Posts Tagged ‘revenge’

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Nicolas Cage vs. the Russian Mafia (and Bankruptcy): “Rage”

September 30, 2014

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Well, look who it is! Ha, didn’t we know that it was only a matter of time before ol’ Nicky Cage made another appearance on this blog. Kind of missed him, didn’t we? Well, here he is and he is knee deep in mystery, violence, and the deep, deep south. Because when you think Mobile, Alabama, you think Nic Cage…with his hair dyed so black it absorbs light and crushes it into a singularity or something. You also think Russian mafia, because we all know that Alabama is the Little Odessa of the South.  Got a sense of what we’re dealing with now? Because that’s what we’re dealing with in the latest Cage vehicle Rage. Okay, let’s dive right in.
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Brain-damaged and violent (and kinda gross-looking): “Bellflower”

December 27, 2013

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As the studios continue to smother us with crappy sequels, crappy remakes, crappy Adam Sandler movies, and inevitable Transformers sequels, it’s only natural to want to root for the scrappy independent filmmaker who meticulously crafts his little film out of tin foil and crazy glue, on a shoestring budget. It’s exciting to see singular vision that’s not been corrupted by studio interference and focus-grouped into oatmeal. Evan Glodell’s 2011 movie Bellflower has just such a pedigree attached to it. In addition to writing, directing, and starring in it, Glodell also modified his own cameras and built the film’s central effect—a battle wagon for an apocalyptic wasteland. Now that is talent to spare. Alas, it gives me no joy to say that Bellflower is no Primer. It’s grim, ugly, and tedious—a mumblecore Taxi Driver that leaves you hoping against hope that the next scene will feature an LAPD SWAT team blowing the door and ending the film in a merciful hail of gunfire.
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Wow! That didn’t totally suck! “Faster”

February 28, 2011

So, I guess the planets all lined up right, or maybe the end times are upon us or something, but for once a movie actually exceeded my expectations. That’s rare. Really rare. Like see-a-falling-star/Charlie-Sheen-is-sober-today rare. I sat in the movie theater thinking: What movie am I here to see again? Oh yeah, Faster…ugh! Why am I waiting to see this? Oh yeah, raspberry popcorn.  Then the movie began and by the time I got to the scene where the yoga-practicing hit man is revealed to have been a crippled child, and is now an insane overachiever, something wonderful something amazing happened: I realized the movie didn’t totally suck.  It’s not great by any stretch of the imagination, but for an action flick catering to the Creatine-pounding, steroids-and-tribal-tattoo crowd, it’s a remarkably substantial piece of storytelling.
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Movies you should rent…or don’t. I don’t care.

December 6, 2010

Sorry. That was uncalled for, wasn’t it? I haven’t had dinner yet, and it’s made me a little cranky. What I meant to say, was “Movies worth seeing on DVD or iTunes, if you want…but if you don’t, well, that’s cool, too.” It was harder to fit than in the subject line. Actually, these are some more capsule reviews, but I was at a loss for how to say “Yet even more capsule reviews…” Oh wait, I just did…well, the headline’s already written, so screw it, I guess.
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Mel Gibson is out for revenge and kills a bunch of people: “Edge of Darkness”

March 28, 2010

Watching Edge of Darkness is a little like taking a trip back in time to a more innocent age when victory in the Middle East was assured, and Wall Street was still the apex of financial responsibility, and “tea party” meant, well, a party where you served tea.  More importantly, though, it reminds you of a time when Mel Gibson was an actor and not a professional nut job. Ah Mel, you hyper-fundamentalist, hypocritical, anti-Semitic, drunk-driving, Mayan-torturing, Unabomber-beard-sporting, Catholic-obsessed nutcase. We missed you.
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The Bangkok International Film Festival Concludes: Fiveplay…”Phobia 2″

October 4, 2009

phobia2So, the last installment in our roundup of the Bangkok International Film Festival, comes from the host country of Thailand. No, it’s not Sawasdee Bangkok! the country’s official entry (fer chrissakes, that movie is 247 minutes long–I couldn’t watch Freema Agyeman bathe for 247 minutes…well, maybe…probably not…possibly…), no, instead we’re going to look at a scary little installment called Phobia 2 (or Haa Phrang in Thai—Five Crossroads). Phobia 2 is a series of five horror vignettes, directed by some of Thailand’s most successful commercial directors. As a general rule, I’m not a huge fan of vignettes—movies or TV shows—since by design they can’t delve too deeply into the worlds they present. In this case, as a horror-injection system, they work pretty well. It kept the girlfriend huddling against me in fright, and what more can you really ask of a horror film?
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The job is done, and the bitch is dead: “Quantum of Solace”

November 14, 2008

qosThose words—Bond’s penultimate line of dialogue from Casino Royale– provide the engine for Quantum of Solace. The 22nd film in the franchise follows James Bond on a mission of vengence for the death of his lover Vesper Lynd, but also one of forgiveness and personal rehabilitation. Throughout the film, Bond seems to be desperately trying to believe those words, and finally contending with the emotional consequences when he can’t. In the end director Marc Forster uses that engine to deliver a fast, flawed, and occasionally frustrating movie, but ultimately the most fascinating addition to the James Bond canon.
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