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Everything Will Be Alright In The End by Weezer - CC1/2

I grew up with Weezer in a way without knowing it. Back when my parents would buy Columbia house records there were a couple of compilation albums that would have their songs on them. One in particular that stayed with me was Say It Ain’t So, that may always be my favorite song but I have followed this band for a good portion of my life and it always amazed me how they could always stay relevant. I remember when Buddy Holly was huge and then they disappeared. Then they came back with Hash Pipe then gone, then they came back with Dope Nose and Keep Fishing. You get what I mean here, they always came around and floored me and everyone with hit after hit. Then Make Believe came, that was the first album I actually went out and bought, that is my favorite album, that album from front to back to me was their most complete album and was a anthem for the time for me, that was when I became a more serious fan. The red album and Raditude quickly shook that off of me, Both times they tried to sort of go in different directions while it was still Weezer it just didn’t seem right while I still dug the hit songs but after that who knows. Then they seemed to just disappear again. Till now with this new album. Everyone says its back to them being them but after listening to the album while it sounds more like them again it feels like much of it was just soap box shit. Anyways here is my live as songs went recall of it. Take of it what you will.

Ain’t Got Nobody - Immediately feels heavier and chunkier than normal but immediately goes into what should confirm most Weezer fans that this is still Weezer, chill out folks. It’s just funny writing this while I am actually listening to it for the first time. The song it’s vintage Weezer with vintage lyrics of nerd rage that I can get into.

Back to The Shack - One thing about Weezer is at least they are honest about things, maybe a bit too much. Song reminds me of Everclear in that they basically doing their style and that is it. People like this song but I can’t get behind it. I mean I didn’t like radiated or the red album too much it wasn’t like they were experimented too much. Either way the song sound Weezer yes but it’s still not good enough to me. Stop apologizing and trying to sell old fans on coming back and just do it you know.

Eulogy For a Rock Band - I don’t get this song honestly, are they talking about themselves maybe not because they have been around for 20 plus years. Maybe they are talking about someone else, it sounds ok but still fairly meh.

Lonely Girl - I like this song a bit more, sounds more original. One thing I can say his lyrics are easy for me to usually always to connect to when it comes to love and such. This song works for me much more. The kind of words that would run through my head when thinking about a woman who looks lonely that I like.

(tea break)

I’ve Had It Up To Here - Another song where the singer seems to just use the music as a soap box, maybe it’s what he has always done in a way it gets annoying but for some reason the song works at least to a degree. Do like the guitar solo though.

The British Are Coming - I think I am getting used to not knowing where they are coming from with this album seems different yet it always winds up going back to their basics in the end. Sounds like he is just ranting off someone who worked with who was British. The song just winds up being pretty annoying. This song just seems like stupid filler, if he changed the lyrics to something more meaningful than bitching about the opinion of one guy maybe the song would have been better.

Da Vinci - Funny but please, why don’t you just redo Buddy Holly. Seriously, the lyrics are cute for this one but but the song itself just seems like recycled stuff. And people shit on AC/DC on doing stuff sort of like this. At least they are not this blunt with it. I mean it’s ok but if I ever hear someone bash my band and know they are a Weezer fan I am going to make them listen to this song and a couple others including Buddy Holly and watch them eat their words.

Go Away - I like this song, probably the best song I have heard so far on the album, the most original of them all so far.

Cleopatra - Song is a bit corny, I think Cuomo needs help making better lyrics. I sort of get where he is going with in this song.

Foolish Father - I thought he patched things up with his dad. Imagine listening to “Say it Ain’t So” then go to this song. Gag me with spoon. If you want a song about forgiveness then maybe give it the same intensity and seriousness as that song because this song just…lame ass filler again.

The Futurescrope Trilogy: Part 1 The Waste Land - I like this this song, instrumental and less Cuomo ranting about useless bullshit or trying to rehash something. I really don’t want to trash the guy because Weezer is a excellent band and this album sound great but a lot of the words, lyrics and messages that to with it just sound so full of shit.

The Futurescrope Trilogy: Part 2 Anonymous - Song goes from a awesome rock roll to a rock ballad that works. Probably the most traditional Weezer song on here and probably the next best song on here. There are four good songs on this album so far. Easily the most solid and most complete song on this album from front to back it feels like Cuomo took a lot more time to make this trilogy work more so far and it sounds awesome.

