RSS feed for Japeman
  • Hateship Loveship 2013

    ★★ Watched 11 Apr, 2014

    Liza Johnson's "Hateship Loveship", which is based on a short story by acclaimed writer Alice Munro, is an "odd" movie. I don't mean odd as in weird like "Enemy" or "Under the Skin". I just mean odd as in it just kinda "exists", you know? It lays there, not doing much of anything, which is perfectly fine in this case since I'm not sure what Johnson's aspirations for this movie are.

    Johnson previously directed "Return", another low-key drama with a…

  • How to Follow Strangers 2013

    ★★★★★ Watched 06 Apr, 2014

    If you want to see "Broad City" breakout star Ilana Glazer in a more serious role, then check out Chioke Nassor's rom-com with a melancholic streak, "How to Follow Strangers".

    A film about life, death, love and second chances, yes the film is a bit of a Debbie Downer at times but it's also surprisingly hopeful and uplifting as we follow Ellie (Glazer), a young divorced woman unhappy with her demeaning job who begins to spot Casey, an equally depressed…

  • Out of the Furnace 2013

    ★½ Watched 13 Mar, 2014

    Scott Cooper's "Out of the Furnace" is a wildly disappointing film that is as bleak and downbeat as the title may suggest, which isn't really a bad thing in general but when it comes to this movie, it's all in the (bad) execution, brah.

    There are good performances from a top-notch cast (Bale! Harrelson! Affleck! Dafoe! Whitaker! Saldana! Shepard!) but the movie lays flat and eventually goes out with a whimper.

    All these good-to-great actors give good-to-great performances in a…

  • Nymph()maniac: Vol. I 2013

    ★★★★★ Watched 08 Mar, 2014

    Quick disclaimer before my review of Lars Von Trier's "Nymphomaniac: Volume 1", which I watched last night: I'm a huge Von Trier fan. When it comes to his FILMS, I can kind of call myself a Von Trier apologist. I love his films, every one that I've seen: "Melancholia" was great, "The Idiots" was very good, "Dogville" and "Manderlay" are modern day classics and "Antichrist" was my #1 movie of that year so there you go. I love his films.…

  • The Wait 2013

    ★★★★★ Watched 25 Feb, 2014

    An enigmatic and daring second film from an increasingly more and more compelling up-and-coming auteur, M. Blash's "The Wait" is a dazzling masterwork.

    2 sisters (Chloe Sevigny and Jena Malone), their sexually confused teenage brother (Devon Gearhart) and Sevigny's lonely young daughter (Lana Green) are all trying to cope with the very recent death of the family matriarch. Sevigny gets a phone call from a "psychic" claiming the mom will be resurrected. Malone thinks Sevigny is crazy. Is she?

    All…

  • McCanick 2014

    ★★ Watched 20 Feb, 2014

    Josh C. Waller's police procedural film "McCanick" is notable for really only one reason: It features one of the last screen performances of the late Cory Monteith from "Glee".

    Other than that, it's a slow-moving character piece, mainly focused on Det. Eugene McCanick (David Morse), who is haunted by a case from his past involving a young hustler (Monteith, spending much of the movie wearing a horrendous wig).

    Though told by his Captain (Cirian Hinds, not even trying to hide…

  • The Broken Circle Breakdown 2012

    ★★★★★ Rewatched 18 Feb, 2014

    Andrew James' big complaint about "The Broken Circle Breakdown" was that the film was emotionally manipulative as hell. I'm not disagreeing. The film IS as emotionally manipulative as hell.

    However, that doesn't mean I don't feel it is a powerhouse of a film because Gosh darn it, it is.

    Yes, there are slight similarities (of varying degrees) to "Blue Valentine", "Walk the Line", "Once" and the series finale of "Mad About You" but that doesn't mean this heartbreaking tale of…

  • Holy Ghost People 2013

    ★★★★½ Watched 18 Feb, 2014

    "Holy Ghost People" is the latest film from Mitchell Altieri, one half of the iconic directing team known as "The Butcher Brothers". The film is an atmospheric thriller about a young drug addict (Emma Greenwell from "Shameless") who teams with a former marine (Brendan McCarthy, who looks a lot like John Hawkes) to track down her drug addled sister who away to join a religious cult run by the charismatic snake-loving pastor Brother Billy (Joe Egender, who is a dead…

  • Pollywogs 2013

    ★★★★ Rewatched 16 Feb, 2014

    Anyone who knows me knows I love Kate Lyn Sheil. The actress, currently seen in season 2 of "House of Cards" is one of my favorite actresses working today and I will see ANYTHING she is in. Well I just watched a movie with her called "Pollywogs" and it was pretty good but I had some problems with it as well.

    Karl Jacob (who also co-directed the film with T. Arthur Cottam) plays a dude named Dylan, who just recently…

  • 24 Exposures 2014

    ★★★★★ Watched 02 Feb, 2014

    "24 Exposures" is kind of like Joe Swanberg's David Fincher movie.

    Swanberg, one of my personal favorite directors returns to the subject matter (sorta) of his film "Autoerotic" (admittedly his worst film) as "24 Exposures" is an erotic thriller of sorts with Adam Wingard, Swanberg's "Autoerotic" co-director (and the director of "You're Next") playing Billy, a photographer who specializes in what he calls "personal fetish photos".

    Billy's life soon intertwines with that of the life of a depressed homicide detective…

  • Four 2013

    ★★★½ Watched 18 Jan, 2014

    Joshua Sanchez's acclaimed film "Four" is set on Fourth of July and is filled with Suburban American Ennui as it tracks a night in the life of 4 characters: a closeted gay man, his daughter, his teenage lover and the daughter's druggie kinda-boyfriend.

    Yes, the movie is quietly powerful and the great Wendell Pierce is wonderful here as the semi-predatory, closeted gay man. He gives a performance very different here than on his tv shows "The Wire", "Treme", "The Weber…

  • Intersections 2013

    ★★★ Watched 17 Jan, 2014

    David Marconi's "Collision" (aka. "Intersections") is another handsomely made production from Luc Besson's Europa Corp. that would be instantly forgettable if it weren't so.... Befuddling.

    Focusing on a newlywed couple on their honeymoon who cause a... well, collision, duh. The movie makes some weird choices including the use of one of my favorite songs ("This Year's Love" by David Gray) in a key scene. The song is great, of course, but even in an ironic way it doesn't fit in…