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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BNFF10 REVIEW: Hot Tamale [2006]

“You better know so Wonderbread” Between the serious faces portrayed on the poster and the heist gone wrong plot synopsis, I had no idea Hot Tamale was going to be as much of a comedy as it is. Beginning with the bizarre death of lead Harlan Woodriff’s father, the kooky family is huddled around the frozen corpse while the son stays in the background wondering if he’d ended up in the wrong family. It all has an air of drama—besides the inclusion of actors Harland Williams and Beth Grant—as we…

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REVIEW: Mr. Wonderful [1993]

“Find her another husband” Have I seriously been wired to assume I know how romantic comedies will end because so many of them are carbon copies of each other these days? It is like every entry to the genre now has the boy and girl with the wild card ex serving as the plot point for which to break them up and eventually get them back together. It’s been so formulaic for the past decade and a half that I went into 1993’s Mr. Wonderful with the end already played…

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REVIEW: 17 Again [2009]

“Let’s push some pills my peeps” I feel like Hollywood just remade Big a few years back. It was called 13 Going on 30 and it was an inferior product; but what wouldn’t be in comparison to Penny Marshall’s classic? This year sees the industry go back to that well again with the Zac Efron vehicle 17 Again. It comes from director Burr Steers whose debut was the critical darling Igby Goes Down, so there was potential. Complete with a cast of notable faces and a stellar soundtrack featuring The…

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REVIEW: The Happening [2008]

“Cheese and crackers” Ah, M. Night Shyamalan. The man who was overrated until I saw the masterpiece that was The Village, followed up by the beautiful fairy-tale Lady in the Water, vaulting him into my must-see echelon, no matter what preconceptions I have based on trailers or word-of-mouth. Well, my blind faith has somewhat let me down in this instance. No, it wasn’t the left wing agenda that is subtly prevalent throughout, nor the blatant “news brief” used to shove said agenda down our throats at the end. What happened…

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REVIEW: The 40 Year Old Virgin [2005]

“You know how I know you’re gay?” I will preface this review by saying I have never been the biggest Steve Carell fan. I love his bit parts, but seeing him in a lead role after having a start on “The Daily Show” rubbed me the wrong way. Believing that I would hate his writing/lead role debut as much as I do Will Ferrell’s multiple attempts, I shied away from checking the film out. Being that director Judd Apatow’s sophomore film Knocked Up is hitting theatres this Friday, I decided…

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REVIEW: Blades of Glory [2007]

“Sex on ice” It’s a real shame that Hollywood churns out some utter crap passed off as entertainment. The new low-brow comedy Blades of Glory has a great premise: two old skating rivals team together, after being banned for life in competition, as the first all male pair to fight for gold at the World Championships. This was ripe for some social commentary, a little out of their element shtick, and a touch of big laugh action sequences. What we get instead are two lead actors doing what they do…

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