33 Postcards – Mei Mei (Zhu Lin) is a Chinese orphan with a sponsor down in Australia, Dean Randall (Guy Pearce). They write back and forth for ten years, and Mei Mei grows up dreaming of Dean’s perfect life, his perfect family, and the perfect skyline of Sydney. Her choir travels to Australia for the Australian Choir Festival, and Mei Mei uses this trip to visit her beloved pen pal. When she meets Dean, things aren’t quite so hunky-dory as he is a convict with a very shady past. Mei Mei still sees some family as a hell of a lot better than no … Continue reading Movie Beat – 05.17.13
Dear Grandma Mary – Thank you very much for coming with me to see To The Wonder. I really enjoyed it, and I hope you did too. The first thing you said to me when the credits came up was, “Deep”. Well played! It is deep, but I like that little touch of comedy in you. I also agree with your initial review, “good music and good pictures.” I suppose that is all that really matters when it comes to a movie. We could have just left it there: deep, good pictures, good music, but you asked for more. You … Continue reading TO THE WONDER
What does it mean to bare witness? Is it simply to record an event, to interpret an occurrence, to prove that someone or something existed? Philosophers have speculated that the sole purpose of mankind’s existence is to bare witness to creation. If no one were here to observe and record, what would be the purpose of the creation in the first place? Jack Harper finds himself in that predicament as he shoulders the role of The Last Man. He is not the last man on Earth, nor is he the last of the human race, but he shoulders the burden of the Last Man, and that burden is to bare witness. There was a war, a terrible, devastating war, and now mankind has to leave the planet. Harper has two weeks left at his position and then he has to leave Earth behind and join the others. Man was created, man walked and worked the Earth, aliens came and obliterated that, and now Harper has to record all of this on his way out the door.
Ain’t in it For My Health: A Film About Levon Helm – Levon Helm was the drummer and primary singer for The Band. When a folk singer from Minnesota named Bob Dylan decided to plug-in, he called on The Band. In 1969 they played Woodstock. In 1976 they played the Winterland Ballroom and broke-up for the first time. Since he was a kid, Helm has been banging away at the drums, strumming guitars, and singing songs, and just because he is north of 70 doesn’t mean he is giving it up. Director Jacob Hatley catches up with Helm and documents his latest … Continue reading Movie Beat – 04.19.13
42 – Jackie Robinson was the first to cross the color barrier in baseball and boy did he take an awful lot of hell for it. The other man who laid it all on the line to make this statement was the manager that signed him, Branch Rickey. The Brooklyn Dodgers started Robinson at first base in 1947 and quickly became the center of attention. Chadwick Boseman plays Robinson and Harrison Ford gives an actual performance as Rickey. Co-starring Christopher Meloni, Jon Bernthal, and Nicole Behaire. Brian Helgeland writes and directs this biopic just in time to get everyone excited about … Continue reading Movie Beat – 04.12.13
3,2,1… Frankie Go Boom – We kick this week’s list of releases with writer/director Jordan Roberts’ second feature. Frankie (Charlie Hunnam) has a problem, and that problem is his brother (Chris O’Dowd), a recovering addict who loves to film Frankie’s every embarrassing and personal moment, including, Frankie and a girl (Lizzie Caplan) having sex. Now Frankie has to track the video down and keep it out of the hands of a notorious pornography producer (Chris Noth) who happens to be the girl’s father. This is one of those movies where nothing is easy. You can’t even go and hire an old prison cellmate without some dramatic twist. … Continue reading Movie Beat – 10.12.12
Seven Psychopaths is writer/director Martin McDonagh’s second feature film. McDonagh, probably best know as a playwright, debut feature, In Bruges (2008), was critically accepted and doubled its budget in sales. In Bruges starred Colin Farrell, who takes the role of the central character, Marty, in this film as well. Marty is a screenwriter who is also dealing with a pretty serious case of alcoholism, he is rarely seen without a drink in his hand. It is later pointed out by Marty’s friend that it’s in his nature to be an alcoholic, he is a writer and Irish, two strikes against him. In real life, Farrell … Continue reading SEVEN PSYCHOPATHS