Thighs Wide Shut Thighs Wide Shut

Friday, December 5

Land & Deliver

A Vegemighty Heart
Trailers & Mo | Official Website

There aints no other director out there that can make a movie spectacle quite the way that Baz Luhrmann can. He shirley takes his dang time crafting these crafty craftwerks (2001's manic Moulin Rouge!, 1996's kinetic Romeo + Juliet and 1992's unrestricted Strictly Ballroom), and the results are always well worth the wait (if you aint a fan then what the elle do you know about movie magic anywayzz). Lurhmann took another 7 years to get his latest feature, Australia, on to screens, and while it may not be as spectacle-tacular as the Red Curtain Trilogy, he definitely tried to step it up a notch by going epic, in every sense of the word. This baby's a bit shy of 3 hours and what you'll get is like 287483 movies in one: part action, part adventure, 69 parts romance, and it's all put on display with tender tears and sunny smiles (+ a lot o' Wizard of Oz shout outs... fitting since it takes place in Oz) that are shed and smirked by both the actors onscreen and the audience taking it in. Although all these parts don't necessarily blend perfectly together, it's damn near impossible to walk away from this film and not be somewhat to beyond satisfied

We were a bit skeptical about the epic proportions as the movie began, but after Nicole Kidman's English aristocrat character touches down under at her deceased hubby's ranch in barren walkabout country and takes charge, the movie qwikly/quigley follows suit. She's more familiar with catcalls than cattle, but luckily she's got a hunky horseman (Hugh Jackman, looking like a chiseled Clint Eastwood cowboy) and some Aborigines to help her keep the ranch from being swallowed up by the monopolizing competition (headed up by long lost F/Xer talent Bryan Brown). One native son in particular, a half white-half Aborigine boy (Brandon Walters, in a mos memorable debut) is the heart of the entire picture. His is torn between his two heritages and yet he's not doing any of the tearing. The white peoples weren't too fond of these mixed-race offspring (much to the dismay of motherly Kidman) and they tried there best to 'civilize' them (same issues also tackled in the film Rabbit-Proof Fence). This is the battle (and history lesson) being fought in the background of the film, while the struggle to keep the ranch independent occupies the forefront. Eventually David bests Goliath, but that's when the movie really gets goings. The final act revolves around Japan's initial attack on Australia during WWII. Friends, lovers and enemies (including Boromir's hottie bro Faramir, David Wenham) are displaced, explosions go boom, and after all the smoke clears, everyone, for the moist part, lives happily ever after. A movie named after a country has certainly a lot to live up to and Baz does a wonderful job coloring in the map, even if it's all over the map

Bruce Spence's Teeth For Hire: filming some fantasy flick and need someone to sport some crazy arsed set o' teeth? look no further than Bruce Spence (probably breast known as the Gyro Captain from two Mad Max flicks, and briefly appears in Australia as Dr. Barker), who chomped it up as Tion Medon in Episode III and The Mouth of Sauron in (the cutting room floor of) LOTR: ROTK

Verdictgo: Jeepers Mos Def Worth A Peepers

Cadillac Records
Hail! Hail! Rock 'n' Roll's Founders
Trailers & Mo | Official Website

The rise and fall of the Chicago based Chess Records and how its Bluesy recording artists practically gave birth to the Rock n Roll era as we know it is lovingly chronicled in Darnell Martin's Cadillac Records (named as such since many of the artists were paid in Cadillacs). The film is bursting with personality, and then some, giving love and deserving respect to its founder Leonard Chess (Adrien Brody in a purty much thankless role... well, a lil less thankless than Emmanuelle Chriqui's, who plays his wife) and to its major players, their legendary tunes, and their personal demons -- Muddy Waters ('Hoochie Coochie Man' and 'Rollin' Stone', which was the inspiration for a certain band's name) and his womanizing ways (Jeffrey Wright, lookin mighty smooth with that Billy Dee/Landosystem stache... then again, when isn't Wright smooth?), Chuck Berry ('Sweet Little Sixteen', and a billion more) and his female indiscretions as well (Mos Def, effortlessly perfect in a role his seemed destined to play), Etta James ('At Last') and her nasty herion habit (Beyoncé Knowles, in her best screen performances to date... which is leaps and bounds better then what she did in the overbloated Dreamgirls ), Little Walter and his love of the bottle (Columbus Short who practically upstages the big guns with his minor role), and the meancing Howlin' Wolf (Eamonn Walker, my, what big eyes you have!). The film covers quite a lot a ground in a short amount of time, and while each of these artists are worthy of their own biopics it's still an absolute pleasure to be swept up in all the madness and mayhem that transgressed when they all crossed paths and broke barriers. The end result may feel more like a Wikipedia entry on the studio than a full-on examination, but you'll be too busy toe-tapping and rocking out to the glorious soundtrack (the famous tunes are actually sung by the acting counterparts) to mind the missing details

Chuck Bassholes: the white man has always been stolenings the black man's music (a topic covered in the film), but no rip off may be as blatant as The Beach Boys' pilfering of Chuck Berry's 'Sweet Little Sixteen' to create 'Surfin USA' (click that link to hear a comparison, courtesy of this fab site The Copy Cat). Berry successfully sued the Boys and has since been givin full songwriting credit for their song. Sometimes the opposite is true, as Ray Parker Jr famously stoles from whitey Huey Lewis in order to make the Ghostbusters theme the new drug that everyone wanted to take

Verdictgo: Jeepers MOS DEF Worth A Peepers

Cadillac Records joins Australia already playing at a theater near Jews

and until next thyme the balcony is clothed...