Friday, October 28, 2016

Film Friday: Halloween Edition

Friday the 13th 
Zero degrees of Kevin Bacon.

Practical Magic 
I have no idea why I like this movie.


I Know What You Did Last Summer 

Blair Witch Project 

Halloween -  In which parents learn the error of naming their son after that SNL guy.  The film debut of Jamie Lee Curtis.

A Nightmare on Elm Street - I like how they chose a common street name, so kids all over the country can freak out.  Johnny Depp's feature film debut.

Thinner -  Gypsies, body shaming, Kari Wuhrer, adultery.  Fun for the whole family.   From a novel by Stephen King.

Cube -  Better concept than script.  Worth it for the cynicism.  

The Faculty -  Some high schools are worse than others.  Jordana Brewster, Salma Hayek, Famke Janssen. 

1408 -  Because room #13 would be too on-point.  John Cusack is his usual reliable, if not impressive, self.  From a short story by Stephen King.

Dark Water -  Snooze fest, but it stars Jennifer Connelly.

The Trial -  Either the 1962 or the 1993 version.  From a novel by Franz Kafka.     

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Elliptical Halloween Advice

Office Party:  Don't be that annoying person who wears the same costume every year. 

Treating the Munchkins:  Don't be those people who give out fruit for Halloween.

Costume (Ladies' Version):  Don't confuse sexy with slutty.

Costume (Men's Version):  Don't try to upstage your gf or wife.  As at weddings, nobody cares how the guy looks.  Get over yourself.

Costume (Kids' Version):  It's all about maximizing your door knocks.  So wear something comfortable that doesn't restrict your freedom of motion.  Masks often restrict range of vision, so consider face paint instead, if possible.

Bartender or Waitress / Waiter:  Working on Halloween but not wearing a costume?  I can't even right now.

Lady at Bar:  Keep a close watch on your beverage.

Party People:  Don't drink on an empty stomach.  Don't drink and drive.  Don't try to convince me Stella Artois is a good beer.

Movie Watchers:  Check back Friday for some recommendations.           

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Tuesday Ten: Vampires

Vampires are female humanoids who feed off the life-blood of innocent men.  The word 'vampire' is from the Latin word 'vemporini', which also gave us the words 'feminine' and 'venom'.   

Let's get to it:

Stana Katic:  The Librarian: The Curse of the Judas Chalice

Monica Bellucci:  Bram Stoker's Dracula 

Angie Everhart:  Bordello of Blood

Aaliyah:  Queen of the Damned

Deborah Ann Woll:  True Blood

Josie Maran:  Van Helsing 

Kate Beckinsale:  Underworld 

Lina Romay:  Female Vampire

Nina Dobrev:  The Vampire Diaries 

Mia Kirshner:  30 Days of Night: Dark Days  


Note:  It's possible that not every statement in this post is 100% accurate. 

Friday, October 21, 2016

Film Friday

We Own the Night 
Mark Wahlberg as a cop.  Joaquin Phoenix as his nightclub managing brother.  Robert Duvall as their high-ranking cop father.  Eva Mendes waiting to be grabbed by Trump.  So it's basically the war on drugs in 1980's NYC and its impact on this one cop family.  I think this was a mixed bag of sorts.  There's an interesting scene with cars and a much shorter scene of Mendes walking down a hall.  The Phoenix / Mendes duo isn't too hard to root for. But there's a bit more corn than I expected from a film set in the northeast.  The ending was kind of meh.    
One Hour Photo 
Robin Williams as Sy the photo guy.  Connie Nielsen as a wife / mother who needs Sy's services, because she's not modern enough to have a flip phone.  Sy's quiet, subdued creepiness is fascinating.  I think the impact of the plot was lessened by starting the movie at the end and flashing back to the beginning of the series of events.  A casual thumb up though.

The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner 
From a short story by Alan Sillitoe, who also wrote the screen play.  Tom Courtenay as Smith, a teen-ager who robs a bakery and is sent to a borstal (reformatory).  It is discovered that he's a talented runner and he is counted on to win a race against runners from an upper crust school.  The story switches back and forth between Smith's borstal life and his life before his arrest.  With Michael Redgrave as the governor of the borstal.  It's one of those symbolic movies, with specifics representing something larger.  I just can't get on board with the key plot point.  (Also, the running scenes are awkward.  They look like actors posing as runners.)    

Friday, October 14, 2016

Film Friday

Vicky Cristina Barcelona 
Friends Vicky and Cristina head to Spain for the summer.  They meet a painter with a volatile ex.  Complications ensue. Starring Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz, Scarlett Johansson, and Rebecca Hall.  Directed by Woody Allen.  Hall seems out of her league.  The other three do fine.  It's a film that lends itself to narration, but the narrator seems like an odd choice.  A casual thumb up.

The Rules of Attraction  
Based on a novel by Bret Easton Ellis.  A drug dealer, a bisexual, and a "virgin" navigate a bizarre love triangle at a liberal college.  There are some funny moments.   Shannyn Sossamon does a good job as the "virgin".  But what I vaguely remember from the book is that the characters had more depth there than they do here.  Also starring James Van Der Beek, Ian Somerhalder, and Jessica Biel.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Tuesday Ten

When you look at a painting, the painting looks at you.  Unless it's a Jackson Pollock.  Fecal matter doesn't have eyes with which to look.

Ernst Kirchner
Potsdamer Platz

A Group of Artists

Rene Magritte
The Menaced Assassin

The Human Condition

Edward Hopper

Sunlight in a Cafeteria

Pablo Picasso

The Old Guitarist

M.C. Escher
Still Life and Street


David Hockney 
A Bigger Splash

Portrait of an Artist

Fernando Botero 
Ball in Colombia

Card Players

Vincent Van Gogh 
Painter on His Way to Work

Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear

Frida Kahlo 
The Bus

Frida and Diego

Diego Rivera 
Self Portrait

Sugar Cane