she visits a physic looking for answers to her questions of love and ends up moving in with a man just based on the reading. Their life together is then turned upside down when Kay’s sister Sweetie comes to live with them. Sweetie is mentally ill and currently not taking her medication. With dreams of being famous Sweetie seeks a place to live with her boyfriend/producer Bob. Bob is a drug addict and has a hard time staying awake most of the time. If the inclusion of a drug addict and a psychotic sister were not enough Kay’s father also seeks solace in Kay’s home.
The dynamic between the characters is enough reason to watch the film, but what is most impressive is how well this movie actually holds up. Made in 1989 you get the distinct feeling that it was way ahead of it’s time. With a dark sense of humor that would be welcomed today it’s easy to forget the film’s release date. Like all Criterion releases this is packed with special features. Everything from Short films to interviews. Most interesting is the newest interview with the stars of the film as the story of the making of the film is just as interesting as the film itself. If you’re interested in just the film itself or the career of Jane Campion it’s definitely a must see.
Fubar: Balls to the Wall: This is the sequel to Fubar: Just Give’r. While I had never seen the original it was easy to jump right in with this release. The film follows Terry and Deaner, two newly homeless rockers that are looking for a job. Their best bet for employment is based on a drunken promise made to them by their friend Tron, a promise that he regrets immediately. With new jobs in hand and money to blow Terry and Deaner seem to be heading in the right direction, that is until Terry falls in love with Trish a local strip club bartender that has slept with the entire town. This new found love splits the duo in two and takes the film into a much darker tone.
This is where I really fell in love with the movie, at first glance you could just dismiss it as another stoner movie. That’s not to say it’s not, it just has a little more to offer. The intelligent humor of the third act had me more than intrigued, any film that can make suicidal ideation and cancer funny gets the vote of confidence from me. The DVD edition of the film includes a DVD commentary and deleted scenes both of which are worth your time. That is why I’m giving Fubar: Balls to the Wall a Buy It.
Sharpay’s Fabulous Adventure: This spin off from the High School Musical films will round out this edition of Blu Monday this week. When Sharpay visits New York she is discovered by a talent scout when performing with her dog Boi at a charity gala. Convinced that she will have instant fame and riches she naively steps into the world of theater. The film wouldn’t be a Disney tween flick with out the inclusion of a nemesis and Sharpay finds that in the owner of the dog “Countess” an actress who will do anything to crush the competition. This movie has it all right? Dogs, a cute boy to save the day and the name High School Musical behind it, the truth is that’s all you really need.
Most people know what to expect from a movie like this and the inclusion of Blu Ray Special features isn’t going to change your mind. The film isn’t unbearable so if your tween is forcing you purchase this you could find worse. I for one would steer clear of this movie if you do happen to come across it but for those of you that have to subject yourself to these kinds of movies, Disney is always the way to go. The Blu Ray has hours of entertainment for your kids enough, time to let you watch something more worth your time.
By Ryan Davis