Friday Question of the Day – What’s the Best Movie of the Summer? The Worst?

Inglorious Basterds, originally uploaded by simonem151266.

Well, I went into Inglourious Basterds hoping to see the best film of the summer. A number of friends highly recommended it. They are no longer my friends. Now, I’m a huge Tarantino fan. Violence in films doesn’t upset me. And of course, I’m Jewish, so I thought I’d love this film. I could not have been more wrong. I was constantly checking my watch throughout the film. It was utterly boring. There was no character development at all and scarcely any compelling plot. It was just plain boring. And like I said, I really enjoyed Kill Bill, Pulp Fiction and the other Tarantino films.

So help me out – what was the best film of this summer? And for fun, what was the worst?

45 Comment

  • I thoroughly enjoyed Up, District 9, and World’s Greatest Dad.

  • If you think ‘Kill Bill’ had character development and ‘Inglorious’ did not you’re remembering incorrectly.

  • Well that’s your problem right there: you’re a Tarantino fan.

    While the movie has elements of the typical Tarantino film, like wanton violence and simultaneous plot lines, this was a departure for him, focusing on non-trivial dialog and historic relevance. I imagine that long-drawn-out dialog and historic minutiae bores some. For me, and for many others, it was a suspenseful and thought-provoking film, requiring not one check of the watch.

  • I also went to see the basterds with high hopes but was a bit underwhelmed.

  • julie & julia, hands down, among the american films so far.

  • I loved The Hurt Locker. I thought the character development was great. Overall this was a tough summer for movies. Not so many great ones. I haven’t seen Julie and julia yet and I love Meryl Streep so can’t comment on that one yet but any move Meryl has got to be good.

  • I’m going to show some love for an earlier summer movie (June maybe?) for Pixar’s UP. That was an incredible movie and I’d recommend seeing it in theaters if you haven’t yet 🙂

  • I’d agree with m.e. – Julie and Julia was the best of the American films of the summer.

  • On your worst/best question: same movie: G.I. Joe. It was so bad, it was perfect for a group of office mates to laugh at on a Friday afternoon. I haven’t laughed so hard at a movie in a while.

    As for Inglourious Basterds, I believe the problem was the format. This should not have been a movie. I definitely had the opinion, even while watching it, that Inglourious Basterds could and probably should have been a ten to twelve episode HBO miniseries or series. There were just too many things that were undercooked.

    I think you could easily have had episodes on (1) Shoshanna’s origins (2) the formation of the unit (3) the unit as terrorist guerrillas in France (4) the story of the German sharpshooter private (5) Hugo Stiglitz (6) a flashback to basterds fighting in Italy (7) the Nazi hunter at work (8) the movie star spy story (9) maybe one on British intelligence and the basterds’ interaction with OSS and (10-11) the big finale, in two parts, the first revealing Shoshanna’s bomb plot, and the second on the Basterds’ shoot-em-up suicide mission and final twists.

  • I think I was the only person who didn’t love Up. The first ten minutes are, however, incredible. I thought that there were no truly amazing films this summer (what else is new), but I thoroughly enjoyed District 9, The Hurt Locker, and The Hangover.

    Worst by far, which I was, unfortunately, dragged to by a date: The Ugly Truth. I don’t think I’ve come that close to actually yakking in a movie theater since the “love scenes” between Ani and Padme.

  • I did not go to see this film. At first, as a Jew myself, it held that interest that all people have for their own people. When I read a bit about it and heard it called the ultimate revenge film, getting back at the Nazi bastards, I began to have my doubts.
    Tables turned, Jews acting like Nazis. In my opinion, not a good idea.
    I wonder, would a Jew have made a movie like this (still remembering that I haven’t seen it so perhaps I don’t know what I’m talking about).
    Also, I have to admit to a squeamishness when it comes to corporeal mutilation.

  • I, for one, really loved Inglourious Basterds, but it seems to be quite the polarizing film. Everyone I know who has seen it either loves it or hates it. As a director, Tarantino has turned a corner.

  • District 9 was great!

    Transformers 2 was just BAD.

  • 500 days of summer was good

  • Inglourious Basterd was just great… really. And did anyone else catch the Fight Club reference?! Great cast. Though, I could have done without the terrible & narcissistic Mike Myers.

    500 Days of Summer was also good.

    Those were the only two I saw in the theater.

    Finally watched Some Came Running and that would probably be my vote for best movie I’ve seen this summer period.

    And I can only imagine that Transformers 2 was a total shit show.

  • I really enjoyed Away We Go and District 9. As a comic book fanatic, Wolverine was soul-crushingly disappointing. Ok, that’s a bit much, but it really did suck.

  • Echoing New2CH… District 9, The Hurt Locker, and The Hangover

    not just because they were guy films and not because they were the only 3 I got to drag the GF to.

  • I liked Inglorious Basterds and 500 Days of Summer. Liked the Julia part of Julie & Julia too, wish there was more of it.

  • andy – great idea on the HBO miniseries – would have been nice to have more background on characters, although not completely necessary.

    With that said, I LOVED inglorious basterds. I’ve been getting made fun of forever for never having seen a Tarantino movie (I know, I know…). I loved the violence, graphic graphic scenes (and yes, I’m a chick), plot, characters… I went with a few people who were like PoP and checking their watches, so I agree with Richard in that people either love it or hate it.

  • I second New Hampy- 500 days of summer! LOVED it!

  • Hurt Locker was probably the best movie I saw in a theatre. Also really enjoyed Humpday, although it was a bit slow at times.

    Inglorious Basterds was excellent. It’s a great homage to both the Spaghetti Western (including music from one of the masters of that genre, Ennio Morricone) and the great WWII films of the late sixties and early seventies. That opening scene could have been taken from a Sergio Leone film. And the weird twist on history actually worked for me.

