So, last year, out of curiosity (and desperation) I decided to become a taxi driver. Taxi driving is a particularly boring endeavor. Lots of waiting in parking lots. You can only listen to music for so long on the radio before it just becomes annoying. I turned to NPR to keep my brain from sedation. It was here where I encountered the annoying, spitty voice of Michele Norris
Saw The Rum Diary over the weekend; the Hunter S. Thompson novel that was delayed in publishing for much of his life, and then made into a film that got delayed over a year after it was shot as well. I was pretty impressed with it, but not in the areas I thought it would. In a way, it’s not quite a successful film. But if you want it to be, it can be a powerful statement filled with intriguing dialogue and engaging “fuck the world” themes. I think its reception can be taken in drastically different ways from person to person (obvious sentence alert!).
I’m not exactly a huge comic book nerd, but in the last 4-ish years, I’ve read my fair share. There are a lot of bloated, pointless events used for marketing (Civil War, Flashpoint, Fear Itself) and lackluster main books (Detective Comics and Superman), but the one book that I could always count on for a great read was “Ultimate Spider-Man” by Brian Michael Bendis. Continue reading
5 or 6 years ago, I was super into Dexter. Dexter was the Breaking Bad of Showtime. It was fresh, smart and entertaining. I waited with baited breath for the next episode, and I was dying for the next season. Dexter though, has just entered its sixth season and is totally showing its age. Continue reading
Premise: Kevin Smith directs the least Kevin Smith movie he’s ever done. A few teenagers end up prisoner at a religious cult’s heavily armed compound. Some federal agents show up and the movie then becomes a 45 minute shoot-out.
-The movie has a 45 minute shoot-out.
-Michael Park plays a good Fred Phelps like role, where you can never really tell whether he’s selling snake oil or truly believes in the garbled nonsense he’s spitting out. Melissa Leo provides an adequate level of crazy. John Goodman is busy being awesome John Goodman.
-Wait, was that Kevin Pollak?
-Really short running time (under 90 minutes). If it were 5 minutes longer I’d say it went on too long.
-Pregnant woman firing machine gun… it happens in this.
-Instead of ending on the action, Kevin Smith tries to close the movie on an almost Coen Brothers level of philosophical dialogue.
-Ends on a pretty good laugh.
-I don’t feel like the point came across as strong as Smith would have liked it to. Either that or it came across too straight forward. It did nothing to enhance or change my views on religious cults. There’s nothing I didn’t already know or have feelings about.
-Now, I don’t mind a good helping of Hollywood violence, but the violence in this movie was used almost as needless filler. It ultimately didn’t aid the story or the theme of it all. It was entertaining, though, I suppose.
-Not a big fan of the first act.
Final Thoughts: Red State isn’t something I would call a success, but I don’t think it quite failed either. I think I maybe need a few days to let it sink in a little more. I actually liked it overall. It sufficiently held my attention for 88 minutes. Kind of a short blip of a movie. I probably liked it a little more than most other people will, so I’m not going to recommend it to anyone. If you’re fascinated by religious cults, violent movies, or seeing Kevin Smith go out of his comfort zone (and don’t want to suffer through Cop Out), then it might be worth checking out.
7 out of 10
Premise: Aliens attack a British apartment building. A gang of teenage hooligans fight them off with swords, baseball bats and fireworks. Do I need to say any more?
-A ton of colorful, entertaining characters throughout. Almost all of them very likeable.
-Fast paced. If you don’t include the credits it’s only around 83 minutes long. It gets right to it, and never wears out its welcome leading up to a satisfying ending.
-The design of the aliens is pretty simplistic, but totally works for the movie. They aren’t technology based aliens, so they provide a lot of fun action and mayhem fighting a group of teenagers.
-Moses is a badass.
-Some of the dialogue is hard to understand because of the thick British accents and British slang. But not bad enough to where you can’t understand what’s going on.
-A little too much cheap, weed-related humor. It falls short of getting annoying with it though.
Final Thoughts: Man, what a fun movie. Just a really good action comedy. I wasn’t blown away like I was expecting to be, but Attack the Block is an undeniably fun movie. If being fun is all it has going for it, that’s not too shabby a thing to say. It features almost non-stop action in its short running time. It’s a good movie bruv, allow it.
8.5 out of 10
If you love coffee, and you live in/ are visiting Chicago, then you must go to this place. Continue reading