Movie Review – The Spectacular Now

Another writing assignment from the folks at Lost In Reviews and this time I got a chance to sit down and watch The Spectacular Now.  With out going into too much detail and spoiling anything for people who might be interested in this movie, this is nothing short of perfect.  This is the coming of age movie that this generation needs and will be fondly looked at years to come.  Please please see this movie, I can’t recommend it enough.

Below is an excerpt from my review and a link to the full review at Lost In Reviews.

Enjoy!

It wasn’t until I saw The Spectacular Now, that I realized that we can get a high school movie with characters who aren’t just picked out of a yearbook of archetypes and clichés, that we can get a movie with characters we can truly resonate with and a movie that we can see and relate to the pangs of growing up and not knowing what to do with life.  I don’t want to say that this IS the quintessential high school/coming of age movie, but it sure feels like we are witnessing something spectacular.

Click here for the full review.

Film-Shailene Woodley

Movie of the Day – Confessions of a Superhero

We all have dreams that we would like to see become a reality one day.  Something almost grandiose for our own good, but dreams that seem so real to us that we can make them a reality.  It seems attainable and possible that it could happen to us.  Dreams are made every day somewhere in the world and why not my dream?  Why not something that I want in life becoming a reality?  We think about them daily, some people make a list of goals to get to that dream job or car or lifestyle.  We can the small steps to hopefully achieve the outlandish dream we have built up in our minds.  Some can achieve those dreams, others well, dreams are dreams for a purpose.  In relation to movies, some of us had dreams of becoming the next best thing.  A leading actor or actress, a director or successful writer, all glorious dreams.  There are people who have achieved that and there are some that haven’t.  Maybe their time will come some day or maybe it will leave them behind as time slips away.  Confessions of a Superhero is a documentary that explores the lives of those who come to Hollywood in hopes of their dreams coming true.  Instead of making it big in Hollywood movies, they are left dressing up as these larger than life characters in front of the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  It heartbreaking to know that their dreams are right beneath their feet.

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Movie of the Day – Synecdoche, New York

Often times during my quest to take in all that is cinema, there are a few times in which I find myself have to retread over previously seen territory.  It’s usually for a number of reason that I re-watch movies, the most obvious is just because I rather enjoy a particular film.  Sometimes it is because a certain film just picks me up after a long day at work or when I need to hear something rather humorous in the background.  Then there are the films that I re-watch because I have to, not because I wasn’t attentive enough the first time around, but for the sole reason that it demands a second watch.

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Movie of the Day – Get Carter

Yeah baby, talking about the 1971 Michael Caine classic and not the abomination that was the remake of Get Carter that starred Stalone.  Get Carter is just a brutal, brutal movie that has Michael Caine taking on the mob underworld in a very well paced revenge flick that has a lot more to offer than just shotgun blasts and death.  No, Michael Caine brings his charming Britishisms to the role of a revenge seeking killer of mob men and makes for supremely satisfying action flick.

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Movie of the Day – The Patriot

USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA USA

The Patriot motherfuckers!

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Movie Review – A Band Called Death

Death comes for us all.

You know, I always associate Detroit with the soulful sounds of Motown and funk music.  I mean bands like The Temptation, The Supremes, Martha and the Vandellas and even the Contours basically defined the music scene there.  I fully get that this is a narrow view of the rich diversity of the Detroit music scene, but when I think of a group of African-American musicians coming together to create music, I and the subjects of the rockumentary A Band Called Death will tell you, the expectation is that it would be Motown-esque.  Thanks to the efforts of directors Mark Covino and Jeff Howlett, we get to uncover a band whose time has finally come.  Some 30 years ago, a group of African-American brothers would form a band that would change the music scene of their time by being, what some would contend, the first punk band ever.  That is, they would have been if it weren’t for the name and their unconventional playing style.

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Movie Review – World War Z

Ok let’s just get this out of the way first before we discuss the movie.  World War Z is in no way shape or form anything like the Max Brooks book of the same name.  Those hoping to see a National Geographic-esque documentary about the aftermath of the zombie apocalypse and mankind reeling from the Z attack, will be utterly crushed under a horde of zombies.  If you can come to terms with the fact that the latest zombie blockbuster is just that, a zombie blockbuster that shares the same name with the book, you will find an enjoyable, action packed summer movie that you can just check your brain at the door.  With that said, let’s shamble (or in the movies case, sprint) on through the squishy insides of director Marc Forster (Monster’s Ball, Machine Gun Preacher, Stranger Than Fiction) and star Brad Pitt’s attempt to give the zombie genre a big screen, summer blockbuster.

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Movie of the Day – Warm Bodies

I fear that we as a film seeing society, will hit critical zombie over-saturation and the zombie genre will be played the fuck out.  Almost every zombie movie is the same with the kills, character arcs and overall same plot structure in that the people try to survive a particular situation from zombies and live to tell the tale.  They ride off into the sunset, somehow one chapter of a larger story is done and it feels a bit cheap and easy.  Now we have shows like The Walking Dead which manage to continue the story that most zombie leave off on, the continuation of the lives of those living in a zombie filled world.  It’s a better story overall and gives us zombies, but not really, at least in the story structure sense.  So maybe that is why I took to Warm Bodies with such a receptive and wide open arm stance than anything else.  A zombie love story?  Alright let’s see how it plays out.

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Movie of the Day – A Woman, A Gun, and A Noodle Shop

Have you ever thought to yourself that while you were watching the sublime Coen Brothers film “Blood Simple” that there would be a different take on the film?  Maybe wondering what it would look like if say a famous international director decided to pay tribute to the movie with his/her vision of the story line?  Well folks your prayers are answered as Zhagng Yimou decided  that Blood Simple needed to be remade with some Asian period piece flair and today I will talk about the exciting and wonderful remake, A Woman, A Gun and A Noodle Shop.

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Movie of the Day – Natural Selection

This is a movie I have been waiting awhile to talk about, mainly because it didn’t get a release in theaters other than the festival circuit.  It kind of sucks talking about a movie that a lot of people won’t be able to see unless they get the VOD treatment or some form of streaming.  Natural Selection was a movie I was back in November 2011 at a local film festival in Kansas City.  I have to admit, even rewatching it makes me realize how much I loved this movie and the subject matter presented.  A fantastic flick with a knockout performance from Rachel Harris, Natural Selection wowed me with a deep, character drama with some dark hints of humor.

So it was a relief to track this down on dvd and give it another watch.  With an amazing performance from the two leads, Harris being the standout of the pack.  The movie certainly is indie at heart, with a strong character driven script that propels the interesting story and filled with moments of earnest, heartfelt discussions about the issue at heart.

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