RSS feed for Rocco
  • Spotlight

    Spotlight 2015

    ★★★★ Watched 24 Nov, 2015

    Spotlight is a haunting procedural that actually reminded me a lot of True Detective in tone. There's something about the scope and the darkness of the subject matter that gave me the same feeling of uneasiness.

    Spotlight has plenty of strengths. The research that went into it, the Howard Shore score, McCarthy's quiet direction that allows the actors to carry the film, and of course the actors themselves.

    McAdams, Tucci, Keaton, Shreiber, and James are all quite good, but it…

  • Hopscotch

    Hopscotch 1980

    ★★★½ Watched 23 Nov, 2015

    Walter Matthau once again shows why he's so beloved and his exchanges with Ned Beatty, Sam Waterston, and especially Glenda Jackson are memorable and often hilarious.

    While it isn't the most visually exciting or thrilling spy film, it has heart and great characters. The opera motif serves as both a great musical backdrop and the perfect symbolism for just how good Matthau's character is at what he does; he alludes everyone with such grace.

    Downside is that I watched it…

  • The Night Before

    The Night Before 2015

    ★★★★½ Watched 22 Nov, 2015

    Laugh-out-loud funny throughout, the right amount of cheese-factor, plenty of not-quite-Hallmarky heart, hyphen-inspiring qualities; The Night Before is probably my favorite "Christmas" movie since Elf.

    While Christmas is hardly a genre at all, there are surprisingly few movies that actually try and succeed to represent the holiday and actually entertain people. Sure, you remember the good ones, but what about the hundreds that NO ONE talks about? It's a risky (and, admittedly, financially viable) move to set your comedy during…

  • John Mulaney: The Comeback Kid

    John Mulaney: The Comeback Kid 2015

    ★★★★½ Watched 13 Nov, 2015

    I had the pleasure of taking my dad to see him live on this tour, on one of the shows before Chicago. So I actually got to see most of this set, already edited down to the greatness that it is in the special. It was like hearing a great song for the second time, though. It heightened the funny and the few jokes that were new to me were even better.

    3 for 3 with excellent stand up specials. Hope he keeps going forever.

  • Hunger

    Hunger 2008

    ★★★★ Watched 18 Nov, 2015

    Something that's going to take a while to digest.

    Of course, immediately, you realize that this is a debut film from director Steve McQueen (Shame, 12 Years a Slave) and that it is one of the most impressive debuts ever for a filmmaker. On a technical level, there is nothing to think about, it's exceptional. And that's not even the best part of the film.

    Fassbender is so good. I'm a fanboy, but I doubt anyone can seriously try to…

  • Louis Prima: The Wildest!

    Louis Prima: The Wildest!

    ★★★ Watched 14 Nov, 2015

    If you've scoured the internet for live Louis Prima performances, you've seen more than half of this movie already.

    As a documentary it's below average, but as a concert film (just take out the "he's THE GREATEST EVER PERFORMER IN HISTORY" interviews) it's very good.

    For fans of Prima or that style of music only. The fact that the whole thing is on Youtube and doesn't seem to be going anywhere makes it an easier recommendation.

  • Trojan War

    Trojan War 2015

    ★½ Watched 16 Nov, 2015 6

    Another masturbatory, bullet-point, dynasty-based sports doc with little to no focus that documents the supposed "rise and fall" of the GREATEST [LEVEL OF PLAY] [SPORT] TEAM OF ALL TIME!

    Maybe it was less interesting because I already knew the whole story (this is when I was at the peak of my college football fandom) and am sort of indifferent on the whole story. I was a big Notre Dame fan when USC was the best team in the world, so…

  • Black Sabbath

    Black Sabbath 1963

    Watched 12 Nov, 2015


    Was watching it on Mubi and then got a phone call and then it was expired. Serves me right for waiting.

    Anyway, the first story had a couple of awesome shots and I loved the Karloff intro, but it was basically just the beginning of Scream. Obviously this came long before Scream (and no doubt influenced Craven in some capacity), but it's hard to see past films you have already watched.

    No rating until I finish the film.

  • The Peanuts Movie

    The Peanuts Movie 2015

    ★★★★½ Watched 09 Nov, 2015

    Blue Sky has outdone themselves (not that hard, if I'm being honest) by making the exact Peanuts Movie that they should have made. They've somehow managed to capture the same innocent Americana that I thought was gone forever in an age where "children's" are either toy commercials or actually for the adults (Pixar). Sure, plenty of Peanuts fans will see it, as they should, but this is a kids movie. They could have made The Aliens Are Here, Charlie Brown…

  • Spectre

    Spectre 2015

    ★★★ Watched 09 Nov, 2015

    Either there was a lot less product placement in this one (the watch being the only glaring example for me), or they've truly perfected it. What they haven't perfected, however, is making an original film that doesn't drag in the middle.

    Others have said it, but Bond somehow managed to finish outside of the top three this year in a genre it basically created.

  • Forbidden Zone

    Forbidden Zone 1980

    ★★★ Watched 09 Nov, 2015

    The kind of movie I'm so happy to have watched, even though I'm certain I will never feel the need to see it again.

    Forbidden Zone is absolutely worthy of its cult status and you can just imagine Tim and Eric seeing this and the light bulbs going off in their heads (that's purely a guess, but boy did this remind me of their stuff).

  • Samba

    Samba 2014

    ★★★ Watched 09 Nov, 2015

    Spotted: Charlotte Gainsbourg in a movie where her character actually enjoys herself. What do I win?

    Samba (Omar Sy) is a dishwasher who wants to be a cook, living in France as an illegal immigrant and sending money back to his family. When he attempts to apply for working papers, he is put in jail. Alice (Charlotte Gainsbourg) is on sick leave and doing charity work helping people in the same situation as Samba (her first client). Basically it's like…