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Posts posted by njskaguy33

  1. Newish Movie Review

    Meeks Cutoff

    Growing up, one of my favorite games was always Oregon Trail. The simple story of a pixilated frontier family braving the open expanses of the untamed West always filled me fascination. At first, you cruise along; you hunt for buffalo, stop at towns to buy supplies and ensure your family of travelers is well fed and medicated. After awhile though, things always go south. Two oxen die of cholera, start traveling slower. A wagon wheel looses a spoke, burn a day fixing it. Ma gets a stern case of the rickets, you slow to a crawl so she can recover. Soon, the game ceases to be a leisurely stroll through the undiscovered country; it becomes a war of attrition. Constantly juggling dwindling supplies, disease and your biggest enemy, time, you really start to feel the hardships of a trail worn traveler. What the game doesn’t do is explain what happens when you take the path not blazed. Played on a fairly steady track, you constantly move westward towards California. In the latest film by director Kelly Reichardt, you not only get a feel for the hardships facing those frontier pioneers, you become part of their family, living, breathing and sometimes even suffering through the monotony of the westward plains.

    The party of travelers you reluctantly join in made up of three families, the Tetherows, played by Michelle Williams and Will Patton the Gatelys (Paul Dano , Zoe Kazan) and the Whites (Neal Huff, Shirley Henderson). The party is led down toward California by Meek (Bruce Greenwood), a crusty old veteran of the Wild West. Cocksure, unwavering and stubborn, Meek takes the family of gold seekers down a supposed shortcut that looks more and more unfamiliar at every turn. During this introductory act, you can immediately tell this is going to be a grind to get through. While the landscape and scope of this unclaimed country is stunningly photographed, the opening slow pans set the deliberate pace for the rest of the film. Reichardt is in no rush to tell the story and instead turns her patient eye towards creating suspense through stillness. Many in the audience I saw it with started to squirm after the first twenty minutes and while the lack of action can be infuriating to those unprepared, anybody who has seen Reichardt’s other work know exactly what to expect. For me, the quiet of the filmmaking made every moment, from a conversation drenched in flickering campfire light to a slow track across an acrid plain, wrought with tension. The film can be excruciating at times but if you let the stillness work its magic on you, the movie’s ultimate mood is enveloping and at times breathtaking.

    Naturally, some good performances didn’t hurt either. The star of the film is Michelle Williams as the mother and head matriarch of the lead family. Her, along with her husband, played by Will Patton, are distrustful of the trail worn Meek, questioning his judgment at almost every turn. Meek has assured them that this path is the easiest route but as they progress, he becomes less and less confident of where they’re heading. Water is scarce, food is scarcer and tensions start to run high. Williams possesses a quiet intensity that colors her character with a smolder that burns beneath her pledge of duty to her husband and family. Williams plays the part to balanced perfection but once the party, at a moment of near desperation, capture a Native American with the choice to either kill him or put aside their fear and to help them fine water, she fully discovers the character’s potential. With the first half playing out almost like a living painting of a landscape, the second half deals solely with the prejudices of the traveling party. Meek wants to kill him, the father wants him to help and while I won’t spoil what the family chooses to do, the arc William’s character undergoes during the process is worth the price of admission alone.

    While the ending split the audience I saw this film with in two, half enjoying, half hating, I felt that the conclusion was an appropriately ambiguous end to an emotionally challenging film. Not a film for those who need their movies all sown up in a tidy bow, Meek Cutoff is an example of high art meeting high tension. Although the film certainly isn’t for everybody, and the glacier slow pacing even caused me to sigh now and again, Reichardt is a brave filmmaker who isn’t afraid to let good actors work in a still space and for that, she has my respect. Framed much like the traveling moments of a Cormac McCarthy novel, more than once I thought, especially towards the end, that Reichardt just might be the one to direct a version of Blood Meridian, an adaptation many experts think to be impossible. Slow, tense and in the end, intellectually thought provoking, Meek’s Cutoff is a film lovers movie, a piece of quiet beauty, stunning style and exceptional emotional quality. The text scrawl of, “Jeb has died from scurvy” in Oregon Trail will never read the same again.

  2. Opening This Week – Nationwide

    Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (Also in IMAX 3D and regular 3D – The opening so big that no other studio dared put their blockbuster up against it, the forth film of the Johnny Depp swashbuckler series pits Captain Jack Sparrow on a quest to find the Fountain of Youth. Joining him on this quest to topple box office records is the lovely Penelope Cruz, famed actor Geoffery Rush and Ian McShane as the fearsome Blackbeard. Maybe I’ll loose my critic card by saying this, but I’ve never seen any of the Pirates films and from what critics have said, there is no reason to start with this offering, this time directed by Rob Marshall of Chicago fame. If any of the films he’s done since Chicago is the standard (Memoirs of a Geisha, Nine) expect a beautifully filmed yet soulless adventure, providing decent enough thrills for the popcorn action set. Critics have been largely negative about this iteration, saying that not only does Cruz and Depp have little chemistry, the film has a slower pace, flying in the face of the kinetic energy of the first three. Each of the Pirates films have fallen in critical favor with critics but these films are more about the fun than the think, so I’ll label this as a very tentative See If For Yourself.

    Opening This Week – Limited Release

    Midnight in Paris – And who dares challenge the Depp machine this weekend? Owen Wilson and Woody Allen does…at least on four screens, anyway. After having a fine film in Vicky Christina Barcelona and a huge dud in Whatever Works, Allen seems to have rebounded in this Parisian rom-com. Wilson and costar Rachel McAdams are both said to be great as a couple traipsing around Paris, discovering all there is to love about it. Critics have gone so far to deem thisa return to form for Allen and a minor classic, so if you’re looking for a love story that doesn’t involve boats, cannons or swords, this is definitely a must see. Playing at City Cinemas 1,2 & 3, the Angelika, Clearview Chelsea and Lincoln Plaza Cinemas.

    A Beautiful Life – Story of two teenagers, one a runaway, another an illegal immigrant, who meet in the streets of LA to help each other figure out their lives. While I couldn’t find any critical opinion on this flick, it seems like your standard street rat story. No opinion either way on this one. Playing at AMC 25 and AMC Loews Fresh Meadows 7

    Cost of a Soul – This film centers on two friend who return to their North Philadelphia ghetto after a tour of duty in Iraq only to find the home they left behind hold much of the same issues as the world of war. While some critics say that this debut feature film of recent film school grad Sean Kirkpatrick shows promise, the film is too jarring and needlessly brutal for anybody to give it a recommendation. Showing at AMC Magic Johnson Harlem, AMC Empire 25 and AMC Lowes Jersey Gardens 20

    Opening This Week – Indie, Art House and Small Screenings

    Louder Than A Bomb – Well reviewed documentary about four Chicago beat poets who are preparing to compete in the world’s largest poetry competition. Critics have been raving about this film, saying that if you’ve had a crappy day, this film will do nothing but lift your spirits. Screening at the IFC Center

    My 3 To See

    Midnight In Paris – Woody Allen makes a triumphant return to critic’s good sides in this Owen Wilson rom-com

    Bridesmaids – Still the best reviwed comedy out in theaters, this crass, potty mouth film about the trials of wedding prep will entertain women and men alike.

    Thor – Still the best action film out in wide release, if you haven’t seen it already, skip the Pirates rush and check out the man with the hammer.

    Confused by the colors? Here’s the guide!

    Green means that reviews are great, the trailer looks great, so this is definitely worth seeing!

    Orange means reviews have been mixed but there’s enough here for me to say, “See It For Yourself”.

    Red means this film should be avoided at all costs! Run, Devil fans, run!!

  3. I'm guessing you're staying here as a extended stay place for work and as somebody who did a very similar gig for three years, let me give a taste of what I look for in a place:

    1) Kitchen Size: If you're staying someplace for two months, you wont be eating out every night, so the best kitchen usually wins out for me. Place Number One looks to have a bigger kitchen plus it has a dishwasher, which #2 didn't seem to have

    2) Location: The closer to the place you're working at, the better, but I will always sacrifice commute for livability, but that's just me. These places are in the same location, but I would look at availability to the highway, parking and things like that. Also, always look for what's in the area. A place may be beautiful, but if it's the middle of farmland with nothing around it, that's going to stink. Places around shopping centers are always great as there usually some variety in eating andif you're bored, there's always the mall.

    3) Amenities - This is usually pretty sparce in Extended Stay apartments but a big deal if you're on a shorter trip and staying at a Residence Inn / Honmeland Suites type of place. Location 1's pool is a big plus for me.

    For me, I'd vote number 1 with everything else being equal. Safe travels!

  4. Opening This Week – Nationwide

    Priest (Also in 3D) – Someone needs to call Paul Bettany and remind him that he’s not an action star. He’s a classically trained actor that deserves quality roles in introspective dramas or even the occasional voice in a Marvel movie. What he shouldn’t be doing is high budget, low imagination schlock like this week’s Priest, a film that looks to be half Assassin’s Creed, half vampire flick with a sprinkle of religious mumbo jumbp to finish things off. Bettany plays a Warrior Priest who, after the great vampire war is living off the radar and in obscurity. However, when his niece get abducted by the bloodsuckers, Bettany goes on a quest to get her back. While critics have said there’s a lot of cool special effects, the story is lame, clichéd and boring, basically the same old stuff we’ve seen a hundred times before. Better off checking out Thor for your summer action sweet tooth.

