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Thursday, October 30, 2014

5 November Gems On Netflix

Gigolos, strippers and bunny-burners. Netflix, worth the price for House of Cards alone, has some hidden gems this month that makes its $8 a month price totally ten-buck-worthy.

 Snowpiercer (Available November 22)

This visual stunner is one of the most critically acclaimed movies from this summer, it currently has a 95% score on Rotten Tomatoes’ site and it has a shot at nominations for this year’s Oscars. With stars Chris Evans (Captain America) and a memorable turn by Tilda Swinton, it’s certainly worth the ride.

Fatal Attraction  (Available November 1)

If you’ve recently gone crazy over Gone Girl, scare up another good time with this original potboiler thriller from 1987.


Nebraska (Available November 8)

This black and white film from January has some of the most colorful movie characters of the year. Director Alexander Payne (Sideways, The Descendants) takes the audience to small town Missouri and Nebraska for a big treat.

Chelsea Peretti: One of the Greats (Available November 14)

Comedian Chelsea Peretti’s (Brooklyn Nine-Nine) stand-up special will arrive just in time for some mid-November laughs.

Fading Gigolo (Available November 5)

John Turturro’s comedy from last May has many of the charms of a Woody Allen film: a great jazz soundtrack, the enchantment of New York and a relaxed, funny neurotic performance by Allen. If the women had been given smarter roles, this would have been a modern Moonstruck, but it still works as an amusing rental.

The ten buck review: Worth ten bucks.

La Bare (Available November 14)

Ladies, if John Turturro doesn’t fit your idea of a gigolo, try Joe Manganiello's well-reviewed documentary. I skipped this one in the theater, but this doc about the backstage lives of Dallas bimbos will be extra fun for Dallasites looking for people they know.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

St. Vincent

Bill Murrey Oscar Golden Globe Oscar
About St. Vincent And A Boy

There’s a scene in St. Vincent where Bill Murray’s character Vincent (Vin) parks his car into his driveway by driving it backwards. I’ve always wondered what the advantage is for those people who hold up traffic for this rather difficult way to park, but this scene tells you everything about the main character. He has a really difficult way to do everything.

Vin is a curmudgeonly alcoholic gambling slob whose life is going backwards for all kinds of reasons. Enter neighbor and single mom Maggie (Melissa McCarthy) and her son that discovers that the sarcastic Vin has a heart of gold. This is not exactly an original screenplay; I think it plays every week on TV’s About A Boy, but Murray and McCarthy’s on-screen charm are crowd-pleasers for sure.

Simply put: Predictable but amusing. A good film choice if you’d like to put a happy note on the end of a crappy day.

Award potential: Murray has some chances to tug at your heart as a true actor. Golden Globe’s comedy category should notice. Oscar won’t.

The ten buck review: Worth ten bucks. Barely.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Gone Girl

Gone Girl review
Fincher elevates an airport bestseller to the year’s creepiest thriller.

Master director David Fincher (Seven, Fight Club, The Social Network) tackles Gillian Flynn’s popular page-turner and you get what you’d expect — a masterfully produced film that is thrilling and entertaining but not too important or thought provoking.

The film explores the media’s obsession with good families gone bad (yawn) and asks the question, “do we really know our loved ones?” (interesting). More effectively, it explores a simpler question: “Did Nick Dunne kill his wife?” (now you got me).

The cast is great. Mr. Affleck shows an emotionally exposed side we rarely see…and yes, his penis. Rosumund Pike (An Education, Pride and Prejudice) has her breakout role. And Emily Ratajkowski (Blurred Lines video) shows us that she should just dance.

The book and the movie both suffer from an ending that’s hardly satisfying, but getting there is the thrill of Gone Girl; I enjoyed both.

Simply put: You’ll be on the edge of your seat for two and a half hours. You’ll discuss it for the next hour. You’ll forget it by next week.

Award potential: It will be discussed in the fall as an Oscar contender, but ultimately it’s just a well-crafted thriller and will be mostly forgotten by Academy Award time.

The ten buck review: Worth ten bucks.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

5 October Gems On Netflix

Netflix, worth the price for House of Cards alone, has some hidden gems this month that makes its $8 a month price totally ten-buck-worthy.

The Trip (2010)

If you saw the trailer for The Trip To Italy, in theaters now, you may not have realized it’s a sequel. The Trip features Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon on a tour country's finest restaurants and it’s the perfect appetizer to the new film.

Joan Rivers: A Piece Of Work (2010)
Can we still talk about Joan Rivers? Absolutely. This top shelf documentary follows the life and career of Joan Rivers, made when the comedienne was 75 years old. You’ll laugh for sure, but you’ll also get an honest glimpse into the real life of a comedian and be surprisingly impressed by the hardworking Rivers. It was worth ten bucks in the theater.

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013)
This year proves you can’t see too much of J-Law. This flick is the perfectly refresher before going to see The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 in theaters on November 21 (Catching Fire available on Netflix on October 22)

Jimi Hendrix: Hear My Train A Comin’ (2013)

If you went to see Jimi: All Is By My Side in theaters this week, you were probably disappointed that the filmmakers were unable to secure rights to any of his original songs. Get your fix with this rockin’ documentary that uses previously unseen performance footage, and his songs, to provide insight into the life of this legend.

Don Jon (2013)

This was a poor choice for a date night movie, but it’s pretty darn funny at home. It definitely needed a better climax, but most of this film is enjoyable thanks to director/actor Joseph Gordon-LevittScarlett Johansson and Julianne Moore.

Bonus for parents:

LEGO: Marvel: Maxium Overload (2013)
The Lego Movie was AWESOME!! But if you’ve seen it 100 times, here’s a super AWESOME suggestion to have something new playing in the background.

Worth ten bucks: For sure.