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Archive for October, 2013|Monthly archive page

Someone Should Have Counseled Ridley Scott About This Film..

In Movies on October 28, 2013 at 10:12 pm

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..it was that bad. Really. Every review was spot on and this movie totally deserves the 34% rating it has received on Rotten Tomatoes. Seriously.

“The Counselor”, directed by Ridley Scott, stars an amazing cast consisting of Michael Fassbender, as the Counselor, yes that is how he is addressed throughout the film, Javier Bardem, as Reiner a crazy-haired excentric drug dealer, I think, Cameron Diaz, as Malkina, the sensual unpredictable evil counterpart to Reiner, Penelope Cruz, as Laura the counselor’s love interest, and Brad Pitt, as Westray, a smart slick southerner who has no problem pulling up his roots when he fears that his drug deals go south.

“The Counselor” tells the story of a man who has everything and wants more. The counselor is wealthy but when we encounter him he is about to become even richer by becoming involved in a drug deal and then investing that money into a club, part owned by Reiner. Things begin to go south and this movie just drags it on..and on.. and on.

The straw that killed this film is mainly due to the lethargic and obese script written by Cormac McCarthy. Comarc, Cormac, Cormac…I love you man. I love “No Country For Old Men” I also rather enjoyed The Road but damn man, enough is enough. There is only so much philosphy and lengthy speeches explaining this aforementioned philosophy you can have in a film before it becomes dull and confusing. That’s what happened with this film. It became tedious to the point where people left the theater. You heard that correct. People bought 14 dollars tickets and left the theater because this movie was so dry and mired in dialogue. The performances were alright but they were absolutely held back by the lengthy speeches that they had to give. More action, less talking! I have a few more points to make about this film but I fear doing so here will only spoil it for those that really are interested in seeing this mess. For those that have, read on, for those that haven’t, don’t.

What was Malkina’s motivation? Greed obviously, but how the hell was she able to target that shipment of drugs. What was her back story? Are we going to have any character development?

Who was the counselor making a deal with? It clearly wasn’t the cartel because they went on a killing spree even after they got their shipment back. The major plot point was lot on me.

That ending. Ugh. So anti-climatic and yes, Cormac, we know you’re one for the anti-climatic endings, but God, really? She’s dead, everyone’s dead, except for Malkina of course. But I hate her character, so why does she live? I had no attachment to her character and I had very slight attachment to everyone else’s and yet she’s the one that gets away. Awful.

That philosophical bartender. You know that one I’m talking about. The Mexican bartender. Sweet. Jesus. Why does every single person have a distinct understanding of life within this film and why did they fee the need to share it? He also spoke impeccable English with a slight accent but was able to have an understandable discourse with the counselor even though he appeared to have very little education. Do extras exist in this film or is everyone given about 87 lines of dialogue.

Writing about how bad this movie was makes me even more upset. Don’t go see this, you’ll thank me for it.

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The Zombies Are Falling! The Zombies are Falling!

In Television on October 15, 2013 at 9:38 pm

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I just finished viewing the season 4 premiere of “The Walking Dead” and it was everything I expected and more. “The Walking Dead” is a story revolving around a group of survivors in a zombie filled world. This group includes retired sheriff Rick Grimes, played amazing well by Andrew Lincoln, group daredevil Glen Rhee, played by Steven Yeun, group badass Daryl Dixon, played by Norman Reedus, the tempermental son Carl Grimes, played by Chandler Riggs, the group doctor and sage Hershel Greene, plyaed by Scott Wilson, alternate group badass Carol Peletier, played by Melissa McBride, and awesome Samurai swinging lady Michonne, played by Danai Gurira. Now there are a ton more people included in this great cast of characters, in season 4, due to the fact that this group now occupies a prison and can support a larger group of people.

Season 3 left the viewers unaware as to the future of this camp, would they move into the town that the Governor, played by David Morrisey, had established, would they keep the prison while keeping the survivors of the Governor’s town out, or would they accept the newbies in. Viewers were also unsure as to the current status of Rick’s psyche as he is a man who is struggling and struggling.

Well season 4 left few stones unturned in that it answered a lot of questions. Now, if you haven’t seen the episode, please don’t read on. Viewers find out that the prison is a lot bigger, that a council has been established, that they now have crops and livestock, and that Rick is still struggling. I rather enjoyed this “catch-up” if you will. I like shows that have a time-lapse which allows for the viewer to play detective and figure out what has occurred in the time-lapse while also allowing the creators to show what occurred in later episodes, if they feel the need. Viewers find out that Daryl and Carol are becoming a bit closer, that the “group” has accepted more people into their group and that stabbing zombies in the face is a daily occurrence and a chore really.

I liked this episode because it included all the things I love about “The Walking Dead”, zombie death, drama, and intrigue.

The zombie deaths were great in this episode and utterly unique in that I have never before seen zombies fall from the ceiling. It was terrifying and I believe that this could make a good haunted house feature. These deaths were also as gory as ever, displaying heads being stomped on as well as zombies being disemboweled. All awesome.

