Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Bringing THE HEAT (2013) with Bullock and McCarthy

Mondo posterWomen are being funny again, how about that! The premise of THE HEAT is simple, and very familiar: two mismatched cops are forced to work together against their will, and in the process of fighting the forces of evil, they bond and become best buds. The plot would be clich├ęd if it weren't for the gender twist, because in this case, we've got a pair of gal pals instead of a budding bro-mance.
“The hunger of a female moviegoing public that’s endured a long June of capes and bro jokes. And I’d add to this list Tuesday’s barn burner thrill ride of watching/tweeting about/bowing down before Texas Senator Wendy Davis, who stood for 13 hours in protest of a bill she believed would dangerously undercut women’s health. Politics aside, it was a bravura performance of a fiercely capable and passionate woman having her most important day at the office ever. Women want to see women on screen they recognize and sometimes aspire to be. And that’s part of why it was so fun last night to watch Bullock and McCarthy, both operating in top form, bring it.” (Karen Valby, Enterainment Weekly)
As someone who stayed awake until the early hours of the morning watching the Texas filibuster proceedings with bated breath, I couldn't agree more. As a girl who grew up loving the original STAR WARS trilogy and INDIANA JONES (I swear, every time we ordered pizza for dinner), seeing two women tearing around the city blowing things up, suffering, sweating, and swearing through the pain, feeds my action-hero soul.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013


Oz poster Oscar (James Franco) is a magician struggling to find love and earn a living in Kansas with the travelling carnival. When Oz climbs into a hot air balloon in order to escape the fury of a romantic rival, he gets swept away in a twister, landing in the mysterious land that shares his name. He is greeted by Theodora (Mila Kunis), who takes him to claim his throne in Emerald city as the prophesied Wizard of Oz. But there is a bit of a mix-up about who are the good and bad witches. Ultimately, Oz must find the goodness in himself to lead the good people of Oz into battle against the wicked witches.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Oscar Fail 2013

So I showed up to work today and everybody's all up in my grill asking me what did I think of the Oscars.
What did I think of the Oscars!? What did I think of the Oscars!?
They were lame. That's what I thought of the Oscars.

1.) Seth MacFarlane You know how William Shatner/Captain Kirk came from the future to tell you what not to do to ruin the Oscars? You shouldn't have done them. Ever. Because they ruined the Oscars. Just because you tell us you are about to ruin the Oscars, and then you go ahead and do the thing you have just told us is going to ruin the Oscars, YOU'VE STILL RUINED THE OSCARS! Only now we know you know we know you just ruined the Oscars. That's like a triple fail right there. I wish Amy and Tina had hosted, no joke.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

THE HOBBIT (2012): An Unexpected Pleasure

Hobbit If truth be told, I wasn't expecting much when I phoned up my friend and asked her if she wanted to go see THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY with me. I was more interested in chatting to her over dinner than I was in getting to the theatre on time. However, I am very glad we did make it.

Around this time of year, I'm usually dashing around madly to every cinema in town trying to see all the films that have been nominated for an Oscar of some sort. Although I had heard some rather ambivalent reviews about THE HOBBIT, I knew I simply couldn't pass it up.

Those who are avid Lord of the Rings fans (of the books and the films) poo poo this prequel to the series as lacking the depth of the other stories. But I have to say that this is probably one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much. Not because they didn't, but because it has a light-hearted sort of fun that is so scarce in the other three films.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

LES MISERABLES (2012): Less Miserable Than Expected

Director Tom Hooper adopted a huge legacy when he agreed to make yet another version of Victor Hugo’s classic French tale. There are two French film versions of the story: the epic Raymond Bernard production of 1934 and the lesser-known 1958 film directed by Jean-Paul Le Chanois. Hollywood presented its own adaptation in the 1935 20th Century Fox production starring Fredric March, Charles Laughton, and Cedric Hardwicke. A few years later they followed up with the 1952 film starring Elsa Lanchester and Edmund Gwenn. The most recent LES MISERABLES (1998) stars Liam Neeson, whom I distinctly remember drooling over in middle school French class.

Monday, January 28, 2013

The Pre-Oscar Buzz Is Getting Serious

'Tis the season to watch movies, fa la la la laaaaa la la la la! The holidays might be over, but ever movie lover knows that January and February are the most exciting months in the cinematic calendar. This year the 85th Academy Awards ceremony will be held on February 24, a date I am certain most of you have marked in red ink in your daily planners.
The first couple Oscar ceremonies were held in the Spring, then a few took place in November. It wasn't until the sixth or seventh ceremonies that they started hosting them in late February or early March. The first Academy Awards dinner was a private event held in a hotel. About 200 guests attended at the cost of 5$ per head. Not to bad, eh? Did you know that the first ever recipient of an Oscar statuette was not even an American? The very first Academy Award ever presented was given to German tragedian Emil Jannings. Here are some more fast facts about the Academy Awards:
  • Oscar ceremonies were held in hotels until 1942, when increased attendence necessitated the move to theatres.
  • The first televised Oscar ceremony was in 1953.
  • 1966 was the first year a full color televised ceremony was broadcast.
  • The ceremony was first broadcast internationally in 1969, and has been ever since.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

THE SECRET WORLD OF ARRIETY (2010): A Secret Worth Knowing

THE SECRET WORLD OF ARRIETY (Hiromasa Yonebayashi, 2010): Based on "The Borrowers" stories by Mary Norton, this film is about a family of tiny people who live in the floorboards of a large house. When young, adventurous Arriety is spotted by a little sick boy who comes to stay at the house, the family must find out how to survive in a world inhabited by giants.
I've never been a huge Anime fan, but I do love the work of director/producer Hayao Miyazaki. His films HOWLS MOVING CASTLE (2004) and SPIRITED AWAY (2001) are truly great works of art. The animation in ARRIETY is also beautiful. The adept use of sound and image to paint the story was really stunning. There's one shot in particular where it's raining, and the way the raindrops on the pavement are animated is really stunning.
My one complaint about the film is the voices. I'm really perturbed that they cast two sets of voices for the UK and American versions of the film. I mean, I like Carol Burnett and everything, but I couldn't take Hara seriously because I was laughing too hard! I would have much preferred to hear the great Geraldine McEwan or Phyllida Law.