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Comment Archives: Stories: Movies

Re: “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

Weary? No. Hurried? Yes. With so many sub plots left from the first two movies Jackson struggles to wrap it up in a satisfactory fashion for any of them. Every one of them is addressed to some degree ranging from minutes to mere tenths of a second. The rescue of Gandalf and the defeat of Sauron, the great struggle to survive and defeat Smaug , the love interest of Elf and Dwarf, the survival and reorganization of Laketown to Dale, Gandalf's return to the group, the near war between the powers of good, the real war with evil, the bla bla bla battle with Thorin and Azog, Legolas and Bolg, Thorin's leap to sudden madness and leap back again, finding lines and places for everyone like Beorn (we see him drop from an eagle into battle for two seconds and never see him again), the 11 other dwarves (no lines), the Woodland realms world beating archers ( not a single elf fired one arrow), the many goodbyes that never happen, the obvious and glaring cutting of critical content to serve for extended edition sales. How utterly ironic Jackson is faced with time problems for a trilogy everyone criticized him for milking to long. In reality, the movie is totally off pace from a plot perspective mainly because two better arranged long movies would have served a better fit rather than three movies. Starting this movie with last movies ending demonstrates exactly what I mean. Its been a year since the insufferable blowhard has left the mountain for us viewers. To be able to get back into that groove and then wrap it up in the time slightly longer than standard Jackson intro length is asking much. It feels like I am watching the end of one movie and the start of another. The movie is fun with its neat moments such as Galadriel suddenly revealed to be more poweful than the Maia and using great name calling skills to defeat the dark lord. The arrival of Billy Conlly to anything is always a good time. Thranduil's two sword imitation of a food processor proves him worthy to be called daddy by Legolas. Good fun all but another path could have meant so much more than thrills.

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Mark Hoochuk on 01/29/2015 at 5:14 AM

Re: “Selma

I’ve read most of the reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, and most sum-up (more or less) with the same plaintive refrain:

“More relevant today than ever…”

As a Republican voter since 1971, I tend to agree, but not for the same reasons as most who are peddling that message. Racism and bigotry are more virulent today than ever in my lifetime. And it’s coming almost exclusively from Democrats, the President, liberals and professional Leftists. Anytime I post a comment on-line critical of President Obama, I can expect to see at least a half-dozen posts calling me a racist or a moron. I see African American members of Congress ridiculed and denigrated because they are either members of the Republican party, or just generally considered ‘conservative’.

In 2012, it was considered ‘politically correct’ (if not ‘advantageous’) to make disparaging references to the Mormon faith, because Mitt Romney was guilty of being both a Republican, and member of a religion which for no known reason, has been deemed eligible for disdain by the liberal ‘community’. There was even a satirical hit on Broadway built on the premise that there was a lot to mock in the Book of Mormon.

And this last year (the year that is supposedly so timely with respect to the film ‘Selma’), we had violent race-riots in the streets of several of our cities, expressing outrage that two African Americans, one of whom had just committed a felony caught on a security video, ended up dead when in each case, they resisted arrest by police. Even after two grand-juries, and the DOJ determined that racism played no part in these incidents, the outrage continued. In Ferguson, Missouri, the media, and racists in the roving bands of so-called protesters whipped up a lynch-mob mentality, all based on what turned out to be false allegations against a white police officer, who, when the facts finally came out, had been assaulted and almost killed when the suspect he was trying to detain, attempted to disarm him, and use his gun against the officer.

Niether was there a shred of evidence of racism in New York City, where another African American died after resisting arrest. In fact, the officer-in-charge in that incident was an African American woman. But when the New York City mob took to the streets, African Americans were seen on national TV carrying placards and chanting: “What do we want? Dead Cops”.

And in just a few short days after that “civil-rights rally”, they got their wish: two NYPD cops shot from behind while eating lunch in their squad car, by an African American who bragged about his intention to “kill two of them for every one of ours” on his Facebook page.

So I guess it’s true. The movie Selma is relevant today, because once again, we have millions of Americans who blindly hate a certain minority of their fellow citizens, partly due to the color of their skin, and their own self-serving assertion that this particular minority (white Republicans and/or conservative African Americans for the most part) don’t qualify for the same respect and civil-liberties as they (you) do.

I don’t need to go see the movie Selma — I watched it all first-hand back then while it was taking place. I recognized racist hatred when I saw it back then, and I recognize it again now. There was no excuse for it then, and there’s no excuse for it now. But there is one added insult to the racism and bigotry practiced by liberals and the Left today: unforgivable hypocrisy.

BTW: This Republican voted for Senator Obama in 2008, because I took him at his word that he would try to do the things he said he would do as a candidate, if we elected him to this country’s highest office. We did. He didn’t.

1 like, 5 dislikes
Posted by Randy James on 01/25/2015 at 5:51 PM

Re: “The Best Movies of 2014

No mention of "The Theory of Everything", "Life Itself"....just shocker, shocker, shocker. Isn't a movie critic supposed to serve all moviegoers? Maybe this one should see "Life Itself" -- very inspiring and thoughtful.

