Ain’t Them Bodies Saints is yet another film that I only discovered through semi-frequent visits to videoeta.com. The main thing that drew me to the film was that it stars both Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara. I’ve been a fan of Affleck since To Die For. Mara made quite the impression on me with her recent portrayals in the US remake of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and then Side Effects. Shortly after the start of the movie, I also spotted Ben Foster. Score, I thought. He’s never failed to blow me away (in the past).
This romantic crime drama is set in the 1970′s in the West. It’s about a man who wants to be reunited with his family after being imprisoned. That is the sum total of what I knew going in. I didn’t even watch the trailer. If I had viewed it, I’d know everything there is to know about the flick. Affleck somewhat heroically goes to prison and starts serving a long ass sentence. While there he pines for his woman as their child starts to grow up. At an hour and a half this movie drags, painfully. I was so bored. I was ready to give up.
It seems that this movie was sold on the basis of nice cinematography and a decent amount of chemistry between Affleck and Mara. However, cinematography doesn’t make a movie for me if the movie is empty. That’s how this film felt, empty. Chemistry is also not that big of a selling point to me when the leads are spending the majority of the movie apart.
Aw shucks pretty lady, I’m such a good guy, but I’m as dull as paint and about as bright too.
I can’t believe that I’ve now finally seen a movie that has wasted Ben Foster. I mean wasted him. I’ve seen Casey Affleck wasted before (although he usually seems to punch up a flailing movie) but never Foster. I did not watch this alone. I watched it with someone who enjoys movies in this type of genre far more than I do and they felt almost the same amount of boredom. That’s bad news, folks.
So, I can not recommend this unless you are a super huge fan of Affleck, Foster or Mara and must see all of their work. I’d probably give this a lower score if it weren’t for the fact that Affleck really tried to get me to root for him in this.
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3.5 out of 5 stars
For a Good Time, Call…is a raunchy 2012 comedy written by and starring Lauren Miller. The only thing that I knew going in was that it concerns phone sex. Lauren Miller is Seth Rogen’s wife. This was my first experience watching a movie that I knew she was in. So far she doesn’t have a long filmography, which is scattered with small roles in Rogen’s films.
Yes, it’s taken me a while to check out this fun film. It’s theatrical release was limited so many didn’t have the option of checking it out until the flick’s DVD release earlier this year. Even then I wasn’t so sure about checking it out due to the lack of advertising and familiarity with the main actresses. However I finally got around to it and I’m glad that I did. Aside from Miller, the film costars the bubbly blonde Ari Graynor. You may know her as the chick that Jonah Hill’s character wasn’t dating but wanted to be in The Sitter. BTW-Her wardrobe in this is awesome. She can totally rock a jumpsuit. The supporting cast is pretty great. It includes Justin Long, Nia Vardalos and Mimi Rogers. Seth Rogen, Ken Marino and Kevin Smith even show up in cameo roles. Yes, they are phone sex customers!
You will probably be wondering the same thing that I was when I heard that it is about phone sex, why phone sex in this day and age? People are more likely to check out say a webcam site to get their rocks off. However the reasoning seems to be that the girl has been doing it for years so I guess the audience can infer that it was more popular then. It’s also based on Miller and co-writer Katie Anne Naylon’s real experiences.
This is the type of movie that is brash and over the top but also sweet. It’s a bit reminiscent of a Judd Apatow picture in that way. Not every joke works. I don’t really care for urine jokes but maybe they felt they were the chick version of fart jokes.
The flick is about two girls who met briefly in college through their gay bestie and took an instant disdain towards one another. Now both need roommates so he gets them to meet and agree to the arrangement. One starts out high strung while the other is wild. Yes, she has a stripper pole for sexercising! Eventually they build both a business and a friendship.
All in all I’d say check it out. I’m not sure how it will stand up to repeated viewings but it’s worth at least one.
You can rent this flick from Amazon Instant Video by clicking here.
Yet another movie that I wouldn’t know existed if it weren’t for the amazing, VideoETA.com. You see VideoETA is a great resource for finding out both theatrical and home release dates of movies. Often while checking to find the date of a film I know about I discover hidden gems. These are often films that had a limited or direct to DVD release.
That was the case with Perfect Sense, also known as The Last Word. It is a perfect case of this, as the film was released in only 1 theater for 1 week. It was directed by David Mackenzie and written by Kim Fupz Aakeson. It was shot and set in Glasgow.
If you only saw the film’s cover you may just go in thinking that it’s a standard romantic drama but it’s so much more. This 2011 drama is actually the most disturbing movie that I’ve seen this year.
The movie is about a horrifying disease that individually steals humans’ senses. As the film progresses, we gradually see and feel the characters lose their senses of smell, taste, sound and finally sight. It’s implied that they will eventually lose touch as well.
Although the movie shows how this would affect large populations of people in various countries (most likely using stock footage of actual riots, etc, which is also incredibly disturbing) it mainly focuses on how this would affect us as individuals.
The movie focuses on Michael (Ewan McGregor), a chef with intimacy issues, and Susan (Eva Green), a scientist who is sick of men mistreating her.
Despite her annoyance at the interruption of a phone call, Susan first meets Michael when he bums a cigarette from her. Their meet cute takes place easily since he is a chef at a restaurant right across the alley from her apartment.
