Author Archives: ochippie

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Movie Trailer – Motherless Brooklyn

Category : Movie Trailer

Director: Edward Norton

Starring: Edward Norton, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Bruce Willis

Release: November 1st, 2019

I was just thinking about Ed Norton, it was his birthday, and I said into the void that he’s one of the best actors we’ve ever seen, a transcendent talent like few others, and we’re lucky to have him.  Case in point; this movie, which is gonna be huge.  He played around with a character like this in The Score, it worked well then, he knows how not to take it over the top into insulting territory, and it’ll work again here.  Oscar for Edward?  Maybe.  He’s only directed one other time, Keeping the Faith in 2000, but he’s collected a great cast for this time around, which I think could work out well: Willem Dafoe, Alec Baldwin, Michael Kenneth Williams, Bobby Cannavale.  I’m definitely looking forward to this.


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Movie Trailer – Queen & Slim

Category : Movie Trailer

Director: Melina Matsoukas

Starring: Jodie Turner-Smith, Daniel Kaluuya

Release: November 27th, 2019

This looks like a cool experiment, but not a film that’s strong enough to push its way into the real conversation.  The message, Kaluuya, some unique qualities; I support all that.  But as a movie, I just can’t imagine enjoying watching what I think is going to be an amateur attempt to say something powerful.


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Movie Trailer – The Report

Category : Movie Trailer

Director: Scott Z. Burns

Starring: Adam Driver

Release: November 15th, 2019

An Adam Driver-driven Spotlight, but what’s so bad about that?  He’s amazing, that movie was great, this is an important topic, and we’ll be talking about this film come Oscar season.  The director is more a writer, and the cast is only OK: Corey Stall, Jon Hamm, Annette Bening, Maura Tierney, Michael C. Hall, Tim Blake Nelson.  So we’ll see, but let’s hope.


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Movie Review – Good Boys

Category : Movie Review

Director: Gene Stupnitsky

Starring: Jacob Tremblay, Brady Noon, Keith L. Williams

Year: 2019

Luckily Good Boys is raunchy without being creepy, think Superbad about a younger group, if not for a younger audience.  I was worried that the sexual humor surrounding minors would just feel icky, like they were going to be trying to have sex with everyone and I was going to feel uncomfortable.  But that’s not the way the story went, and I’m glad.  The most inappropriate thing the film could be accused of pushing tweens to do is run across an interstate; I honestly thought that scene was unnecessary and irresponsible, which is, I’m sure, how many people view the movie in general.  Not me though; I found it humorous and heart-heavy, with enough restraint to appease the moms & dads in the audience who didn’t want to be pushed too far.  Don’t get me wrong; Good Boys is still very bad, very dirty, isn’t out to toe the line, but it also never goes too far, and lands well at the end to general applause.

Max, Thor, and Lucas make up the Beanbag Boys, a trio of friends who have been together since kindergarten and have just started 6th grade.  They want to be cool more than anything, to be liked and fit in and seen as teenagers, but life’s not easy for a prepubescent who still needs permission to stay up past 8:30.  Max really wants to go to a kissing party where he’ll finally have a chance to show Brixlee how much he likes her, but he’s nervous because he’s never kissed a girl before.  So he and his buds use his dad’s drone, which he’s not allowed to touch, to spy on a neighbor, who just broke up with her boyfriend, with the hope of seeing her kiss someone.  But when she takes their drone and the boys accidentally take her drugs, they come to an immature impasse that can’t be steered easily.  Get the drone, return the drugs, kiss the girl, don’t abandon your friends; 6th grade is going to be lit.

This isn’t something you watch with your parents, but the sexual aspects of Good Boys could have been so much more uncomfortable.  Mostly the kids were generally/hilariously confused and misinformed, maneuvering their budding curiosities with an attitude that was still completely innocent and unaware.  But we get to see it, we understand it, we know what they’re holding that they think is a beaded necklace that smells bad, so don’t think we’re off the hook, we’re still made to feel grossed out and that what we’re watching is 100% wrong, but that’s all part of the fun.  We’re adults, we can take it, and I don’t think the kids were overly sexualized, that’s what I’m saying; the story let them be innocent and sweet (for the most part) and allowed us to find it hilarious that they were so in over their heads.

