Casablanca is widely remembered as one of the greatest films of all time, coming in at #2 on the AFI’s top 100 list and similarly regarded by many other critics. You can quibble with its exact rank, but it’s at least undeniable how iconic Casablanca remains. Even now, more than 70 years after its 1942 release, few movies have ever produced as many enduring quotes. Continue reading
Palette-Swap Ninja, whom I have never heard of before, is a parody band who focus on geek culture. This year, in honor of the 40th anniversary of Star Wars: A New Hope and the 50th Anniversary of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band they did what anyone would naturally do — mashed up the two.
My niece Riley just made her first film. I think it’s awesome. There’s some wonderful raw talent here.
I am so looking forward to seeing whatever she does next!
Here's a new review I did for PopMatters. 14 essays about adaptation from book to film.
Click and give 'em some love. 'The Fantastic Made Visible' Suffers From Some Blind Spots | PopMatters
Last January, 2014, I was visiting the US for my niece Riley’s bat mitzvah. This was my second time returning to the motherland since I’d left and as with the time before, I took the opportunity to visit friends in LA and San Francisco. While I was in LA I met up with my good friend, brilliant actor and former roommate JR. A few weeks earlier, JR had gotten engaged to the beautiful and charming Natasha, whom I’d heard about but this trip was my first time meeting her. It was great! Then at one point, JR and I were just shooting the breeze and he said “Listen… If you say ‘no,’ I’m screwed because I don’t know who else fits so will you be my Best Man.” I man enough to admit there were tears and hugging and of course I said “yes!” Continue reading
Opening with the “gosh, gee willikers” approach of young Frank Walker to the 1964 World’s Fair in New York (side note, someone should do a piece on the cultural impact that particular world’s fair has had on popular culture) to show off his home built jet pack to Nix (Hugh Laurie). Their dialogue basically sets up the rest of the film: Continue reading
Avengers: Age of Ultron, as far as I’m concerned, works. Now, to be fair, I’m a fanboy. I’m predisposed to like it and be far more forgiving than others who don’t know Marvel from marvel. This doesn’t mean I can’t find fault with certain elements (I do) but it does mean I’m more willing to give it a bit of lead. I’m also not so tied to the source material that I’m going to freak out becuase something happened on screen differently than the way it happend in issue #183 of the comic. Intention and execution count for a lot with me, as do target audiences and the desire of the writer/director (not to mention the studio) to please as many people as possible. Continue reading
This is a question long posed by science fiction literature and films and Ex Machina is the latest to take a stab at answering the unanswerable. The plot itself is simple. Caleb (Domhnall Gleeson) is a programmer working for a Google-like search engine company called BlueBook. He wins a company wide lottery to spend a week at the home of company founder Nathan (Oscar Isaac). While there, he discovers he’s been set-up and the real purpose of his visit is to “test” an android, Ava (Alicia Vikander) to see if she truly possesses artificial intelligence. This is done through a series of interviews, where Caleb and Ava exchange nuance-heavy dialogue. Continue reading