5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

YouTube Pick of the Week

Just a fun little short by Aardman for this week.

Since I can't embed, just click here.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

RIP Bea Arthur

Sadly, the actress Bea Arthur passed away peacefully yesterday. She will be remembered by friends, family, and the DVDs and Syndication that fans watch and own.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Paper Heart

I don't know about you, but I can't wait for this one.

Paper Heart hits theaters August 14.

Saturday, April 18, 2009


I suppose you need to have a guy like Cal McAffrey for a movie like this to work.

He puts dates, places, people, events and connections together in his mind like it's no more difficult than the box score to a Celtics game. It's a bit ridiculous to have such a computer-brained protagonist, but in a film that is an adaptation from a six-hour BBC political crime thriller, you are just going to have to accept it; Cal McAffrey is the man.

Kevin Macdonald (The Last King of Scotland) has brought a very well crafted film to the table here. Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton) wrote it, along with Billy Ray and Matthew Michael Carnahan, and while it is very clever, suspenseful, and often times funny, it seems to lack the sharpness and originality that was present in Michael Clayton. Don't get me wrong, it's a very solid movie, but I think it wouldn't have hurt to send the script through one more draft, and just get a little more in there. I can't say exactly what it lacked. It was awesome, but I just felt like I wanted a bit more.

As I said Russell Crowe plays Cal McAffrey, a smart and dry reporter for the Washington Tribune. While in the middle of investigation the murder of his good friend Commissioner Stephen Collins' (Ben Affleck) mistress, he stumbles upon clues and leads that send him into an obsessive hunt to expose the conspiracy of a giant corporation in DC. He teams up with a young blogger for the Tribune (Rachel McAdams) to expose the truth. I won't say anymore, because the film is very reliant on the plot, and its many twists. But what political crime thriller isn't?

Again, I can't exactly say why this movie didn't blow me away; it just didn't. We have some very solid performances by all of the actors. Russell Crowe is the best of all. And this is coming from someone who doesn't really like to watch him. His lazy eye always freaked me out. But here his eye is under control, as is his performance. He's a very likable character who really draws you in. Next best is Ben Affleck. Now, really, why does he get so much sh*t? It seems to be the fad to say Affleck is a bad actor. I've always liked him, and I think he's very, very good in this. He has a lot to struggle with as his character, and I think he plays it very well.

Now, on to Rachel McAdams. Anyone who has read my posts should know she is my favorite actress, for more reasons than one (if you catch my drift). And I'm sorry to say, she is not my favorite character here. I feel like her part was very underwritten, and she got excited to play a part in such a fun thriller. She definitely breathes much more life into the role than was written for it, and I honestly feel the character would suck without her. She's very good, I would even go so far as to say great, but she had nothing to work with.

In the end, I really have nothing specifically negative to say about the film, but I also have nothing glowing to say. It's a very good movie, and I recommend you see it, but don't expect to walk out with your world rocked. A 3 might be a bit undeserved, but a 4 suggests I had a lot to think about when I left.

Also, I don't know why it's called State of Play. Maybe that got left in the miniseries.
3 stars

Thursday, April 16, 2009

A Little Film to Follow the Big Ones

It seems that after The Ocean's films and his two part epic on Che, Steven Soderbergh decided for something a bit less ambitious and probably much more interesting. Amongst all the summer blockbuster's due this year here is a film that will probably pass under the radar of most people.
Here is the trailer for The Girlfriend Experience:

I have to say the casting of Sasha Grey is somewhat interesting. You might remember her from the hit Youtube comedy PG Porn or form her not-PG work.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

YouTube Pick of the Week

Hey internets,

Here is a really cool short video from the USC School of Architecture. I really love the style of this, and the payoff makes you smile.


Friday, April 10, 2009


The latest from Todd Phillips made me laugh and cringe, sometimes at the same time. The premise of the film is a simple one to follow. Four guys go to Vegas for a bachelor party with the groom. They wake up the next morning and don't remember anything about what happened the night before, including where they left the groom.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Teaser for Mike Judge's Next Film Revealed

Here's hoping Extract gets a wider release than Idiocracy...

