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Showing posts from June, 2018

2018 Blind Spot Series: Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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What I knew going in: Tis but a scratch! King Arthur (Graham Chapman) goes on a quest to gather knights of the round table and find The Holy Grail.  A lot of comedians who make me laugh hysterically today all credit Monty Python as an inspiration to them. Yet, they've always managed to escape me. I'm still very ignorant of the majority of their work, but I figured this would be a good place to start.  All the members in this troupe have a ton of charisma, and while this film did make me laugh, it wasn't as funny as I hoped it would be. Comedy really is generational isn't it? While I've seen and loved plenty of classic comedies I rarely find anything before the 90's that makes me laugh the way comedies do now. (Except Airplane! and that horse getting punched in Blazing Saddles .) Thankfully I wasn't expecting to be on the floor over this, and I still really enjoyed myself. I can see now what people where saying when they said sort of spoofed The Se

Thursday Movie Picks - TV Edition: Spin Offs

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I'm super excited about this week's theme from Wandering Through the Shelves because I get to talk about a show that my dad and I used to watch when I was a kid. It just brings back so many wonderful memories. We're talking TV Spin Offs today, and here are three of my favorites.  1) Better Call Saul Breaking Bad is one of my all time favorite TV shows but when they said they were doing a spin off on shady lawyer Saul Goodman, I wasn't sure how they could make that last. I should've known to trust these writers because Better Call Saul is fantastic and this past season had one of the best episodes I've seen on TV lately.  2) Space Ghost: Coast to Coast Growing up, we had this little TV in our kitchen that hung below one of our cabinets and my dad and I would always sit at the counter and watch shows that the rest of my family deemed too ridiculous. Space Ghost Coast to Coast was one of them. A spin off of the old Space Ghost cartoon, this one was s

Indie Gems: Please Stand By

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I'm ready. Wendy (Dakota Fanning) is a young woman with autism living at a group home run by Scottie. (Toni Collette) She sticks to her routine, but she's ready to deviate a bit to submit her Star Trek script to Paramount Pictures for a contest. When her sister Audrey (Alice Eve) fails to take her to the post office to mail said script, she runs away to deliver it herself.  Dakota Fanning is truly a wonderful actress and she's great her. Apparently they had an "autism coach" on set to help make sure everything was going smoothly and not running into offensive territory and I think they did a pretty good job at that. Toni Collette is always a joy to watch as well. Unfortunately the script does end up with forced conflicts. Wendy gets robbed on her way to Los Angeles, she loses some of her script pages, those times of plot points that are meant to extend the film but wind up being a little frustrating, but they don't distract from the film as a wh

Rambling TV: Thirteen Reasons Why

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It's been a hot minute since I've talked about TV on my blog. With Game of Thrones being on a long hiatus and The Walking Dead turning into a trash fire, I've mostly stuck to Twitter with my TV thoughts. But I've still been watching a ton of TV and I just need to talk about it. More specifically, I really need to bitch about 13 Reasons Why ... I know, I know, I'm making my TV comeback all about negativity but I can't help it. Aside from some pacing issues, I adored season one. It was well acted, the story was good, and it was there for me in a time when I really needed to binge a show and cry my eyes out. So to be served a second season that managed to be even more unnecessary that I ever imagined, I can't help but be massively disappointed. So here are thirteen reasons I hated season two. These things range from petty to unforgivable in no particular order.  1) The plot should follow the actual cliffhanger Remember that school shooting that wa

Thursday Movie Picks: Juvenile Delinquents

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This week's theme from Wandering Through the Shelves is probably pissed at their parents and run off somewhere. We were all there once, right? Here are some great movies of kids doing bad things. The only rule I set for myself was to not use one of my favorite movies, Thirteen , because I think I've used it once every year in this blogathon so far.  1) Dirty Girl I really hate the title of this film, but Danielle is text book Juvie. So much so that she ditches school and takes her reluctant friend and a bag of flour they are supposed to be pretending is their child for Home Ec on a road trip. 2) Lords of Dogtown We all know the Z Boys weren't so innocent. I love this film following their start in becoming the Skate Board giants they are known as today.  3) Manic Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays a teen prone to angry outbursts who is admitted into a mental institution and tries to navigate his way through treatment. You can tell this film barely had a budget bu