    Bridesmaids – Mixing the raunch of The Hangover with the charm of a rom com, the latest film produced by Judd Apatow has been getting surprisingly good reviews from everybody who’s seen it. Starring SNL’s Kristen Wiig in a role many critics have called a “star making performance”, the story follows Wiig as maid of honor who leads the bride and the rest of the bridal party down the tricky trail of getting ready for a wedding. Along the way, expect mishaps, gross out comedy and even the occasional poignant moment. While Apatow didn’t have a hand in writing or directing this film, mostly everything he produces has that emotional center and it looks like Bridesmaids is no exception. Seeing rave reviews from critics, it’s nice to see a gross out comedy that treats women as the subject not as objects or the point of the gag. Already have some plans to see this next week and you should to!

    Opening This Week – Limited Release

    Everything Must Go – Will Farrell goes from wild man comedian to a sad crying clown in this, a more dramatic turn directed by first timer Dan Rush. Based on the Raymond Carver short story of the same name, Farrell plays Nick, an alcoholic salesman who on the same day of his getting axed for being sauced on the job, goes home to find his wife gone and his possessions on the lawn. In trying to deal with this tragedy, Nick holds an impromptu garage sale with surprisingly poignant results. The trailer looks interesting and the reviews are largely positive, mostly praising Farrell in his portrayal of the freefalling salesman. Not easy watching, but good for those looking for something a bit meatier this weekend. Playing in select theaters

    Hesher – Going in a completely different direction that our previous film, Hesher stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt as self destructive wildchild who moves into the garage of his grief stricken family, uninvited. Not having the wherewithal to kick out their squatter, they reluctantly accept him into their family, shaking them out of their grief with his wild sense of anarchy. To me, the story sounds too cold and cruel for me to get through the beginning, but I think your enjoyment will largely depend on how much you like the character. Critics have been similarly mixed with many saying that the film is too vapid to support it’s anarchistic main character yet others say it’s a good dark comedy. Flicks like this are what trailers were made for! Showing at the Angelika and AMC Empire 25

    The First Grader – This trailer for this inspirational biopic has been making the rounds for a few months now and every time I see it, it looks a little more interesting. The story is about a 70 year Kenyan man who goes back to school in order to learn to read and while it sounds formulaic and overly sweet, the setting and performance may be enough to pull me through. Critics, however, have been less than enthusiastic, saying it’s poorly directed and predictable. Still, there’s enough of a message here for me to say See It For Yourself. Showing at City Cinemas Beekman and the Angelika

    Go For It – Kids! Dancing! Follow your dreams! There, you’ve now seen Go For It, another film in the wasteland of coming of age dance movies. Critics haven’t seen it because critics don’t care. Playing in select theaters

    L’Amour Fou – Well received documentary about the life and work of fashion mogul Yves Saint Laurent. While the film is seeing generally good reviews, the consensus is that the doc more about Laurent’s affluent lifestyle than it is about the man himself. Still, fans of the fashion world would probably do well to check this out at some point. Screening at City Cinemas Paris and IFC Center

    Opening This Week – Indie, Art House and Small Screenings

    Skateland – Set in early 1980’s Texas, this film examines youth and what it’s like to have all the energy on the world and nothing to do with it, all set around a skating rink. Review have been very mixed, with some critics enjoying the Mallrats type of feel it has and others saying it’s one big pile of bland from beginning to end, although everybody agrees the film is beautifully shot. Still, this is probably not one I’m going to run out and see anytime soon. Screening at City Cinemas Village East

    True Legend – Well known kung fu director Woo-ping Yuen helms this winking homage to 1970’s kung fu flicks with mostly positive results. I’d get into the story but, let’s be honest, people don’t see these things for cohesive storylines. They go for fist flying action and according to critics, they certainly get what they paid for. Playing at the Regal E-Walk Stadium 13

    The Topp Twins – Documentary about two lesbian country singers who use their gifts of comedy and music to push political activism. This doc has been well reviewed by critics solely for the charm and love of life the two sisters have. That alone makes this an easy recommendation. Showing at Cinema Village 12th St

    The Big Bang – Antonio Banderas, Sam Elliott anda host of other familiar faces star in this neo-noir style flick about a detective out to find a missing girlfriend and $30 million stash of diamonds. Critics have all lambasted this flick as crude, awfully made and not worth anybody’s time, despite the star power. Oh Antonio, why can’t you get yourself a decent role for once… Screening at City Cinemas Village East

    City Of Life and Death – Framed like a Chinese Schindler’s List, this film tracks the lives of several Chinese citizens during the Nanking Massacre of 1937. Disturbing, emotional and very powerful, critics have failed this Chinese import ad being wonderfully balanced and well done, despite the tough subject matter. Showing at the Film Forum

    Worth Waiting For

    Cameraman: The Life and Work of Jack Cardiff – This documentary about the life and work of famed cinematographer Jack Cardiff, featuring interviews by his peers and an interesting look into this groundbreaking artist.

    My 3 To See

    Bridesmaids – While the subject matter doesn’t scream See It, critics have been loving this films frank humor, off color tendencies and poignant moments

    Thor – Still the best action flick in theaters right now, Thor has been smashing box office numbers for a week now. No reason to think the momentum will stop anytime soon.

    Everything Must Go – This heart-rending tale about an alcoholic salesman literally picking up the pieces of his life on the front lawn of his house has been getting very strong reviews.

    Confused by the colors? Here’s the guide!

    Green means that reviews are great, the trailer looks great, so this is definitely worth seeing!

    Orange means reviews have been mixed but there’s enough here for me to say, “See It For Yourself”.

    Red means this film should be avoided at all costs! Run, Devil fans, run!!

  5. A list that hopefully spawns a good natured debate here in the dog days of the offseason, please check out my listing of the Top 11 New Jersey Movies and let me know what you think! Too much work to copy / paste / deal with the formatting, so the link is right here:

    Top 11 New Jersey Movies


  6. Opening This Week – Nationwide

    Thor (Also showing in 3D and IMAX 3D) – The summer season is officially upon us with he latest film from the boys at Marvel Thor. Directed by Shakespearian director Kenneth Branagh (Henry V, Dead Again), Thor is the story of a Norse warrior from another world who, after being exiled from his home world for starting an intergalactic war, finds himself on Earth with none other than Natalie Portman. Luckily fella… Critics have been largely positive about this, the first big blockbuster of the summer season with most stating that while it has its flaws, it’s an entertaining way to start off the dog days. Let’s be honest, most everybody will be seeing this flick at some point this month, so you might as well turn the brain off, grab a bag of the crunchy stuff and marvel at the technical wizardry.

    Jumping The Broom – Starring Angela Bassett, this racial comedy involves two African American families from different backgrounds meeting for the first time at a wedding in Martha’s Vineyard. While critics have been saying the film is innocuous and sweet enough, there are just too many clichés to make this an honest recommendation. For me, there’s a place in movies for feel good comedies, so I’m going to give this a very cautious See It For Yourself.

    Something Borrowed – Kate Hudson, John Krasinski and Ginnifer Goodwin star in this by the numbers rom-com about a two lifelong friends and the guy that got away. Working on the premise that Goodwin is the friend who always acquiesces to the whims of her more popular half, even when it comes to the man she loves, critics have blasted this film as trite, cliché and just like the thousand other rom-coms that Hollywood will be trotting out this summer. While Krasinski is very likable and saves the film from the bottom of the barrel, there just isn’t enough here for me to give you a good recommendation.

    Opening This Week – Limited Release

    The Beaver – The biggest film coming out in limited release this weekend, this film, starring and directed by Jodie Foster, is the story about a forty something toy executive (Mel Gibson) who deals with his issues by venting through a beaver puppet. While the trailer had me thinking, “Yeah, this can’t be good”, critics have been largely positive about the movie. Critics largely agree that both Gibson and Foster do a nice job of keeping the story small, controlled and quite moving. While some critics have mentioned the film takes a darker than expected turn, there’s enough positive buzz surrounding this one for me to say See It! Playing at AMC Lowes Lincoln Square 13

    Last Night – Keira Knightley, Eva Mendes and Sam Worthington in a rare dramatic role star in this tale of two New York couples who have to make choices amongst relationship ennui and temptation. This film has critics split right down the middle with some finding it an interesting take on interpersonal communication and others finding it a soulless bore. For me, Saw Worthington should be the weak link this flick, but if you can get past him there may be something here. Showing at City Cinemas Beekman Theatre, the Angelika and Clearview Chelsea

    Forks Over Knives – Documentary / educational film proposing theories on how if we as Americans were to banish meat and dairy from our tables, we could eliminate most diseases. I have a friend whose been preaching this mantra for years now and while I don’t need another lecture, critics say the film is fascinating, if not a bit dull. Playing at Landmark Sunshine

    Octubre – Peruvian art film / dark comedy about a womanizing pawnbroker who is left with a son thanks to one of his trysts with a lady of the night. While critics have commented that nothing much really happens in this flick, the artistry of the filmmaking and a focus on the impact small moments can have on a person’s life adds up to a well made and interesting film. Showing at the Angelika and Lincoln Plaza Cinemas

    There Be Dragons – A story of two religious brothers split by the Spanish Civil War, this flick has been getting horrid reviews from critics and audiences alike. Melodramatic, hackneyed and pandering to the audience, this is an easy skip this weekend. Screening at AMC Lowes Village 7 and AMC Empire 25

    Opening This Week – Indie, Art House and Small Screenings

    Daydream Nation – Odd sounding love triangle flick involving a seventeen year old girl, her teacher and another classmate, this indie darling has been getting very mixed reviews from critics. While many reviewers have been praising the beautiful way the film is shot others have lambasted the picture for being too full of ungrounded teen angst to sit through. Screening at City Cinemas Village East

    Hobo With A Shotgun – Hyper violent grindhouse style movie about a hobo who jumps off a train straight into a hellish world where everybody it out for each other’s blood, Hobo looks to be a campy good time in the mold of Machete. Critics have largely enjoyed the carnage so if you can handle buckets of blood, this flick should be for you. Playing at City Cinemas Village East

    An Invisible Sign – Framed like A Beautiful Mind light, this movie stars Jessica Alba as a mathematically obsessed adult who, after dealing with her mentally challenged father, takes a job as a math teacher to hopefully help her out of her own mental issues. Being labeled by critics as syrupy and boring, this film looks to be another easy skip this weekend. Screening at IFC Center

    Harvest – Film about three generations of a family who are drawn together for one summer in a beautiful shoreside town. Promising an intimate look into how people of different ways of life interact amongst each other, this film has been seeing fairly good reviews from critics, with many saying it’s a satisfying if not inspired film about families being with life, loss and everything in between. Screening at Quad Cinema

    My 3 To See

    Thor – Celebrate the summer season with a bucket of popcorn, some friends and a giant Nordic character wielding a hammer! Tons of fun should be had at this weeks big ass blockbuster.

