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  • Elves 1989

    ★★★★ Watched 16 Dec, 2014

    Holy crap, this movie. They should have called it ELF, since there is only one of the titular monsters.

    Anyway. Grizzly Adams smokes about 100 cigarettes while some Elf tries to impregnate a virgin, or something.

    This movie is goddamn nuts. The dialogue must be heard to be believed.

    I want to watch this again with a packed room of friends, like, tonight.

    Must-see for low-grade shlock fans. Elves gives Troll II a serious run for its money, that's for sure.

  • The Ides of March 2011

    ★★★½ Watched 14 Dec, 2014

    Strong performances from an insanely stacked cast, slick direction and scripting from Clooney makes The Ides of March perfect cinematic comfort food.

    A morality tale that packs quite a bit of drive into a wholly political plot; you could do much worse when it comes to politics thrillers than this. It all could have felt stagnant and uneven, but the result is an immensely watchable and engaging flick.

  • Inherent Vice 2014

    ★★★½ Watched 13 Dec, 2014

    I'll have to see this one again to really work through my feelings on it - sheesh.

    My girlfriend - upon exiting - pretty much nailed it when she said "Well, that made me FEEL stoned."

  • The One I Love 2014

    ★★★½ Watched 14 Dec, 2014

    The One I Love is a breezy and funny high-concept comedic-romantic pic starring Mark Duplass and Elisabeth Moss.

    Gets bonus points for executing this ambitious concept on such a low-scale, more intimate setting - and sticks the whole thing into a better overall package than Safety Not Guaranteed, if you ask me.

    It still may be just a few steps shy of true greatness, but it's perfect weekend -Netflix fodder and I definitely dug it quite a bit.

  • Mr. Turner 2014

    ★★★ Watched 11 Dec, 2014

    I don't even know where to begin here - Mike Leigh's latest film, Mr. Turner is 150 minutes long, and boy does it feel like it. Which isn't to say that the film has pacing problems, or feels uneven, but it is certainly a languid motion picture to say the least.

    The film is stunningly framed - juxtapositions between Turner's work and the cinematography abound; It's gorgeous to look at. Performances are all great, and yes Timothy Spall in particular…

  • Big Hero 6 2014

    ★★★½ Watched 08 Dec, 2014

    Big Hero 6 is a thoroughly formulaic Disney pic, buoyed by some absolutely wonderful visual moments, and the unbelievably charismatic Baymax.

    TJ Miller steals the non-Baymax show as goof-stoner-bro Fred, and the rest of the crew are certainly likable and carry a camaraderie that makes the film a breeze to sit through. The villain has a nice weapon-based hook that feels fairly fresh - though his motives add to the formulaic feeling of the whole thing.

    Basically, I would have…

  • Parents 1989

    ★★★★ Watched 01 Dec, 2014

    Bob Balaban's darkly comedic, head-trippingly artful horror pic Parents is deserving of a Criterion blu-ray release, if you ask me.

    Unjustly criticized at the time for tonal inconsistencies, Parents is a great example of a low budget film (here released by Vestron) can aim for a feeling rather than dolling out plot points to hand-hold you along through the picture. The film takes coming-of-age elements and twists them into horrific dream imagery, while still being deadpan, hilarious and acted with…

  • The Iron Giant 1999

    ★★★★★ Rewatched 30 Nov, 2014 2

    This movie plays me like a goddamn fiddle.

    The only thing that stopped me from a full-on, body heaving cry in front of my Girlfriend, was the fact my computer froze a minute before "Superman" and I had a moment to compose myself.

    Easily ranks as one of my favourite movies - animated or otherwise - of all time.

  • James and the Giant Peach 1996

    ★★★★ Watched 29 Nov, 2014

    James and the Giant Peach is better than A Nightmare Before Christmas.

    The songs take some getting used to (and aren't quite as earworm-worthy), but aside from this, I find it a much more interesting picture in pretty much every other way.

  • Prehysteria! 1993

    ★★½ Rewatched 29 Nov, 2014

    Prehysteria! - from Charles Band's family themed Full Moon offshoot Moonbeam - was a hit on video,thanks to his continuing relationship with Paramount (this was before it all went sour). Directed with his father, the film is an average blender-flick, taking a bunch of popular genre elements and pulsing on high.

    The creature effects are fair, with some nice stop motion cropping up from time to time.

    As always with these types of films (see: Munchie), there's a scenery-chewing comedic…

  • The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 2014

    ★★★ Watched 24 Nov, 2014

    As the first film to not have the games as a central framing device for the narrative (with tension ramping up to the games leading to a climactic finale), it's no wonder I've been hearing rumblings about how this film is "slow", "boring", etc.

    That said, as someone who has not read the books, I didn't find the first two-thirds of Mockingjay - Part I to be all that slow - or boring for that matter. Most scenes all contain…

  • Words and Pictures 2013

    ★★ Watched 23 Nov, 2014

    A fun but gimmicky set-up (it's english teach vs. art teach in a battle between which is more important: literature or art?) leads to a thoroughly uneven romantic comedy with moments of shining wit and tone-deaf bluntness.

    The central romance just doesn't really click when it finally happens, but the lead-up can be entertaining stuff. Plenty of head-shakingly lame teen-speak moments, and a final act that is really dreadful. It's also a bit too long. It's unfortunate, as there's a neat concept and a decent time-passer buried in here, but it's all just too muddled to fully work.