Finally, a short break to catch a movie with my wife. In fact, we saw two this weekend that we both agree are good ones: Ray and Team America: World Police. You must be wondering how can you put these movies on the same level. My criteria for good movies is simple: the movie delivers an enjoyable performance, especially one where I can empathize with the characters. Ok, so this is a stretch for Team America, but it delivers on the first count. Trust me!
Ray is an awesome movie and Jamie Foxx delivers an Oscar-worthy performance. If you wonder how can a funny comedian, often compared to Jim Carey, deliver this, you are in for a treat! Jamie Foxx shows incredible range in his acting skills to make this movie a complete standout on both of my counts above: it’s enjoyable, even tear jerker at times, and gets you as close as possible to the character. I say as close because there is absolutely no way to truly understand what it’s like to be a blind man. You can begin to comprehend the difficulties and even imagine it, but not quite understand unless you’re blind too. And this is where the movie delivers because it uses clever imagery from Ray’s childhood and upbringing to deliver a complete picture of who was Ray and what it means to be a successful blind musician but not a crippled one. That’s the point made throughout the movie. Ray was a street-smart person who was tough on everyone, especially himself, and never accepted any pity from noone. He was also a humorous smooth-talker that was a magnet for the ladies. This made Jamie Foxx a perfect actor for the role, with his youthful, comedic and smooth demeanor that worked well to show Ray in it’s full glory. Oh, yeah, Jamie Foxx is an accomplished pianist who got Ray Charles’ blessing for the role before Ray passed away. Wow, I sound like a movie critic…go see Ray!
Moving to a more serious stuff, Team America delivers big time. I still burst laughing just by reminiscing some of the scenes as I write this. My favourite one that’s been played on the trailers: “I got two terrorists going down on baka-laka-daka street.” This movie is as funny as anything Matt Stone and Trey Parker have done. Clever and elaborate like any South Park episode, with not so subtle critiques of terrorists, US actions abroad, Hollywood liberals and Government honchos, oh yeah, and sex, plenty of it! There’s an elaborate sex scene with the puppets that will make you laugh so hard you’ll need an ambulance. Oh, yeah, and my favourite song “We need a montage!” from South Park…how funny is that, making fun of your movie in your movie. This is one funny movie, go see it!