    The Beaver – Putting my personal opinions of Mel Gibson aside, this directorial debut of Jodie Foster has been getting some quality buzz from quality critics.

    13 Assassins – Too cool for the Thor crowd? Then check out this bloody yet beautifully done samurai flick directed by the man who gave us Audition.

    Confused by the colors? Here’s the guide!

    Green means that reviews are great, the trailer looks great, so this is definitely worth seeing!

    Orange means reviews have been mixed but there’s enough here for me to say, “See It For Yourself”.

    Red means this film should be avoided at all costs! Run, Devil fans, run!!

  7. New Movie Review

    Source Code

    Sometimes when a director moves from the indie space to the Hollywood arena, their message gets a bit muddled in transition. Ideas get churned up in the studio machine, producers make suggestions based on marketing material and actors make demands based on image, notoriety and celebrity. While I wouldn’t know from firsthand experience, I can imagine that it isn’t easy having a critical hit made on a modest budget just to have a studio turn around and hand you six times the money to make your follow up. This is exactly what happened to British director Duncan Jones. Made with a budget of about $5 million, Jones’ first film, Moon, was received with rave reviews from critics and audiences alike. Leading man Sam Rockwell got some Oscar looks and Duncan’s debut made him a director on the rise. So when Jones got a tidy sum of 32 million dollars to made his second film he chose a twisty science fiction script about an army soldier who is tasked with replaying the final eight minutes of a horrific train accident over and over again in an attempt find the person responsible. The film became Source Code and while the result is a neat little story that features a fine performance by its star Jake Gyllenhaal, the film doesn’t quite reach the heights of Duncan’s previous effort due some unfortunate missteps in the script.

    Throwing the viewer right into the fray from the first frame, at first not much is known about the army soldier played by Gyllenhall. Luckily for the audience, the combination of the character’s army persona and Gyllenhall’s natural likability help the audience quickly connect to our confused protagonist. Bewildered, lost and finding himself following orders from a far off officer well played by Vera Farmiga, the soldier now known at Private Colter Stevens find himself getting zapped over and over into the body of a recently deceased schoolteacher, a passenger on that doomed train. The goal? To find out who planted the bomb and, with this information, prevent another disaster from occurring. At first I thought reliving the same eight minutes over and over again would become tiresome but Jones does a great job in keeping each reiteration fresh, making smart decisions in when to change things up and when to cut to the chase.

    While on this time bound merry-go-round, Stevens encounters an attractive young woman named Christina, played by Michelle Monaghan, who eventually becomes his love interest. While I understand the point of having a romantic lead, this is where the film starts to teeter on its own wheels. Again relying on the instant likability of the two stars, the film fails to give the burgeoning relationship any grounds for existing, other than to provide an anchor for the emotionally charged second half. Still, Jones obviously knows how to work with actors and directs both Gyllenhall and Monaghan well enough to give the audience something to latch onto. Sure, we have no idea why they fall for each other but they are likable enough for us to not really care.

    Already on shaky but acceptable ground, the film really starts to hit the skids when it tries to explain its science. Once the initial shock of the soldier repeatedly reliving a disaster wears off, the film wisely starts to explain how all this time jumping is possible in the first place. While watching the film, I found myself nodding my head, saying, “Yeah, yeah, that makes sense…but no, it really doesn’t” and once that happened, I found myself thrown out of the action. It also doesn’t help that the explanations are rushed, confusing and slightly illogical, depending completely on the audience’s total suspension of disbelief. Compelling stars and good acting may be enough for us to believe the relationships but the leaps of faith asked of the audience concerning the science is too far a jump, even for a speedy action flick.

    Still, through all this pseudo science and baseless romance, I found myself enjoying the film very much. As the second half ramps up the drama and the mystery of the bomber begins to unravel, I found myself caught up in the action. I even thought the relationship worked at a very basic level, a huge credit to Jones’ skill with directing actors. As it led up to the conclusion, I felt oddly entertained. Yes, the movie got lost in its own science but thanks to a few key scenes, including a wonderful moment when Gyllenhall calls his father, I felt the humanity of the piece in full force. And as the final shot filled the screen, completely telegraphed but still satisfying, I felt glad that this story somehow, someway worked in the end, despite the lack of character development and confusing techno-babble.

    The ending came. And it went. Yet the film kept going.

    As the reality of the situation dawned on me, a stifled “no” escaped my lips. The shot I had just witnessed was an end, an untidy, messy ending to be sure but a deeply human one just the same. So why was the film still going? And why are they doing that? And what is Farmiga talking about here? And Gyllenhall is going to do what??? Every minute of that ending drew more ire from me, getting me to the point where I could do nothing but mutter, “End already”, through my clenched teeth. In the short seven minutes between the supposed ending and the actual one, I went from satisfied acceptance to baffled, confounded and really pissed off.

    In the end, Source Code contains 86 minutes of an enjoyable if illogical action thriller capped off with seven minutes of an ending so reproachfully tidy, there might as well been Care Bears and unicorns dancing about while the credits rolled. While exiting the theater, my first thought was that the ending had to be the brainchild of some studio executive sitting in a pristine office somewhere in Hollywood. Surrounded by market research, Excel charts and demographic data, this studio peon had to have conjured up the hamfisted conclusion to a movie that was shaping up to be a better than average science fiction flick. It was hard to imagine the director of the daringly disarming Moon could have thought this up and if he did, this mistake did the film and the audience a huge disservice. Regardless of who‘s responsible, Source Code is still an entertaining film, even if it suffers from an illogical plot, stunted character development and a burning desire to appease everyone all at once. While I still think director Duncan Jones is an extraordinary talent who infuses his films with a very human flavor, I hope his next project allows the audience to wonder not in confusion of the plot or annoyance at the ending but at the uncanny way he allows his characters to live on the screen.

  8. Just wanted to point out Fast Six is already being written.

    So much for Fast Five being the final film in the series. Shame that Hollywood can't leave well enoguh alone been when a film makes $86 million in it's first weekend, you really can't blame them.

    As for Thor, the trailer just don't look good to me but the early reviews have been fairly positive. Also, Thor is one of those Rotten Tomatoes fake outs. While it has a stellar 93% rating, the reviews themselves have all been "above average", averaging around 6.5 out of 10. In the RT world, though, anything above a 50% rating is marked fresh and that's what goes into the number. Same thing happened with Source Code which got good reviews, yet it has a 90% rating.

  9. Fresh From the Tribeca Film Festival


    8:30 PM, April 29th, the 11th evening of the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival. Upon getting to the theater, the crowd was buzzing about the world premiere of the latest film from director Tony Kaye. Mostly known for his brilliant American History X, slightly known for the polarizing abortion documentary Lake Of Fire and widely known for being a wild eccentric, nobody can deny Kaye’s skill behind the camera. However, when one of the festival employees walked up to the audience before the screening, pulled out a microphone and said, “Ladies and gentlemen, Tony Kaye is with us tonight and would like to say a few words”, nobody was prepared. Sporting a 13th century beard, an acoustic guitar and a sense of boundless enthusiasm, he walked up to the screen, said literally three words about the color red and sat back down. A strange introduction to the film to be sure but, in the end, completely appropriate. Detachment, a film about a substitute teacher dealing with the issues in both his own life and in the school of troubled kids he works in, is easily the best movie Kaye has ever made. A film of undeniable beauty and an unwavering understanding of the human condition, Detachment is an experience best taken in without any introduction at all.

    Staring Adrian Brody, in what’s easily his finest performance since his Oscar winning turn in the Pianist, Detachment starts off as raw as you would expect a Tony Kaye film to be. Brody is wonderful in the role, both in the classroom standing up to some of the most intensely troubled kids you’ll see in a film and in his private life. Brody plays both the tough yet pragmatic school teacher and the tortured soul at home, each with a skill that’s amazing to watch. While Brody reminded me of Ryan Gosling’s character in the excellent Half Nelson, Brody’s issues are more deeply rooted and better explained than the pain of Gossling. Also, while Gossling deals with his demons by shooting up in a girl’s locker room, Brody is much more stoic, purging his demons in spurts of frustration in an overall sea of numbness. The rest of the cast is damn near pitch perfect, including Marcia Gay Harden as the school’s principal, James Cann as the callous yet hilarious veteran teacher and Kaye’s own daughter, Betty as a troubled yet talented teen looking for direction. The cast is well utilized and nary is a frame wasted in telling the stories of people stretched to their absolute limits.