Review: The Tale

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It's how I wrote it. Jenny (Laura Dern) re-examines her first sexual encounter at the age of 13 with her running coach, Bill. (Jason Ritter). She always considered it a relationship and not the abuse that it truly was. As she goes back to talk to the people involved, she's forced to take a different view of it.  When The Tale premiered it Sundance earlier this year, there was a lot of chatter about how this is the perfect story to tell in the era of #MeToo. And it is, still, I was iffy when I heard they would be showing scenes of abuse. But director Jennifer Fox - who is dramatizing her own experiences - went to great lengths to use a double for the more troubling scenes, and the film lets you know it. She handles it the same way Gregg Araki did the harder scenes in Mysterious Skin . Knowing all of that, I gave it a shot when it premiered on HBO recently.  It's still incredibly hard to watch at times. Isabelle NĂ©lisse, who plays Jenny at 13 looks is just so

Thursday Movie Picks: Legends/Mythology

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Full circle. A new terror born in death, a new superstition entering the unassailable fortress of forever. I am legend .  Not really, but this week at Wandering Through the Shelves we're talking about legends/mythology. There's plenty of legends in film, but this topic stumped me a bit. I wanted to be creative but I couldn't stick it. I'm sure I'm going to be kicking myself over and over as I read everyone else's posts. 1) Star Wars: The Force Awakens "Luke Skywalker? I thought he was a myth." I loved how Rey and Finn talked about our original heroes like the legends they are.  2) Troy I love this movie, I know it's shit on all the time but Brad Pitt and Orlando Bloom are so hot in it. All those oily bodies.... Oh that's right, we're talking legends. Achilles is a legendary fighter that can't help being so damn gorgeous. 3) The Sword in the Stone The legend of King Arthur starts here. I feel like this is a Disney f

Review: Hereditary

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All in the family. After Annie's (Toni Collette) mother passes away. Strange things begin to happen to her family, particularly with her children, Peter (Alex Wolff) and Charlie. (Milly Shapiro) It's hard to escape the "scariest film of all time!" hype there is out there right now. While nothing will ever take that title away from The Exorcist for me personally, let's be real; Hereditary is seriously fucked up. A24 got tricky with their trailers again. Without giving away spoilers something I expected to be a huge plot point in the film wasn't at all, and it was better for it. Hereditary doesn't rely on jump scares like it could have. Instead it's just plain unsettling all around. It plays with shadows and sound.  If I had one complaint, it's the film's pacing, which was incredibly slow at times. I'm a patient person but I was getting to the point where I felt like we were taking a beat too long to get from point A to p

Thursday Movie Picks: Speech/Soliloquy/Monologue

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I was going to come up with some witty, drawn out speech to fit the theme, but it wouldn't really fit my rambling theme here now, would it? This week's theme at Wandering Through the Shelves we're talking about films with a famous monologues. Here are the first three that came to mind. 1) Call Me By Your Name Of course I'm kicking things off with this recent Oscar nominee. Michael Stuhlbarg's monologue at the end of the film when he's trying to ease his son's broken heart was beautiful. He's a parent that is so understanding he's making the rest of us question ourselves.  2) Doubt Doubt is a movie I haven't thought about in a while, so it surprised me a bit when it came to mind so quickly. Viola Davis is in this movie for about 10 minutes total, but her plea to Meryl Streep over her son is extraordinary. This film has plenty of memorable speeches. On top of Viola's, there's Meryl's final "I have doubts" words t

Indie Gems: In The Fade

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Justice Look at this! Another Indie Gem. Because my ass is too lazy to go see something new at the theater and instead went and saw Infinity War for the third time.  Katja's (Diane Kruger) husband and young son are killed in a bombing. When the neo-nazi's responsible are put on trial, it ends up not being as simple as she expected. Germany's submission to last year's Academy Awards didn't disappoint. I'm still making my way through last year's foreign releases. The Insult is up next. I wasn't sure about this going in because of my feelings towards Diane Kruger but she was excellent in this role. I believed her grief and her self medicating. Another actor that really stood out was Denis Moschitto, who played Katja's lawyer Danilo. He was a lovely addition and I hope to see more of this actor. The way this film is shot is interesting. It's told in three different acts, and each act looks different. It starts gritty, then becomes

Indie Gems: Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool

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Just love. This might not be the least heard gem I've done in a while. It was nominated for a few BAFTAs. But the release this film got in the states was pathetic. This should've been an Oscar contender. More on that in a bit. Peter Turner (Jamie Bell) is a struggling actor when he meets former screen legend Gloria Grahame. (Annette Bening) despite their age difference, they form a relationship that lasts several years and comes to a close as Gloria seeks out Peter again while dealing with a terminal illness. Bening and Bell are both so good in this film that it's an absolute joke that they were robbed of Oscar nominations. They had amazing chemistry and I loved their scenes together. I almost wish this movie was three hours long so I could continue to see them together. I haven't read the source material, nor am I even that familiar with Grahame as an actress, but now I want to be. While it's Bening and Bell's show, the supporting cast works