REVIEW: The Old Man and the Gun [2018]

I know what I’m doing. Finding an occupation you love is rare when familial and financial responsibilities often dictate a path towards compromise. It’s therefore hard to let one go. Just ask Forrest Tucker, a career criminal in and out of prison since age fifteen whose life consisted of planning his next bank robbery or jailbreak depending on his mailing address at the time. The guy broke out of San Quentin at the age of 70 and then went right back at it for the sheer joy of the act…

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REVIEW: Carrie [1976]

Sin never dies. As a Maine resident trying his hand at literary horror, it shouldn’t be surprising that Stephen King would gravitate towards a New England topic such as witchcraft so early in his career. Carrie was his fourth novel (first to be published) and showed the potential for the skewed gaze on common tropes he possessed. The titular character isn’t a witch per se, but a young girl with newfound telekinetic powers and an abused background with which to foster a seething rage beneath her shyly sweet demeanor. Rather…

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Posterized Propaganda October 2013: The Faces of ‘Gravity,’ ’12 Years a Slave,’ ‘The Counselor’ & 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. Not too many movies open up in October—and only one studio horror flick at that, despite Halloween. What’s the best way to sell tickets then? Star power. Celebrity faces are…

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Picking Winners at the 84th Annual Academy Awards

For the next week and a half, Spree contributor William C. Altreuter, our online film reviewer Jared Mobarak, and me will share our thoughts on who will take home the Oscars. Let’s kick things off with … Best Supporting Actress. —C. S. BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS:Bérénice Bejo – The Artist as Peppy MillerJessica Chastain – The Help as Celia FooteMelissa McCarthy – Bridesmaids as Megan PriceJanet McTeer – Albert Nobbs as Hubert PageOctavia Spencer – The Help as Minny Jackson Christopher Schobert: Bill, it seems like every time you and I tackle…

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REVIEW: The Help [2011]

“God don’t pay no mind to color when he decide to set a tornado loose” I guess it’s my own fault for not paying attention to the advertisements, but I really thought The Help was based on a true story. The author was Emma Stone‘s Skeeter Phelan and the stories told were authentic orations of the maids in her Jackson, Mississippi community. Those trailers had ‘inspired by a true events’ somewhere, right? Or is the fact the film occurs during an historical event like the Civil Rights movement real life…

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FILM MARATHON: Terrence Malick #1 – Badlands [1973]

“He said that if the Devil came at me, I could shoot him with a gun” A character at the end of Terrence Malick’s debut feature film Badlands tells antihero Kit that he is “quite the individual”. This could be the understatement of 1973. Based on the 1950s Starkweather-Fugate killing spree, the film tells the tale of a 25-year old James Dean type and his 15-year old girlfriend on the run. Shy, young, and naïve, Holly falls in love with this man who somehow also picked her despite the potential…

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REVIEW: Four Christmases [2008]

“That’s not a boy named Bjorn?” Perhaps I was in an overly good mood before bed, or maybe I was just so tired that I’d laugh at anything, but Four Christmases ended up being a pretty good time despite my trepidation and warnings to steer clear by friends. It was cute, somewhat innocuous, and had its fair share of big laughs. By no means is it great cinema, nor intelligent storytelling—its sub 90-minute runtime shows us only the craziness spending time with the four parts of two divorced marriages and…

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