Friday, September 24, 2010

3.5" Movies - The Runaways

How does an adult, bald male write about the Runaways and not come off sounding like a perv? He doesn't. So, I apologize in advance.

So, for those who didn't read the last post, well, why are you reading this one? But still, some quick background. Most of my movie-watching is done on my iPod Touch, to and from the office. So, I watch movies on a very small screen in about 15-30 minute segments. Because of this, it sometimes takes several days or even weeks to finish a movie, depending on the distractions in my life. 3.5" Movies hopes to provide reviews of movies seen in this odd format. So, let's get to the review.

The Runaways is a movie about the teen girl rock group headed by teenager Cherie Currie, played by Dakota Fanning. The most famous of the band is Joan Jett, played by Twilight star Kirstin Stewart.

The movie follows the typical rock star movie pattern. The band members are down and out. They start the band, in this case thanks to the machinations of their adult male manager, Kim Fowley, played by Michael Shannon. They make it big, feel discord with thier old lives (mostly via Fanning's Currie), get involved with drugs and sex, become jealous of each other, and then break up. That's it. I just explained the whole movie in those few sentences.

The reality is that with certain genre movies, you can almost predict the story before it starts. This movie played entirely into the stardom-followed-by-a-fall genre. So, in order to enjoy the movie, you have to kinda accept that nothing in the plot is going to be fresh; and trust me, nothing is. However, what is fresh is the interesting and impressive transformation of kid star Dakota Fanning into a very adult-themed Cherie Currie.

I've been following Dakota Fanning's career since she was a goddamn infant. The SciFi channel, before they went all ghey and renamed themselves SyFy (is it just me, or is this as weak as the wannabe girls who change their names to Lauryn to be different), aired a mini-series called Taken in 2002. It was a multi-generational mini-series about aliens visiting Earth. It's been a long time since I've seen it, but I remember that I was very impressed by the little actress who was, I think, like half-alien or whatever. She was something important that the aliens wanted. Regardless, she must've been 6 or 7 years old back then (when filmed, 8 y.o. in 2002), but I was amazed at her ability to actually act.

Thankfully, Fanning's career took off. Still, being a kid star, she focused on kid films. That recently changed when she took a role in a movie no one saw where her character was raped. I suppose it was intended to help her break from the Disney stuff, but all it did was create controversy in the papers. Unfortunately, the controversy did little for the film, which did not do well in the box office.

She then had a role in the Twilight films, but there, she plays a young vampire and, in my estimation, comes off as a child.

Cherie Currie, though, was a role that was seemingly made for Fanning. After the first few scenes, you don't see kid-star Fanning anymore, but instead, Cherie Currie, all sexual energy with absolutely no focus or control. In an early scene, she glides around her HS auditorium's stage in skin-tight pants during a talent show lip-synching with David Bowie. In later scenes, none of which actually depict sex but imply it, she is shown to be a strung out rockstar sex symbol in none of its glory.

This is all to say that Fanning transcends the cookie cutter (and watered down) storyline and actually gives an impressive, adult performance. Gone is the Fanning that starred in such fare as the Cat in the Hat and Charlotte's Web. Welcome the Dakota Fanning that grinds against the floor in skin tight pants, mimics a drug overdose, and then can actually successfully play the other side of the coin, the pensive girl who realizes that he rockstar days are over and she's just another one in the crowd.

So, I'm giving the movie a 6 out of 10. It really needed to stop pulling punches and the rockstar portion of the movie was too compact to really appreciate the rise-and-fall nature of the storyline. But I give Dakota an 8 out of 10 for successfully transitioning to adult material in a way that will surely help her find better adult roles in the future.

Until next time, keep 'em 3.5"!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

3.5" Movies - MacGruber

I love reading FilmChaw posts, but I haven't posted on here in months. It must be because my consumption pales in comparison to Dawn, the patron saint of Netflix, I don't attend any cool film festivals like Astin, and I can't get myself to delve deeply into random flicks like the Goat. But we all have our movie-watching quirks, so I've decided to embrace mine. 3.5" movies, for the guy who watches more movies on his iPod Touch in 15-30 minute increments than any other form of media.

