Sunday, November 29, 2009

'New Moon' Review

Oh, you maniacal "Twilight" fans. I know Taylor Lautner looks dreamy without a shirt, but surely there's a better way to occupy your time than by watching this ridiculous sequel. A step down from the original (which isn't saying much), "The Twilight Saga: New Moon" is pure pop trash of the lowest order. Even the CGI is of Sci-Fi Channel quality.

Poor Kristen Stewart, whom I truly enjoy despite her seeming indifference toward the craft of acting. Matched only by the comic relief of scene-stealing spitfire and probable 2009 Oscar nominee Anna Kendrick, Stewart's angsty, nonchalant performance seems to whisper, "people actually like this crap?" Yes, Kristen, apparently they do. So, please, thank your new moons and lucky stars for this career-making role, then leave it safely behind you and move on to work more deserving of your talents.

To read more of my bitching about "New Moon," head over to my review at CLICK HERE

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving...

...from Your Movie Buddy. And remember, "Do not trust those Pilgrims, especially Sarah Miller."

Sunday, November 22, 2009

An 'Antichrist' Video Game?

According to Wikipedia (itself crediting the news to Politiken, a newspaper from Lars von Trier's homeland of Denmark), it's in the works.

I'm sorry, Whaaaaaa...?

First of all, while I'm not all that surprised (today's video games, after all, even glorify terrorism), I shudder to think of what kind of twisted kid is going to rush out and stand in line to buy the interactive version of what I consider to be the most profoundly disturbing film in years, and what kind of an effect it will have on him/her. For sure, I am not one to buy into the dialogue about video games destroying our children's minds, but some things really should be off limits, and this potential dialogue I find terribly creepy:

Kid: Mom, can I have this new video game for my birthday?
Mom: What's it called, honey?
Kid: "Eden."
Mom: Why, sure. That sounds nice.

At this point, neither Mom, Kid, nor I am aware of exactly what said video game will entail, but since it's based on a film in which a man ejaculates blood, a woman gives herself a clitorectomy, and horrifying truths are both revealed and alluded to, the result can't be pretty.

To be fair, the game is reportedly centered around what happens after the proceedings of von Trier's controversial shocker but, come on, what kind of sick software developer looked at this movie and thought, "Wow, this would make one helluva first-person adventure game?" What, may I ask, will be the objective(s)? Dodge the falling acorns? Defeat the talking fox? Mow down the swarm of ghost-like women ascending the mountainside? Find the wrench under the house, or worse, the scissors?

I'm sure von Trier is getting an absolute kick out of this insane new venture, which, among other things, eerily validates his vision of a God-less world (not that I buy into that kind of dialogue, either).

*Roger Ebert addresses this very topic over at the Movie Answer Man section of his website. Click it -- it's a quick read.

Cinema Italiano

Here's one way to get excited for Christmas:

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Documentary Shortlist

As many already know, on Nov. 18, the Academy released their list of the 15 documentary features that will be vying for nominations at this year's Oscars. The group was culled from a pool of 89 eligible '09 docs. The (almost) nominees are:

The Beaches of Agnes, Agnès Varda, director
Burma VJ, Anders Østergaard, director
The Cove, Louie Psihoyos, director
Every Little Step, James D. Stern and Adam Del Deo, directors
Facing Ali, Pete McCormack, director
Food, Inc., Robert Kenner, director
Garbage Dreams, Mai Iskander, director
Living in Emergency: Stories of Doctors Without Borders, Mark N. Hopkins, director
The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers, Judith Ehrlich and Rick Goldsmith, directors
Mugabe and the White African, Andrew Thompson and Lucy Bailey, directors
Sergio, Greg Barker, director
Soundtrack for a Revolution, Bill Guttentag and Dan Sturman, directors
Under Our Skin, Andy Abrahams Wilson, director
Valentino: The Last Emperor, Matt Tyrnauer, director
Which Way Home, Rebecca Cammisa, director

Now comes the part where I admit how depressing such announcements can be. No, I'm not crushed by the omission of Anvil! The Story of Anvil, We Live in Public and Capitalism: A Love Story (as many are), I'm reminded of how many 2009 movies I've yet to see, something I've complained about before.

Of the titles in this list, I've seen...well, let's just say I'm familiar with Robert Kenner's work. The ones that also appear on my must-see list -- aka my "God, give me some free time so I can actually watch these movies" list -- are The Beaches of Agnes, The Cove, Soundtrack to a Revolution and Valentino: The Last Emperor, which I hope will also find themselves on the short-shortlist.

I'll admit I'm a little peeved to see R.J. Cutler's The September Issue out of the running, having adored the film and chatted with the director back in...September. And I'm sure a certain editrix is none too pleased...

Thursday, November 19, 2009

'The Blind Side' Review

If you like movies about rich white people patting themselves on the back, made by other rich white people patting themselves on the back even harder, then "The Blind Side" is your hot ticket this weekend.

If not, wait for DVD so you can speed forward to scenes that show Sandra Bullock strutting her well-clothed (and well-toned) physique, and a few tender moments she shares with tight-lipped newcomer Quinton Aaron. In the meantime, CLICK HERE to mosey on over to my "Blind Side" review, now online at

Monday, November 16, 2009

Thursday, November 12, 2009

'Precious' Review

I hate to be a bandwagon-jumper, but it's true: "Precious" is one of the year's best.

Catch my brief review HERE, and stay tuned for my feature on director Lee Daniels, arriving in December.

'Clash of the Titans'

The kid in me reeeaaally wants to see this, but the adult in me is waving his skeptical finger. I'm currently siding with the kid.

PS: Does this mean Sam Worthington is officially Hollywood's new go-to action hero? He came out of nowhere and suddenly seems to be popping up everywhere, at least in the world of big-budget effects blockbusters.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

This Is It... first review for the widely-read weekly South Philly Review.


Monday, November 2, 2009

What's the Worst Movie of the Decade?

It's a question that yours truly and a colleague of mine, the uber-knowledgeable wordsmith Pete Croatto, recently answered in a spirited discussion over at Pete chose "Date Movie" (which I've never seen and probably never will), while I opted for Michael Bay's awesomely awful "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen."

Along the way, we discuss other titles that have greatly offended us, as well as why bad movies admittedly have a certain appeal all their own. To read the full conversation (which should be the first of several), CLICK HERE.