  • The Nine Lives of Marion Barry

    Did you see the 1980’s Columbia Heights scene?…breathtaking.

  • As a female who’s not all that in to Tarantino films, I went in to Inglorious Basterds with minimal expectations, but ended up really enjoying the movie.

    I’ll also echo the above recommendations for The Hurt Locker – what an extremely well-acted, suspenseful, compelling film. If you haven’t seen it already, make some time during the upcoming rainy weekend to do so. I was able to see it at a special pre-screening in DC for the EOD (Explosive Ordnance Division) community, where Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boals (the director and writer, respectively) were present. We were able to chat with them after the movie, and both of them mentioned Chris Hedges’ book, “War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning” as a heavy influence on the movie. So I went out and got the book, and it’s also fantastic. So if you enjoyed The Hurt Locker (or are just looking for a quick, interesting read), pick up Hedges book as well.

  • The only current summer movie I saw was Ponyo, which I really enjoyed. Some Miyazaki fans have quipped with its relatively simple narrative, but I loved the characters and of course the breathtaking animation. The Ponyo character was written with a very keen eye for the mannerisms and playfulness of a young child.

    Still want to see Inglorious Bastards, The Handover, Julie and Julia and 500 Days of Summer. Will probably have to wait for Netflix.

  • I thought UP, The Hangover, and HP6 were the best of the summer. District 9 was very good as well and I really liked Inglorious Basterds. It was different from the usual Tarantino but in a good way.

    As for the worst, that would go to Tranformers 2 and GI Joe.

  • The Hangover. Hysterical.

  • District 9 and The Hangover were definitely the best movies I saw this summer, though I didn’t catch other people’s favorites, Inglorious and Up. Transformers 2 is in my top 5 worst movies I’ve ever seen.

  • Another vote for the Hurt Locker- definitely the best movie of the summer. It is a great study of the Iraq War, and the motivations of the soldiers who fight for us. It has action, nail-biting tension, and some laughs. Check it out-

  • Basterds was easily Tarantino’s finest movie. The build-up of tension in every scene was phenomenal. Perfect amount of character development. Not too violent. He was definitely aware of it as well; brad pitt’s last line before the cut to credits was “I consider this to be my masterpiece” or something like that. I couldn’t believe 2.5 hours had passed when it was over.

    Best of the summer, however, goes to The Hurt Locker. In the top 3 finest war movies ever made, imo.

  • The Hangover

  • I forgot all about The Hangover. Not to say it wasn’t good cause it was hysterical.

  • Worst movie – the Hangover! Best – Public Enemies!

  • I liked District 9 a lot, too, but I’d have to say that my favorite movie this summer was Moon. Wonderful performance by Sam Rockwell, who isn’t even one of my favorite actors (except in Galaxy Quest). It’s not a “summer movie” in the traditional sense that it has a lot of action or is riotously funny, but it is an excellent, excellent film. Unfortunately, it has probably left the theatres by now, and isn’t the type of film to make it to the second-run joints.

    Also In the Loop is a funny, fast-paced political comedy, some of it filmed in D.C. One critic said it’s the best movie about the Iraq War — and it never even mentions the word “Iraq.” If you have a really hard time with British or Scottish accents or if you object to a lot of swearing (which I assume isn’t a problem, since you’re a Tarantino fan), you might not enjoy it as much.

    While the summer is technically over, I am really really looking forward to 9.

  • In The Loop – hands down my favorite. It is a political spoof of the start of the Iraq war from the British perspective. Highly entertaining and very funny and smart. Still playing at E Street I believe.

  • I’m not a Tarantino fan at all, but I loved Basterds.

    District 9 was great.

    Annd….that’s about it. I know I saw other stuff but clearly none of it was memorable.

  • I really liked “Funny People”.

    “Food, Inc.” was riveting and a must-see in my opinion.

    I laughed a lot at “The Hangover”

    The worst movie I saw this summer was “Cold Souls” Horribly boring flick.

  • The Hurt Locker.

  • Basterds is my movie of the Summer thus far… The actor that played the Jew Hunter is my vote for supporting actor thus far. Just outstanding acting and I felt his character was well-developed by the end of the movie. Will see again on video.

  • I don’t see alot of movies but I thought that “The Hangover” was hysterical

  • DISTRICT 9 – not just the best movie of the summer, but the best movie of the year (that I’ve seen… admittedly I haven’t seen The Hurt Locker yet, and from what I’m hearing it is major competition for the “best” honor). Amazing first time directing job, amazing first time acting job, original, fantastic sound and visuals, tight story… fabulous all around!

  • District 9: best movie of the summer, by far.

    One of the few movies that wasn’t obnoxious marketing dreck (GI Joe, et al) or stupid violence-for-violence’s-sake garbage (e.g. all things Tarantino).

    Oh, and I think I would have loved In The Loop, if I’d bothered to see it.

  • Bests: In the Loop, District 9, Every Little Step (Chorus Line Docu), Hurt Locker

  • Up- check. District 9- check. No one mentioned Taking Woodstock, a really fun, and oddly moving movie. I wasn’t expecting that. Very different from you typical 60’s movie- not self righteous or superficial romanticism of the period, but it’s really more about relationships and how people change. Very upbeat. See it!

    Another fun movie- Extract. Justin Bateman is excellent. The Post didn’t like it (?????) but everyone else did. Very funny, very entertaining. A perfect weekend movie.

  • I didn’t see many of the movies that others have listed, but my votes go for Star Trek and Julie & Julia.

  • Gamer for best…Inglorious Basterds/G.I. Joe tied for worst…

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