Category Archives: Movies

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Kathleen Hanna Should Be Everyone’s Heroine

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image of the poster for The Punk Singer (2013)The other night I watched the 2013 documentary ‘The Punk Singer’ about the life and times of activist, musician, and cultural icon Kathleen Hanna, lead singer of bands such as Bikini Kill, Le Tigre, and The Julie Ruin. The film blew me away and gave me a huge appreciation of Hanna’s music and point of view. I know I’m not the usual demographic for Hanna’s music but her music and lyrics just seem so honest and real. She is a heroine of the 1st degree. Check out the film on Netflix.
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Who Knew There Was More To Career Opportunities Than Jennifer Connelly Roller Skating?

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screencap of Jennifer Connelly
I could watch an entire movie of just this

I swear, as minute after minute ticked off as I re-watched the 1991 comedy ‘Career Opportunities‘, I kept saying to myself: ‘where is the roller skating?’ Of course how I remembered the film had nothing to do with how the film actually plays out. I could have sworn it was 83 minutes of Jennifer Connelly roller skating around a Target store – who knew that other people were in the film.
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The Iceman – Makes You Sympathize With A Serial Killer

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poster for the film The Iceman (2012)I wanted to see ‘The Iceman‘ ever since seeing the trailer and I wasn’t disappointed. Most films about serial killers make them out to be only cold and heartless but in this film the killer has a heart and you do start to sympathize with him a little bit. The film is based on a true story and not the usual type of story you see in films about the Mob. It doesn’t glamorize organized crime or serial killers which is a good thing.
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Lovelace Hits The Right Notes About Golden Era Of Porn

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poster for the fim Lovelace (2013)I had the opportunity to check out the new film about porn star Linda Lovelace titled ‘Lovelace‘. I thought it used an interesting take on the period in the 1970s when pornography went mainstream by giving us two films in one. The first half is like a Hollywood style biography that never goes below the surface while the last half of the film gives us what really happened behind the scenes. The film not only gave a look at the pop culture impact of the actress, ‘Lovelace’ also humanized the woman. I also liked how the film didn’t go after pornography as a whole but did point out the dark and dirty underbelly of the industry in the 1970s. Unlike how Linda Lovelace was exploited during her short stint in porn, the film ‘Lovelace’ isn’t exploitive and gives a true examination of the woman and the industry she popularized.
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I Wanted To Be The Kid In My Side Of The Mountain

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My Side of the Mountain DVD coverI was about the same age as Sam, the main character in ‘My Side of the Mountain’, when I first saw this film. I was so in awe of the kid going off on his own to live in the mountains to do science experiments. Sam’s adventure reignited my enthusiasm for camping and started my long time love with science. I also briefly entertained the idea of capturing and training a falcon. The movie is so imprinted in my head that when I rewatched it recently I remembered every scene. Even 44 years since it was made, this love letter to a boy’s adventure and love of nature holds up and I would gladly show it to any 13 year old today.
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Tiresome Fight Scenes Drags Down Man Of Steel

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poster for the film Man of Steel (2013)Man of Steel is the reboot of the Superman franchise. While I liked the film in general, the climatic fight scene in the last 30 minutes dragged down the film for me and took away from a decent story and good cast.
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Willy Wonka Hated Charlie And The Chocolate Factory

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Gene Wilder and Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka
Gene Wilder and Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka

In a recent news article, Gene Wilder who played Willy Wonka in the 1971 children’s classic ‘Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory‘ said he thought the 2005 reboot, ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory‘, directed by Tim Burton was an insult to his film. I love Gene Wilder and loved the 1971 film but I think he is wrong about Burton’s adaptation and the author of the original book might have thought the same. Come on Gene, can’t we love both versions?
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The 400 Blows Isn’t A Typical Artsy Fartsy French Movie

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DVD cover art for The 400 Blows (1959)
The 400 Blows (1959)

The other night, I had Turner Classic Movie (TCM) channel on. It started to show Francois Truffaut’s "The 400 Blows" (1959). Film buff friends of mine have waxed poetically about all the French New Wave directors like Truffaut and until now I had avoided them all. I just thought that these "great" movies were 90 minutes of French people sitting around drinking coffee and smoking – and that’s it. The film started and I promised to turn the channel when I got bored. 99 minutes later I realized I did watch a great film. The 400 Blows isn’t a typical artsy fartsy French film.
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