    On the storytelling front, Kaye has never been one to shy away from the more intense side of filmmaking, and he doesn’t start here. In documenting the scholastic hell Brody and company find themselves in, Kaye pull no punches providing some of the grittiest scenes I’ve ever seen in a film about emotionally disturbed kids. The crazy thing is, despite the extreme nature of the students, I can’t help but think these children exist. Ignored by failing schools, pandered to by teachers who have checked out and seeing no support from blame shifting parents, it is obvious screenwriter Carl Lund experienced these outcast students first hand. No matter how extreme it may be, everything in the movie feels genuine and rooted in reality. The pain of both supporting and being in this fringe society is hammered home, almost to the point of melodrama. However, Kaye balances this film out beautifully, not only providing dark humor, mostly in the work of Cann, but giving the audience a glimpse of light at the end of the emotional tunnel. Kaye understands that there’s always a glowing ember in even the darkest of stories and by helping his actors make positive decisions, even when dealing with some heavy emotional baggage, the film allows the audience to push through the heart-rending drama. The film is also marvelously shot in Kaye’s signature style, all leading up to a final set of scenes that defines the word jaw-dropping.

    Despite his technical brilliance, Tony Kaye is far from a Hollywood darling. During the making of American History X, he fought with his actors, made New Line Cinema delirious with demands, took out full page ads in trade papers condemning the film and beseeched the Directors Guild to remove his name from the credits. Even at the premiere, he looked off with his ragamuffin bread, jangly walk and difficult speech impediment. To be fair, if you saw him on the street, you’d probably think he was homeless. However, after experiencing Detachment and seeing that there is indeed a genius behind the hoopla, I can only say that I hope it doesn’t take another thirteen years before his next dramatic film. Hell, if he needs some cash to help it get going, I’ll pony up a couple of bucks. The wild haired, guitar toting director that had made me think, “Oooh, he’s a little crazy” at the outset, had created a work of art that shocked me into silence. Simply put, the world needs more directors with a singular, soulful vision and the will to put it on screen for the world to see. A movie that cements Kaye as a filmmaker of skill, daring and insight, Detachment is a must see for anybody who’s felt at some point that the world was full of insurmountable pain yet still found the strength to push on anyway.

    Note: While I try to do the most bare bones synopsis possible when writing my reviews (let’s be honest, you can read what a flick is about on this very site), I purposefully left out as much as possible about the plot of Detachment. Suffice to say, I wouldn’t want to lessen the impact of the movie by giving away any of the story points. Seriously, when it reaches theaters, just see it. You won’t be disappointed. Also, when the credit finished rolling, Kaye was kind enough to do a brief question and answer session. Usually, when this happens, the movie elite like to barrage the filmmakers with questions: what was your motivation, how was working with Brody, etc. Even I had thought up a question about who was the teacher that influenced him as a kid and if he ever was one of these cast off students. This time though, nobody uttered a sound. If a film can get connect with a room full of film geeks enough to stun them into complete slience, you know it’s something special.

  10. Opening This Week – Nationwide

    Fast Five (Also in IMAX) – The fifth and evidently final film in the long running Fast and The Furious franchise, this film pits series regular Vin Diesel and returning star Paul Walker as a reluctant duo who has to do one more heist in order to ensure their freedom. While next week’s Thor is technically the start of the summer popcorn season, one could call Fast Five a nice prelude. Loud, fast and completely insane, the film requires a completely brain shut off but critics have said, if you’re willing to do so, Fast Five provides some damn entertaining thrills. Fans of the series will eat up the reunion of most of the series stars, action junkies will eat up the physics defying set pieces and everybody else should find something to enjoy in this early spring adrenaline pumper. I’m shocked I’m saying this, but based on mostly positive reviews, I’m giving this a very cautious See It!

    Dylan Dog: Dead Of Night – Being billed as a horror comedy, this adaptation of a popular comic book stars Brandon Routh as a private eye whose specialty is the undead. The idea of a mere mortal having vampire and werewolf clients sounds like an entertaining premise but tack on a story involving a lost artifact and some sort of war amongst the undead and you have a film that looks to have overstretched its bounds. This film has not been pre-screened for critics, so I have to leave this one as a “no judgment”.

    Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil (Also in 3D) – The sequel to 2005’s fairly awful Hoodwinked, the second iteration in the series is getting an even worse response than the original. Jam packed with film references that don’t work, slapstick that isn’t entertaining and humor that falls flat, there is literally no reason for you or your kids to see this drab mashup of fairy tale themes. Avoid!!

    Prom – Oft times the words “Disney” and “Live Action” are a precursor to bad times ahead. In the latest combination of those two terms, you could also some other terms to the equation, those being drab and clichéd. The film swirls around a number of high school kids whose different stories and experience culminate with the senior prom. Critics have been mixed but everyone agrees that the film is inoffensive, forgettable and clichéd beyond belief. To be fair, tweens who want an easy, down the middle flick about kids getting ready for prom should be largely entertained but everybody else should and will stay away. At least if you’re a parent and your kid says she’s going to see this with her friends, you can rest easy knowing she wont get scared by it.

    Opening This Week – Limited Release

    Exporting Raymond – When I saw the trailer for this one a few weeks ago, I thought to myself, “Yeah, I need to see this one”. According to early reviews, critics largely agree. This comedy doc centers on the creator of the hit TV show Everybody Loves Raymond and his attempts to bring the comedy to Russia. What happens next is a series of real life misadventures that some critics call snarky and annoying and even more call insightfully hilarious. While there are enough poor reviews for me to label this as a see for yourself, it’s a strong one. Showing at AMC Lowes Lincoln Square 13, City Cinemas Beekman Theatre and the Angelika

    The Robber – One part art house film, another part heist movie and ending up with a chase scene that will get anybody’s blood boiling, The Robber is a perfect blend of indie sensibility and white knuckle action. This story about a long distance runner turend bank robber has been getting rave reviews from critics and has done well at a number of film festivals, so it definitely worth a look. Showing at Lincoln Plaza Cinemas and Cinema Village 12th St

    Earthwork – True dramatization of crop artist Stan Herd and one year of his life where he created a massive organic art piece on Trump owned land in New York City. Starring John Hawkes (Winter’s Bone) as the green thumbs artist, critics have been mixed about this film, with many saying it’s a decent effort but something better left for a Sunday afternoon TV viewing. Playing at the Angelika

    Sympathy for Delicious – Starring and directed by Mark Ruffalo, this film is about a promising underground DJ who, after becoming paralyzed in motorcycle accident, meets a young priest who introduces him to the world of faith healing. While the film features some very good actors, critics have said that the film is too messy and too far flung for its own good. Showing at City Cinemas Village East

    Opening This Week – Indie, Art House and Small Screenings

    13 Assassins – Directed by Japanese powerhouse Takashi Miike (Audtition, Ichi the Killer) this film about a group of unemployed samurai whose mission is t overthrown a feudal lord has been rave reviews of almost everybody who’s seen it. Promising a compelling story, tons of action and the best final battle scene since Kill Bill, this is a must see for fans of Japanese action. Showing at the IFC Center

    Cave of Forgotten Dreams 3D – The best reviewed movie coming out this weekend, this documentary, narrated and directed by the great Werner Herzog, takes viewers into the almost inaccessible Chauvet Cave to examine some 30,000 year old works of art. Critics have not only loved the patient way these works of beauty were captured by Herzog’s patient eye but in the way 3D, for maybe the first time, was used to heighten the drama of delving deep into an ancient cave. Slam dunk recommendation! Screening at the IFC Center

    Lebanon, Pa. – The story of a 35 year old Philly advertising agent who after going home to bury his father, forms an unusual relationship with newly pregnant 17 year old cousin. Promising an interesting look into the diverging lives of very different people, critics have been mostly positive about this film. While it does scream indie drama, there looks to be enough behind the technique for me to give this a cautious See It. Screening at Cinema Village 12th St

    That’s What I Am – Staring Ed Harris as a junior high teacher who pars up and unlikely duo for a project with startling results. Touted as a cry for tolerance and understanding during everyone’s most awkward phase, That’s What I Am is seeing mixed reviews from critics. For this one, it looks like it all depends on whether or not you dig the message. Screening at Quad Cinemas

    The Arbor – An experimental yet fascinating film that I’m almost annoyed I’m leaving for last on this week’s wrap-up, The Arbor is an interesting take on the documentary and play adaptation genres. After doing two years worth of interviews with Dunbar’s family, first time director Cilo Barnard filmed actor lip syncing the real people while intercutting clips of the play preformed on the street where the writer grew up. The result isn’t all technique as critics have said the film is poignant, emotional and truly wonderful. Showing at the Film Forum

    My 3 To See

    Cave Of Forgotten Dreams – Wanna see 3D actually done properly for once? Check out the latest documentary by director Werner Herzog for a prime example.

    The Arbor – While this is only playing in NYC at the moment, documentary fans and film geeks alike will fall in love with this emotional yet fascinating film.

    13 Assassins – Sure Fast Five is playing anywhere there’s a screen and I almost said, screw it, it’s the beginning of popcorn season, check it out. That being said, this fantastic Kill Bill-esqe samurai flick has equal parts heart stopping action and actual story-telling for me to recommend it this weekend…but I won’t be mad if you check out Vin Diesel instead.

    Confused by the colors? Here’s the guide!

    Green means that reviews are great, the trailer looks great, so this is definitely worth seeing!

    Orange means reviews have been mixed but there’s enough here for me to say, “See It For Yourself”.