When it comes to watching movies on an iPod Touch, I've discovered a real surprise: some movies are better in mini-form. The mini-format is not just size, but also time. I literally watch most of my iPod Touch movies in brief intervals while riding to and from work. And I will often bounce between different things, so it may take me a week to finish a 2 hour movie. Amazingly, while I am probably breaking all of the rules of movie-watching, I find that some films are actually way more enjoyable than I expected (usually based on others' reviews), leading me to believe that some films may actually benefit from my micro movie style.

Let's get to the first film in this hopefully long series of posts. The first is a sleeper of a film, by which I mean it utterly failed at the box office, despite lots of promotion: MacGruber!!!!!! The title doesn't actually have six exclamation points, but it should!!!!!!

MacGruber is a comedy based on the micro-sketch that has been airing on Saturday Night Live sporadically for the last several years. On SNL, the sketch is basically a riff on MacGyver, the 80s TV character who was known mostly for taking random objects and turning them into whatever tool he needed to stop the bad guys or disable the bomb or escape from the trap. So, MacGruber on SNL (played by Will Forte) was merely a skit with a needy, emotional version of MacGyver and usually two other actors, generally a female sidekick (Kristin Wiig) and the special guest of the week. Invariably, they would be locked somewhere, diffusing a bomb, when MacGruber would get distracted by some personal issue, at which point, the bomb would explode presumably killing them all...until the next MacGruber sketch.

With this background, its easy to see why the movie looked like a dog. MacGyver is a pretty old reference for a parody and the sketch was always limited, but the movie transcends these issues. The parody is broadened from MacGyver to general action movies, with takeoffs from a variety of films too lengthy (and likely too obscure in some cases) to list here.

Perhaps the greatest strength in the film was its willingness to accept an R rating. Most comedies attempt to go broad to attract the teen audience, but MacGruber was pure R. That means boobies and bad words, two things that help any action or comedy movie.

As MacGruber, Will Forte is absolutely hilarious. The character is well realized and multi-dimensional, not to mention delusional and just plain awesome. For instance, a running gag is that MacGruber does not use guns...but he does have a patented move where he rips out the bad guys' windpipes with his bare hands. It's absurd, disgusting, violent, and hilarious all rolled into one.

Also to be commended are his supporting case. Kristin Wiig is great as his female sidekick. She actually looks like a funny Jennifer Aniston; funny as in not as good looking but close enough, and funny as in she doesn't make every movie instantly suck by her presence. In fact, Wiig is a comedic star in her own right and more than holds her own in the movie. One of my favorite scenes involves Wiig dressed as MacGruber to be used as bait. She has MacGruber telling her how to act via an earpiece, but she is so skittish and a shrinking violet, particularly in comparison to the blustery MacGruber, that the scene is chock full of laughs. I really wish I could tell you the exact scene that had me rolling on the floor of the subway laughing, but I'd hate to ruin it.

Finally, I have to give props to an actor who is woefully underrespected in my humble opinion: Ryan Phillippe. Phillipe plays the role of the straight guy, both as his character and by the sheer fact that the usually-serious actor is in such a wacky comedy. And he's good. His acting is solid, and he somehow grounds the movies and the characters around him.

And to round out the cast, props to Val Kilmer, who played the villain, Kunth. Obviously, the name was picked so that MacGruber could make lots of lines about pounding that Kunth. It can be a bit of an old gag, but really, when do you ever hear the C-word used in film, especially in a comedy.

And for you wrestling fans out there, there is a scene you will absolutely love, with cameos of a handful of WWE stars. For you non-wrestling fans out there, its not a wrestling scene, so don't worry about it. You will not lose anything by your inability to identify the Big Show.

I'm giving MacGruber an 8 out of 10. It's laugh-out-loud funny, it doesn't pull any punches, and it has a surprisingly strong cast and story.

