Archive for June, 2012

Chicken And Egg Pictures, MBK Entertainment, Northstar Pictures,

Adepero Oduye, Pernell Walker, Aasha Davis, Charles Parnell, Sahra Mellesse, Kim Wayans, Shamika Cotton, Raymond Anthony Thomas, Stephanie Andujar

A Brooklyn teenaged girl named Alike (Adepero Oduye) is struggling to find her identity. She is attempting to find friendship, but is confused because she finds herself attracted to other girls. She really doesn’t fit in anywhere, neither in school, nor at home. This is a coming of age story of an urban girl with no one to guide or help her to figure out who she is and what she wants out of life.

I am not a homophobe. I have no problem at all with Alike’s sexual orientation. But I found this film very, very slow and boring, bordering on unwatchable. I tried hard to get into the story, but it was dreadful. Yes, this is an independent film, and though I’m not particularly against Indie films, I do sometimes find them to be very pretentious and quite boring. That was my problem with this one. I found my mind wandering to what’s for dinner, and whether or not I should water the lawn. When it was over, it was a pleasure to turn it off and move on to something more interesting.

This film tried to be edgy and dark, and to not pull punches, but it just didn’t work for me. There was no buildup, no conclusion, and really no point to the whole thing. I can’t recommend this film.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Lightstream Pictures, Waypoint Entertainment, The Third Mind Pictures,

Woody Harrelson, Ned Beatty, Francis Capra, Ben Foster, Anne Heche, Ice Cube, Brie Larson, Audra McDonald, Cynthia Nixon, Sigourney Weaver, Robert Wisdom, Robin Wright, Steve Buscemi, Jon Bernthal, Jon Foster, Stella Schnabel

David Brown (Woody Harrelson) is a cop from the infamous Rampart Division of Los Angeles. David is a dirty cop. But he’s a different kind of dirty cop. Very frustrated with the way the law works, he’s not above taking the law into his own hands a little bit and delivering a little self appointed justice out on the street. He’s got some really big character flaws. He’s definitely a racist, and doesn’t try at all to hide it. He’s very egotistical, a serious womanizer, for sure, and has a cruel streak a mile wide. But David is caught on tape delivering a sadistic beating on the victim of an auto crash and finds himself dragged into internal affairs for a closer look.

This film obviously was made to address the problem of racist or sadistic bad guy cops of the LAPD. But it’s not overly preachy or judgemental. I belive it tries to show fairly how a cop can find himself caught in this trap and I belive Woody’s character is not really able to see what’s wrong with what he did.

There are two problems. One is that like many pedophiles or perverts are drawn into certain professions which offer them easy access to vulnerable children, I think many cops are frustrated guys who had no power who are drawn the the badge which gives them the right to get away with murder without any risk of prosecution. The band of brothers protect each other, and they can take it out on vulnerable citizens who are literally afraid of them, and some are drawn to that power I suspect. Additionally it must be extremely frustrating to do your very best day after day to try to clean up the streets and watch the courts turn them back out to do the same thing again because of technicalities and crowded jails. They must constantly be bombarded with idiots who laugh and mock them because they aren’t afraid of being arrested because they know they’ll be back on the street in no time. It must be very tempting to try to teach a lesson to these arrogant jerks. So there are causes and effects that bring things like this to the force.

This film takes a look at that, and David’s frustration at being picked on for doing a good job makes this a pretty interesting film. What he did was not right, but we can kind of understand why he did it.
Woody does a great job of playing the dirty cop who thinks he’s right, and though he’s the star, the rest of the cast does a fine job as well. All in all it’s a little film, not a widely seen one, but one that might be worth another look. It is out of the way, but available on DVD now, and if you like a realistic cop film, this is definitely worth checking out.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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BBC Films, UK Film Council, Footprint Investment Fund,