Despite her initial reticence at getting involved with a player Susan decides to dine one night after hours with Michael. This is during the beginning of their loss of senses. This causes a very close connection between them as they simultaneously lose their sense of smell.
As they lose more and more senses they rely on and fall for each other. This is incredibly romantic and seductive. They let down their defenses and tell each other things they’ve never told another soul because they can feel everything ending and need something honest.
“Want to go dancing?” “Sure” “Get drunk?” “Sure” “smoke cigarettes?” “Always”
Despite the interspersed footage of riots and the horror of the situation, including the fact that as someone who has been studying this epidemic from the beginning, Susan admits that no one really knows what will happen next, for a while things are going better than normal for the characters. Why? LOVE, of course.
Unfortunately, prior to the loss of each sense, humans experience a heightened sense or emotion. So prior to the loss of hearing they become very angry and violent. This is when Michael scares and drives away Susan after yelling terrible things at her and then wrecking his own home.
This causes them to be apart during the horror of losing their hearing. However they both try their best to enjoy life as they can. Michael eventually goes back to work and Susan learns to love her sisters’ family (instead of just being jealous of them).
“…and if there had been anybody left to see them, then they would look like normal lovers, caressing each others’ faces, bodies close together, eyes closed, oblivious to the world around them…”
With the impending loss of sight, our lovers’ realize how important love and being with those you love is. So they reunite as the darkness closes in.
Yes, that is Trainspotting’s Ewen Bremner (Spud)!
In addition to love overcoming the worst we are also repeatedly presented with the idea that life goes on and humans learn to adapt. This is often shown to great effect at the restaurant that Michael works at. For instance, when people lose their sense of smell (which is tied to taste) the chefs decide that they must increase the spiciness of the dishes to really give the customers flavor. Later as taste goes dining out is more about texture and feeling special as you spend time with a loved one and are waited on.
Perfect Sense is most definitely not an easy film to watch. In fact, you may cry. However, it’s incredibly touching, interesting and innovative. It is a must watch!
The craziest thing about Casa de Mi Padre (House of My Father) is not the movie itself, which is very out there (woot!) but the fact that I almost missed it’s very existence. I only learned of the film a few months ago due to the fact that I adore Nick Offerman. This means that I follow a ton of Parks and Recreation and other tumblrs that celebrate him. When I saw an unfamiliar still from this movie I immediately pulled up the trailer and was knocked sideways. How was this being kept from me?
Well Case de Mi Padre is a new Will Ferrell comedy that is completely in Spanish, aside from the English characters like Offerman. Yes, that’s correct Ferrell is playing a Hispanic character in this film.
The reason that I had no knowledge of the film was that it had a very limited release (368 screens). I suppose most theaters didn’t want to release a movie that was being shown completely in Spanish.
So what is the movie about? Well Ferrell is the loser son of a Mexican rancher. While his brother Raul (Diego Luna) is out making money and romancing a lovely woman, he’s content to hang out with his buddies (Efren Ramirez and Adrian Martinez) in the wild like a true rancher.
All hell breaks loose when everyone becomes entangled in the web of drug dealer Onza (Gael Garcia Bernal). Then Ferrell’s hapless character (who continuously gets slapped in the face BTW) must get some balls and protect his family’s ranch and his bro’s woman, whom, he’s of course fallen for.
I simply loved this movie. It’s truly hilarious. The film was written by Andrew Steele. There are many times when you feel the humor of Saturday Night Live and it’s no wonder that feel is stamped all over this movie since Steele wrote for SNL from ’95-’08.
It’s not just the hilarity of the movie that draws me to it but also the fact that Ferrell is playing the underdog. Back when he was on SNL and then transitioning to film it wasn’t uncommon for him to play an underdog. However his later comedic roles often elevated him to a god like (to the other characters’) figure. In this he gets to come up the chain from the slapped to the slapper and I really dug that. (BTW-Yes I know he often plays a loser in his indies but the less said about those, usually, the better, I mean, the one where he was living on the lawn? Blech!)
Luckily since the movie is now available for rental or sale you can watch it with subtitles and don’t need to be fluent in Spanish to enjoy it. As someone who took 6 Spanish courses and used to hang out with Hispanic people sometimes (but still couldn’t really keep up with the convos) I was asked by my sister (who is fluent) how Ferrell did with the Spanish. Well he does his best. Like me, he speaks much slower than the actual Hispanic actors in the film. I also think that he probably just memorized the lines because in large groups scenes he doesn’t seem to understand what others are saying and is looking around for his cue.
You definitely need to rent this movie to check it out. If you are a big Ferrell fan then just buy it outright, you won’t be sorry.
Dark Shadows is a campy horror comedy. It’s based on a supernatural soap opera about a vampire named Barnabas Collins that aired from the late ’60s to the early ’70s. The show was remade in the ’90s. The film version is set in the early ’70s. Tim Burton’s film stars his muse Johnny Depp as well as his long time girlfriend (she would be considered his common law wife if they lived in the US), the awesome Helena Bonham Carter.
The cast is rounded out by Eva Green, Chloe Grace Moretz, Jonny Lee Miller and Jackie Earle Haley (or as we may always think of him, 2nd Freddy Krueger).