The Unknowable, by Tyler Smith

29 Jul

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James Ponsoldt’s The End of the Tour is a fascinating and sensitive exploration into the inner life of an unknowable person. In an attempt to delve into the complicated world of David Foster Wallace, Ponsoldt goes so much deeper and uncovers truths that are at once specific to Wallace, yet universal to anybody that has ever attempted to express himself, creatively or otherwise. It is a dark and invigorating place, and Ponsoldt has captured it perfectly.

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Coming Soon

28 Jul

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Hey, Watch This! Bojack Horseman/White People

28 Jul

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In this episode, Paul and David discuss Bojack Horseman and White People.

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New to Home Video 7/28/15

28 Jul

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Review

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Review

Home Video Hovel: The River, by David Bax

27 Jul

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Based on the strength of its imagery alone, Jean Renoir’s The River would be more than worth the cost of the Blu-ray. The depth of color and details of the Indian location photography and the texture of the transfer are arguments in favor of the format itself. The River is even more than than, though. It is also one of the more honest coming of age stories ever committed to celluloid.

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EPISODE 436: with special guest BRANDIE POSEY

27 Jul

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In this episode, Tyler and David are joined by comedian Brandie Posey to discuss Jim Carrey, Magic Mike, and more!

Double Feature: Oldboy/The Hunt

26 Jul

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In this episode, Eric and Michael discuss Oldboy and The Hunt.

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Sequel Saturday: It’s a Long Way Down The Holiday Road, by Mat Bradley-Tschirgi

25 Jul

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Next weekend Vacation, the latest film in the Vacation comedy franchise, gets released in theaters. Readers of this column might recall I did an article a few months ago with my impressions on an early trailer of the film. Now, I’m going to look at the four prior theatrical films in the series.

The series started with 1983’s National Lampoon’s Vacation. Directed by Harold Ramis fresh off his success with Caddyshack and based on a short story by John Hughes, National Lampoon’s Vacation does a fine job introducing the Griswold clan as they venture to Walley World. The pacing is a bit slow at times and the climax never provides much of a payoff. Chevy Chase’s finest moment as Clark Griswold in the entire series comes during a scene where he loses it at his family in the car, launching into a rambling monologue expertly punctuated with profanity.

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Like Ships Adrift, by David Bax

24 Jul

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Christian Petzold is a director who subtly wields the trappings of genre to underline and familiarize stories that are imbued with personal and political heft. His last film, the note-perfect Barbara, used the outline of a thriller to explore the push and pull between morality and politics in 1980s East Germany. His newest film, Phoenix, similarly employs the elements of a horror movie in its allegory of the German nation and its people after they both survived and carried out a genocide. Unfortunately, Phoenix is undone by a premise that asks the audience to swallow a bit more than they may be prepared to.

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Home Video Hovel: Set Fire to the Stars, by Craig Schroeder

24 Jul

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Every writer I’ve ever idolized is, without fail, a drunken malcontent. Tennessee Williams. Ernest Hemingway. Charles Bukowski. All of them geniuses and all of them disastrously self-destructive. Hunter S. Thompson was my favorite. A drug addict who got his ass kicked by the Hell’s Angels and once gave Jack Nicholson an elk heart as a birthday “gift,” Thompson is the main purveyor of a theory that haunts every creative mind: greatness comes only through disastrous levels of personal despair. It’s an insidious line of thinking and one I’ve (mostly) overcome in my creative pursuits, that is until I’m introduced to the works of a supremely fucked-up genius I was not yet aware of. Dylan Thomas, the Welsh writer whose poetry dominated literary circles in the mid-twentieth century, is one of those fucked-up geniuses. And Set Fire to the Stars, the new film from director Andy Goddard, is a beautiful film that seeks to define the grey areas between the beauty of Thomas’ poems and the ugliness of his drunken despair.

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