Tilda Swinton, John C. Reilly, Ezra Miller, Jasper Newell, Rocky Duer, Ashley Gerasimovich, Siobhan Fallon, Alex Manette, Joseph Melendez

Kevin (Ezra Miller) has been a troubled child since he was a tiny baby. Worried that something was wrong, his Mother, Eva (Tilda Swinton) took him to specialists to see if he had a learning disability, but they found nothing. Kevin had a really mean streak that ran a mile wide. But mostly he took his rage out on his Mother and his little sister. Kevin suddenly turned into the model perfect child when Dad, Franklin (John C Reilly) was around, which wasn’t that often. So everyone looked at Eva as the problem. But as Kevin’s behavior became much more violent, Eva has to look closely to see how much she might be to blame for what happens.

This is a strange film. The whole thing is very done in a manner where we feel like we’re staring through a window into this very disturbed household. We get to see into Eva’s mind as she tries to deal with how to love this evil child. Then she has to deal with the abuse and disgust from the outside, the neighbors, her friends, but most of all her husbands attitude toward her. It seems there’s nothing that Eva can do to fix her unsolvable problems. It’s a very shocking and harsh story that doesn’t try to cover up the ugly life we’re watching. It pulls no punches, and as such is rather tough to stomach at times. It’s not for everyone. But if you have the nerve to sit through this, it’s certainly a story that will touch you and change your feelings forever. When terrible things happen, we always ask ourselves, “WHY?, WHY?, WHY?” Well that is probably not the right question as there often is no sense to these things. But perhaps this film will show you once and for all “HOW” it happens.

There was an old story about how to cook a frog. Being cold blooded, throwing a frog into a pot of boiling water was of no use as he would jump out immediately. But put a frog in a pot of cold water and slowly heat it degree by degree, and before you know it the frog is cooked without even realizing it. Probably not an accurate story, but the meaning is still valid. “How could the family let this happen?”
It doesn’t happen in one day. It’s little by little, step by step over a lifetime. Try as you might, you still try to convince yourself that the worst will not happen.

So if you have an interest in this really uncomfortable film, it may be something you will never forget. But remember that it is very harsh, and will definitely be uncomfortable from start to end.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Movie Rentals Releasing Tuesday June 26, 2012


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Pixar Animation Studios, Walt Disney Pictures,

Kelly Macdonald, Emma Thompson, Billy Connolly, Kevin McKidd, Craig Ferguson, Robbie Coltrane, Julie Walters, Eilidh Fraser, Sally Kinghom

Merida (Kelly Macdonald) is a Scottish princess who is more interested in hunting and archery than love, but time has come for her to be betrothed to the winner of the games between the princes of each of the clans. To avoid her fate, Merida runs away and meets a woodcarving witch who makes a deal with her to avoid her fate which changes everything, but not what she wanted at all.

This is another fantastic opening for a Pixar film, the 13th from the studio. At over 67 Million for opening weekend, it was a little bigger than the last one, Cars 2. Some people were a little underwhelmed with the story, but apparently most of the moviegoing public was impressed. Or perhaps it’s just because it’s a Pixar film. Personally, I thought it wasn’t the absolute strongest story, but it was refreshing new. There were some really fun characters that invoked laughs every time words came out of their mouths. The family was very well defined, with the struggles between the daughter and the mother that every mother or daughter can identify with. The struggle of the father to be head of the clan while servant of the queen is also humorous. All in all the story was very refreshing as it’s based on Scottish legends and magic and was something out of the ordinary. The critics that I have seen seemed to either be rating the trailer, or they must have missed some of the story.

We attended with all the Goettman’s, 20 of us ranging from two years old up to sixty, and as far as I could tell every one of us really had a good time. Even the little ones were caught up in the story, while the older ones tried hard not to shed a tear or two. Pixar’s been good at that
lately (think Toy Story 3), and it was a really fun evening at the big screen! I highly recommend this film as one the entire family is going to love and enjoy. Another great job by the Pixar folk.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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