Wouldn’t you know it, interplanetary teenage love is hard. That’s that gist of Andrew Niccol’s (“Gattaca”) new film, “The Host.” This should come as no surprise. After all, the movie is based on the novel of the same name by Stephanie Meyer, who penned everyone’s favorite sparkly vampire books. “The Host” is also only about as interesting as maudlin young love sounds, which is too bad, because the premise is actually has a great deal of potential.
Thursday, March 28, 2013
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
2009’s “GI Joe: Rise of Cobra” is almost universally considered to be a terrible pile of crap. While it definitely isn’t great cinematic art, I definitely enjoyed it way more than most. Despite a critical drubbing, the first installment managed to make money, so we now we get the inevitable sequel, “GI Joe: Retaliation.” In many ways part two is a more grounded, realistic action flick, but it is also still pretty damn entertaining. Big, dumb, loud, and completely forgettable, “Retaliation” is good for a couple hours worth of distraction.
Monday, March 25, 2013
After a run of episodes that have ranged from terrible to mediocre, AMC’s The Walking Dead is nearing the conclusion of its third season. The penultimate episode, “This Sorrowful Life,” better get things rolling, right? At this point in the game, Andrea (Laurie Holden) is all tied up in the Governor’s (David Morrissey) basement, and Rick (Andrew Lincoln) is considering handing Michonne (Danai Gurira) over the folks at Woodbury, so something damn well better happen. Find out who, what, when, and where down below.
Thursday, March 21, 2013
Early on in director Antoine Fuqua’s actioner “Olympus Has Fallen,” disgraced secret service agent Mike Banning’s (Gerard Butler) wife makes him a thick, milky smoothie for breakfast. This particular morning drink serves as an effective metaphor for the entire film, which is like the producers threw “Die Hard” into a blender with “Under Siege,” hit puree, and projected the resultant lumpy goo onto a movie screen. I don’t even mean this as hyperbole. Going through “Olympus Has Fallen” you can label each scene as straight up lifted from one of those iconic films. The movie is a gross, lumpy action smoothie.
Admittedly I’m having a difficult time sorting through my feelings about “Spring Breakers.” To call it half incredible and half annoying sounds hyperbolic and doesn’t tell you anything real about the film, but walking out of the theater, that sums up my reaction. If it feels like indie auteur Harmony Korine (“Kids,” “Gummo,” “Trash Humpers”) made a modern sexploitation movie about bikini girls with machine guns in the vein of a Monte Hellman flick, then you’d be right, because that’s precisely what this is. The film alternately screams and whispers “Spring Break,” in both a literal and metaphorical sense, for the entire run time.
Monday, March 18, 2013
Last week’s episode of AMC’s The Walking Dead, “Arrow on the Doorpost,” has been almost universally recognized as a total piece of shit. In a show that has often been criticized for nothing happening, it was by far the most egregious offender. The hope of most of us who watch the wildly popular zombie drama was that the follow-up, “Prey,” would right the ship. Any progress would be a step in the right direction. Were they successful? Find out below.
Thursday, March 14, 2013
There’s always a level of concern when an acclaimed international filmmaker heads to Hollywood for the first time. How often have we witnessed a director who cranks out masterpiece after masterpiece fall flat on his or her face when it comes to their initial English language picture? There are a number of issues to be faced down, including, but not limited to, studio interference, skewed cultural conventions, and working in a language that is not their native tongue.
Monday, March 11, 2013
As a small child I used to accompany my parents on regular treks to the local video store, which oddly enough also served as an ice cream shop. On every run I invariable wandered into the horror section and proceeded to scare the living shit out of myself by gawking at all the gruesome box covers and reading the horrific descriptions on the back.
Last week’s episode of AMC’s The Walking Dead, “Clear,” was the best episode since “Pretty Much Dead Already,” and maybe since the pilot. Quiet, moving, hopeful, it represents the show at its peak. Can the follow up, “Arrow on the Doorpost,” live up to that high bar? Can it capitalize on the promise of its predecessor? Read on to find out.
Thursday, March 7, 2013
At one point, near the end of “Oz the Great and Powerful,” Theodora, played by Mila Kunis in green face, makes an exasperated noise and utters, “How predictable.” Those two words are a good summation of the entire movie. There’s nothing particularly wrong with the film, but there’s nothing especially original or engaging about the story either. Obvious kiddie fare, an audience that will likely thrill in the dazzling color and shit the bed at the sight of the flying baboons, the story is so watered down and transparent that sitting through it as a grown-ass adult can be trying. Why this is more than two hours long is beyond me.
Monday, March 4, 2013
Last week’s episode of The Walking Dead, “I Ain’t a Judas,” set them up. Does this week’s chapter, “Clear,” knock ‘em down? We’re about to find out. Read more down below, and see if our opinions match, or if you feel like we were watching two completely different shows.
Sunday, March 3, 2013
There was an era, once upon a time when Sharon Stone could carry an entire movie. That time, however, is now far, far in the past. Once she was nominated for an Oscar, but she does not have the chops to headline a film in this day and age. Nowhere is this point so clear as with her new direct-to-video effort, “Border Run,” a movie that sets out to be a harrowing examination of human trafficking along the US/Mexico border, but that is crushed under the heavy hand of its own message of injustice.