October's DVD Reviews 

Entourage: Season 4 - The way I don't know why I eat junk food, I'm not sure why I watch this.  I wouldn't watch it if it was an hour the way you don't eat a three-course meal of junk food.  I guess what I'm saying is it's junk.

Grey's Anatomy: Season 3 - The show actually gets better as it progresses.  The characters are no longer wantonly juggled in and out of relationships just to keep things fresh; it's much more organic in that relationships are allowed to develop and dissipate along a natural and believable timecourse, although the dialogue is not as witty (albeit cartoonish) as the first season.

The Invention of Lying, 2009 - Like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, this is one of those movies that asks you to imagine the world in which the fundamental rules marking the boundaries of the human condition are altered, and as such it makes us question what it means to be human.  However, as a comedy, this one is a bit clunky because it attempts to straddle two separate and completely independent consequences of its premise, and one of them is sufficiently large enough that a whole movie should have been dedicated to it.

Heroes: Season 3 - A step up from the appallingly bad 2nd season, but this season is so scattered that it feels pointless by the end.  There's no central story, and there are so many threads that ultimately lead nowhere that you don't really care to follow any of them, which is a shame for a series with this much potential.

Breaking Bad: Season 1 - I don't always find the central character's actions believable (i.e., the evolution from straight-edge to bad-ass happens on a creationist's timescale), and many of the supporting characters are weak, but there's so much original and interesting going on here that I'm going to recommend it anyway.

Watchmen: The motion comic, 2009 - No, this isn't the theatrical offering from earlier this year.  It's the source material, the Moore and Gibbons graphic novel, all dropped into Flash and brought to life.  Although the format seems a bit awkward at first, you get used to it quickly (and you have about six hours in which to do so regardless) and there's excellent and inventive direction behind the manipulations to what was conceived years ago as merely static 2D panels.

Flash Gordon, 1980 - Contrast with the above.  It's anything but faithful to the source material, even when following the plotpoints of the original serial or using the designs created in the pages of the comic strip, but here we have an enjoyable update (for its time) that throws in humor and sexuality where previous incarnations were comparatively flat and lifeless.  It's a classic in its own odd way.

Mary Reilly, 1996 - Blah.  Possibly the least interesting, most pointless adaptation of Jekyll and Hyde ever committed to film.  The novelty of this is that it's told from the perspective of one of the doctor's housekeepers, but the psychological component (that was apparently the focus of the updated novel) doesn't play well in this retelling, and so it's just a good story viewed obliquely and incompletely by an outsider.

PICKS OF THE LITTER: For all its faults as a comedy, The Invention of Lying is genius in its premise alone, and the presence of Ricky Gervais is always guaranteed entertainment in any case.  Like I said, Breaking Bad is too original to not check out.  And Watchmen is a masterpiece in any medium.  Having the complete saga made watchable is truly awesome.

Copyright 2009 Ale[x]plorer.
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