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Hollywood Air Force

By Adam Lippe

The late comedian Mitch Hedberg, in one of his more perceptive, addled observations, pointed out how multi-tasking is not solely a requirement of office work, but falls under Hollywood’s expectations as well: “As a comedian, I always get into situations where I’m auditioning for movies and sitcoms, you know? As a comedian, they want you […]

Whiteout

By Adam Lippe

Do you ever wonder what goes on during meetings about theatrical release dates for movies? Well, I know you don’t, but just whose idea was it to open the violent 3 hour exploitation pastiche/parody Grindhouse on Easter weekend? “We have an opening in April; do we have anything to fill it?” “Which weekend?” “Easter.” “Hmmm. […]

Cold Souls

By Adam Lippe

If you rip off an original idea in an original way, is it still stealing? Does it really matter one way or the other, since the presentation is more important than your “acquired” idea? The fallacy of the original idea is a nice trap thrown in by those rejecting material without needing to explain their […]

Quantum of Solace

By Adam Lippe

One of the most amusing things about the influx of Bourne-style action movies is that it puts the filmmakers in a peculiar bind. The Bourne films take themselves very seriously, but amidst their constant globetrotting (I’d imagine Jason Bourne manages to fill up even his fake passports with travel stamps), they tend to stay in […]

Reds

By Adam Lippe

Here’s the idea behind “A Canadian, an American, a Lawyer, and an Elitist”: Rhett’s favorite movie is Meatballs 4,  Shawn has an unhealthy fixation on Resident Evil, Richard scoffs at anything that isn’t pretentious and hoity toity, and Adam is a prick who hates everything. We all watch far too many movies, and spend our […]

I Really Wanted to Get Smart

By Adam Lippe

Wanton violence and nihilism is not always a bad thing. As with anything, it is entirely about tone. Having just finished watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning, in all its studio-polished, R-rated glory – where the question of character deaths was not an “if” proposition, but rather a “when” – it became clear what […]

Transsiberian

By Adam Lippe

It is not always a mystery why some films manage to creatively avoid widespread distribution. Brad Anderson’s Transsiberian, a mix of travelogue, relationship drama, Runaway Train, and Renny Harlin’s hilariously anti-Russian Born American, doesn’t fit into a specific category. The movie is well made, has terrific, snowy photography, and its minimal ambitions are an asset. […]

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

By Adam Lippe

Harrison Ford is introduced in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull looking slack and small. This is not a good omen for someone who supposedly can beat any foe in a fistfight (numerously illustrated with endlessly repetitive punch noises added after the fact). The film also betrays its obviously huge budget, because […]

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Roadracers

By Adam Lippe

Whenever there’s a genre parody or ode to a specific era of films, such as Black Dynamite’s mocking of Blaxploitation films or Quentin Tarantino’s Death Proof, the second half of Grindhouse, the danger is that the film might fall into the trap of either being condescending without any particular insight, or so faithful that it becomes the very flawed thing it is emulating.

Black Dynamite has nothing new to say about Blaxploitation films, it just does a decent job of copying what an inept [...]


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Featured Quote (written by me)

On Cold Fish:

Though the 16 year old me described the 1994 weepie Angie, starring Geena Davis as a Brooklyn mother raising her new baby alone, as “maudlin and melodramatic,” Roger Ebert, during his TV review, referring to the multitude of soap-operaish problems piling up on the titular character, suggested that it was only in Hollywood where Angie would get a happy ending. “If they made this movie in France, Angie would have shot herself.”

Well Cold Fish was made in Japan, where Angie would have shot herself and that would have been the happy ending.