    Red means this film should be avoided at all costs! Run, Devil fans, run!!

  11. New Movie Review

    Bill Cunningham, New York

    As I’ve said in a number of different reviews, New York has is a city comprised of characters. From the bag lady on the 6 train to the Upper West Side sophisticate, from the Brooklyn based hipster to the androgynous fella who jogs in tights, a fishnet top and a crack hugging thong, the City That Never Sleeps is also the City That Never Ceases To Surprise. While some of these characters are often there to shock, appall or simply annoy, there are a few standouts that show the true color of the city whilst melding into the background. Seldom seen but uniquely New York, these characters buzz around the ether, making little moments of magic wherever they happen to go. The titular subject of a brand new documentary by first time director Richard Press, Bill Cunningham is one of those outliers, a camera wielding, picture snapping man of joy whose story is inspirational, poignant and uplifting all at the same time.

    For those of you don’t know, Bill Cunningham is an 85 year old fashion photographer who spends his days perched on the street corners of New York City’s more fashionable areas, snapping pictures of random people whose fashion sense catches his meticulous eye. Just don’t expect to get a pic in his column if you’re rocking an H&M sweater and a pair of Levi’s jeans. The more expressive the better and whatever Bill happens to capture on a given day ends up in his weekly column in the New York Times. While this may seem a mundane subject for a documentary, Mr. Cunningham is anything but. Despite being one of the most influential photographers in all of fashion, Bill lives an austere life; he lives in a tiny studio, rides his ancient Schwinn bicycle and spends almost no money on himself. The man’s sole purpose is the documenting of the fashion created by everyday people and that single minded focus is what makes him brilliant. The man is also a downright sweetheart, constantly smiling, laughing and finding pleasure in the very act of living, even when a potential subject tells him to “f himself”.

    The film reflects the quiet joy of its subject, firstly following Bill through his daily activities and standard routines. The doc does a sublime job of giving the Bill room to breathe, in turn giving the audience an unobstructed view of the artist at work. The film follows him from the sidewalk to the runway, fashion events and even to the streets of Paris, where he gives an acceptance speech for the esteemed Order of Arts and Letters. Up to this point, Bill comes off as a kooky yet earnest genius: he jokes with the filmmakers, obsesses over layouts and goes about this day with his signature smile intact. Here, however, is where you first see the emotion behind the magic and the moment of his acceptance speech is easily one of the most emotionally cutting moments I’ve seen in a doc this year. The filmmakers also deserve high praise for the respect given to their subject. At several points in the film, you can tell they back off from the cutting questions, understanding that it’s not that he doesn’t have the answers but has the right to withhold if need be. The result is an even keeled and positive film that never becomes too invasive or mean spirited.

    As you go through the film, you realize it’s aptly named. Bill Cunningham is more than just an old guy on a bike snapping photos of weirdos; he’s a boro onto himself, an island of single sighted purpose finding joy in his photos and fulfillment in his work despite the sacrifices inherent in the life he chose to live. One of those film you can’t frown at eve if you tried, Bill Cunningham, New York examines a visionary talent with an empathy and grace uncommon with a subject so wonderfully odd. Lesser filmmakers could have made a mockery of the man but you can tell this is a labor of love, a documentary made to inspire, not smear. As the film finishes, you find out just how many people Bill Cunningham has inadvertently touched and realize he’s touched you too. A remarkable documentary about a remarkable New York character, Bill Cunningham, New York not only tells the story, but conveys the spirit, a rare feat in documentary filmmaking.

  12. Opening This Week – Nationwide

    Water For Elephants – After seeing the trailer for this about three months ago, I remember thinking this might not be half bad. The third film from director Francis Lawrence (I Am Legend, Constantine) looked to have a Big Fish dreamlike quality and according to critical opinion, I’m not far off. This story about a young veterinary student (Robert Pattinson) and an oldie time circus performer (ReeseWitherspoon) who meet under the Big Top and find love amongst the elephant dung is getting very mixed reviews from critics. While most enjoy the visual beauty of the film, critics are split on the chemistry between Patinson and Witherspoon, saying the two of them together simply doesn’t work on screen. Even though I personally can’t stand Pattinson, I have him on a short enough leash to say, See This For Yourself.

    Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Big Happy Family – Not much to say about this film that’s already been said at least three times in this column last year. The ninth film in the Madea series of films find the cross dressing Perry dealing with a sick niece who tries to gather her family together to share the sad news. Problem is, they are all so wrapped up in their own dysfunction, it’s up to Madea to get them in line, evidently by physically abusing them. Jimmy Kimmel did a very funny take on this flick last night and is worth checking out. As for the film, reviews have been expectedly bad, so steer clear.

    African Cats – This nature film / drama stars a group of real life lions living life, raising cubs and defending their prides in the sometimes unforgiving savanna of Africa. Narrated by Samuel L Jackson, critics have been largely positive about the film, with most saying that the narrative falls apart at times, but if you view it as a pure nature film, there are enough moving images to keep you engaged. Check it out if nature on the big screen is your thing.

    Opening This Week – Limited Release

    Pom Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold – Morgan Spurlock of Supersize Me fame makes a comeback of sorts in his latest doc. This time around, Spurlock sets his sights on the advertising industry. The movie is entirely funded by advertising and throughout the movie, Morgan uses his charm to get various ad agencies to pony up the funds for the film we are all watching. Although the result is supposed to be a mediation on how pervasive advertising is our society, I imagine the result will fall somewhere between Spurlock in board meetings and blatant product placement. While the premise is precarious at best, Spurlock’s affable nature should make this a ton of fun, if nothing else. Even though Spurlock is more Michael Moore than Alex Gibney in the world of documentarians, he’s fun to watch and critics largely agree. Showing at AMC Lowes Lincoln Square 13 and the Angelika

    Incendies – One of the nominees for Best Foreign Language film at this year’s Oscars, this French mystery involved two siblings who, after the death of their mother, are given an inheritance envelope. Problem is, one of the envelopes is for the father they both thought was dead and the other for a brother they didn’t know existed. This film follows both siblings as they look to reconnect with the formally missing members of their family. Getting very high praise critics for a riveting story, good acting and great direction, this French import is an easy recommendation. Showing at Lincoln Plaza Cinemas and Landmark Sunshine

    Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen – Chinese kung fu film about the Chinese / Japan conflicts in the 1920’s and the legend who rises to stop it. Critics have said that while the action is expectedly good, the fights are too few and far between, creating an uneven experience, especially given the snore inducing drama that fills the space between. Playing at the Angelika

    Opening This Week – Indie, Art House and Small Screenings

    Stake Land – Post apocalyptic vampire flick centering around a world in ruin teeming with blood thirsty beasts. Based on the trailer, I’m thinking it’s a combination of 28 Days Later, The Road and a George Romero flick and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Critics have been mostly positive about this flick saying it’s a great movie for those who like their bloodsuckers brutal, violent and free of Robert Pattinson / Stephanie Meyer teen angst. Screening at the IFC Center

    The Bang Bang Club – This story of four young combat photographers who bond in the midst of post-Apartheid Africa has been getting a luke warm reception from critics. While the work of star Ryan Phillipe is getting some praise, critics are calling the film a shallow one, never providing any real drama in a setting that has tons of it already built in. Playing at City Cinemas Village East

    Dumbstruck – Documentary about puppeteers and the sometimes strange relationships they have with their wooden counterparts. Getting mixed reviews from critics, some marvel at the quirkiness of this strange sect of performers while others really wonder if the film needed to be made at all. Sounds like a lighthearted affair to me, so check it out if interested. Showing at Cinema Village 12th St

    My 3 To See

    Incendies – This is the time of year when all the foreign Oscar noms get a stateside release and this is one many critics had picked to win it all. While it didn’t get the big prize, this fascinating story of discovery and family sounds like a much watch for fans of foreign film.

    Pom Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold – Morgan Spurlock’s latest enter-doc looks to be funny, interesting and entertaining, despite the fact that you’re probably not going to learn much in the process. Still, Spurlock needs a good one after 2008’s disappointing Where In The World Is Osama Bin Laden and this looks to be just the thing.

    Meek’s Cutoff – The latest film by director Kelly Reichardt (Wendy and Lucy, Old Joy) and Blue Valentine star Michelle Williams is quiet yet intense all at the same time, providing an interesting look into the 1850’s Western push.

    Confused by the colors? Here’s the guide!

    Green means that reviews are great, the trailer looks great, so this is definitely worth seeing!

    Orange means reviews have been mixed but there’s enough here for me to say, “See It For Yourself”.

    Red means this film should be avoided at all costs! Run, Devil fans, run!!

  13. New Movie Review

    Of Gods And Men

    I am not, what most people would call, a religious person.

    Growing up in working class New Jersey, I had a Roman Catholic upbringing, complete with a Christening, a Confirmation, several weekends spent at CCD and more than a few confessions made at the local church. My family wasn’t terribly into it and my spiritual training consisted mostly of, “do it, because you’re supposed to”. My family consisted of true “CE” Catholics, meaning they only saw the inside of Saint Anthony’s on Christmas and Easter. Any other time, heading to the chapel was more of a chore than a spiritual journey, much like vacuuming the living room or cutting the grass. As an adult, that apathy towards modern religion has stuck around. While I feel more in tune with the spiritual side of things as I’ve grown older, I’ve never felt the need to head to a church to have a spiritual moment. That is, until I saw the latest film by director Xavier Beauvois, Of Gods and Men. Not only is this film a piece of quiet beauty, it speaks to the audience on a level deeper than simple dialogue and scenes, creating a spiritual experience that sticks with you months after the final frame flickers on screen.