YouTube Pick of the Week

And you thought the John Williams tribute was amazing.


Monday, April 6, 2009

Editorial: Wes Anderson

By Guest Blogger
Dustin Hamlin

From the moment I saw the trailer for The Life Aquatic, something hooked me. I couldn’t tell quite what it was, and I’m even having trouble defining it now, but there was some quality there that I had never seen in film making before. And that makes sense, because Wes Anderson is a director with such a completely unique vision.

The thing about his movies is that they can’t be cast easily into a genre. Sometimes they are though, and it pains me to read a review exclaiming Rushmore to be “One of the best comedy’s of the year!”. That totally misses the point. Yes Wes Anderson’s movies can be funny, but that doesn’t mean they should be slapped with the comedy stamp and shipped off to slave away making us excrete laughter. That’s like a guitar that can only play one note. Sure that note might ring beautifully, but it’s only going to stimulate on one redundant shallow level. When Wes Anderson makes a film, he strings it with the entire spectrum of human emotion. They slide from hilarious to heartbreaking, and don’t make a spectacle of it either. Other directors might nudge and prod for the desired emotions, performing the cinematic equivalent of holding up a queue card printed with the word “Cry”.

It never feels like that with Wes Anderson though, and that’s exactly why I love his films so much. He’s content to just let things happen, and allow the characters to be the emotional set pieces; not the sweeping violins, or the cloying close up of a tear rolling down a lost love’s cheek. There doesn’t need to be a startling conclusion, or an intense heart-pounding tearjerker of a third act. There doesn’t even need to be a traditional “wrap up”. Sometimes just a brief excerpt from life is good enough. Not all strings need to be tied, because then you know it’s artificial.

When the three sons from The Darjeeling Limited finally use their collective initiative to reconnect with their Mother, a mother who abandoned them multiple times, she just simply leaves again. The family wasn’t happily reunited after all their struggles, and the camera didn’t zoom out as laughter was heard from the happy bunch. And that’s okay. That’s what happened. There’s no pretending that these artificial conclusions take place in reality. When two lovers finally embrace each other’s feelings and share their passionate kiss, there’s no director to walk in and say cut. The credits don’t roll. Things keep moving, and people keep living.

Despite my annoyance with Wes Anderson’s movies being labeled as comedies though, I do find them hilarious. There’s some funny stuff in them, and I think the reason why his comedic style resonates so well with me is because of the same principles. There are no “Insert laughter here” moments. No jokes are set up or even delivered. Its just people being the people they are, and I love that. Wes Anderson fills his movies with so many eccentric arbitrary details; then compliments them all with a completely unique sense of cinematography. As Margot from The Royal Tenenbaums walks towards her brother in slow motion set to "These Days", the scene verges on profound with it’s simple sincerity. Done any more elaborately, and the beauty would’ve been crumpled.

So that’s a bit of why I love this man’s movies so much, and why he’s now my favorite director. It’s hard to articulate exactly why I feel such a connection to his work. I’ve just never before seen such a brilliant and cohesive mix of emotions. Wes Anderson is a storyteller who’s not afraid to deny the need for a tired worn out rubric. I doubt one’s ever even existed to him.

You can investigate Dustin Hamlin further at his YouTube Channel.

Friday, April 3, 2009


What is an adventure? It's hard to define, but one thing is for sure; it cannot be planned.

Now Superbad is among my all-time favorite comedies, and Adventureland is just as great, if not better... and it couldn't be more different than Superbad if it tried.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Brüno trailer surfaces, violating theaters this July

its pretty safe to say the trailer below is NSFW

Hot off the trailer of receiving an initial "kiss of death" NC-17 rating from the MPAA, the Red Band teaser for Sacha Baron Cohen's follow-up to Borat is looking really good. Every bit as offensive as I expected and looks funny enough to re-capture the same pop-culture significance as well. The trailer is embedded after the jump.


Hey guys,

Don't worry, we are back to normal now. And don't worry loyal readers, Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer still suck!

Some things to look forward too on TMW:

Advance reviews!

Some interviews with some cool people!

And much much more!

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