The Futurescrope Trilogy: Part 3 Return Ithaka - Can you spell guitar solo? And it works as a great climax. From what I have been told all the members of the band were doing solos for this. What could have wound up falling flat wound up really making an album that feels very lack luster and diss appointing at least end on a awesome note.

So what can I say, half the album bored or annoyed and the other sort of entertained by the music.

All in all, this album is better than the last two Weezer albums however the best songs from either of those two albums were better than the best songs from this one that is for sure. Maybe that is the nature of the beast. However this album definitely has more better songs by and large than those other two albums.

Look I love Weezer I mean as I have told you I have sort of grown up with Weezer, it’s part of my childhood however I am often most hardest on the bands I care for the most. I would be this hard on AC/DC if I heard their new album which I will in two months.

Bottom line is if you are looking for a more Weezerish album this album is it however if you are looking for good hits like those others had this has none outside of the trilogy. I doubt much of this album will survive the next tour following another album from them outside of maybe the Futurescrope trilogy. This albums has great Weezer riffs but majority of them are wasted by Cuomo soap boxing why the last two albums were less than great. Hopefully now that things are settled he can get back to less ranting and more better songwriting. I hope so because Weezer is one of the 90s great band and it would be a shame that their legacy would be that they were only really good for the first 10 years of their career and after Make Believe they didn’t do anything worth a damn. I give this album CC1/2 on the Core Scale.

Between Colors by The Wilderness of Manitoba - CCCC

I have become a real flag waiver for this band over the last two or three years I have been a fan of them. Maybe it’s because they gave me probably my favorite album from them for free when I probably would have paid for it.

That being said when I heard they came out with a new album while I was in Kōln Germany I had to get it.

Delaware House which has become my favorite album from them that you can only get in America it proved to be a preview of what this album would be ever since they got a new female singer who I think has become the lead singer of the group since she has such a strong voice.

This band has been predominantly a harmonic atmospheric band playing more in harmony and less focus on one or two people, everyone sings in unison or singing with the male singer for the most part when there needs to be a singular voice.

The female voice adds a new dimension to them. I would put her name on here but I am on my old iPad one and if leave this tumblr app all the progress I made up to this point would be gone and it really slows things down. If you get to know their music from album to album you will know what I am talking about.

With each album they seem to be growing their sound, it seems to be getting bigger. I was worried their sound would get too big if they attempted to get too big after Island of Echoes but I was pleasantly surprised with this album that while the sound has gotten bigger it has gotten bigger in the right ways.

I will say more I will get to each song.

Big Skies - Great opener that displays the direction they are taking with this song, both male and female lead singers play so well in unison. At the beginning of the song I was fearful that they were going into a really corny direction but this song just seem to work once I got into it. It’s more structured than previous songs, works as a song and less of a atmospheric kind of song like they often do.

Leave Someone - This song picks up from from the momentum of the previous song. At first it sounds corny but it quickly gets into your head in a good way.

Disappearing - This song is the male singer going, this song feels more vintage Wilderness of Manitoba which is very atmospheric however the song does move along in the new direction the band is taking, it is a good fusion honestly. A great marriage.

Fade From My Light - This song doesn’t sound quite like Wilderness of Manitoba, feels more like a Cranberries song maybe because the female voice sounds very similar. This song feels more the females song that she brought to the that the band put their stamp around. I may be way off base I am o my going by what my ears things.

When You Go - This song is the first song I heard from this album when they were giving their Facebook fans a taste of what they were working on. Very repetitive since it it one line chanted throughout the entire song but it is a very peaceful song that sticks on your head, probably the most traditional Wilderness of Manitoba song yet it’s the newest singer doing it showing that it all still works well with the new parts. She has a excellent voice that works well with the sound and still brings a new dimension.

Shift - I think of the songs on this album I am a bit bewildered with this one. I think it’s sort of the weakest song on the album but I can still listen to it if that makes any sense. It is basically going back to what they were establishing in the first two songs. Not bad but I don’t know if they would or should play this song. I guess maybe they could to bring more upbeat songs into their sets. Also funny to see a guitar solo in this, don’t think I ever heard a solo from them till this song.

Smoke Leaves A Trace - This song starts off sort of weak but picks up into a really catchy yer slow waltzing kind of song. This song sticks with you a bit more than the others in a really surprising way, you don’t know it till its too late.