Until next time, keep 'em 3.5"!

TIFF Review - Bunraku

Mix a Noir, Western, and Samurai film, place it in a pop-up book, and make it look like it was all created by Guy Laliberté - that's Bunraku.

In a future where guns have been banned, violence has returned to the old forms of melée combat. The martial arts, swordplay, and straight-up street brawling are the weapons of choice. Within this world, new rules apply. A mobster can rule a city with a small army, but be challenged by any gang of twenty. The Woodcutter Nicola (Ron Perlman) owns this town.

A vicious killer himself, he has 9 lieutenants who go by the names Killer #2-10, ranked by their ability and who they killed to move up the ladder.

All of this is explained in the opening sequence, where Killer #2 (Kevin McKidd) single-handedly takes down a gang of 20 freedom fighters who want to free their town from the grasp of "the most powerful man east of the Atlantic".

A drifter (Josh Hartnett) comes into town, along with Yoshi (Gackt), both with similar destinations, but different ideas on how to get there. The Drifter is a brawler with incredibly fast hands who is seeking vengeance. Yoshi is a Samurai in search of a family heirloom. Naturally, both roads lead to Nicola.

The local bartender (Woody Harrelson) has his own history with Nicola, but is injured and old. In these two men he sees his chance at retribution, and he manipulates them into becoming partners in their endeavours.

An original tale? Not on paper. Mixing a drifer out of a Western and a Samurai out of the world of Kurosawa isn't that much of a stretch, as the genres share themes. The noir aspect adds a veneer of style that ties it together. But what truly makes Bunraku worthwhile is the visuals. "Bunraku" is a traditional form of Japanese puppet theatre, and the movie takes place in this world. Surreal landscapes and surroundings, transitions through comic books, fight scenes out of side-scrolling video games, and a world that looks made out of paper mâché makes for a visual feast. The fight scenes move between quick and dirty brawls to choreographed clashes of style, to dance routines disguised as efficient fighting techniques. By the time the acrobats start kicking cowboy-ass, you may believe you're watching a Cirque du Soleil presentation.

Stylistically, Bunraku fills me with the same hope as Scott Pilgrim vs The World. It's original, modern, relevant, and an important part of the presentation. It's not style for style's sake, but a valid representation of the ideas within the film. If cinema continues to move in this direction, it could easily reinvigorate a generation raised on interactive fiction, games, and graphic novels to enjoy movies.

The story falls apart towards the end - the long road to the climax eats up so much time that it would be a three-hour film if it finished at the same pace. That isn't to say it's a slow trip, but a full one. Fights, explanations, poker games, synecdoche, and backstory are all presented. The ending simply wraps them all up. But this shortcoming of the film can be forgiven for the visual feast presented throughout.

TIFF Review - The Trip

The Trip is a movie that keeps lying to its audience. We were told it was a two-hour movie, but it's really a six-part British series. It's advertised as a road movie about two funny British actors touring restaurants, but it turns out to be much more.

Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon play two comedian friends named... Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon. Exaggerated versions of themselves, Coogan is a pretentious prick and Brydon is a passive-aggressive impersonator trying to make the best of a generally insufferable situation - being stuck with Coogan.

Now, put two funny guys together in a car, hotels, and restaurants, and you're guaranteed some laughs. They come in various forms throughout the film, Brydon's hit-and-miss impersonations, back-and-forth reconstructions of movie cliches ("We awake at dawn!"), commentaries on epicurean feasts, James Bond revisited, Coogan's acerbic critiques of Brydon, and the kind of humour one finds when two old friends start playing off one another. If the film was simply these two touring the north of England and shooting the shit, it would be enough for two hours of funny worth your time. But as the movie progresses, it becomes obvious this is only the shell of what's being presented.

