I was always quite taken with the idea of the boy in the bright blue jeans, jumping up on the stage while the world is dying around him. I guess that really wouldn't fly in the Middle East. Kim Jong Il would at least dig the hair, I think.
Speaking of our sexually ambiguous, misfit saviours, I saw Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest yesterday. I liked it better than the first one--I thought the dialogue was better, I thought Elizabeth Swan and Will Turner were far more interesting--to the point of actually being characters contributing to the film--and I greatly preferred the concept of Davey Jones' damned crew over the lame "undead" curse from the previous film, in which the dead people weren't even actually dead.
I thought I was going to be annoyed to distraction by the new movie's slapstick, but I actually quite liked it. Instead of Jack Sparrow bouncing around like a cartoon for the sake of it, the arrangements were genuinely inventive. It reminded me of 1940s cartoons where the artists weren't amazed at the concept of making a cartoon, and had moved on to, "Okay, what would be great?" And it had a Chaplin/Keaton-esque quality, too.
Being the avid Caitlin R. Kiernan reader I am, I had to love the half pirate, half strange sea organism concept, especially as it played out in the designs.
The movie's considerable length was almost unnoticeable as the story pulled you right along. Of course, I've only seen it once so it's hard to really judge, as I found my appreciation for the first film diminished precipitously upon second viewing. But right now, I say thumbs up.