REVIEW: Finding Nemo [2003]

“You mean the swirling vortex of terror?” There’s a lot happening in Finding Nemo, a fact that hindered my appreciation for it back in 2003. At its core is a story about an over-protective clownfish father and his adventurous boy yearning to break free of the constant fear that’s ruled their lives for too long. But this logline barely scratches the surface after introducing a blue tang in the Pacific without a short-term memory and an angelfish in captivity searching for freedom. When the boy (Alexander Gould‘s Nemo) is taken…

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REVIEW: Green Lantern [2011]

“This is the worst eleventh birthday party I’ve ever been to” And here I thought green was the color of envy. Leave it to the DC Universe to set the record straight on how wrong that is in what could be the most implausibly convoluted mythology of any comic book entity ever—especially for a superhero who lives in the same world as Batman and Superman, two guys heavily steeped in reality, with some artistic flourishes of course. Green Lantern is hindered from an easy transition to the big screen at…

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Picking Winners at the 83rd Annual Academy Awards

Spree contributing writer William Altreuter, graphic designer Jared Mobarak, and I are going to share our thoughts on this week’s Oscar nominations. Let’s kick things off with a category whose victor—Colin “Mr. Darcy” Firth—seems to have already been agreed upon. — Christopher Schobert Best Actor:Javier Bardem: BiutifulJeff Bridges: True GritJesse Eisenberg: The Social NetworkColin Firth: The King’s SpeechJames Franco: 127 Hours William Altreuter: If the Academy had wanted to make a statement Jim Carrey‘s amazing turn in I Love You Phillip Morris would have found its way onto this list. Wouldn’t that…

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REVIEW: Elizabeth: The Golden Age [2007]

“I will live right until the end” Whereas Elizabeth told a tale of royalty and the politics underlying every action to gain power, Elizabeth: The Golden Age weaves the story of how that strength survives. Michael Hirst gets help this time from the capable William Nicholson to explain what happens once the queen has proven her worth. The country has accepted her, yet many Catholic dissenters hide behind Mary Stuart, looking for an overthrow. Outside her kingdom sees Spain reviling her crown, standing against the God they hold dear. King…

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REVIEW: Elizabeth [1998]

“The Virgin Queen” Not being a fan of the biopic, I must say that Elizabeth leaves an impression. With outstanding performances, lush settings and costumes, as well as a well-crafted story, this film does exactly what is needed for a biography to succeed—and it sticks to a specific period of a legend’s life, without trying to tell eighty years in two hours. Hers is a tale that many know, at least a trifle bit, about. From our introduction, writer Michael Hirst, (a scholar at the subject if I’m to be…

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REVIEW: Frida [2002]

“Alone in pain” I’ve said it many times; I am not a fan of biopics. They always overextend themselves to the point of unbelievability because of the same actors playing everyone from 20-80 years old. The ones that work are those that take a slice of life rather than the entirety of it, like The Queen and Capote. Let’s say I was very surprised to find out how much I enjoyed Frida. From her college years until her death, this film never feels like we are learning about her life—it…

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REVIEW: Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End [2007]

“Oooo, a peanut” I will preface this review by saying if you did not enjoy the first two Pirates movies, you shouldn’t be seeing the third. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End is the final part of a very cohesive trilogy. There are no recaps between the films; they consist of a single story that is to be followed part by part. You must watch the first movie to be introduced to our heroes and supporting players because it is their actions here that make them the people they…

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