ALL THE MONEY IN THE WORLD

The average viewer may not know who J. Paul Getty was. If they do recognize the name, it’s most likely from his extensive collection of art, housed in Santa Monica’s Getty Center or the Getty Villa, located just up the coast in the Pacific Palisade. They might even recognize him as the answer to a trivia question: Who was the world’s first billionaire? But in a world of thousands of billionaires, first no longer holds currency. Yes, according to the 1966 Guinness Book of Records, J.P. Getty was the world’s richest private citizen, worth approximately $1.2 billion. Getty made his … Continue reading ALL THE MONEY IN THE WORLD

Movie Beat – 06.27.14

Archipelago – Another week, another movie from writer/director Joanna Hogg. This time out Hogg takes us to a remote English location to explore the quiet desperation in the lives of others. An archipelago is a collection of small islands in a vast sea, a perfect descriptor for this family who is waiting for Father to arrive. Smacks of Beckett and Antonioni, but in the best possible way. Starring Tom Hiddleston, Amy Lloyd, Christopher Baker, Kate Fahy and Lydia Leonard. In limited release from Kino Lorber.   Begin Again – Dan (Mark Ruffalo) is an ex-record executive who is drowning his … Continue reading Movie Beat – 06.27.14

Movie Beat – 12.25.13

47 Ronin – A ronin is a master-less samurai, a drifter, a wanderer who makes his way from village to village, performing meaningless tasks for room and board. Kai (Keanu Reeves) joins up with a bunch of other ronin, 46 to be exact, to defeat a bunch of evil spirits and demons plaguing the land. Kou Shibasaki, Rinko Kikuchi, Hiroyuki Sanada, Tadanobu Asano, and Min Tanaka co-star. Writers Hossein Amini and Chris Morgan retell the legendary tale with direction from Carl Rinsch. Out in wide release from Universal Pictures.   August: Osage County – Holidays mean family time. Some of … Continue reading Movie Beat – 12.25.13

Movie Beat – 08.02.13

2 Guns – Two gentlemen look to rip off a bank and steal about $40 million US. They are wise cracking, professional, and very good with a gun. Then it turns out that one of these gentlemen (Denzel Washington) is not who he says he is, he’s actually an undercover DEA agent. But the other gentleman (Mark Wahlberg) is not who he says he is either, he’s from the Navy! Well, that is awkward. Too bad that this is all one big set-up, and surprise surprise, they have to work together to uncover the mystery. Bill Paxton shows how good … Continue reading Movie Beat – 08.02.13

PAIN & GAIN

Pain & Gain - Poster

“If I think I deserve it, the universe will serve it,” Daniel Lugo tells himself and anyone who will listen. Is he trying to convince them, or is he trying to convince himself? “If I think I deserve it, the universe will serve it.” Throw it in a self-help book, and you could move a decent amount of copies. Just another line in a string of pop-hokum that people will shell out honest to good money to either read in books like The Secret or pay to hear at a motivational talk by Tony Robbins. It’s likely the mantra that Jeff Goldblum forgot way back in Annie Hall. “If I think I deserve it, the universe will serve it!” Ladies and gentlemen, I give you, The American Dream!

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Movie Beat – 04.26.13

Arthur Newman – Wallace (Colin Firth) is tired of his life and decides to start over again. This time with someone else’s identity, completely fabricated, a new man: Arthur Newman (a bit on the nose if you ask me). He meets Michaela, or Mike, (Emily Blunt) and they take off together, having all sorts of adventures and romps that poor old Wallace could only dream of. But when fiction becomes so desirable, there is a point where we must turn it into a fact. That means taking the crap along with the fun. Two characters in search of an identity, two great actors in search of a … Continue reading Movie Beat – 04.26.13

Movie Beat – 01.18.13

Birders: The Central Park Effect – What a charming little documentary about birds in Central Park. New York City is a giant metropolis of concrete, glass, steel, and asphalt. Imagine a bird soaring over skyscrapers, roads, apartment buildings, and smack dab in the middle of this, a giant swath of green, Central Park. Birds come here to congregate, rest, feed, live, and the birders can’t get enough. How these birds co-exist with thirty-eight million visitors of Central Park is remarkable. Just watch that goose calmly strut its stuff, completely indifferent to anyone else. Written and directed by Jeffrey Kimball and … Continue reading Movie Beat – 01.18.13