Thighs Wide Shut Thighs Wide Shut

Thursday, December 16

My Very Late Homework Assignment

With This & That Baby With No Face Running Thru My Head, I'm Never Having Sex Again!
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who doesn’t like their meat a lil bit pink?
Men are such bastards and women are utter biznitches. And no movie in my recent memory banks exemplifies that statement better than this one, (mos def) one of the YEAR'S BREASTEST!! Starting with The Graduate and coming full circle with his latest joint Closer, Mike Nichols perfectly examines the complex nature of humans and our forked up relationships we have with one another. I felt the same sort of shame and guilt for Natalie Portman's character Alice as I did for Dustin Hoffman's Benjamin Braddock. And the two movies may be distant cousins in terms of plot, but the driving force behind both of them is in the actors' willingness to open up and pour out the emotions. Jude Law, in what must be his 17th film of the year, is eggceptional in the role of Dan, Portman's selfish lover who always has his eye out for greener pastures/bacon strips. But the real scene stealer here, besides Natalie's batty crease, is Clive Owen. He goes from being the world's happiest chap, to down in the shitters, to manipulating assjerk, all in less than two hours! Mr O made a huge splash in the lil '98 gem known as Croupier, but since had been starring in crap that no one saw AND whoring himself out to those Jerry Bruckheimeresque BMW mini-flicks. Well, hello world, wake up and smell the Clivemiester cause he has just arrived at A-list land!! You all OWE(n) him yer attention and yer paying monies at the box office. I'd also like to mention that I broke one of my two personal movie jihads in the process of vidying this DELI-icous film: never see a Julia Roberts movie. I mean, I had to see how it was possible for two men to be in the love with the same woman, even if she looks like Falkor! Did I mention Porty's batty crease?

Recommended for those who like: poll dancing hotties, large photographs, and Jude Law looking like a total prick.

Unsatisfied with this? Netflix Mike N's other 4 person relationship hell-a-thon, Carnal Knowledge.

Bad Education
Is This Is Bad, I'm Dying To See His Good Education!
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men behavin badly
We are all very lucky that we live in the times of Pedro Almodóvar. It's like having our own French Wave, but without all the jump cuts, cigarette smoking, and French people. The man is a not a filmmaker, but an arteeeeest (not as in Ron Artest, mind you)! His films are large canvases in which he paints vividly colorful broad strokes of life slices... slices that include raping nurses, trannies, and all sorts of Spanish oddballs. The man loves men, but he loves the beauty of women even more. But in Bad Education, he leaves the ladies behind for a more personal and intimate look about childhood, baddie priests, and life as a filmmaker (or should that read arteeeeeeest?). Many compare this work to that of Hitchcock's thrillers and they're bloody right! Why you can't even appreciate the multi-layerednessness of the plot until hours after you left the theater. And to me, that’s the sign of a franztastic movie.

Recommended for those who like: man ass, man love, and priests who sing 'Moon River' to children.

Unsatisfied with this? Netflix Hitch's mos eggsalad Vertigo.

The Motorcycle Diaries
Easy On The Eyes Rider
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ride captain, ride!
If you were to see one Gael García Bernal (GGB, as I like to call em) film this winter, make it Bad Education. But if yer looking for him to keep his clothes on and not wear make-up, than this is the one for you! GGB plays Ernesto 'Che' Guevara in his free-wheelin' salad days, years before he got all guerrilla and became an icon that would later be used on a Rage Against The Machine t-shirt. Joining him on this sojourn is his best mustached friend, Alberto Granado. Together they go up and down South America searching for love and what their purpose in life is. After a lot of riding, boozing, and dancing, the two encounter the mistreatment of native Americans and also help some lepers. After these experiences, an epiphany strikes young Che, setting the path to his future and place in history. A beautiful film that only fails in one respect: you want to see where Che goes from there. I guess there's still hope for sequel, Motorcycle Diaries 2: Che Lets His Hair Down... then again it wasn't made in Hollywood.

Recommended for those who like: medical students, people with missing body parts, and hearing the words 'Machu Picchu'.

Unsatisfied with this? Netflix El Norte.

A Very Long Engagement
Unfortunately, The Theater Engagements Probably Won't Last Long
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audrey tautou you!
Like Almodóvar, Jean-Pierre Jeunet is an arteeest that we're lucky to have. If only America had such visionaries as these guys, we'd be in a lot better shape... unless David Fincher comes back from his nap with something good! JPJ doesn't explore our world, he lets us explore his. And for our benefit, it aint always the same world time and time again (Wes Anderson seems to inhabit only one world). Engagement's world deals in pre, during, and post WWI France, and the scenery is so pristine and gorgeous that you'd wish they sold post cards in the theater's lobby. Basically, this movie is worth seeing just for the production design alone! But there's much more here than just purty pictures! Like a tragic love story that ties all the characters together (many of them mustached). Think JPJ's own Amélie meets Kubey's Paths of Glory. And whiles yer at it, think yerself over to the theater and see this NOW!

Recommended for those who like: staring at Audrey Tattoo’s anime eyes, French mustaches, and seeing Jodie Foster (yes, that JF) getting boned!

Unsatisfied with this? Netflix Paths of Glory fo sho!