Jacob Tremblay played that part perfectly, the cool, good-looking kid who is still just nice, hasn’t discovered how to be a total jerk just yet, and is simply trying to figure out how to talk to girls.  Brady Noon was a great sidekick, willing to push the envelope but still looking out for his buddies, helping them out when times got tough.  Keith L. Williams was, unfortunately, terrible, though his character was solid; he’s just not a natural actor.  I watched him in Last Man on Earth and he didn’t talk, which is probably the way he should be highlighted.  I liked how the boys were always trying to treat girls nicely, even though they thought feminism was a negative word; good intentions balanced with stupid mistakes, that’s my overall takeaway from Max, Thor, and Lucas, which made me like them all the more.  And there’s heart at the end, that was pretty surprising, how much of a life lesson we could get out of a comedy that was this heavy-handed in the dildo department, and how much we would feel at the end as the boys began to understand that their paths might be splitting.  Gene Stupnitsky’s directorial debut is a success, as audiences are thrown right in to this fictional world and simply urged to follow along with three kids on their adventure, laughing and cringing in turn, but ultimately leaving with a smile.

My rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

 

 


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Movie Trailer – The Kill Team

Category : Movie Trailer

Director: Dan Krauss

Starring: Nat Wolff, Alexander Skarsgard

Release: October 25th, 2019

I like the theme of this movie, but I don’t think the execution will be quite as good.  The idea, the thriller concept, the war, all that is solid, and I’m curious to see how it all plays out.  But the production seems recycled, and I’m not sure the acting will be enough to pull the film along when the going gets tough.  Wolff is …OK, but Skarsgard is terrible; I’ve seen too much of him and it’s never good.  I think I’m gonna pass.


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Movie Trailer – Bombshell

Category : Movie Trailer

Director: Jay Roach

Starring: Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman, Margot Robbie

Release: December 2oth, 2019

I’ve gotta say; I’m not too interested.  This trio is impressive, I’m gonna watch just to see them together, and the rest of the cast isn’t bad either: Alice Eve, Kate McKinnon, Stephen Root, Connie Britton, Allison Janney, Madeline Zima, Ashley Greene, John Lithgow, Malcolm McDowell, Mark Duplass.  But I have absolutely no room for empathy for anyone even remotely connected to Fox News, and I’m not sure I care to watch a scandal involving Ailes unfold.  I hope he was appropriately punished for what he did and I never want to talk about that evil man ever again.


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Sports – 2019 Fantasy Football: TEs, Ks, & DEFs

Category : Sports

With the preseason beginning and many fantasy drafts planned for the next few weekends, it’s time to prep for your 2019 Fantasy Football team. Here is my advice/predictions as it relates to tight ends, kickers, and defenses:

TEs

  • Obviously, the other skill positions are the sexier in fantasy football, but having an elite (or at least solid) tight end can be the difference between a championship and a consolation prize.  One year I won the league because Jason Witten threw a touchdown, no joke, it happens, so don’t forget about this position come draft day.  Travis Kelce is the undisputed #1 TE and the only one that should be drafted at all high.  The Chiefs will score, he’ll be the recipient often, and you should try to pair him with Mahomes if you can, that would be pleasant.  After Kelce, the Tier Two guys can sure help, but aren’t worth a reach: Ertz, Kittle, Henry, Howard, Cook.  I really like Cook with his new team and I think Drew Brees will throw to him a lot; he won’t put up Jimmy Graham In New Orleans numbers, but he could still help your team immensely.  If you don’t get someone from those groups, try your luck at the next bunch of serviceable options: Engram, Rudolph, Ebron, Walker, McDonald, Njoku.  Greg Olsen & Jimmy Graham have become a little old & unreliable, so avoid those guys unless you want to take a chance at having them as backup in case they still have some surprises left.

Ks

  • Again, pulling from personal experience, a kicker has saved my bacon more than once, and Justin Tucker has turned my mediocrity into a championship a few times.  I’ve had him five or six years in a row now, in my book he’s the absolute best, and I wouldn’t pick any kicker over him.  Still, there are some guys who are projected to score more points: Zuerlein, Butker, maybe Lutz.  You can’t go wrong with that first tier, and those guys could really make a huge difference, so don’t wait too long to get your franchise kicker.  The next tier you can wait a while for: Fairbairn, Gostkowski, Maher.  These are solid, week-in-week-out kickers, so don’t be afraid to pull the trigger.  After that, wait till your final pick to choose anyone else: Badgely, Crosby, Gould, Elliott, Vinatieri, Prater, Tavecchio, Succop.  Just don’t undervalue the position; it’s more important that most amateurs would think.  Nab a great kicker before anyone else has even thought about it, and rest easy the rest of the season knowing that you have guaranteed points for every matchup.