Shadow Forgiveness - This song was actually the first I heard from the first album, the other was the second. I didn’t notice when I first was listening to this album till this song came up. I heard this song during their live show in Vancouver. I really liked it and hearing the studio version of it I still like it quite well. It is easily going to be a live show staple I think.

Through Blue Light - This song has a Chris Isaak feel to it I don’t know why I draw that comparison. This may be the weakest song on the album though, filler but you can still listen to it. Maybe I am being soft because I really like this band and much rather see bands like this succeed than other bands. This song does have some Mumford & Sons in them as well but in their own way. So it’s a fusion of those two styles.

The Movement Of Stars - This song goes in many directions that you don’t believe it would go which I am fine with. One thing I like to do when listening to this band is just sit back, close my eyes and imagine what their music is projecting or maybe I could just say that this music is perfect zen music for me. AC/DC is my favorite band and whatever but this band I think is my relax and chill music. This song also has a guitar solo but not as prolific.

Oh Heart - I think of all the songs that stuck in my head the most it’s this one. At first it could come off as very cheesy and corny but I think it’s the strength of the female singer and the conviction that makes you get past the corny nature of it and go with it. Reminds me of Head & Heart the song from Delaware House or the Leslievile sessions however you want to name the other album which it is cheesy but the conviction makes you believe it. This is another favorite of mine on this album. It’s the song you want to take your love on to the dance for with and waltz with. To awesome waltz music that shows the singer’s great range.

I think this is their best effort since When You Left The Fire and I think it may just become better in my opinion. It’s been awhile since I listened to that album but it feels so different from this. This album and that seems almost like different bands though still linked to something very similar.

That all being said their last album felt like way too much noise while this one is much more sharper and direct however I m weary of how poppy they want to take things. I hope they keep with this way and don’t get poppy with their sound. Hopefully they won’t read this and take it the wrong way. Maybe I mean that they stick this and work with it while still being what they built at this point.

I trust them however, I was afraid this album was going to just be too much as they grew but they found a way to find a perfect balance of growing themselves while still not being too big for their britches so to speak.

In the end this album may grow on me more to be my favorite album from them. I am already looking forward to seeing them live again and telling them how much I liked this album. I hope this band sticks together.

Bottom line is if you are a fan of this band you may find this direction a tad surprising be rest assured that it is a good direction and feels almost logical they will convince you of it as the album progresses. For people who do not know of the band and want a gateway this might just be a good one as its a introduction to their new direction while still having roots in what brought them to the dance at this point. I give this album CCCC on the Corey Scale.

Life After Beth - CC3/4

This is an attempt to break my writers block tonight in Cork Ireland, don’t know if it will work but at least it would make my day a bit more productive than it has been today.

My interest with this film started when I was traveling from Munich to Budapest, wasn’t going directly there but it was on the train that would have wifi despite how bad the wifi was. I was thinking about downloading a movie in order to maybe get me to write. Yeah my writer’s block has been long.

What first sold me was Aubrey Plaza obviously as I sort of had a crush on her. Though the movie To Do List sort of made me not think much of her anymore however I wanted to believe she was going to be doing good work outside of Parks and Rec.

Then I seen the cast and honestly Molly Shannon or John C Reily would have sold me separately but together as a married couple, done I want to see this movie.

However the wifi was shit and I didn’t have the hard drive space on my iPad 1 to get it on iTunes, yeah I still have one and I still don’t have the space.

Fast forward a couple of weeks later I am walking around Galway Ireland and notice a theater so I look at the movies and notice Life After Beth. So I decided to watch it one stormy night since I wasn’t in the mood to hit a pub for the third night in a row.

Life After Beth is about A couple; Zach and Beth.

Zach is your typical yuppie teenage guy living with his rich parents. He is the boyfriend of Beth; typical teenage girl living with his seemingly normal parents.

One day Beth decides to go on a hike but then gets bit by a poisonous snake and dies leaving everyone to mourn for her.

Zach and Beth were going through a rough patch and it is only now through losing her that he realizes what he is missing and what he wished she could do or say to Beth if she was still there. Obviously her parents have their own regrets.

Then suddenly something happens, Beth rises for m the dead and she doesn’t remember anything about what happened to her, she doesn’t even know she is dead yet she doesn’t seem to notice the bite mark on her leg.

