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30 October

Films That Should Satisfy

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Youth in Revolt

Director: Miguel Arteta
Cast: Michael Cera, Portia Doubleday, Steve Buscemi, Jean Smart, Ray Liotta, Jonathan B. Wright
Review [8.Jan.2010]
23 October
Youth in Revolt

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Ever since the breakout success of Superbad, Michael Cera has been carving out a unique niche career for himself. He costarred in the coming-of-age comedy Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist and then saddled up to Ellen Page in the Oscar nominated farce Juno. Then there was the mock doc Paper Heart and the unsuccessful spoof Year One. With his take on fan favorite Scott Pilgrim vs. The World in his foreseeable future (he’s the title character), the 21 year old now guides the translation of the well known novel by C. D. Payne. He plays a milquetoast young man who decides to go rebel in order to win the girl of his dreams. While some have suggested it plays like Fight Club for the Xbox Generation, the irreverent nature of the material suits Cera’s laidback demeanor perfectly.


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Gentleman Broncos

Director: Jared Hess
Cast: Michael Angarano, Jemaine Clement, Sam Rockwell, Jennifer Coolidge, Suzanne May, Halley Feiffer
23 October
Gentleman Broncos

Jared Hess is back and he’s bringing his skewed world of weird eccentrics with him. While his last film, Nacho Libre, was more of a celebration of Mexican luchadore culture, his latest is a return to Napoleon Dynamite territory. The story centers around a young sci-fi geek, a celebrated author of speculative fiction with writer’s block, and the boy’s own work of far out future shock that the famous scribe “steals” and calls his own. Sounds like all the elements are in place for another sublime slice of idiosyncratic surrealism—and boy does the trailer confirm it. This is one of the smartest looking efforts this Fall, a film unafraid to speak the language of its subject while playing its stupidity very, very smart. With the added benefit of Flight of the Conchords’ Jemaine Clement in the lead, all signs point to a clever cult classic. 

Films That May Leave You Starving

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Michael Jackson: This Is It

Director: Kenny Ortega
Cast: Michael Jackson
30 October
Michael Jackson: This Is It

For the longest time, he was a tabloid target, a ex-pop superstar who hadn’t been relevant since Geraldo was a CNBC liberal. Suddenly, an “accidental” overdose of anesthetic later and Michael Jackson is a unquestioned god, growing in unpleasant posthumous stature. So leave it to the suits behind his now defunct mega-money concert tour to whore out the last images of the late and lamented King to the highest bidder. There are even reports that part of his recent private funeral will be included in the concert film. When Elvis died, he had his last show, elephantine physique and winded greatest hits routine included, repeatedly played on every station that would carry it. For John Lennon, it was shots of bloodstained sidewalks near the Dakota and continual replays of the Beatles catalog. Now comes the Michael Jackson mea culpa and no matter how reverent it is, it still looks like a tacky bit of grief stricken grave robbing.

Since deciding to employ his underdeveloped muse muscles over five years ago, Bill has been a significant staff member and writer for three of the Web's most influential websites: DVD Talk, DVD Verdict and, of course, PopMatters. He also has expanded his own web presence with Bill a place where he further explores creative options. It is here where you can learn of his love of Swindon's own XTC, skim a few chapters of his terrifying tome in the making, The Big Book of Evil, and hear samples from the cassette albums he created in his college music studio, The Scream Room.

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