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Ruby MacDonald on 01/02/2015 at 8:23 AM

Re: “Review: Wild

The author, Kelly Vance, did a terrific job on this piece. I feel like I've already traveled the 1,100 trek myself and am all the wiser for it. Please thank the author for me

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Melani Boultier on 12/11/2014 at 4:06 PM

Re: “Review: Gone Girl

This was a terrible movie . Although i like Ben Affleck, the story line did not make sense. End of the story was the worst.

1 like, 7 dislikes
Posted by Nazanin Zare on 10/17/2014 at 8:45 PM

Re: “Review: The Green Prince

This comment was removed because it violates our policy against anonymous comments. It will be reposted if the commenter chooses to use his or her real name.

Posted by Editor on 10/09/2014 at 12:53 AM

Re: “Review: Wetlands

A degenerate German movie I saw at Sundance where hemorrhoids leads to love and we laughed all the way to the toilet.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Mark Hendricks on 09/17/2014 at 10:53 PM

Re: “The Giver

What a dumb review. Maybe the author needs to go back to the 50s.

Posted by Robert Giese on 09/17/2014 at 7:42 PM

Re: “Love Is Strange

The review made the film an exiting one to see.

Posted by William Simon on 08/31/2014 at 4:04 PM

Re: “Magic in the Moonlight

I musn't, tired of everything about him and his phony characters.

Posted by Pamela Drake on 08/26/2014 at 11:41 PM

Re: “California Crude

Opinions are, by their very nature, subjective. Therefore the opinion of this reviewer is as valid as any.

But I just cannot agree. Whilst I am yet to be introduced to the Huston character to which the reviewer refers, and perhaps if I had seen Chinatown the similarities between Plainview and Huston would become apparent, in isolation I found Daniel Day Lewis' performance to be utterly enthralling.

To me, the movie was a wonderful depiction of two very opposite people who ultimately descend into the same madness brought about by their own peculiar manifestations of greed and grandeur.

Therefore I have less of a problem with the review, and more of a problem with those commenters who state that people only liked it because they were told to. Errrr, no! I personally watch very few films, finding most of Hollywood's offerings formulaic and unoriginal.

In my opinion the same cannot be said for There Will Be Blood.

4 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Xyzzy Frobozz on 07/02/2014 at 8:53 PM

Re: “Gore Vidal: United States of Amnesia

I just saw it here in DC. Interesting way of doing a biography narrated by the own persona !!! Love it !!!

Posted by Guto Galvão on 06/11/2014 at 5:01 PM

Re: “Wag the Guccis

Brian De Palma, Warren Beatty, Michael Mann, David Mamet, Alfonso Cuarón, Jonathan Demme, and Sean Penn are tyros? Wow.

Posted by David Crow on 05/25/2014 at 11:16 PM

Re: “Palo Alto

thanks for a class-based review

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by John Tango Iversen on 05/16/2014 at 9:10 PM

Re: “Under the Skin

Ha ha, good one. You've got a point there. But sometimes emptiness can be refreshing.

Posted by Kelly Vance on 04/17/2014 at 3:31 PM

Re: “Under the Skin

the only interesting thing about this movie is that it depicts on screen what is actually happening to the audience; suckers lured in by a pretty face only to get quagmired in timeless gelatin of emptiness.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by rene alvarez on 04/17/2014 at 1:37 PM

Re: “Cesar Chavez

" even remember to pay tribute to the Filipino manongs in Delano whose labor actions dovetail with those of the NFWA."

DOVETAIL??? Larry Itliong and the AWOC started the Delano Grape Strike. Chavez had to be convinced by Itliong and Huerta to join. I am certainly a fan of Cesar Chavez, but Filipinos started the farm worker movement in California, and they deserve more than "tribute." Please read Carlos Bulosan's _America Is in the Heart_. It deserves its own movie!

Posted by Hali Um William on 04/04/2014 at 3:35 PM

Re: “The Wolf of Wall Street

Using 500 times the word 'fuck' is a bore, over the top and speaks for itself. No plot, plain vulgair and decadence, the right movie for the pauper

1 like, 2 dislikes
Posted by John Smith 2 on 03/16/2014 at 4:55 PM

Re: “California Crude

This movie was aweful. Super boring and extremely bad character development. A mater piece? More like a piece of shit.

3 likes, 17 dislikes
Posted by Alexis Laperrière-Vanier on 03/05/2014 at 9:10 AM

Re: “The Wind Rises

'The Wind Rises' can be seen as a bookend film linking back to Miyazaki's original nuclear warning epic 'The Valley of the Wind.' You may not like Jiro as a sort of Japanese WWII apologist, but let us not forget which country actually dropped the bomb on Hiroshima and which American company (General Electric) helped build a purposefully faulty Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. Miyazaki points out what we are losing while reminding us we're all in this current nuclear nightmare together.

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Nicole Berg on 02/28/2014 at 5:58 PM

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