Category Archives: Movies

The new phone book’s here!

During a class meeting today, I had reason to utter the words –

“I’m somebody!”

…which brought to mind the iconic scene from The Jerk starring Steve Martin.

When I mentioned the movie to my class, they stared at me unknowingly.  One student, trying to be helpful, said, “I’ve heard of Steve Martin.

That’s awesome.

So, for their education — and everyone’s viewing pleasure — I include the aforementioned clip here.

I hope you are inspired to watch The Jerk…

And learn your special purpose.

ImPressed

Back in June, I discussed Eric Devine’s young adult novel Press Play, which has since been published in October.

press playIt tells the story of a high school student who accidentally captures footage of the violent hazing practices of the lacrosse team while filming his documentary film project.

I was impressed by Devine’s idea to create a book trailer — like a movie trailer, but for his book — and display it at the local movie theatre in his home town of Waterford, New York.

A film features prominently in the book, and Devine is using the movies to promote it.

Devine’s book trailer was played multiple times before the films, inviting viewers to purchase Press Play at the mall bookstore where the cinema is located.

I think this is inspired.

Even better — Devine saw my blog post about his book trailer and was nice enough to share a link so we could all take a look:

Thanks Eric — and congrats again on the book and your brilliant marketing campaign!  Can’t wait to read it.

 

 

I’m still waiting

I saw Hunger Games – Mockingjay Part 1 this morning.

mockingjayI don’t want to offend anyone with a Twilight comparison, but it reminded me of Twilight Eclipse –

Stuff happened, but it was very much a placeholder until the final installment hits theaters next year.

This Hunger Games has no games, so the energy is inherently lower.  Katniss and the rescued survivors are living below ground in District 13, where everyone wears identical grey jumpsuits — no flaming dresses or garishly bright clothing, even on Effie who is almost unrecognizable.

We only see the folks from the Capitol — including Peeta, who we assume is being held prisoner — on small video screens. But those scenes are, for me, some of the most compelling.

By movie’s end, Katniss and the rebels have rediscovered their energy and purpose, and things are getting really exciting…

And then it’s over.

Should be a great finale…next year.

A true story

The movie Foxcatcher, starring Steve Carrell, Channing Tatum and Mark Ruffalo, is based on a true story. That’s about all I knew — well, that and Carrell wears a prosthetic nose.

And we all know a fake schnoz can land you an Oscar. Just ask Nicole Kidman.

foxcatcher

After seeing the film, I’m glad I was so uninformed.  This telling of Olympic wrestler Mike Schultz’s relationship with his sponsor, millionaire John du Pont, is so slow and deliberate that I might have lost patience if I had known how it was going to end.

But the performances — not the plot — are the reason to see this film.  All three actors disappear into these characters who, with the exception of Ruffalo, struggle with varying shades of mental illness and mommy issues.

And when actors who usually take pratfalls raise their game to this level, you simply have to see it.

Fair warning — you may never look at Michael Scott the same way again.

 

Who ya gonna call?

ghostbustersPeople were horrified at first at the mere mention of a Ghostbusters reboot.

An all-female cast?  Blasphemy.

Then names like Melissa McCarthy and Sandra Bullock were tossed around.  And director Paul Feig tweeted a confirmation that the remake was indeed happening.

Now the tide appears to have turned, and everyone is stoked.  Actresses that aren’t even known for comedy are publicly ‘begging’ to be cast.

gillian andersonGillian Anderson, for example.

True, she’s got plenty of experience hunting otherworldly creatures on The X-Files…but comedy?

Not so much.

But when I think about some of the biggest moves I’ve made in my career, they didn’t start with your typical cover letter-resume-interview. I picked up the phone and asked for the job.  Who knows?  Might work the same in Hollywood.

So, go get ‘em, Gillian.

You could be exactly what this crazy redo needs.

Everything you want is out there waiting for you to ask. Everything you want also wants you. But you have to take action to get it. — Jules Renard

 

 

O Canada!

Columbus Day is a weird holiday.

I mean — if I worked in an office, I’d love the day off as much as the next person.  But celebrating the life of a man who enslaved and tortured Native Americans is a bit distasteful.

So today I pay tribute instead to a different holiday  –

CANADIAN THANKSGIVING!

Thank you, Canada, for so many amazing celebs who entertain us all in television and film –

Canada Actors

 

I’m know there are also female Canadian actors to be thankful for, but hey — it’s my blog.

I know what I like.

 

Fun rerun

edge of tomorrow I didn’t see Edge of Tomorrow when it was in theaters.

I thought the ‘Groundhog Day meets Aliens’ premise sounded interesting — and goodness knows its reviews on RottenTomatoes.com were very fresh — but I just never saw it.

(Based on its box office numbers, several people had the same attack of inertia.)

But now it’s OnDemand, so I finally watched it today.  And it’s good.

The Groundhog Day conceit is handled with a lot of humor, and it doesn’t feel repetitious.  Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt also do a bit of role reversal in this film, with Emily occupying the skilled warrior role and Tom the clueless PR mouthpiece.

It’s nice that Tom can make fun of this action hero self.

Not that he isn’t a pretty fast learner…