    Discussing a film of such depth and meaning in any traditional sense is difficult at best. The true story of eight Trappist monks on a mission in Algeria and their collective decision to either flee the erupting civil violence or stay as a symbol to the people they’ve sworn to help is just the surface dressing for a more emotional experience. At the outset, the monks go about their daily business quietly and peacefully: they garden, visit the town leaders, settle some petty disputes, all while maintaining a sense of quiet serenity. This peace is echoed in the filmmaking which could be brashly described as “slow” but I much prefer patient. The film moves at a glacial pace but the tempo only serves to heighten the connection between the audience and the action on screen. This is especially true when the camera settles on the monks at prayer. These scenes, usually framed in a single wide shot or in a slow track, show the eight brothers praying in harmony, singing, connecting and being one with God. A disconnected viewing will make the scene seem indulgent and boring but if you allow yourself to meld with the moment, the effect is quietly powerful.

    As the film movies from the day to day work to the drama of the burgeoning civil war that threatens the sanctity of the monk’s community, the drama escalates accordingly, all while keeping the sense of peace and serenity established in the fist half hour. While you’ll have a hard time differentiating who’s who at the beginning, once the tension ramps up, you start to see the color of each character: some want to stay, some want to flee and they all have their own motivations as to why. The cast is unilaterally great in their respective roles, all leading up to the “wine at dinner” scene which is so brilliantly played by the actors and beautifully directed, I challenge you to not smile while still having a tear in your eye. While the scene does border on melodrama, given the gravity of the situation they find themselves in, it’s completely understandable.

    Of Gods And Men is the first film of 2011 that I can honestly label as brilliant. From the opening scene to the final snow blanketed frame, the movie not only tells a compelling story, it shakes you to the core, challenging you to re-examine your own ideas of faith, all told in an unforced and beautiful way. When the credits roll on a film, I usually leave right away. Trains to catch, things to do, reviews to write, etc. The time though, I felt compelled to sit there with what I had watched, letting the thoughts and emotions roll through me. Disquieting yet necessary, the film had not only taken me on a journey with eight men of peace, eight men who, in the spirit of true religious charity showed exactly what it was to live for an ideal, it took me on a journey within myself. The chilly walk home that evening was surprisingly quiet for nine o’clock on the Upper West Side, a perfect ending to a remarkable film going experience. Alone with my thoughts, I had a small epiphany about this film and the message it was trying to preach, something that’s stuck with me to this day.

    Maybe you won’t have the same experience. Maybe you’ll read this review, thrown it on the Netflix list, sit down with it in six months and say, “Ehhhh…man this flick is slow. What’s on A&E”? If so, I don’t mind. Movies like this speak to different people in different ways and it really isn’t the type of thing meant for mass consumption. My only advice is that if you do choose to see it, see it properly. Turn off the phone, dim the lights to black and just sit with it. Get wrapped up in it. Let the patient pacing, lovely acting and wondrous direction fill you with a solemn type of serenity that’s unlike anything I’ve experience while watching a film. Like or hate it, your perception of what a film can aspire to will be irrevocably changed.

  14. That is one eclectic mix there Bulletproof. I dig it.

    I have to say, my iPod has been in fine form for the last few days. Much of time, I can't get past five songs without skipping but lately, it's been doing quite well!

    That reminds me of a fine car game my brother and I played driving back and forth to Cape Cod last year. It's great for extremely long car rides, but can be adapted for anything. The rules are thus:

    1) Put the iPod on shuffle

    2) Every block of 10 songs you get through without skipping is considered a "round"

    3) For every round you get through, you get an increasing number of points.

    1st round of 10 - 1 point

    2nd round of 10 - 2 points

    3rd round of 10 - 3 points

    4th round of 10 - 4 points

    And so on...

    4) If you skip a song, at any point, the game ends and you get the points you've accrued to that point.

    The idea is that if you're on song 35 of the game and you come across a song you just don't want to listen to, you have to decide whether to suffer through it for the points or skip. At that point, you would have 7 points and only 5 more songs would give you an additional 4, so it becomes a game of attrition at that point.

    It's a great game if you have a large iPod library and it's great way to listen to songs you would normally skip, thereby making the most of your huge library. We would actually keep the game going when we got in and out of the car and let it run for days straight if need be. You can also do this one your own...just leave the iPod on shuffle and see how hard it is to not skip a song when shuffling!

    Anywho, just thought I'd share! :-D

  15. Off-season blaise! Gotta love it!

    1) The Toasters - Shebeen

    2) Opie and Anthony - Homeless Shopping Spree 2 (Full Show)

    3) Catch 22 - Party Song (1917)

    4) The Wombats - My First Wedding

    5) Paul McCartney & Wings - Listen To What The Man Says

    6) Bouncing Souls - New Day

    7) The Cure - Fascination Street

    8) The Roots - Something In The Way Of Things

    9) Smashing Pumpkins - If There Is A God (Machina 2 version)

    10) The Go Go Rays - Sick World

    11) Explosions In The Sky - The Only Moment We Were Alone

    12) Canibus - Watch Who U Beef Wit

    13) Bob Dylan - I Want You

    14) Royal Crown Revue - You Go To My Head

    15) The Planet Smashers - Struggle

    16) Royal Crown Revue - Too Young

    17) Agnostic Front - Liberty

    18) The Casualties - Under Attack

    19) Frankie Goes To Hollywood - Two Tribes

    20) Nuff Said - Cherry Bomb

  16. Oooh, the original Arthur was huuge back in the day! I know a bunch of people who consider it blasphemy that it is being remade. I'm up in the air about it -- it all depends on the reviews it gets.

    As for Hanna, what no mention of the Chemical Brothers score?!!

    Arthur is getting really bad reviews and that makes sense considering it wasn't a wonderful film to begin with. Good to be sure, but not worth remaking. As one reviewer put it, even Dudley Moore knew an Arthur 2 would be a bad idea...

    As for Hanna. I didn't know the Chemical Brothers did the score! Another plus for a very well received film.

    I don't know how you can make a movie about a lovable drunk in such a hyper-PC world that would never allow that type of person to be a "hero".....

    Interesting point as I'm not even sure if the film gets into the whole "lovable drunk" side of the Dudley Moore character. My thinking is that they soften it up by making him "kooky crazy" or some mes like that. Haven't seen it, nor do I plan to, so I have no clue!

  17. Fans,

    While we are all saddened at our Devils falling short of the playoffs, we at DevsCast have come up with a fun contest to help make the upcoming tournament a little more bearable. We’re calling this the first annual “DevsCast Race To The Cup Contest”! Why should you play? Well, the winner will receive an autographed 8x10 photo of ex Devil Jason Arnott, that’s why! Here’s how the game works:

    1) Each participant should pick four (4) players to track throughout the playoffs. Any player from any playoff bound team is acceptable.

    2) During the playoffs, for every point this player receives, you will get one point added to your score.

    a. For example, if you have Ovechkin and he has a three point night in the first round, you get three points added to your score.

    3) Also, for every round your players advance, the point totals increase by one.

    a. In the second round, each game point is worth two contest points, third round, they’re worth three, etc.

    4) Here’s the Devils twist: If you pick a former Devil, all of your point values double!!

    a. The player can either be an actual ex-player, played in our minor league system or even a draft pick.

    b. So, for example, if you pick Paul Martin and he has a two point night in the first round, you get four points instead of the usual two!

    c. This counts in late rounds as well, so if Martin has a three point night in the Stanley Cup Finals, you get 3 (for the game) x 4 (because it’s the fourth round) x 2 (ex-Devils bonus) giving you 24 points!

    5) As said before, the participant with the most points at the end of the playoffs will receive a signed 8 x 10 photo of Jason Arnott!

    6) Minor Details

    a. Entries close the minute the playoffs start

    b. Picking will work on a fantasy draft basis, so once a player is picked, that’s it.

    c. Former Devils can be picked by a maximum of four people, since there are only handful of them left in the postseason.

    d. If you pick duplicates, we will let you know via e-mail whose been picked so can re-pick.

    Want to enter?? Check out Episode 7 of DevsCast to get all the info on how to enter the contest and be sure to check out future shows to hear the status of the game: winners, losers, etc. Also, if you dig the show, check out www.devscast.com to subscribe via iTunes and link to us socially.

    Episode 7 of DevsCast

    Good Luck!!

    PS: Thanks to msweet for allowing me to post these shameless plugs on our fine message board. Enjoy the game!

  18. Opening This Week – Nationwide

    Your Highness – At first, this flick looks like it could be a little slice of early spring fun. A hilarious Danny McBride, Natalie Portman in skimpy outfits, a usually high James Franco and direction by indie darling David Gordon Green? All in a medieval setting brimming with modern language? This should have all the makings of silly, raunchy fun! Sadly, critics have called this flick sophomoric, one noted and really, quite stupid. Seems like the film, penned by McBride, thinks saying the f-word over a hundred times in a medieval setting is rife for comedic gold. Critics have been largely panning this but I imagine it will do quite well this weekend. While there are a few laughs to be minded from Your Highness, there isn’t nearly enough here to warrant a paid viewing.

    Arthur – And from bad to worse, Russell Brand stars as Arthur, a happy go lucky alcoholic billionaire who risks his fortune if he doesn’t marry a corporate executive (Jennifer Garner) bent on keeping him and his money in check. A remake of the minor classic film, famously helmed by Dudley Moore, Helen Mirren, Nick Nolte and indie darling Greta Gerwig round out the surrounding cast in a film, according to critics, has no real reason for existing. For me, the original was a fun if slightly forgettable romp, held together solely by the wit and charm of Moore. While the casting of Brand for this remake makes a bit of sense, Brand is more silly annoying than silly charming, ruining the central draw of the story. For me, a huge skip.

