POPSTAR: NEVER STOP NEVER STOPPING

Modern celebrity is a hard concept to parody. The 24-hour news cycle and websites operating via click-bait headlines drive the madness while social media shoulder the personal aspect of the downfall. But these are merely the instruments that over-bloated egos hoist themselves with. Give someone enough rope, and they are bound to hang themselves. And they do, time and time again. Making the question behind Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping not why parody it, but how? Childhood friends cum comedic rap/pop group, The Lonely Island — Andy Samberg, Akiva Schaffer, Jorma Taccone — broke through on Saturday Night Live with … Continue reading POPSTAR: NEVER STOP NEVER STOPPING

GREEN ROOM

If there is anything I have learned from watching movies it is this: never, ever take that one last job. No matter how much money, no matter how great the chance of fame, no matter the guilt involved, never take that last gig. Too bad that these punks have never seen a movie, or they might have figured that out. But alas, they didn’t and a broke hardcore punk band — lead by guitarist and lead-singer, Pat (Anton Yelchin) — takes one last gig hoping to salvage some aspect of this cross-country trip. Not that they’re desperation isn’t understandable; they … Continue reading GREEN ROOM

KNIGHT OF CUPS

“How do I begin?” Knight of Cups, the latest movie from writer/director Terrence Malick, follows Hollywood screenwriter Rick (Christian Bale) as he tries to understand what his life is now that his brother has died and his career is on the precipice of a momentous piece of work. True to Malickian form, none of this is spelled out, and the above quote does not come from a piece of dialogue snatched from a conversation, but from Rick’s inner thoughts. Or from a prayer. Or maybe just a simple voiceover. There is no real way of telling, but that doesn’t matter. … Continue reading KNIGHT OF CUPS

JIMI: ALL IS BY MY SIDE

Jimi: All is by My Side, Academy Award winning screenwriter John Ridley’s second foray in the director’s chair, is a biopic of famed guitarist, Jimi Hendrix. André Benjamin, of Outkast fame, plays Hendrix. Benjamin happens to look so similar to Hendrix that I wonder if this movie was willed into existence for that very reason. Not that Hendrix isn’t deserving of a movie, or several. Just another unknown in 1966, Hedrix exploding onto the scene one year later, but by the end of 1969 — with only three albums recorded — he was dead and buried. Hendrix is arguably one … Continue reading JIMI: ALL IS BY MY SIDE

Movie Beat – 07.11.14

The Battered Bastards of Baseball – Next week is All-Star Week where the best of the National League and American League will take a break from a grueling and long season to play a game, that has some impact on the outcome, but is by and large for fun. The Battered Bastards of Baseball looks back to a time when baseball was a whole lot of fun and money didn’t pollute and convolute everything. How could it? There was none of it to go around! The story of Portland’s Mavericks and Bing Russell, directed by Chapman Russell Way and Maclain … Continue reading Movie Beat – 07.11.14

Movie Beat – 05.30.14

Age of Uprising: The Legend of Michael Kohlhass – Michael Kohlhass (Mads Mikkelsen) was just another family man, a horse trader and a loyal citizen. Then they stole his horses and murdered his wife, now he has nothing to live for. Nothing, except for his revenge. A classic tale of retribution painted across the wide-open landscape of 16th Century France. Mélusine Mayance, Delphine Chuillot, David Kross, Bruno Ganz and Denis Lavant co-star in a script written by Christelle Berthevas and Arnaud des Pallières with des Pallières directing as well. In limited release from Music Box Films.   Filth – Bruce … Continue reading Movie Beat – 05.30.14

Movie Beat – 03.14.14

The Anonymous People – It would be safe to say that everyone knows someone who either is or has been an addict. Two out of every three families deal with someone who has a destructive and crippling addiction, and as a nation we turn a blind eye to it. Far too often we assume that the addict could simply decide to take control and wake-up, or that they are make a conscious decision to continue the addiction. It’s a shameful cross these Anonymous People carry, but they are doing what they can to get the message out and spread the … Continue reading Movie Beat – 03.14.14

Movie Beat – 01.31.14

12 O’clock Boys – They call them 12 O’clock boys because they ride their bikes straight up in the air. They are a gang of kids, running wild on the streets of Baltimore, where the police are hamstrung by a policy that won’t allow them to pursue a risky chase. Pug is a young boy enchanted with the 12 O’clock Boys and wants to ride with them, even if his mother, Coco, wants him to be a veterinarian. The Westside of Baltimore is a gritty and dangerous place, and director Lotfy Nathan brings a camera to an unsung way of … Continue reading Movie Beat – 01.31.14

THE LOOK OF LOVE

The Look of Love - Poster

The Look of Love is a biopic about Paul Raymond (Steve Coogan), Britain’s richest man. Matt Greenhalgh wrote the script, with the bulk of the material coming from Paul Willetts’s biography, Members Only: The Life and Times of Paul Raymond. Paul Raymond was a self-made man, a British version of Hugh Hefner, Larry Flint, and Ringling Bros. all rolled into one. He came from Liverpool with only five bob in his pocket (as he proudly proclaimed) and built an empire based on the scintillating world of erotica. He started with strip-tease shows, moved into theater that featured significant amount of unnecessary nudity, and then started publishing magazines both in the UK and the US. At one point, he tells that his first gig was as a mind-reader and that his best trick was to read the minds of all the men who would pay to see a girl take her knickers off. He is the perfect example of rags to riches, a British Horatio Alger.

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Movie Beat – 07.05.13

Absence – Liz (Erin Way) is near full-term when she suddenly looses the baby. Actually looses it, disappears, good-bye, nice knowing you. That’s fairly strange and the doctors have no medical explanation for it. Liz’s brother, Evan (Ryan Smale) is a film student and wants to get her side of the story on camera, and maybe get to the bottom of the mystery. Evan and husband Rick (Eric Matheny) decide to get Liz a little rest and relaxation by taking her up into the woods. Things go all right for a while, then as you can imagine, all hell breaks … Continue reading Movie Beat – 07.05.13