Ostensibly a magazine-writing job, Coogan's ulterior motive for this trip was to romance his girlfriend. His girlfriend who has asked for a break and moved back to America to continue her journalism career. Having committed to the job, he's gone through his list of friends and ended up with Brydon. Between tasting menus, Coogan is on the phone with his girlfriend, his ex-wife, his son, and his agents. His professional life isn't where he wants it either. He juggles feasts with various relationships, career insecurities, and sexual conquests. Through it all is his old friend.

Brydon is a family man, with a wife and baby he adores, living the life of a celebrity of some fame, but without the international exposure or trappings of Hollywood recognition. He's content with this existence, it gives him a comfortable life, but without taking him away from those he loves. He has no desire for that flaring moment of super-celebrity, and in fact fears it - if it was to be achieved, how would he follow it? In many ways, he's positioned as Coogan's mirror-image - secure, content, faithful, he followed the path Coogan didn't take and found happiness.

The movie bounces between the awkwardness of two people who don't really get along, to peeks at the deep friendship they seem afraid to admit, to Coogan's personal issues. It is all tied together with humour and heart and gourmet food.

And what food. I'm anxious to see the full 6-part BBC series, because I can only assume it spends more time on those dishes. Six gourmet restaurants in the British countryside, beautiful locales (I now understand why the Brits emigrated to Canada - feels like home), and tasting menus that make me yearn for a wallet-busting restaurant visit.

If there's one complaint I have, it's that the point of the film seems a bit lost. It's part travelogue, part conversation piece, part road-buddy flick, and largely a comic showcase. But the bittersweet ending left me with one impression - The Trip is an excellent improvised study of fame disguised as a funny British road trip movie.

If you like wry British humour, gourmet food, and amusing, sometimes hilarious conversation, you definitely need to see this. Hell, if the thought of dueling Michael Caine impersonations appeals to you, you need to see it.

TIFF Review - Score: A Hockey Musical

Canadians are a proud people. Every once in a while, a Canadian movie causes those deep-seeded red-and-white feelings to rise to the top. A film can come along that captures our spirit and humour and love of our country. Score: A Hockey Musical is not that film.

A pandering, uneven, and largely derivative hockey movie, Score is a disappointment. The fact that it was the gala opening for the Toronto International Film Festival just increases the embarrassment.

Farley Gordon (Noah Reid) is a home-schooled teenager who has been sheltered from the world. His one non-educational activity seems to be playing shinny at the outdoor rink across the road from his bedroom with the locals. Naturally, he's the best player on the ice. He gets discovered by the owner (Stephen McHattie) of the Brampton Blades, a minor-league team full of players who will never see the NHL. Convinced to go against his granola-munching elitist parents (Olivia Newton-John and Marc Jordan), he joins the team.

Of course, being the sheltered son of neo-Trotskyist pacifists, he's SHOCKED that there's some physicality in the game he loves. The Blades are, of course, the roughest team in a league of goons. Bench-clearing brawls are commonplace, their star is a guy named "Moose" who is obviously the league's prize fighter, and the fans want blood.

His talent shoots Farley to national superstardom in a single game. By 3 games in, he's got an agent, underwear ad, and is testing a cologne. The fact he's the best player since Sidney Crosby (stated numerous times, along with his ignorance of who that is) gets him protected by his teammates, until he covers up during a fight with another team's goalie. Now he's not only a pariah to his team, but a national disgrace.

Etc, etc... the whole thing follows the hockey movie playbook. There's the female best friend from childhood who secretly loves him (and vice-versa), but gets temporarily turned off by his jackassery due to fame. His coach doesn't get this gentle kid, but is under ownership orders to play him. Teammates accept him, reject him, accept him again. His parents go from dead-set against his choice to realizing they're bad parents. It's all in there.

Even the fighting. Which is possibly the most disappointing aspect of the movie. This is 2010. Fighting is still a part of the game, but not to the extent it was in the 70's and 80's. The movie pretends the Blades are the Broad Street Bullies, loaded up with Hanson brothers. Fighting is hockey, and hockey is fighting. If you don't fight, you're a pussy who a country will turn against. Vague justifications are given, and a completely unbelievable solution is found. Seriously - had the writer not heard of Wayne Gretzky? Oh wait, he had to have, because Wayne's dad Walter is in the movie.