The drama was great in which Rick encounters the survivor who wants to feed her husband a nearly alive boar and then Rick. I liked the close-ups in this scene I also really enjoyed Andrew Lincoln’s acting. I liked that all of this death has had a profound effect upon him, as it should, because, this show would not be realistic if it didn’t include that at least.

The intrigue in this show was the death at the end. What a cliffhanger! How did this kid turn and is it possible? Was he sick, then died, and then became a zombie? What happened?

So in conclusion, this episode was typical of “The Walking Dead”. It included the essentials and has now made me look forward to the episodes I shall consume in the coming weeks.

“Masters of Sex” Isn’t Just About Sex…

In Television on October 6, 2013 at 8:40 pm

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..it’s about relationships, about masculinity and femininity, it’s about friendship and trust, it is also about research.

“Masters of Sex” stars Michael Sheen as Dr, William Masters, the premiere fertility doctor in the country and Lizzy Caplan as Virginia Johnson, Masters partner in what would become a world renown study on what occurs within the human body during sex. Did I mention that this story takes place in the 50s and is based on actual people? Well it does and it is incredibly original in its story-telling and unflinching int he way it depicts sex.

I have watched two episodes of this show and am absolutely hooked. The story begins with Dr. Masters depicting his interest in studying sex by watching a hooker through a peep hole and recording how long it takes for her to orgasm and for her “john” to orgasm as well. Dr. Masters’s interest in the study of sex is difficult to unravel because at times he genuinely does seem like the interested researcher while at other times there does appear to be more there.

Ms. Johnson has two children and is twice divorced, which is incredibly frowned upon during that era. She is also quite free, sexually. Ms. Johnson eventually finds her way into the hospital in which Masters practices and sleeps with his assistant, Dr. Ethan Haas, played by Nicholas D’Agosto, who is absolutely captivated by her, in order to meet Dr. Masters. This is where the story begins and if I explain anymore, if fear I shall ruin it for you.

The sex is this show is worth noting because it is depicted as….well sex. Sex isn’t always beautiful and romantic, it can often be useful while also serving a purpose for one individual engaged in it. Sex in this show is depicted in a variety of ways by showing how engaging and beautiful it can be while also depicting how sad and depressing it can be as well.

The depiction of women, and subsequently, femininity, is also worth noting, in that it shows how difficult it was to be a woman, in that era, who wanted to do something other then raise/have children. Ms. Johnson is a divorcee who wants something more in life then just having kids while Dr. Masters’s wife, Libby, played by Caitlin Fitzgerald, wants nothing more then to have children. When Ms. Johnson does engage in a fling with Dr. Haas, it confuses him. It does so because he associates sex with love and marriage while Ms. Johnson does not. When this occurs, Dr. Haas lashes out,  because his mind cannot comprehend a woman who isn’t married, who isn’t a prostitute, and enjoys sex as freely as Ms. Johnson.

In conclusion, check this show out. Lizzy Caplan and Michael Sheen give excellent performances that will leave you speechless at times and profoundly upset at others.

“Gravity” Had Me Floored

In Movies on October 6, 2013 at 8:11 pm

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Go see this movie. Go see this movie if you like thrillers, if you like character development, if you like suspense, if you like cinematography, if you like George Clooney, if you like Sandra Bullock, and if you like Alfonso Cuaron, director of “Children of Men” and “Y Tu Mama Tambien” Go. See. This. Movie.

Gravity stars Sandra Bullock as Dr. Ryan Stone who is up in space on  her first mission alongside commander Matt Kowalski, played by George Clooney, who is equal parts light-hearted and concern. Ed Harris, IMDB informed me of this, did the voice for Houston: Mission Control in this film and is worth mentioning because I didn’t know this. While up in space, Dr. Stone is a raw nerve held together by work. She is up there to complete a task, not to make any friends along the way. While uploading a new program to the Hubble telescope, Stone and Kowalski are informed by Mission Control to get back to the International Space Station because Russia has detonated a series of satellites, the debris of which is heading directly towards them. The rest of this movie is profound and edge of your seat terrifying.

I had the pleasure of seeing this film in 3-D and it was completely worth it. My God. I was immersed in it. This was due in part to the 3-D but mostly due to Mr. Cuaron. Seriously. The lack of sound in precise moments, the use of first person point-of-view, made it seem like you were right up there with them.

The length of his shots were really what stood out in this film. I don’t know how long the first shot is, but it is long, and it give the viewer a glimpse into the vastness of space as well as the characters that are bouncing around in it. Just astounding.

Sandra Bullock was excellent in this film and if she doesn’t walk away with an Oscar then the person who beat her to it better be astounding. She was unlike anything I have ever seen from her before. It was mostly her within this film which made her performance that much greater. It was just you and her. You experienced every bump, every anxiety, every chance of hope, right alongside her.

George Clooney appeared at home in this film, like he truly was Commander Kowalski who had a slew of stories up his sleeve but was read to become exacting at a moment’s notice.

This film was absolutely everything anyone said it would be. It was a simple and short story but it was powerful. Go see it for yourself and tell me otherwise if you truly feel different.