Anyways she is not a zombie, she can still speak, think and she doesn’t go around eating people at least not at the start, everything seems normal.

Zach at first is put off by this thinking it is a joke, it doesn’t take long for him to just take it for what it is and continue to be with his beloved Beth.

Things of course do not stay status quo as Beth starts to change. She starts to become more violent, more possessive of primal thoughts (love for Zach, etc) and she starts to create trouble for both Zach and her parents.

Zach soon tries to figure out how she came back from the grave all the while more dead people are rising from the grave.

Zach must find the answers and furthermore stop the outbreak that is beginning to happen, can he keep his beloved Beth from being a zombie if so what are the consequences?

I won’t spoil the movie for you however there is not much to spoil. This movie was tough to swallow for me at times while very funny at other points.

This felt like a movie the crew from Parks and Rec did when not filming Parks and Rec since it seems to have the same look to it. Even the actor who plays Jerry had a cameo in it.

Aubrey plays like she typical stereotype which was sort of disappointing though in all honesty though she is pretty fucking hilarious regardless though, I would say despite how much the writer was terrible at writing dialogue for both Aubrey and Anna Aubrey really made every slap stick physical comedy point count.

Where The To Do List was very well written but not that funny the way it should be, Life After Beth was very funny where it should be but very poorly written.

I think that waste biggest weakness of the movie, I mean I am not a great writer and this guy got to write and direct this movie with stars so he has something over me but I mean come on.

How does Beth not get curious when her parents won’t let her outside for the uptinth time, how does she not notice the bite mark on her leg at all? How does she not start to get curious about her sudden violent mood swings?

How does nobody but Zach really notice that many people are coming back from the dead. Maybe these are just things that you toss off because I mean even John says. In the movie why do you ask so many questions.

This movie forces you to just go with it and normally I have no problem with it but to me it has to feel like its worth going with and honestly I didn’t think much of it was. Don’t get me wrong, I laughed this movie a lot, mostly because Aubrey rocked this movie, without her not even Reily or Molly who are comedic powerhouses in their own right could have saved this movie. I think this movie was made for Aubrey’s kind of dead pan style while adding another element no one knew she had which is slap stick.

All the actors did well in this movie I just think this movie fell flat through the dialogue and much of the plot. Like while it took Beth a week to start craving flesh, it took everyone else maybe a day. Maybe I am just nit picking but again…yeah.

Bottom line though if you are a fan of Aubrey Plaza and are looking for a very off beat comedy that will make you laugh then this is something you could take a look at. If you can get past the gapping plot holes this movie is pretty funny. It is like soft jazz, it is a bit cheesy and corny but there are glimpses of creative brilliance if you look into it. Why did I say slow jazz? I dunno ;) anyways its a funny movie and that is all you want out of a movie for a night then check it out. If you can’t get behind huge plot holes then don’t watch this movie. I give this movie CC3/4 on the Corey Scale.

The Giver - CCC

This will probably be my last review of the year or at least till December maybe.

The Giver is one of the very few books I enjoyed in school. My school curriculum was full of bad books outside of the rare ones here and there but none stuck in my mind like The Giver.

A couple months ago I heard they were going to make a movie about it and I was surprised since I figured it would have been made by now. Given how so many more books these days are getting the hollywood treatment I guess it all makes sense. The trick is whether it is true to the book.

The movie is about a future society based on total equality, int he future certain people created this area where everyone was equal, everyone had their own roles and no one stood out, there were reasons behind this that I think we could all put pieces together on what.

The story revolves around Jonas whom unlike everyone around him seems to see things a little differently, unlike everyone else he does not know what role he will have as he graduates, this is when everyone is assigned a role for the rest of their lives or till retirement. 

He become assigned to be the one who must remember. Remember how things were before the system was put in place too remove dreams, feelings and etc. It is there that he meets The Giver who is the one who came before him who must transfer all of his memories that he has stored up to him.

As Jonas starts to remember and feel things he has never knew before he starts to question the society around him and wishes to rebel.

I will stop there because it would be a whole shit stain of spoilers. Quite honestly i think most people from my generations read this at some point it seems.

I barely remember it I one remembered certain things and for the most part they were int he movie and felt true. The whole graduation scene for the most part felt like exactly how I remembered it in the book, it was almost exactly how i imagined it so be props to them.