DEFs

  • Defense seems to be a position that can be picked up in free agency later in the season, but the flip side philosophy is to be the first team to select one, that way you get the absolute best.  Chicago is at the top of the list, then Jacksonville, Minnesota, LAC, & NE.  Get one of those teams before other people think about defenses and you’ll be set for the season.  Otherwise, you can wait a while or even simply pick one up in free agency after teams show their true colors.  Still, there is a solid group after the first tier, and they are worth consideration.  Baltimore, Tennessee, New Orleans, LAR; can’t go wrong with those solid teams, they will (probably) not let you down.  After that, the third group might be the last to really even consider: Buffalo, Denver, Houston, Philadelphia.  The other teams just pick who you like and hope for the best, replacing them as you need.  Defenses shift in power throughout the year, so keep an eye on the waiver wire.


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Movie Trailer – Ready or Not

Category : Movie Trailer

Director: Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, Tyler Gillett

Starring: Samara Weaving, Mark O’Brien, Adam Brody

Release: August 21st, 2019

What the legitimate fuck?  But I kinda want to find out.


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Movie Trailer – Marriage Story

Category : Movie Trailer

Director: Noah Baumbach

Starring: Scarlett Johansson, Adam Driver

Release: September, 2019

I like Baumback, Johansson, and Driver, a lot, but I’m worried that this movie will go in an Eleanor Rigby direction, which is definitely not what I want.  As long as it steers clear of being too “experimental”, I think we’ll have a solid film on our hands; how could we not with the talent of this team.


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Movie Review – Miller’s Crossing

Category : Movie Review

Director: The Coen Brothers

Starring: Gabriel Byrne, Marcia Gay Harden, Albert Finney

Year: 1990

If I hadn’t known this was a Coen Bros. film coming in, I might have been able to guess it by the mood and the actors, but I might not have been able to believe myself, since the overall product is so much worse than I have ever seen from the incomparable pair.  I’ve said before that there is an entire period of early Coen that doesn’t rank anywhere near the next period, which is their absolute best, but I always liked those amateurish films anyway, because they carry a patented feel that you can tell is just blossoming into something that you know will be great in the future.  But Miller’s Crossing, although still signature, simply feels like a mistake, without the saving grace of inherent genius that bolsters some of the other lesser Coen flicks, and it will probably hold its place at the bottom of this finite list until I someday see The Ladykillers.

The Irish mob controls the police, the Italian mob controls the gambling, the Jews fit somewhere in between, and the groups somehow hold a fragile alliance, as long as no one oversteps his allowable greed.  When Johnny Caspar comes to Leo and asks him to whack Bernie, business should conduct as usual, and Leo’s right hand man Tom OKs the hit, but Leo can’t allow it, because he’s sleeping with Bernie’s sister Verna, and secretly so is Tom.  So now the Italians are mad at the Irish because they won’t kill the Jew, and war erupts between the mobsters, the police in the middle and helping both sides.  Tom is torn between his loyalty to Leo, his desire to do business with Johnny, and his attraction to Verna; a fine pickle he finds himself in, which he made for himself, and from which a can’t easily find a way out.

The first problem in the casting; Byrne and Harden just aren’t good actors.  They’re asked to run the show and they simply can’t; the film fails because it couldn’t fall on their shoulders.  The rest of the cast is solid: Albert Finney, John Turturro, Jon Polito, Steve Buscemi, Michael Badalucco, Frances McDormund, some of which often pop up in Coen Bros. films.  But none of them had big enough parts, and so the worst actors got the most lines, and that’s not How To Make A Good Movie.  The Prohibition-era action was overdone, it always felt fake, the cinematography and music were nice, but they weren’t nearly enough, and the entire thing felt like an experiment rather than a polished gem.  We all know these geniuses would go on to make some of the best art we’ve ever seen; this just isn’t it yet, it’s a growing pain, and really doesn’t deserve much attention.

My rating: ☆ ☆