Established May 2010.

Gordie: Do you think I'm weird?
Chris: Definitely.
Gordie: No man, seriously. Am I weird?
Chris: Yeah, but so what? Everybody's weird.

Film Critic for Twin Cities Live

Member of THE LAMB: The Large Association of Movie Blogs LAMB #1588

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Monday, October 18, 2010

Weekend Movie Re-Cap

Yet again, I tried to squeeze in as many movies in as possible this weekend in between work and Godot rehearsals. It was time to dust off my Netflix and get crackin'

In order of viewing:
1. The Lovely Bones (2009)
2. Valentine's Day (2010)
3. The Strangers (2008)
4. Mommie Dearest (1981)

AND the #1 movie of the weekend was

It's a TIE! The Strangers and Mommie Dearest! I liked them both for very different reasons. While neither of them was perfect, they both had a lasting positive impression on me. I can't say the same about The Lovely Bones or Valentine's Day.

Directed and Written by: Bryan Bertino
Starring: Liv Tyler (Armageddon, Lord of the Rings) and Scott Speedman (Felicity)

This is the kind of scary movie that I like. It's a fast paced, barely 80 minute thriller. A young couple returns home after a wedding reception ready to go to bed when a knock is heard at the door. They are out in the middle of nowhere (obviously!!) and decide to answer the door. Moments later they are being terrorized by three strangers wearing masks. You don't know why this couple is targeted, but they seem to be after Scott Speedman's character. I think what makes this movie on the scarier end of the spectrum is that it is all possible. I get mored scared by movies that could happen than impossible torture porn/gore fests.

Directed by: Frank Perry
Starring: Faye Dunaway (Bonnie and Clyde, The Network)

I finally got around to watching this cult classic. Mommie Dearest is based on the novel of the same name by Christina Crawford and follows the unknown side of legendary actress Joan Crawford as this crazy mother that physically and emotionally abused her daughter, Christina. This movie could have actually been even better if the director would have not made it soo campy at times. The campy factor is what people normally love about this movie. I think it cheapens the movie from what it could have been. Faye Dunaway is amazing as Joan. I think she perfectly fills the role of over-bearing and over-the-top. It's sad that Faye refuses to talk about the movie and many claim it ruined her career. You have to keep in mind that this story is told through the eyes of her daughter "who wanted the last say" after Joan died. You wonder how much is actually true. I actually think Joan Crawford was as crazy as the movie makes out.

Well, I'm in the thick of rehearsals with a show opening this week. It may be a few weeks before I see some more movies. Maybe in the mean time I will do a special Halloween themed scary movies blog dedicated to my favorite scary movies. Until then.

-P McG
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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Unleash Your Inner Foodie

As I mentioned in a previous post, I am writing some foodie themed movie reviews for my friend DeeAnn McArdle's blog. Her blog is entitled "Unleash Your Inner Foodie". DeeAnn told me October is National Pizza Month. I had no idea! The first entry for DeeAnn's blog would be based on movies where pizza makes an appearance. I decided to watch a new movie (Mystic Pizza) and revisit some favorites (Fast Times at Ridgemont High and Home Alone). I also give two options on what to do the next time you want to stay in, eat a pizza, and snuggle in front of a movie.

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Movie Recap of Last Week

Weekend Movie Recap (even though it’s a bit late…)

Shockingly enough, I managed to watch three new movies this past week
1. Mystic Pizza (1988)
2. Easy A (2010)
3. The Social Network (2010)

Of these three contenders, The Best Movie of the Week goes to:

Director: David Fincher
Screenplay: Aaron Sorkin
Starring: Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Justin Timberlake, Armie Hammer, Rooney Mara, Joseph Mazzello

Since it is October and many of the best movies of the year haven’t come out yet, I cannot call it the best movie of 2010 yet. It definitely has the potential to be though. David Fincher (Fight Club, Zodiac, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) directs this movie with a screenplay by Aaron Sorkin (A Few Good Men, “The West Wing”) who based his screenplay off of the book “The Accidental Billionaires”. The Social Network follows the story of Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, and what spirals out of the simple creation of a social networking site for Harvard that ended up with 500 million users throughout the world. What could have been a geeky computer movie turns out to be a very taught fast paced legal drama/thriller. The movie cuts back and forth between the creation of Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg battling two lawsuits. One coming from his best friend/college roommate who was the CFO of Facebook and the other by a set of rich athletic twins that claim Mark stole their idea after he had a meeting with them. I honestly did not know much about the creation of Facebook or how it became such a cultural phenomenon. All I know is that I spend way too much of my time on it every day. You learn pretty quickly that Mark is being sued by his best friend, and that Facebook has over 500 million users. You immediately get sucked into the lives of these not-so-innocent Harvard students as you watch the downhill spiral of how it all turns out. Granted some of the movie is dramatized, you can’t help but wonder if most of it is actually true or what the filmmakers dramatized. As you leave the theater, it makes you question why you ever joined such a silly thing as Facebook anyway and question what this society has come to. I don’t think you need to neither be on Facebook nor understand what Facebook is all about to appreciate this movie. It’s not so much about Facebook itself, but as what happens when an idea you have makes you a billionaire and who in your life thinks they are entitled to your fortune.

Here's the trailer:

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Thursday, October 7, 2010

Ode to the Video Store

When I was a child, I don't remember roaming the aisles of the toy store or the candy store. I remember roaming the VIDEO store. That's right. My love of movies traces back to as far as I remember. I remember my step-dad rushing me after I had spent an hour slowly pacing the aisles at the Blockbuster on Central Avenue in Columbia Heights. I remember trying to convince my dad to let me rent two movies from Mr. Movies in Shoreview when we spent the weekends at his condo. I even spent five years of my life working at an independently owed video store that sold porn and normal movies. Was 15 too young to sell porn to sleazy old men?

With the dawn of Netflix (I'm a subscriber) and RedBox (never tried), video stores have slowly gone out of business. Hollywood Video went goodbye. Blockbuster has filed for bankruptcy. What are people supposed to do if they are in the mood for a good old catalog title? An oldie but a goodie? You can't get those through RedBox. What if you're craving a movie and don't want to wait 2 days for Netflix? What's a desperate movie geek to do?

Last night, I was in the mood to watch "Mystic Pizza" as part of my new duty to write foodie movie reviews for a foodie blog. LUCKILY, Video Stardom in the Quarry came to the rescue! They were still open. I went in and was in heaven. Not only were they playing "Hocus Pocus" in the background, but they had my movie in stock! I filled out my membership card and paid for my video. Wait, I mean DVD. Today at work, I got a courtesy call from them asking how my first rental was. Now that is good customer service.

Oh, how I wish there were more video stores around.

-P McG
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