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Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets: A Thousand Stories Too, by Josh Long

19 Jul

Science fiction film is in a bit of a strange place in the 2010s. Star Wars is back. Star Trek is back. Even Blade Runner is back. The majority of high-profile sci-fi fare banks on nostalgia, while remaining (intentionally or not) mired in a mise en scène redefined by the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Outliers that buck the pattern are risky – the Wachowskis’ Jupiter Ascending was a critical disaster and squeaked by on a narrow worldwide profit margin.

And now, here comes Luc Besson. He’s returning to his “space opera” a la The Fifth Element, but he’s not rebooting his former work. He does base his story on comic books, but on a Franco-Belgian collaboration that is likely unfamiliar to most English speaking audiences (even though Valérian and Laureline has been around since the 1960s). So is the visionary director back to revitalize the genre, and introduce a new and exciting universe to audiences? Sort of.

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Landline: Tell Me Why I Love You Like I Do, by Josh Long

19 Jul

In 2014, writer/director Gillian Robespierre hit the scene with her feature debut, Obvious Child. This year we’re treated to her follow-up, Landline, also starring comedienne Jenny Slate. While the former film deals with one woman’s personal development, the latter explores family dynamics and the kind of dysfunction that can lie beneath the surface of a seemingly “normal” family. Set in the 1990s, a decade familiar to the teen years of both Robespierre and Slate, the new film examines the challenges of a middle-class family changing in unexpected ways.

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The Bad Batch: Comfort Zone, by Josh Long

21 Jun

Ana Lily Amirpour’s first feature, A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, was a revelation in the 2015 film scene. Sleek, edgy, cool, with an inescapable socio-political message, it stood out from the crowd in a way that made many of us excited to see what the filmmaker would do next. No one could say it would be easy to top her first film, but Amirpour is definitely up for the challenge. Her new film, The Bad Batch, is longer, bigger budget, and has a much broader scope.

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The Jogger (directed by Josh Long)

20 May

EPISODE 523: Indie-Lite

27 Mar

In this episode, Tyler and David are joined by Josh Long to discuss indie movies that don’t feel particularly independent.

Personal Shopper: Dead and Living It, by Josh Long

15 Mar

As beautiful as Olivier Assayas’ films appear, they are certainly enigmatic. The filmmaker is not interested in a world that is clear, explicable, cut, and dried. It is intentional that his viewers leave with questions about what was real or imagined, and whether there can ever be a clear line between the two. In Personal Shopper, he dives into the world of ghosts and spiritualism, and Assayas’ dreamy quasi-reality perfectly surrounds such a subject.

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New to Home Video 10/25/16

25 Oct

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Review

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Review

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Review

New to Home Video 9/6/16

6 Sep

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Review

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Review

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Review

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Review

New to Home Video 8/9/16

9 Aug

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Review

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Review

I Do Movies Badly: Bergman/Herzog Recap

3 Aug

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In this episode, Jim welcomes back Josh Long to discuss the Ingmar Bergman and Werner Herzog films he watched.