RSS feed for Joseph
  • Cake 2014

    ★★★ Watched 10 Jan, 2015

    For a second there, it seemed like we might all have to start referring to her as Academy Award nominee Jennifer Aniston, but those hopes, well hers anyway, were dashed away when she didn’t make the final cut when the nominations were announced. All the same, her persistent campaigning managed to snag her a few high profile accolades, as well as generate a lot of interest in the film itself, Cake. Naturally, I was curious to see what the fuss…

  • American Sniper 2014

    ★★★ Watched 17 Jan, 2015

    I will just get this out of the way upfront. I don’t care for Clint Eastwood movies most of the time. With the rare exception (LETTERS FROM IWO JIMA), I find his films to be painfully obvious and often times borderline offensive (CHANGELING). Some times, they are even overtly offensive (GRAN TORINO) and yet are passed off, and all too often interpreted, as these enlightened morality tales. All that said, Eastwood’s latest, AMERICAN SNIPER, is easily his best and most…

  • Inherent Vice 2014

    ★★★½ Watched 27 Dec, 2014

    As I sit down to write about Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest film, INHERENT VICE, I’m still not 100% certain that I have actually grasped what took place in the 148 minutes that make up this movie. I’m also not at all sure that this matters really, as it is undeniably a pretty groovy time all the same. And yes, I can say groovy in this case, because the whole thing takes place in the 70’s. I tried to follow the…

  • Still Alice 2014

    ★★★★½ Watched 13 Dec, 2014

    Watching STILL ALICE is like watching a horror movie unfold. Only it isn’t a horror movie. It is a simply told, effectively executed film about the deterioration of one woman’s mind. It is also an incredible showcase for one of the most talented and beautiful actresses working today, Julianne Moore. The only trouble with it is that it is so heartbreaking that it may be very difficult for viewers to get through.

    At no more than 50 years old, Dr.…

  • The Interview 2014

    ★★★ Watched 24 Dec, 2014

    Ah, THE INTERVIEW - an ill conceived, naive attempt at satire that could have possibly ended the world. It is almost impossible to see the film through any filter other than the one that marred the film in controversy in the weeks leading up to its release. On some levels, watching James Franco and Seth Rogen trample all over the North Korean government, delighting in their supposed subversiveness for our amusement, is actually, and surprisingly, amusing at times. That said,…

  • Unbroken 2014

    ★★★ Watched 17 Dec, 2014

    Perhaps drawing from the title of her second film, UNBROKEN, actress turned director, Angelina Jolie seems to believe that if something isn’t broken then there is no real reason to attempt fixing it. This is the only explanation I can think of for her taking an incredibly inspiring story of the strength of the human spirit and turning it into a contrived and conventional biopic. Olympic track star turned prisoner of war, Louis Zamperini’s life is an astounding one, and…

  • The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 2014

    ★★★½ Watched 18 Nov, 2014

    Make no mistake; the games are over and the war has officially begun. Well, the events leading up to the actual war between the districts and the Capital have started more or less; they’re saving the actual war for the finale. As a result, THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART 1 plays out like a prelude to a more monumental moment that is always just out of reach. And while it does leave you longing for more, which is partly the…

  • Interstellar 2014

    ★★★½ Watched 06 Nov, 2014

    I will begin by stating that INTERSTELLAR, Christopher Nolan’s latest science fiction opus, is a cinematic feast of epic proportion. It is nearly three hours of stunning visuals, often gripping action and sound and music unlike almost anything I’ve ever seen or heard before. On the one hand, it is a glorious film experience, something that Nolan is particularly skilled at crafting. On the other hand though, INTERSTELLAR is also an overinflated, plodding journey that is weighed down, not by…

  • Citizenfour 2014

    ★★★★½ Watched 05 Nov, 2014

    I’m not sure I feel all that comfortable writing this review. Having seen CITIZENFOUR, I now know that they’re watching me right now. They’re always watching. Well, they’re not watching me specifically, but they’re watching basically everybody all at once in a variety of different ways and they are therefore watching me by extension. Also, I essentially knew this already but was conveniently ignoring the larger implications of where unsupervised, worldwide surveillance can lead. In all fairness though, this is…

  • Big Hero 6 2014

    ★★★½ Watched 27 Oct, 2014

    In BIG HERO 6, a group of unexpected and unlikely characters come together to combine their powers and fight for justice in the world. Wait. Haven’t I seen this movie already in some variation or another already this year? (GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY?) I’m sure I’ve at least seen something similar to this in recent history. (THE AVENGERS? Any X-MEN movie?) Sure every one of these types of misfit superhero films adds its own distinct spin to the lore, and…

  • Dear White People 2014

    ★★★★ Watched 14 Oct, 2014

    Dear film goers, please stop whatever it is you’re doing and go see Dear White People, the delightful yet still insightful new film by first time feature filmmaker, Justin Simien. The winner of this year’s Special Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, Dear White People explores modern day racism at a predominantly white, Ivy League college in a supposedly post-racism America. Simien makes his very important point with style and wit to spare, and in doing so, announces himself…

  • Birdman 2014

    ★★★★★ Watched 02 Oct, 2014

    I will be the first to admit that I did not think BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE) would work at all when I first heard about it. An absurdist comedy from the man responsible for some of the most bleak, yet beautiful dramas I had ever seen (BABEL, BIUTIFUL) did not seem like a smart idea to me. Not only has Alejandro Gonzales Inarritu succeeded in his ambitious endeavour though, but he has actually made what is arguably…