1/26/2014

Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers: Runnin' Down A Dream (2007) ****1/2

Movie Matters Podcast: Movie Matters #23 - Halloween Special IV

After an unavoidable hiatus, the Movie Matters podcast returns, better late than never, for its fourth annual Halloween special. Joining co-hosts Lee Howard and Michael Mackenzie once again is special guest Daniel Sardella. The trio look at an eclectic line-up of frightful festivities, starting with Michael Stephenson's 2012 Halloween Documentary THE AMERICAN SCREAM before going on to explore Stuart Gordon's 1986 cult classic FROM BEYOND and ending with Rob Zombie's controversial 2012 tale of demonic possession THE LORDS OF SALEM. Also discussed are Halloween traditions and viewing habits, as well as a rundown of recent horror-themed Blu-ray releases of note.

Created by Lee Howard & Michael Mackenzie
Edited by Michael Mackenzie
Music and audio editing by Lee Howard
Featuring music from HALLOWEEN III: SEASON OF THE WITCH (John Carpenter and Alan Howarth), FROM BEYOND (Richard Band), HALLOWEEN and HALLOWEEN II (John Carpenter), and THE LORDS OF SALEM (John 5 and Griffin Boice)



Links for reference:

Jim Thompson 'The Grifters' (1963) ****1/2

My first Thompson novel and I loved it. It actually made me appreciate the film even more because it pretty much follows the book to a T.

1/18/2014

Intolerance (1916) **1/2

This is significant mainly for its influence and place in cinema history - advances in narrative structure, multiple simultaneous timelines, extravagant set pieces, camera work, etc. Otherwise, it's overlong, boring and largely forgettable. I believe this is the oldest film I've ever watched - nearly 100 years old!

Media Meltdown Podcast: Focus On Film - Annual Episode 1: Top 5 Criterion Releases Of 2013

Focus On Film Annual Episode 1 is up!
Download the MP3 here.
Don't forget to subscribe to Media Meltdown Podcast on iTunes.

In this episode:
  • Criterion New Year's Drawing
  • Top 5 Criterion Releases of 2013
  • "2nd Run" (Runners-Up) Criterion Releases of 2013

"Focus On Film Theme"Daniel Sardella

1/17/2014

Nashville (1975) **

Wow. Very letdown by this one. Long, slow, don't really see the point. The ending had some impact, but after being bored for the majority of the film, it felt like too little, too late. The worst film on the AFI Top 100 that I've seen that I can recall. Out of the 3 Altman films I've seen I'll take POPEYE any day.

1/08/2014

Manborg (2011) ****


Also, Bio-Cop (2012) ****1/2 


Happy 3rd Birthday, Blog!

My blog is 3 years old today!

Continuing the usual trend, here's how many films I've watched:

2005 - 339 (that's a lot of films!)
2006 - 369 (wow, more films than days in the year!!)
2007 - 274 (quite the jump down!)
2008 - 270 (very similar to 2007)
2009 - 234 (steadily declining)
2010 - 188 (whoa, BIG drop)
2011 - 236 (back up from 2010 and on par with 2009
2012 - 253 (steadily climbing back up!)
2013 - 352 (damn, 2nd most, after 2006, since I started keeping track and almost 100 more than last year!)

1/05/2014

Top Albums Of 2013

1.   David Bowie The Next Day *****
2.   Placebo Loud Like Love ****1/2
3.   Snowden No One In Control ****1/2
4.   David Lynch The Big Dream ****1/2
5.   Goldfrapp Tales Of Us ****1/2
6.   Queens Of The Stone Age ...Like Clockwork ****
7.   Kavinsky Outrun ****
8.   Boards Of Canada Tomorrow's Harvest ****
9.   The Octopus Project Fever Forms ****
10. Nine Inch Nails Hesitation Marks ***1/2

Top Films Of 2013

1.   The Wolf Of Wall Street *****
2.   Only God Forgives *****
3.   The Place Beyond The Pines (2012) ****1/2
4.   Her ****1/2
5.   David Bowie: Five Years ****1/2
6.   Stoker ****
7.   Spring Breakers ****
8.   Inside Llewyn Davis ****
9.   The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty ****
10. Behind The Candelabra ****
11. Antiviral (2012) ****
12. Zero Dark Thirty (2012) ****
13. Mud ****
14. The Counselor ***1/2
15. Wrong (2012) ***1/2
16. Side Effects ***1/2
17. American Hustle ***1/2
18. The World's End ***1/2
19. Maniac (2012) ***1/2
20. Kiss Of The Damned (2012) ***1/2

Honorable Mentions

1.   Passion (2012) ***1/2
2.   The ABCs Of Death ***1/2
3.   The Wolverine ***1/2

Biggest Disappointment

Man Of Steel **

Worst Film

Texas Chainsaw 3D *1/2

Mary Poppins (1964) ****1/2

Akira (1988) ****1/2

1/04/2014

Her (2013) ****1/2

Really, really impressed with this one, taking a "ridiculous" premise and somehow making it work. Can't wait to see it again.

I especially liked the piano pieces by Owen Pallett, which reminded me a bit of Erik Satie and while I'm not familiar or a fan of Arcade Fire (just never bothered getting into them), their work on the score, which was reminiscent of The Album Leaf, was also very good. Unless that was also Pallett (I'm not entirely sure).

Inside Llewyn Davis (2013) ****

Well, I was happily surprised by this one. I am a HUGE Coen Bros. fan and they've only made one giant misstep, which I won't name, and one film (their last one before this) that I think is good, but nowhere so as the general population, in a career of astounding films.

The trailer for ILD did virtually nothing for me and I have to admit to not being a very big folk music fan. So my excitement level was low. I was worried that their trademark humor and style might be somewhat absent and that the film could become a culprit of "feel gooditis" (I think I should trademark that).

Boy, was I wrong. This definitely has the Coen stamp and while it may be slightly less so than I would prefer, I really can't complain. Excellent flick.