There is one scene, where a team-on-team battle becomes a ballet that almost makes a point about how even the fisticuffs have a poetic motion to them - but since it's not followed up on, it can be easily forgotten.

Obviously, the writer knew he'd written every other hockey movie out there, so he tossed in some song-and-dance numbers. Remember, it's "A Hockey Musical". The songs are generally forgettable, pedantic, and stretch to fit the plot. There's some clever wordplay here and there, and even the occasional catchy tune, but overall, it's a tacked-on effort that makes you wonder why they bothered.

Granted, the dream sequence with Walter Gretzky and Theo Fleury was pretty hilarious, if only a minute long.

Then there's the supporting cast - the team and coaches are fine (and Chris Ratz is funny when he gets to speak). Stephen McHattie is awesome (as always) as the owner of the Blades. Oliva Newton-John gets by on being, well, Olivia Newton-John. Marc Jordan comes off as "I guess Eugene Levy was busy". Allie MacDonald (Farley's best friend-cum-girlfriend, Eve) is cute enough, but pouts and sighs her way through the role. There's also vague Italian guy who's generally useless. In short - the cast is either serviceable or distracting.

Oh, and Nelly Furtado is in it for some reason. She doesn't really sing, act, or do anything else. Just cheers in the back row as a some sort of super-fan.

It's a shame that this movie fails so much. It starts of with John McDermott singing "O Canada", just like he does at Leafs games, which stirred my patriotic heart. Sadly, it just got more pandering from there, to the point where it went from funny to sad. But hey, if you like playing "where is that in Toronto", it's fun for about 10 scenes, then they've covered them all.

If you're Canadian or a hockey fan, I recommend watching this film alone in a small room and not telling anyone. You'll chuckle, maybe cheer a bit, and then grow increasingly anxious to grab another beer and maybe forget about the rest of the movie, since you know how it ends. If you're American - please forget this movie exists and never watch it. We don't need your opinions of us further ruined.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

September to Remember

Huh. Did anyone else realize that remember rhymes with an awful lot of our months of the year? No? Just me? Well, then YOU'RE welcome America! Um...and Canada. And possibly Mexico, if the Rooster reads this blog. Which he probably doesn't.

The Crazies

This movie is AWESOME! And that was before I even watched the whole Deadwood series in a week and learned all about Bullock. It’s scary AS HELL, in terms of both gore and psychological thrillage… I just made that word up, didn’t I? It’s got yer government cover-ups and your shootings and burning alives, oh and yer pitchfork stabbings…AHHHHHHHH. OMG. Seriously. I screamed for hours.

Death at a Funeral

This is the movie I thought I was renting when I rented the British Death at a Funeral, last year or earlier this year, it’s starting to run together. This version stars Martin and Chris Rock and Tracy Morgan and Danny Glover. And would you believe, TRACY MORGAN is the best part? Everyone else stinks. Chris Rock as the straight man is stilted and boring. Martin as a cad hitting on a teenager, yawn. Even the guy who accidentally takes hallucinogens and starts tripping is lame and boring. Definitely see the British version instead.

Repo Men

This is one of those set in the future sci fi adventures that I hate so much. And seriously, why doesn’t Jude Law just shave his head or wear a wig instead of us making us watch his hairline recede in slow motion movie after god awful movie? Ah, but enough snark, how about a plot. So… um… they have invented artificial organs to make up for the shortage in organ donations. Naturally, such organs are expensive, so people need to take out loans to pay for them. But the bad loan company is evil and charges them interest and so now they have to pay for the organs AND the privilege of borrowing money. And when they fall behind, the bad mean company sends out men to repossess (that word has A LOT of esses in it) the organs. Jude Law’s wife doesn’t like what he’s doing so she wants him to quit, but his partner refuses to let him go and rigs and\ accident that costs Jude Law his heart. So now HE must take out a loan for an artificial heart! Then I think Jude Law falls in love with a woman who has so many artificial limbs and organs that she’s mostly machine. I dunno. This movie is wretched. Booo.

