Category Archives: Reviews

Bullet (1996) Movie Review

Within the first 10 minutes of Bullet you see nekkid dudes and a good eye-stabbing. That’s some quality craft.

This is a story about Butch Stein (Mickey Rourke), AKA “Bullet” who gets out of prison and gets right back into the game (general thuggery) about an hour after being paroled. But get this – he was in jail for a crime he didn’t commit! He ain’t no snitch, see?

Don’t worry, they’ll attempt to give Bullet dimensions as the movie plays out.

Posted in Reviews | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Living in Oblivion: Movie Review

It took me a while to figure out this film, but after the first few minutes, I settled in to enjoy. It’s purposely frustrating to watch; my friends and I made some “movies” in high school (that makes me an expert in film, you know) so the premise of Living in Oblivion was not completely lost on me.

Steve Buscemi (Boardwalk Empire, Sopranos) plays Nick, a filmmaker struggling to complete a movie despite constant setbacks with the crew, the location, and with himself. Living in Oblivion takes place during one day of filming – but this day also includes three separate stories about this same day, and the message about whose story this really is gets blurred with the hopes and dreams of the cast. The star actress is Nicole, played by Catherine Keener (Death to Smoochy, Where the Wild Things Are), who has her own struggle with her career, trying to shake off her “shower scene in Richard Gere movies” reputation.

The movie we are watching is an exploration on filmmaking, extrapolating these frustrations into a dream world. The first parts are, consecutively, the dreams of Nick and Nicole, while the third and final “real” scene of their Living in Oblivion movie is an intentional dream sequence, complete with spooky fog machine and top-hatted dwarf.

Despite this, there is some linear continuity between the what happens to the cast, telling the audience what is truly important and real: a script which Nick writes exploring his love for Nicole is actually Nicole’s own dream, possibly exploring her feelings for Nick. We see the evolution of cameraman Wolf from an artsy cinematographer to a man whose life is comically falling apart – just as the film shoot is falling apart for Nick.

Posted in Reviews | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

X-Men: First Class Movie Review

I’ve been a fan of X-Men since I was 10, so of COURSE I’m gonna go see it on opening day.

Let me step back and say that although I have a deep-seated love of the X-Men, I am not a fan of the comic book drama, with its alternate storylines, returns from death, retcons, and all around soap opera shenanigans. I can suspend my disbelief with the best of ‘em, though, and I find most of the Marvel movie franchise easy to swallow. This installment of the X-Men saga was pretty good, and the glimpse into the past pulls together what we know of this group of mutants.

The beginning scenes are almost stereotypic tragedy of the nascent anti-hero. It does get better, so let’s move on from Nazi Germany to the swingin’ 1960s, where mutants are among us and humanity is unaware of the building showdown with this new “race”.

I do like the slow reveal of who these new….old… characters are. I’m still iffy on James McAvoy* (Last King of Scotland) playing the role, not because of his acting abilities, but because it’s hard to compare the playboy-esque, boyishly good looking Charles Xavier with the crippled, bald Patrick Stewart role of the future/present. I did like the allusions to the future Professor X, though, so I won’t spoil them here.

Speaking of spoiling, there was a cameo in the movie that set my heart aflame, but you’ll have to figure that out on your own.

I was happy to see Moira in the movie. I must admit that I have neglected her character for much of my fandom, but I do like the presence of a non-mutant in with the team. Vicariously we can live through the bewilderment and disbelief: “my bullets don’t work” and “these guys are strange but still part of humanity” even if some of them don’t want to be. Moira is played by Rose Byrne**; totally didn’t recognize her as the smug bitch from Bridesmaids (another good movie).

Posted in Reviews | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

X-Men Origins: Wolverine AKA Battle of the Sideburns

Since I missed out on the crowd-crushing world premiere of the X-Men Origins: Wolverine movie (AKA: Battle of the Sideburns) in Tempe on Monday, I had to wait to see my most anticipated movie of the year.

It was awesome!!! Oh Wolvey, you’re so… heavy.

Posted in Reviews | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

To Spore, an apology sort of

Spore, I am sorry for doubting you.

But honestly, you did make the game really simple in the first FOUR stages. I was disappointed in your lack of real evolution and I let that get the better of me as I evolved and devoured my way to a bigger brain, muttering about the lack of random mutations and the absurdity of suddenly sprouting legs just like way the Creationist version of evolution portrays it. I thought maybe you had set science back a little.

But then I realized, this is a game and it should be fun, so let’s enjoy the ride. Designing creatures is amusing, although my first few creations look horribly deformed and are crimes against nature. Life being a blobbie is really fun and relaxing and I was disgruntled with you assuming I should just take my legs and run with them on the big, scary dry land.

It was self-affirmation in my chosen herbivorous lifestyle, as I wept every time I killed and devoured an impossibly cute monkey/birdie/blowfish bubble creature. So I settled for just completely destroying anyone who wouldn’t make friends with me, and eating them.

I wasn’t blown away with the Tribal stage, which seemed like the management aspect of Black & White. Moving right along… what’s next? Civilization? Awesome! Complex social interaction and strategy? Not really.

But I can design my own vehicles and houses! Yay? Yawn. Not really compelling to me, but I like my strawberry house. Too bad meanies want to destroy me and steal my spice. Best to just kill them.

And then, there was SPACE.

And I forgive you. I’m sorry. You are a great game after all.

Posted in Reviews | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Batman: The Dark Night Microreview


Totally awesome!!!

Posted in Reviews | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Sweeney Todd Movie: Microreview

Sweeney Todd is a beautiful love story just in time for Xmas.

This remake has Johnny Depp! It’s no Edward Scissorhands, though.

Posted in Reviews | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Brick Movie: Microreview

Brick is an awesome movie, I strongly recommend it. Even though I have seen maybe 5 movies this year, I can confidently say this is the best one. It’s even starring little Tommy from 3rd Rock from the Sun!

This movie has a great trenchcoat detective flavor to it, with its set of code words, gratuitous smoking and convoluted trails. But it’s much more than that.

Posted in Reviews | Tagged , | Leave a comment

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Movie: Microreview

Saw the Chronicles of Narnia movie last night. It was very good, pretty close to the book with some dramatics and quips added. I loved the books as a kid, and of course was drawn in by The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe animated movie.

I really recommend you go see it, I NEED them to make the rest of the books into movies…

Posted in Reviews | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Ghost in the Shell 2 Movie: Microreview

Saw Ghost in the Shell 2, which was great. It had a dog, so that already makes it better than the first movie on that factor alone, plus it has much less incontinent mind-spew timed to animated mouth flapping than the first one.

I have yet to see the TV show, so cannot comment. The first Ghost in the Shell movie was one of the very first shows to make me dislike anime. It took a lot of other shows to make me trust in anime, after my sweet and non-threatening introduction by way of dubbed Sailor Moon.

Posted in Reviews | Tagged , , | Leave a comment