REVIEW: August: Osage County [2013]

“I’ll be sickly sweet” I’m drawn to dysfunction—especially when it’s of the familial persuasion. It’s probably because I didn’t really get exposed to much as a kid growing up with a family most would give anything to have. When you see the looks others who know dysfunction’s definition like the back of their hands telling you that what you believed was an example from your past is laughably quaint to say the least, experiencing a bit of that fiery vitriol at the movies can be invigorating. And when you have…

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REVIEW: Ender’s Game [2013]

“The enemy’s gate is down” While speaking during a Q&A at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books in April, author Orson Scott Card stated that Gavin Hood‘s adaptation of his seminal novel Ender’s Game was “the best that good people could do with a story they really cared about and believed in.” He also went on to say it was “damn good,” a sentiment with which I can’t wholly agree. The first quote, however, is a pretty spot-on description when you consider the amount of detail and political unrest…

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Posterized Propaganda March 2013: ‘Stoker,’ ‘Place Beyond the Pines,’ ‘Spring Breakers’ & More

“Don’t Judge a Book by Its Cover” is a proverb whose simple existence proves the fact impressionable souls will do so without fail. This monthly column focuses on the film industry’s willingness to capitalize on this truth, releasing one-sheets to serve as not representations of what audiences are to expect, but as propaganda to fill seats. Oftentimes they fail miserably. I’m honestly not sure if it is possible to cram more movies in one 31-day period (five Fridays!). Let’s just say the dump month doldrums have ceased and we’ve moved…

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REVIEW: New Year’s Eve [2011]

“Did he just snap me in a maternity ward?” So many questions I never knew I had were answered last night during a packed house screening of New Year’s Eve. A spiritual sequel to last year’s Valentine’s Day, director Garry Marshall, writer Katherine Fugate, and at least three actors playing different characters return. Besides learning the general masses savor broad-stroked comedy when it’s spoon-fed to them, I also discovered trite generic love to be their fantasy dream-come-true of choice. I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised since this film received…

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REVIEW: Zombieland [2009]

“It’s amazing how far you can go with costume jewelry and a cutthroat attitude” It is sometimes a fine line to cross when handing the reins of a big budget film to a newcomer, but that’s exactly what Sony Pictures did with Zombieland. The foursome in the lead aren’t necessarily A-list big money talent, but they are stalwarts in the industry, (Woody Harrelson and Abigail Breslin—I know she’s 13, but she did get an Oscar nom), and rising stars, (Jesse Eisenberg and Emma Stone). Steeped in horror clichés and more…

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REVIEW: My Sister’s Keeper [2009]

“I’m sorry I let them hurt you” I have not read the Judi Picoult novel for which the new film My Sister’s Keeper is based, and I think that is a good thing. Whether I would have thought the movie did or didn’t live up is beside the point as, from the scuttlebutt at the completion of the screening around me stated, the endings are completely different. Truthfully, I think I like the cinematic conclusion much better than the literary one, if these audience members are to be believed. What…

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REVIEW: Definitely, Maybe [2008]

“I make a living” Maybe I was just in the mood for a romantic comedy with some intelligence, but as far as wondering if I liked this week’s Valentine’s release, I say … definitely. Wow, I just did that. Despite the horrible wordplay, I really found myself fall into this story of one man’s three loves told to his daughter in order to show the complexities of that, humanity’s greatest passion. Definitely, Maybe is very much your run-of-the-mill rom-com, yet something about it just resonated with me. It might be…

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REVIEW: Little Miss Sunshine [2006]

“A little sweet sweetness” Keeping up with the recent buzz-worthy films coming out of Sundance the past couple years, Little Miss Sunshine is a gem of a movie. After loving crowd favorites Primer (2004) and Hustle and Flow (2005), I wasn’t quite sure if the hat trick would be made. Sunshine seemed to have the cast, and direction (the debut of husband/wife team Valerie Faris and Jonathan Dayton, who have helmed some of my favorite music videos including the Smashing Pumpkins’ Tonight, Tonight and the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Otherside),…

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