Better Luck Tomorrow

By Adam Lippe

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better-luck-tomorrow-1Just because your movie gets picked up MTV, who bragged about its first independent film acquisition, doesn’t mean you have to throw in distracting MTVish style into your story because you don’t believe you have original material. It was a shame about this, because I liked a few of the scenes in Better Luck Tomorrow here and there, especially one where the Asian kids at the high school have to confront and accept how they are seen by the rest of the student body. The main character makes the basketball team, we understand it to be because he works hard and has a modicum of talent, but it is suggested by a school reporter, an Asian reporter trying to get him to accept that he was only put on the team because of affirmative action, rather than his own effort. There isn’t the mean spirited antagonism coming from the reporter’s end, he seems to be suggesting that this is so obviously a fact that it seems silly to think otherwise. The rest of the movie takes scenes from Bully and mixes it with style stolen from Lock, Stock, and 2 Smoking Barrels (as if that was original), and throws away the potentially interesting perspective in favor of look-at-me editing.

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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.