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Friday, May 30, 2014
Without him, a movie like Filth would fail to find any real value whatsoever. With him, it carries on past the problems to be a somewhat worthwhile experience.

Why isn’t James McAvoy a bigger star? He’s been part of Oscar winning efforts (The Last King of Scotland), mainstream blockbusters (Wanted, X-Men: First Class) , and quirky indie efforts (The Last Station, Trance) and yet he’s still considered a bit of a B-lister. He doesn’t open a film, he’s not automatically assumed for the lead in upcoming prestige productions, and while giving great performance after great performance, he seems stuck in the same subpar career arc as Clive Owen and Jude Law (read: good looking guys—god-awful script choices). Filth, his latest effort, will be viewed as yet another foray into confused career territory. McAvoy himself is terrific in the film, giving the kind of tour de force turn that would normally land one an Oscar nod. Instead, the rest of Jon S. Baird’s adaptation of Irvine Welsh’s novel undermines the very power his onscreen personality is generating.


Tagged as: filth, james mcavoy
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Friday, May 23, 2014
You may not learn much about Alejandro Jodorowsky's actual childhood after watching this affecting film. You will see how the situation of his growing up influenced everything else in his life, however.

Memories aren’t meant to be truth. They’re not an internal documentary of our lives, unflinching in their authenticity and immovable to interpretation. No, our recollections are supposed to be filtered, formed over years of personal reflection and friendly storytelling. Names get changed. Events are altered. Perception becomes less about what happened and the more important “why?” Indeed, why we remember what we do is as significant as the events or individuals themselves. After all, we come into contact with millions of possible reminiscences every day and yet we cast aside some in favor of others. For the amazing auteur Alejandro Jodorowsky, it’s all an act, a performance piece that gets twisted and altered over time into something close to what really happened. The essence, not the evidence. It’s the Dance of Reality, and as seen through his eyes, it’s incredible.


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Friday, May 23, 2014
It all becomes a battle, not of wits so much as wishes. Indeed, one wishes Blended was better.

The problem with the new RomCom Blended is right there, up front, for everyone to see. It’s name is Adam Sandler, and oddly enough, the issue has little to do with his character or his performance. No, the former SNL star and Happy Billy Madison Gilmore frat fave is actually quite decent as a single father looking for love in all the wrong Hooters. You see, Sandler’s character Jim Friedman manages a local Dick’s Sporting Goods and has been set up on a blind date with a closet organizer named Lauren Reynolds (Drew Barrymore). Smooth operator that he is, he takes this otherwise perky gal to the famous chicken wing establishment, and wouldn’t you know it, everyone there knows his name.


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Wednesday, May 14, 2014
A lot of early reviews claim that "nothing happens" in the first hour of this film. Those opinions couldn't be more wrong.

Sometimes, my fellow film critics infuriate me. One of the most highly anticipated movies of 2014 has to be Gareth Edwards reboot of the beloved giant lizard Godzilla. Back in 1998, Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin, hot off their success with Independence Day, were hired by Tri-Star Pictures to fulfill their rights agreement with Japanese producer Toho Studios for a trilogy of American Godzilla movies with the only prerequisite being they stay “true” to the original films and warn against nuclear proliferation and runaway technology. Naturally, the duo ignore most of said prerequisites. While there was promise in their approach, the final result was a ridiculous combination of showboating set-pieces and lax character development. Audiences agreed.


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Friday, May 9, 2014
We may never know who killed those three boys in a rural Arkansas ravine. The Devil's Knot doesn't add to the discussion. Instead, it distracts from it.

There are four definitive movies about the West Memphis Three. The Devil’s Knot is not one of them. Not by a long shot. Between Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky’s brilliant trilogy - Paradise Lost: The Child Murders of Robin Hood Hills, Paradise Lost 2: Revelations, and Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory - and the Peter Jackson produced West of Memphis, there is no need for further discussion of this incendiary criminal case. It’s safe to say that the miscarriage of justice that occurred in the State of Arkansas, a collaboration between police prejudice, prosecutorial malfeasance, and small town fear mongering resulted in three young men (Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin, and Jessie Misskelley) serving more than 18 years in prison for crimes they did not commit, the killer of three innocent boys going un-captured, and the families of both the accused and the murdered left wondering what went wrong.


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