Youth In Revolt

Man, I hate Michael Cera. I’ve been watching old Arrested Developments and my only regret about that series is that it made him famous. And now he is unleashed unto the world making crap movies like this dung heap. He’s a kid in love with a girl who is way too hot for him. And so he conjures up an alter ego who does bad things to make him seem more rebel than dweeb. And then she falls for him, but now he has to go to prison. The only one that’s funny is Michael Cera’s mom. But she’s also a whore. Blah. Snooze.

The Runaways

Yeah, because what I really want is to see little Dakota Fanning as a coke whore. Sigh. I’m not into this kind of music and I’d never heard of Cherie Whatever or her Girlettes before, so maybe I’m not the movie's target audience. But as a biopic, it’s merely okay. I actually empathized most with the manager and felt like I was supposed to be siding with the girls…right? The chick from the Twilight movies was as single dimensional and vacuous as she is in those movies. I used to think it was the character Bella, but now, I see it’s the actress. If you can’t make Joan Jett in the 60s exciting, you fail at life.

Green Zone

Oh man, yet another terrible movie. I don’t know why they say this is part of the Bourne series, it’s not. Damon plays a regular old marine, who is navigating the fine line of a “friendly occupation.” The movie is basically about whether he can trust this Iraqi dude as they search Baghdad for the bad guys in Sadaam’s administration. In the end, he can’t. No, he can. Wait, no, he can’t. Oh…maybe…YESS HE CAN! Aw…lemon. Nope. I’m not kidding. That’s how the movie goes.


THIS MOVIE KICKED ASS! I can’t begin to tell you how much I feared this movie was gonna blow chunks. But, no, instead it BLOWS YOUR MIND! The premise is that this nerd boy decides to dress up like a superhero and see if he can make a difference. He can’t, he gets his ass kicked. (“They shouldn’t call him kick-ass, they should call him ass kicked” – Nicholas Cage as Big Daddy.) But he inspires this father and daughter team to do the same thing and they are ARMED! And then he spawns a nemesis, a Richie rich kid who is trying to win his father’s affection. MAN, this movie is GREAT GREAT GREAT!!!

Clash of Titans

I liked this flick a lot. I’m totally into mythology and that’s what this movie deals with. The demigod son of Zeus trying to save makind from Hades’ power grab. There are cool monsters (“Release the Krakken!”) And neat fight scenes, the story isn’t totally predictable and the end is surprisingly satisfying.

Extraordinary Measures

Um…Brendan Fraser plays a dad of two kids dying of some weird children’s disease. Harrison Ford is the aloof scientist who has a cure in theory but is too anti-social and poor to test it on human subjects. Um…it’s supposed to be one of those “tug at your heart strings” movies. But, I didn’t feel a single tug. I dunno, I just didn’t care. Maybe they shoulda gotten cuter kids. (Oh snap! No she didn’t.) Or maybe Brendan Fraser and Kerri Russell are just too annoying…yeah, that was probably it. The kids were plenty cute. (Save!)

Diary of a Wimpy Kid

UGH. SKIP. SKIP. SKIP. I think this is a beloved children’s book series? I don’t know, I don’t have kids, but this movie strings together every dumb cliché about being yourself and sticking up for your friends from every live action kids movie since the beginning of time, yet still comes out with a stinker. The main kid is trying to be cool, so he ditches his chubby elementary school best friend, but then still isn’t cool and the chubby kid becomes cool and then they have to eat some cheese off the floor… blech. Boooo double booo!

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus

I rented this movie in my never ending quest to see all of Johnny Depp’s movies. He isn’t in it very long though, and then I realized this was the famous “last Heath Ledger” movie. It’s okay. It’s got Jude Law’s receding hairline in it too… um… the premise is weird. It’s all about magic and the devil and the dreamworld, meh. If you are trying to see every Johnny Depp movie, then definitely rent it!

