Review: Young Adult

Seeing 2011’s Young Adult now, from the prospective of 2018, it seems that writer Diablo Cody wrote an allegory for the disconnected young adults of today. Continue reading “Review: Young Adult”

Watch This: Trailer for Tully

Tully has all the right ingredients. Stars include Charlize Theron, Mackenzie Davis, Ron Livingston, and Mark Duplass. It’s written by Diablo Cody. Come on, people. This is going to be pure gold. Continue reading “Watch This: Trailer for Tully”

Review: Mindhunter

Mindhunter, season 1, is a Netflix original. Set in the late 1970s, it’s about how the FBI began to develop a behavioral sciences division and look at the psychology of psychopaths and serial killers. These were early efforts to understand the criminal mind in days when the killers managed one-offs with a kitchen knife or a sawed-off shotgun.

I couldn’t help thinking about today’s mass murderers, who kill so many so quickly with automatic weapons. Nowadays, even if the FBI can understand the psychology of mass murderers, they are thwarted from doing anything about it by the gun lobby. Continue reading “Review: Mindhunter”

Review: Atomic Blonde

Atomic Blonde could definitely become a franchise like the James Bond or Jason Bourne movies everyone keeps comparing it with. Charlize Theron as Lorraine Broughton is smart, tough, relentless, cool, stylish, resourceful, beautiful, deadly, and really good at the spy game. Continue reading “Review: Atomic Blonde”

Review: Girlboss, Season One

Girlboss is a new Netflix original comedy series starring Britt Robertson as Sophia, an immature, over-emotional 23 year old slacker who finds her passion and develops an online fashion business. Continue reading “Review: Girlboss, Season One”

Review: Learning to Drive

Learning to Drive stars Patricia Clarkson as Wendy, a NYC book critic whose marriage ends abruptly. She’s always depended on her husband (Jake Weber) to do the driving. Continue reading “Review: Learning to Drive”

Review: In the Valley of Elah

In the Valley of Elah from 2007 is a searing condemnation of the war in Iraq. The story is a mystery about a father and a cop who investigate the son’s murder just outside a mythical Army base in New Mexico.  Continue reading “Review: In the Valley of Elah”

The Old Ain’t Dead Top 10 of 2015

Old Ain’t Dead just me, watching whatever looks good. To me. I don’t watch everything. I don’t have a “best of 2015” list because I don’t have a clue as to what most of 2015 had to offer, much less what the best of all that would be.

Yet here we are, at the end of the year, and a top 10 list is in order. So how about an Old Ain’t Dead top 10 for 2015? I present my favorites in no particular order.

I admit to being a little fast and loose with the 2015 part. Some of these things were made before 2015, but I saw them in 2015. Just go with it.

I cheated just a bit, too, because at the end I threw in a few extra mentions of things too good to ignore.

Continue reading “The Old Ain’t Dead Top 10 of 2015”

Watch This: Trailer for The Huntsman Winters War

The Huntsman Winters War has Charlize Theron, Emily Blunt and Jessica Chastain in a feminist fairy tale about the huntsman. Oh, yeah, Chris Hemsworth is in it – he’s the huntsman. In case you weren’t counting, that makes The Huntsman Winters War an action adventure tale with 3 women and 1 man in leading roles.

In a more perfect world, at least one of those faces would be a woman of color, but I’m happy to celebrate this bit of progress.

The wordy plot synopsis of this dark fantasy is,

The fantastical world of Snow White and the Huntsman expands to reveal how the fates of The Huntsman Eric and Queen Ravenna are deeply and dangerously intertwined. Chris Hemsworth and Oscar® winner Charlize Theron return to their roles in The Huntsman Winter’s War, an epic action-adventure in which they are joined by Emily Blunt and Jessica Chastain, as well as director Cedric Nicolas-Troyan. Producer Joe Roth (Maleficent, Alice in Wonderland) once again leads the team in a breathtaking new tale nested in the legendary saga.

Long before the evil Queen Ravenna (Theron) was thought vanquished by Snow White’s blade, she watched silently as her sister, Freya (Blunt), suffered a heartbreaking betrayal and fled their kingdom. With Freya’s ability to freeze any enemy, the young ice queen has spent decades in a remote wintry palace raising a legion of deadly huntsmen—including Eric (Hemsworth) and warrior Sara (Chastain)—only to find that her prized two defied her one demand: Forever harden your hearts to love.

When Freya learns of her sister’s demise, she summons her remaining soldiers to bring the Magic Mirror home to the only sorceress left who can harness its power. But once she discovers Ravenna can be resurrected from its golden depths, the wicked sisters threaten this enchanted land with twice the darkest force it’s ever seen. Now, their amassing army shall prove undefeatable…unless the banished huntsmen who broke their queen’s cardinal rule can fight their way back to one another.

The film is a sequel to Snow White and the Huntsman from 2012, which was an equally feminist turn on a fairy tale starring Kristen Stewart as Snow White and Hemsworth as The Huntsman. In the sequel, as in the first huntsman tale, the director, writer and most of the behind the scenes names are male. But in front of the camera it’s nothing but awesome.

The film is set to open in April of 2016.

Images © 2015 – Universal Pictures

Review: Dark Places

Dark Places is a haunting tale about recovering from childhood trauma and the lingering seduction of evil. I give it high marks. The acting was brilliant from all the cast, particularly Charlize Theron and Christina Hendricks. The plotting and story details were original and fascinating.

Spoilers ahead.

The film was based on a book by Gillian Flynn, who also wrote the novel Gone Girl, which was equally original in plotting. Gilles Paquet-Brenner wrote the screenplay and directed Dark Places. Continue reading “Review: Dark Places”