The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou
Movie Overbored
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sad to say, but this baby is lost at sea
Tsk, tsk, tsk Mr Anderson. This is how you follow-up yer melon collie and infinite sadness/greatness that is The Royal Tenenbaums? Did you conjure up this story whilst taking a dump? Well that’s how I sorta felt after I left the theater, dumped upon. Now I'm not saying this movie is shit, cause I still need to see it 173245123475 more times before coming to that conclusion, but c'mon, this is a step backwards, not forwards into yer (hopefully) long and tuck everlasting career. All the Wes Anderson touches and comforts that we all know and love are well in place: dysfunctional Salingeresque characters played by Hollywood's finest, his kitschy kitschy bon-bon style and design, killer soundtrack, and Bill Murray, but that’s basically all surface, and nothing underneath. Its like watching The Simpsons these days, where everything looks and feels familiar, but you know you've seen better from them before. One of my major gripes is that a lot of stuff 'happens', but basically nothing happens. You don't ever develop a relationship with the characters like you do in his previous films. You can't cause they're too busy showing you how cool the Zissou boat is or what the gang would look like if they were fighting Asian pirates (don't ask). Anywho, there is still much to love and appreciate as Anderson is our best hope for American cinema's future. I hispecially like how he cast Bud Cort (Harold of Harold and Maude) in a minor role, which felt like he was paying homage to the 70s movies that influenced him. But you know there's something just plain wrong when the only thing I thought about post-screening is where I can score some Team Zissou Adidas kicks (no luck so far)!

Recommended for those who like: City of God's Knockout Ned, Willem Dafoe kicking it German again, and topless women.

Unsatisfied with this? Netflix any of Wes' other works!

The Incredibles
Is It Too Late To Rename It The UMcredibles?
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she's replaced jessica rabbit as my cartoon HJ partner
Within one group of reviews I broke both of my movie jihads. The second being seeing any cartoons (occupational hazard, don't want to talk about it). But boy o boy am I glad I laid down my rocket launchers and saw this! For those who love Brad Bird's The Iron Giant or never saw it, this is how animation and storytelling should be! You won't find any sappy animals being all sad and stizz cause their moms got shot by a hunter or any awful Nathan lane musical numbers here. What you will find is 100% fun fun fun (50% killer action, 40% Elastigirl hotness, and 10% Craig T Nelson!). That be so much fun, that yer daddy will take the t-bird away. This is the breastest American animated feature I've seen since Toy Story 2. Yep, green ogres don't do it for me. Neither do fish or the band Phish, so I pray they don't ever make a musical cartoon, or reform for that matter. I think Jamie Foxx's performance in Ray and this are locks for Oscar statuettes.

Recommended for those who like: Zorro masks, TV's Coach, and a movie that looks like but isn't Sky Captain And The World of Tomorrow.

Unsatisfied with this? You won't be, juss go and see it for Chisssssakes!

Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason
Keeping Up With The Joneseses
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hey, at least its not puck!
Many have trashed this film for just being more of the same Bridget Joneseseses hijinks, but isn't that eggzactly what we want in a sequel of this type? As my AP European History teacher once said, 'If it aint baroque, don't fix it.' And I'm glad they didn't. Pufferfish/Renee is back as tubby mcgee, but this time she's got the man, the always reserved/always charming Colin Firth, in her hands. But of course with Bridget, she overanalyzes and thinks Colin doesn't want her cause she's a pufferfish and his assistant is the uber-hot Jacinda from Real World: London! Embarrassing moments ensue, throw in some seduction from Hugh Grant, predictable ending occurs and dat's what I call pure entertainment folks! However, towards the end, the movie jumped the shark when Bridge lands in a Thai prison and sings 'Like A Virgin' with a bunch of 14(?)-year-old prostitutes!!! Oh the horror!!! Or should that read, oh the whorer!!!

Recommended for those who like: traveling, girls with puffy cheeks, and pig shit.

Unsatisfied with this? Netflix Love Actually.

How NOT To Succeed In Bidness
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look at me, i'm a jackass!!
How many of us will ever get our dream script sold or land a recording deal for or phat band? Probably none of us (eggcept you should hear the demos of my band the Hi-Hats, where the only instruments we play are hi-hat drums... we can even freestyle without the drums). So can you imagine landing both of those prizes in one shot? Well, that’s what really happened to Boston bean-head turned LA bartender Troy Duffy. Not only that but, he got Harvey Weinstein to throw in the bar that he worked for! Now you gotta be something special to be in that kinda position, eh? Well, problem is, Scruffy McDuffy lets it all go to his head and in turn divides his friends and becomes nemesis to Harvey and Mirabest. Not a good thing if you ever want to make it in del biz. This documentary that documents his minor ascent and heavy downfall is a muss c for anyone itching to get in the bidness. You may decide to give up on yer dream and go to law school. Good thing it wasn't in theaters long, cause this is mo suitable for the home entertainment system.

Recommended for those who like: Massholes, cocky mutherstickers from Boson, and Harvey haters.

Unsatisfied with this? Netflix

National Treasure
Our Founding Fathers Are Shitting In Their Graves
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jerry SUCKheimer does it again!
Lame. Stoopid. Redonkeylous. Yep, that pretty much sums it up. When people see Ron Howard's adaptation of Da Da Vinci Code, they're gonna think that its such a rip-off of this Nic Cage gag-me-with-a-spoon-a-thon (actually, the script for Treasure was written well before Dan Brown's book). Too bad this movie is all fun and no brain, unlike Da Vinci which is tons of brain AND tons of fun. Please don't see this crap, unless you want to larf yer a$$ of at the lil things like Sean Bean/Borimir playing a good guy turned bad for the nth time or Harvey Keitel playing a police chief who wears denim shirts! Tripe on a stick! Stay away at all costs.

Recommended for those who like: really old documents, crap on a stick, Ben Franklin's good name being crapped on.

Unsatisfied with this? Netflix Indidna Jones and The Last Crusade, since its basically the same eggzact movie.

Till next time, the balcony is clothed!