    Hanna – The best reviewed film being released wide this weekend, Hannah is an odd action thriller / fairy tale mashup about a young woman who is released into the world at the age of 16 as a highly trained super assassin. Directed by Joe Wright and starring Saoirse Roman, both from the film Atonement, Hannah looks like standard Bourne Identity Light type fare but critics have been praising it’s heart stopping action and the work of Roman, both as an actress and an action star, in equal measure. While the story seems by the numbers, critics promise a few surprises in the screenplay, coaxing an enthusiastic see it from me!

    Soul Surfer – Where did this come from?? Oh yeah, I think I saw twenty seconds of the trailer while waiting for a video to load and clicked off of it at the first opportunity. This story of a young surfer girl who braves the ocean after getting her arm chomped off by a shark is getting very weak reviews from critics. The most prevalent complaint is that story is told blandly and with great amounts of Christian faith healing dumped upon it, so much so that it becomes a chore to watch. Definitely skippable.

    Opening This Week – Limited Release

    Henry’s Crime – Keanu Reeves, Vera Farmiga and James Cann star in this offbeat comedy about a life drifter (Reeves) who, after getting arrested for a supposed bank robbery decides to actually pull it off upon his release. With the help of his old cell mate (Cann), they hatch a plan that involves getting cast in Chekov’s the Cherry Orchard and inevitably falls for the plays lead (Farmiga). Yeah, I’m confused too. Critics have been mixed though with some saying it’s a fun, deadpan comedy and other saying there’s too much plot, not enough humor. Still, everyone agrees Cann and Farmiga are great their respective roles. And yes, Keanu Reeves still sucks. Screening at Clearview First & 62nd and Landmark Sunshine

    Ceremony –Light hearted indie comedy about a young suitor looking to crash the wedding of the woman of his dreams, played by Uma Thurman. Critics have been mixed with some saying it’s a Wes Anderson style farce and others saying it’s too bland and by the numbers for its own good. Playing at City Cinemas Village East

    Meek’s Cutoff – Sporting a move poster straight out of Red Dead Redemption, this slow paced but intense western stars Michelle Williams as a 1850’s woman traveling the Oregon Trail with a mysterious guide. When the guide takes them down an uncharted path and gets the family lost, their will is tested. Getting near rave reviews from critics, the only negative is the pacing of the film, which I imagine is close to The Road. Still, Michelle Williams is quickly becoming one of my favorite actresses, so for that reason alone, I say see it. Showing at Lincoln Plaza Cinemas and the Film Forum

    Opening This Week – Indie, Art House and Small Screenings

    American: The Bill Hicks Story – Documentary about the brilliant comedian Bill Hicks, documenting his comedy, his outlook on life and his zeal to break down every establishment known to man. Fans of the comedian should flock to see this one and, according to critics, so should everybody else. A true patriot in every sense of the word, this doc looks like it does Hick’s work justice. Showing at Cinema Village 12th St

    Meet Monica Velour – Kim Cattrall stars as an aging 80’s adult star who, while living in a trailer park and stripping to make ends meet, meets a young fan who trekked across the country to meet her. Being described as bland, stereotypical and flaccid by critics, despite a fine turn by Cattrall, Monica is looking to be an easy skip. Showing at Clearview Chelsea

    Meeting Spencer – Famed character actor Jeffery Tambor stars as a Broadway producer who goes back to New York to find his last big hit after a number of flops. Not many reviews as of yet for this one, but Tambor is a fine actor, causing me to label this as a See It For Yourself. Screening at Quad Cinema

    Blank City – Documentary of the underground movie scene in 1970’s New York and the impression they left on modern independent cinema. Screening at IFC Center

    Special Events

    Born To Be Wild 3D – Inspired story of the connection between people and animals, this IMAX 3D event has plenty of awww factor, and at a brisk 40 minute runtime, won’t strain your eyeballs in the process. Plus, it features the narration of Morgan Freedman, and let’s be honest, who doesn’t love themselves a little Morgan. Playing at IMAX 3D theaters in NY and NJ

    My 3 To See

    Win Win – Getting the highest praise from critics and audiences alike, this film starring Paul Giamatti about an ex attorney who leaves his practice to volunteer as high school wrestling coach blends the perfect amount of humor and pathos to make it a must see.

    Source Code – Looking for a smart, fun and fast paced action thriller with a brain? Look no further than this well received film starring Jake G. And no, I’m not even bothering to spell his name. Suffice to say, he’s allegedly great in this movie.

    Hanna – Getting fine reviews by critics, if you’ve already seen Source Code and need a bit more adrenaline, Hanna is your go to flick.

    Confused by the colors? Here’s the guide!

    Green means that reviews are great, the trailer looks great, so this is definitely worth seeing!

    Orange means reviews have been mixed but there’s enough here for me to say, “See It For Yourself”.

    Red means this film should be avoided at all costs! Run, Devil fans, run!!

  19. Just Watched

    Please Give

    Right before I moved from New Jersey to the Upper East Side of Manhattan, I heard my fair share of warnings and platitudes from friends and family. “Don’t take the subway after 10”, “HOW much are you paying for your apartment?” and “New York is a cold, heartless place” were some of the more common comments. The most interesting one, however, was a saying my younger brother had picked up somewhere and passed on to me. He said, “Live in NY for a bit but leave before it makes you too hard, live in LA for a bit but leave before it makes you too soft”. The opening twenty minutes of the latest film from writer/director Nicole Holofcener made me immediately think of that mantra. Brimming with a cast of unsympathetic characters, I first thought, “Great, another snarky, too cool for the room, Manhattanite comedy”. “Do we really need another flick about rich yet depressed New Yorkers?” Luckily, the answer is yes as the film rises above the cliquey pretense of its privileged Central Park West setting providing arc, depth and even redemption in its characters. The end result is a relatable, wryly outrageous and often very funny dark comedy about complex people dealing with a range of issues, all with a real emotional center.

    Just be aware that it takes a bit of time before these characters become tolerable. The principals of the film is a couple, played by Catherine Keener and Oliver Platt, who make a very fine living purchasing antique furniture from the estate sales of the recently deceased and reselling the pieces at a crazy mark-up. When their next door neighbor starts knocking on Heaven’s Door, they salivate at the thought of buying up the place, giving them a chance to expand their own domicile. Charming! Add in the old lady’s granddaughters, one a sweet yet painfully bland radiologist, the other a cold, emotionally vapid skin specialist as well as the couple’s whining, angst ridden daughter and you have the makings of a pretty rough edged cast, especially given the frankness of their disconnection. The only redeemable character at the beginning is the grandmother herself, played brilliantly by Ann Morgan Guilbert. Everybody else is so wrapped up in their world of materialism, codependency and soullessness, you really feel as though these characters are doomed, New York caricatures, worthy of only our dislike as they meander through the indie blasé of the first twenty minutes.

    Luckily, this all changes as the film trucks on thanks to some really fine development and direction by Holofcener. Not to give anything away, but we slowly learn about each of the characters fears, insecurities and past pain, opening them up as real human beings. While there isn’t much a plot in Please Give, as the five main characters mix and intermingle, you learn there is much more to this film than snarky quips and cold behavior. Each character is wonderfully drawn and realized, providing a center for the sometimes shocking humor, which almost always works and had me laughing out loud more than a couple of times. By the time the film ends, you not only understand each and every character in the film a bit better, you find things in your own life you can relate to and connect with. Add to that a couple of truly touching scenes, especially the scene where Keener visits a hospice for handicapped children and you have a film that works on both an emotional and comedic level.

    Despite a very thin plot, Please Give is a touching and often hilarious character study of people searching for more than what they have, despite them having just enough. While the characters, at first, seem to have no redeeming qualities, the audience quickly learns that there’s pain behind the wall these people put up, walls that we all can find at least some connection to. Thinking back on this film and the comment my brother made almost eighteen months ago, I can see the kernel of truth in that statement reflected in the film. Those hard shelled characters certainly live on this island, strap hanging the subway, pushing past you at the supermarket, muttering grumpily as they speed past on the sidewalk. What that quote doesn’t take into account, however, is how they got there and what’s really inside these unique characters when you brush aside the bristles. Please Give does exactly that, providing a funny, charming and oft outrageous character study of six New York characters, all searching for their own special something, just like everybody else in this great city.

  20. Meh, I'm siding with Rowdy on this one. While I do think the piece was a little overblown in the use of language, I appreciate the authors attempt to do something different with the "end of season" article. Making the focus on the scene at the Rock and not regurgitating stats and numbers was actually kinda refreshing. While he could've told the story better, it was nice to see something different.

  21. New Movie Review

    Sucker Punch

    Call me lucky, picky or even snobbish, but I rarely see bad movies. Being I spend entirely too much time on websites like Rotten Tomatoes, I’m usually aware of what the critics say and I typically go with their recommendations when it comes to what I watch, especially if I’m forking over cash to do so. However, once in a while, I’ll succumb to my baser temptations and in the defiance of critical approval, I’ll see something I know is going to stink. Last year it was The Expendables, a completely terrible film yet one I had a blast watching, if only to laugh at its ineptitude. So, when a friend and I missed a screening of Tim Burton’s Beetlejuice this past weekend and was stuck needing something to see, a combination of a convenient starting time, an IMAX presentation and the promise of things blowing up urged us to see the latest film by Zach Snyder, Sucker Punch. Our expectations were low: sure it was going to be bad, but maybe deliciously so, much like that horrible Stallone effort from the previous year. Sadly, the flick didn’t even reach that low strung expectation as it not only fails as a cinematic experience, it fails to even raise the heart rate of comic book audience it was intended for. Sucker Punch, in short, is a soulless bore.

