Preparing to shoot a few segments of Big Jon in 5 for BEER2WHISKEY in our upstairs studio at Barley's Taproom in downtown Greenville. That's owner Josh Beebe preparing for his closeup.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Renting Movies at Red Box: A Buck Doesn't Buy Much Anymore

I rented a couple of movies from Red Box last night. Neither was particularly riveting; but when you rent a movie for a buck, you rarely feel gypped. Such was the case with last night's entertainment.

The first was a Ben Affleck vehicle called Town. He wrote, directed and starred in it. I'm not sure if he was the star because, as the director, he couldn't find a "name" star; or if, because he was the star, no one else would direct it. It's a "chicken or the egg" sort of mystery. I can't decide whether I like Affleck as an actor or not. I don't find him annoying so much as just sort of flat. When I see his name attached to a movie, I don't think, oh man, I can't stand him. I usually just shrug my shoulders, yawn and watch. I thought he was a better Jack Ryan in Sum of All Fears than Harrison Ford had been in other Ryan movies, but not as good as Alec Baldwin in Hunt for Red October. I thought he was fine in Armageddon, too. But generally, I don't even notice him.

I only recognized a couple of other actors in the movie and his love interest wasn't one of them. A thin plot line and lackluster writing didn't provide the cast with a lot to do. It was, however, something for me to do for 90 minutes; and like I said, it only cost a buck.

The second epic snoozer was something called, Devil. I continue getting sucked into every movie that comes along with M. Night Shyamalan's name on it because I keep hoping against hope that it will be another Sixth Sense. And since Unbreakable, he hasn't come close to repeating the surprise nor the suspense of his debut film. For a measly dollar, though, I was willing to take another chance.

Devil concerns five people targeted, trapped in an elevator and systematically killed by the devil. No, it wasn't a comedy. There is the typical Shyamalan surprise twist at the end, but it hardly has the impact of the Sixth Sense. Again I recognized four or five of the eight or so key players, but none of them headliners.

I neither laughed nor cried, but I did kiss two bucks good-by. I need to find something better to do with my evenings.

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