The Spy Next Door

So, if I say that “Jackie Chan is the romantic lead,” is that enough to tell you to run, run very far and very fast away from this movie? Cause if it’s not, you need your head examined.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Ooh, ooh I get to give my pretentious “the book was better” line on this one! Well, it would be pretentious, if the book wasn’t basically beach lit that everyone and their mama is reading right now. Oh, but what if I add “the book was better, but the other two in the trilogy are infinitely better,” that is TOTALLY pretentious! Woo! Suck on that! Where was I? Right…the movie. It’s basically a murder thriller. An old man is dying and before he goes he wants to find out what happened to his granddaughter fifty years ago when she disappeared from the island. The movie is in Swedish, with subtitles. It’s very dark and grainy. I highly support the upcoming remake with Daniel Craig…they could have done more. The movie glosses over some stuff way too quickly, though, it’s still fairly long. Not a good combo.

Dirty Work

Very random comedy…where Norm McDonald runs a revenge for hire business (incidentally, I could SO run a revenge for hire business!) Hinjinx ensue. It’s funny in parts… not anywhere close to Dodgeballs funny, but decent. And short, so there’s that.

The Last Song

Well, I will say two things about this movie. First: I rented it because Miley Cyrus was in it. I like her. Second: I did not know it was a fracking Nicholas Sparks movie. However, at the movie’s end, I did not feel violent towards anyone involved. I cannot say that about the last two Sparks movies that I saw. It’s a pretty standard “family movie.” You know, bad NYC teen’s mom ships her off to her dad’s house in…um…somewhere else that’s not NYC where people talk funny and life moves slower. She learns to love again. Or gets self esteem. I dunno…whatever the point those movies always try to make, this one tries to make as well.

Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day

I didn’t know what to expect from this movie at all. Not sure why I picked it up. But I’m glad I did, it was a quirky, not annoying period piece. The plot is something like a homeless woman in pre world war 2 England pretends to be a hotshot publicist and gets a fancy job for an actress. She comes to realize that she’s not the only one pretending to be what she’s not.

City Island

This movie is TOTALLY not what I was expecting. It’s about a family in the Bronx. And everyone is keeping secrets, but then the secrets come out and boy are they dumb secrets like “I don’t want to be a prison guard, I want to act!” Oh, well, and “oh, this is my son that I had with some whore before I married you.” And “I’m a stripper, dad.” But other than those, the secrets are way dumb.

Harry Brown

BLECH. I saw this movie when it was Gran Torino and the I hated it then too.

Grand Canyon

At first, I thought I hated this movie. It’s one of those vignette style pieces set in LA where the white people run into the black people by some unfortunate happenstance but then interact: think Crash. Except this movie starts to make fun of itself for being that and then I didn’t hate it. That this movie was made way before Crash and didn’t win an Oscar, pisses me off. It’s great! And the writing is great…though the ending is weird.


Shut it. Do I come to your blogs and judge you?


I had a big debate with my coworkers about whether Tom Hanks has sex with the Weeds lady in the movie. My argument was absolutely NOT this is a kid’s movie and that would make her a pedophile! I was wrong. So, very very sadly ewwww, grossly wrong. Aside from the pedophilia, the movie stands up as the cute fun story that I remember.


This movie does not stand the test of time AT ALL! Except for the first ten or so minutes when the dumb blond girl gets eaten, this movie is not scary for even a second. Well, okay, and maybe at the end when the captain gets eaten. But really, it’s just a lot of old men yakking away. Snooze job! And why did I think that Jaws was like a super shark science experiment that went wrong? Nope. He’s he’s a regular old shark. ZZZZZZ


STOP IT! I see you saying it three times in your head. Jerks! Um… I liked this movie more when I was a kid, it’s kind of uneven, but I still liked it today. And I was singing “shake shake shake zanora” for the rest of the day, so, you know, there’s that.