    Doomed from the beginning, Sucker Punch jumps out of the gate covered in lame sauce, presenting the audience with an uncomfortable opening sequence involving some fat guy attacking our lead heroine for some reason or another. According to Wikipedia, which I seriously need to refer to in order provide any sort of synopsis, during this sequence our hero, dubbed Baby Doll, mistakenly kills her sister in an attempt to save her from her abusive father. As a result, she is sent to a mental hospital by her father and is scheduled to be lobotomized in five days. During that time she delves into her imagination to keep herself sane while she awaits her demise. Again, I had to go to Wiki-freaking-pedia to get that because if that’s what the film was trying to say, it sure as snot didn’t do a good job of it. Instead, we get jangly rock music, a bunch of slow motion scenes with Baby Doll staring doe faced into the camera and bullet casings hitting the floor. In slow motion, no less! What a visual treat!

    And what a segue into the only thing people are really seeing this for, the visuals. Now, Snyder has made a career of pushing the envelope when it comes to computer generated spectacle, with films such as 300 and to a lesser extent, Watchmen. Sucker Punch provides much of the same visual bombast only times a thousand. In short, it’s too much for anybody to absorb, never mind take seriously. In any one scene you have bullets flying, robots getting destroyed, places crashing, stuff exploding and buildings crumbling. Sounds great, right? So, why did these action scenes not only bore me but put the crowd of opening weekend fanboys I saw it with to sleep as well? Because all that noise becomes sleep inducing without a competent story to give it context and meaning. Sucker Punch makes the grand mistake of thinking it has something important to say when the tale is as shallow as teenage fan fiction. The action scenes only highlight the weakness of the material because the female characters are just as hollow as the mindless thugs and robots they slaughter by the thousands. Snyder may know how to program a special effects computer but he has not an inkling of insight into human motivations or what elicits emotion from an audience and frankly, I don’t think he cares. Sucker Punch would have made for a fine ten minute tech demo but that’s about it.

    As for the action in Sucker Punch being described as “videogamey” by some critics, that moniker is nothing but an insult to video games. Even the most intense gaming experiences provide some sort of character development and since the person playing them is personally involved in the events of the story, they naturally connect to the game. Sadly, we don’t play movies, we passively watch them, which is why there’s more to filmmaking than fancy visuals and visceral thrills. Sitting through the action scenes of Sucker Punch is like watching a friend play Call of Duty for two plus hours; it grabs your attention for the first ten minutes but after awhile, either you want to grab the controller yourself or do something you can actually care about. Films need story and character development to keep our attention, two things that Sucker Punch not only fails miserably at, never makes an honest attempt at providing.

    In fact, it’s that very subject that brings the most bile to my throat when discussing this waste of time. The biggest crime committed by Sucker Punch is way it treats its characters, its story and ultimately its audience. Staged like levels in a 1990’s video game, the film flips between scenes of emotionally ravaged hookers either cowering to their alpha-male superiors or using their sexuality to get the best of them and the aforementioned fantasy fight scenes. Framing his female characters like Charles Manson likely would, Snyder presents them as quivering weaklings only able to muster strength when they delve into their imaginations. This 1850’s way of thinking of women is at the core of the storyline and the film just bleeds this disdain out from its pores. Creating a band of femme fatales can be a ton of sexy, edgy fun but that fun derives from the strength of character in the women involved. Sucker Punch sets up the action as solely existing in the imaginations of our broken down protagonists and as a result, gives us actions that nobody could possibly care about. The fact that Snyder would assume that we as an audience would care about these paper cut out characters without any sort of proper development is downright insulting.

    Needless to say, I could go on and on. Much like the Star Wars prequels, one could write a Masters thesis on Sucker Punch with the topic being, “How Not To Make An Action Movie”. Filmed and written as if Hollywood gave $82 million to a horny 15 year old and said, “Go make a movie, sonny”, Sucker Punch treats its characters and story with such a misogynistic and mean-hearted slant, I actually question the soul of the director responsible. Not to turn this into a personal attack, but if Zach Snyder actually thinks this noisy, mean and borderline sadistic piece of white noise should actually be considered entertainment, I have to wonder about the maturity of this so called artist. Full of plot holes, contrivances and an ending that screams hack at the top its computer generated lungs, Sucker Punch is schlock that swears it’s Shakespeare and what’s worse, assumes you the viewer doesn’t know the difference. One of the few movies I’ve paid to see that I felt compelled to walk out on an hour in, Sucker Punch is exactly as advertised: a punch in the gut to anybody who feels they deserve more from a film than two hours of ear splitting din.

  22. I didn't mind The Day After Tomorrow (in an escapist fantasy kind of way). You haven't seen a worse movie than that in the last seven years? :noclue:

    Let me expand on this a bit. Firstly, I actually have a soft spot in my heart for the cheesy Roland Emmerich late 90's disaster flicks. Yes, they are usually terrible but there's something charming about them to me. The Day After Tommorrow was one of the first times I had left a theater cheated and pissed off at a movie. The leaps in logic that flick takes to set up the plot was beyond simple suspension of disbelief and treated the audience like a pack of morons. Sucker Punch had the exact same effect on me, which prompted that comparision. I'm fine tuning the review now as bad reviews are much harder to write than good ones (for me, anyway) but Sucker Punch didn't just fail in every concievable way, it didn't even try.

    Oh, and as I say in the beginning of my review, I don't typically see poorly reviewed movies, so yeah, I haven't seen a worse one in probably seven years.

  23. While I hope to have a review of Sucker Punch in a day or so, let me just say that I see about 200 movies a year, between new releases and old stuff and Sucker Punch is the worst film I've seen since The Day After Tomorrow. Awful in literally every way.

  24. Opening This Week – Nationwide

    Sucker Punch – Also Showing in IMAX – You know, there’s something about director Tom Snyder that I’m dying to like. I honestly enjoyed 300 as a piece of hyper-stylized film fluff and while I’ve never seen Watchmen, I hear that was OK too. As pieces of visual artistry, there’s something to be said for the flair and wizardry of an over CGI’ed movie going experience. However, my first thought, after seeing the first trailer for his latest effort Sucker Punch, was, “This is going to suck”. Schlock like this doesn’t even deserve the time it takes to piece together a synopsis and to be fair, if you’re going to see this, you really don’t care about the story, and apparently neither did Snyder. Critics have been killing this flick all week with the writer from the New York Post summing it up best saying, “Sucker Punch is what happens when a studio gives carte blanche to a filmmaker who has absolutely nothing original or even coherent to say”. Ouch!

    Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules – The sequel to last year’s hit milk toasty kids movie is getting largely the same kind of buzz the original received. This time around, Greg has to deal with a bullying brother and his parent’s ham-fisted attempts at bringing them together. The result is an inoffensive and sometimes funny film that breaks no new ground but is a safe bet for families with children who are antsy to get out of the house this weekend. Reviews have been pretty negative, negative enough for me to usually give this a red mark, but I feel many reviewers simply over reviewed this flick. Seriously, what were you guys expecting, The Matrix? Bland, safe kid stuff does have a place in modern cinema and for that alone, I say See It For Yourself.

    Opening This Week – Limited Release

    Miral – The newest film from auteur director Julian Schnabel (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) depicts a young woman thrust into the middle of the Palestinian conflict. Getting surprisingly bad reviews across the board, critics point to failures in the screenplay, adapted by the author of the book and a director who just doesn’t know how to direct this sort of material. Usually a quiet, intense director, a story like Miral probably needed someone with a touch more direction as opposed to Schnabel’s subtle meandering. Showing at the Angelika and Lincoln Plaza Cinemas

    Potiche – Comic battle of the sexes film, adapted from the 1970’s play of the same name, takes place in an umbrella factory where the workers have revolted, the manager has left in panic and his wife is left to clean up the mess. However, when she proves to do an even better job than her husband, things get tricky when he returns. Getting fine reviews from critics, mostly for a standout comic performance by Catherine Deneuve, this should be good fun for those looking for a solid French comedy. Playing at the City Cinemas Paris Theatre, Angelika and Clearview Chelsea.

    White Irish Drinkers – This movie tracks the life and time of two Irish brothers who have to deal with an abusive father, the rough gang streets of 1975 Brooklyn and the hope of the Rolling Stones playing their father’s little local pub. Getting mixed reviews from critics, some say that the movie is an honest and gritty look into street life in the 70’s and others say it’s so cliché ridden, it’s like watching five movies you’ve already seen. For me, it may be worth a rental but not much else. Showing at Landmark Sunshine

    Opening This Week – Indie, Art House and Small Screenings

    ***Due to time constraints, I’m not going to be able to do a write up for each film this week. Between writing for the show, attempting to do reviews and real work, I am officially out of time!!***

    Peep World – Screening at the IFC Center

    My Perestroika – Showing at the IFC Center

    Mia and the Migoo – Showing at the IFC Center

    Bal (Honey) – Showing at City Cinemas Village East

    Illegal – Screening at Cinema Village 12th St

    Confused by the colors? Here’s the guide!

    Green means that reviews are great, the trailer looks great, so this is definitely worth seeing!

    Orange means reviews have been mixed but there’s enough here for me to say, “See It For Yourself”.

    Red means this film should be avoided at all costs! Run, Devil fans, run!!

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