Some people love Tom Cruise. Others… not so much. I fall into the first camp, thinking that pretty much anything the guy touches will be (at least) entertaining. My guess is that studio heads may fall into the second camp, or think the majority of people do, anyway. How else could you explain “Oblivion”, the big-budget, sci-fi Summer blockbuster that was released in mid-April? Helmed by “Tron: Legacy” director Joseph Kosinsky, the picture has a sleek, futuristic visual style that would’ve wowed Steve Jobs and has the biggest movie star in the world fighting space aliens. What happened? Why isn’t Cruise’s Jack Harper going toe-to-toe with the likes of Tony Stark, Dominic Toretto and Jay Gatsby? Maybe because ”Oblivion” isn’t the movie you think it is. Read more
Tag Archive for cinema
This past weekend was my baby nephew’s first birthday. He lives quite a distance from me, so I’ve really only seen him three times in his 12 months of life and it’s pretty amazing how fast it goes. When he was 4 months old, he just sort of sat there like a baby Jabba the Hut. At 8 months, he could move his arms, albeit a bit clunky-like. At 1 year, he can scoot around like a little race car on all fours, has a few teeth and can SCREAM like nobody’s business. When he’s in a good mood, he’s an angel. When he’s Mr. Grumps, I feel like scheduling a vasectomy, as I don’t think I could ever handle being a parent. So it was fitting that I brought along “Not Suitable For Children” (available 4/16 from Well Go USA) to watch while I was there. Because if a title describes you to a T, you’re bound to relate to the material.
And that can’t be half bad. Right? Read more
The question is as old as time itself: What is love? Some may respond, “It’s the link between a parent and a child. Others may say , “It’s the bond shared with a spouse.” Internet memes will answer, “Baby don’t hurt me. Don’t hurt me, no more.”
All joking aside, there are many different kinds of love – but in the case of Sheldon Candis’s film “LUV”, we look at a mentorship; a young boy being brought into adulthood by an uncle. Nominated for the Grand Jury prize at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, “LUV” debuts today on DVD. But the real question to be asked: Will you be giving it any love? Read more
I don’t get clowns. They’re supposed to be happy and make you laugh, but so many people find them terrifying. My friend Steve actually yells “Yikes!” in his husky smoker’s voice whenever he sees one. It’s pretty funny (if a bit over-dramatic), yet he illustrates how clowns are a legitimate fear of many. How else could you explain the successes of “It”, “Killjoy” or the appropriately titled “Killer Clowns from Outer Space”? Even “Seinfeld” explored the phenomenon with the episode “The Opera” where “Crazy” Joe Davola dresses as a clown and scares the shit out of everyone. Now, Irish filmmaker Conor McMahon (Dead Meat) takes his turn scaring you with a circus psycho in “Stitches”, coming to DVD and Blu-Ray April 2 from MPI/Dark Sky Films.
No outside help.
Alone in an impenetrable location.
Where have we seen this before? Oh yeah, “Die Hard”, “Under Siege”, and I guess “First Blood” to an extent (if you count the Pacific northwest forest as an impenetrable location). That’s the gist of “Olympus Has Fallen”, which isn’t to say it’s a bad thing because that’s always a fun plot to watch. Read more
It’s not too often that I’m wowed by a cartoon. Gone are the days of the Pixar “slam dunk” (in my opinion). More often than not, I find myself annoyed by an animated film – like say, Shrek that uses some catchy pop song and then has the characters dancing around like assholes almost as a concession for not having them sing a la OG Disney films. To quote Mike “Green Ogre Slob” Myers: It’s craaaaap! Which is exactly the reason I was DREADING “The Croods”, Dreamworks’ latest computer generated feature. After seeing countless bus shelters, mass transit wraparounds and AMC policy bumpers all featuring the cave-clan, I wanted to smash my head in with a rock (which was probably used as both a pillow and a dental tool in their day). But after seeing the film in glorious 3D, I have to say that I haven’t been this happy to spend time with cartoon cavemen since “The Flintstones”. Read more
What a lucky week for our readers! So far we’ve explored Ireland’s fables, love, war, religion, music and of course, beer. Now, day 7 of CJD’s St. Patrick’s Week, we reach the end of the rainbow and everybody knows what’s found there. Gold. Lots of it… $6,894,620 worth, actually. Today we take a look at director Kirk Jones’ “Waking Ned Devine”, a little fable of greed, money and community. As such I pose a queston: What would you do with a pot full of money? Better yet, what would you do with someone else’s pot full of money?
When I think of great rock bands, I think of The Beatles, The Stones, Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith, Metallica and our boys from Ireland, U2. But when I think of Irish music, I think of traditional songs like “Danny Boy”, Sinead O’Conner (though I don’t know why, seeing as she’s best known for covering a Prince song and tearing up a picture of the Pope) and The Cranberries. Riverdance also comes to mind. Maybe I’m just out of touch with anything outside of classic rock. Maybe I’m just trying to BS an intro to this review. Either way, Day 6 of St. Patrick’s week finds us watching “The Commitments” – out now on DVD from 20th Century Fox. Alan Parker’s 1991 dramedy about a Dublin soul band is a rocking good time… and Michael Flatley never even makes an appearance. Read more
It’s been around since 9500 BC. One of the oldest man-made beverages, it’s shown up in ancient manuscripts and is thought to have been important in the development of civilization (according to Wikipedia – heh, heh). Though celebrated as the drink of the working man, it’s enjoyed by people of every socioeconomic level. It’s beer and the reason I bring it up, is that you just can’t celebrate St. Patrick’s Day without it. Day 5 of our week-long Irish holiday focuses on Orion Pictures’ 1985 film “Beer”. This little known comedy screams 80′s fun with a slobs vs. snobs story wrapped in a commentary on the advertising practices of the day. A movie about beer commercials? How could you possibly go wrong?? Read more
Ireland isn’t all blarney stones and shamrocks. It had long been plagued with violence between Irish Roman-Catholics and British Protestants during a 30 year period commonly known as “The Troubles”. Our 4th day of St. Patrick’s week, we look at Canadian director Kari Skogland’s “Fifty Dead Men Walking” – available now to stream on Netflix, Hulu Plus and Amazon Instant Video. Based on a true story, the film depicts a darker side of the Emerald Isle at the worst of The Troubles. Forgoing shots of rolling green hills in favor of the gritty streets of Belfast, this urban crime drama reminds us, for better or worse, of the very complex history of St. Paddy’s homeland.