For the most part I feel like this movie is true to the book, of course with all movies it misses a awful lot of what the book had but a book is over a story told over several hours while a movie must tell the story in 90 minutes. For what it’s worth I felt it did a good job for what time it had to tell it.

You can’t argue the cast quality, you got Meryl Streep who is the best actress of all time, Jeff Bridges who is a very capable and well respected actor. Katie Holmes was always a decent actor who now seems to have bypassed being a sex symbol of her youth to playing mother roles and maybe that is a good thing because now she can just be a character actress and that way she can always find work and not be pigeonholed.

I agree with the visual look of the movie, I think that was the biggest question of what they were going to do with this movie is how it was going to look, I can’t remember how the book described it I think it was very vague but I like that this movie is for the most part starts B&W and the more Jonas learns the more colorful things become. I love it when films use everything around to tell the story.

With all that said I felt the movie was fairly bland, never did I feel really attached to these character or wished to follow them very much I think this was because as what happens with movies that adapt from books is that they miss out on all of the character development in the book, cut it out and just focus on the main parts. Enders Game did that for the most part and that is what hurt that film.

It doesn’t hurt this film quite as much but I feel that the film could have done with more character development as a whole.

Honestly I don’t think this is a bad movie I would suggest this movie over TMNT that is out right now that is for damn sure. However I just feel like this movie was just trying to get from the beginning of the book to the end as soon as it could and I think that hurt the overall value of the movie in the long run. Its still an ok movie, better than Enders Game but still meh.

Bottom line is if you are a fan of the book be rest assured it doesn’t butcher the book at least in my opinion, it is as true as it can be however if you want the full effect you are better off with just re reading the book. There isn’t much time in this movie to care about who you are following only enough to care about the message that is being sent by this movie. I give this movie CCC on the Corey Scale.

The Good Life - CC3/4

This movie I think is an example of how sometimes everything needs to go right for it to be a good movie because here is a movie that is loaded with such a good cast of character actors with such a good story yet for some reason the movie itself sort of falls flat.

The movie is about a guy named Jason who lives in int his part of Nebraska where everyone is basically football crazy. He has had a rough life and is still going through it. He has a disorder that makes him bald, his father killed himself and was responsible for killing his sister, his mother is poor and he has to support her because his idiot brother wont, he has to work at a gas station in order to support his mother and his little chance to leave, he also spends nights taking care of his other boss Gus who runs a old theater that only plays old movies.

Jason basically spends all of his time taking care of everyone else which leaves him with little else in every way. When his dad kills himself his dad sent him a present before doing (which we are left guessing to the end).

Jason also has to deal with assholes in his life like his brother whom I think may either be mentally disabled and just became this childish asshole to people to mask his problems or is a kid who was just such a spoiled brat who got his way all of the time from cradle to adulthood that he himself never grown up.

Then you got the high school burn out who still thinks he is going to go to college and play football but in reality is just a stupid pimple faced thug/drug dealer.

Things seem very depressing for Jason and how can you blame him, he has nothing. Then all of a sudden almost like a angel Frances appears and seems to just be completely in love with him. Jason at first doesn’t believe this but due to his need to be cared for a relationship builds. However things are not all peaches and cream as Frances is not a perfect lady either.

Just like most movies like this things get better for Jason till all of what was and is good around Jason is taken from him one by one to where he must decide to take a stand or take action for his own future as it seems his entire past is crumbling around him.

I wanted to like this movie I really did, it had all the intangibles to be a good diamond in a rough kind of movie but after watching it I am not surprised that I am not surprised that it is forgotten.

Is it the direction I sort of think so because this film in its core feel very very corny and I think this comes out through the acting.

Bill Paxton I think is only in 2 or 3 scenes and his very lame in this role like he only took it just to be part of the movie. Harry Dean Stanton looks bored for the most part in this movie, he has been playing these kind of characters for 20 years now and there isn’t much difference between those characters and this one. Zooey seems to be the perfect dream girl for everyone and I don’t blame anyone because the moment you look into her blue eyes how can you not fall in love with her but she too looks bored I think in this like she is sick of playing these dream girls. The only times where she doesn’t seem bored is when she is playing the screwy parts of Frances the parts that make her less of a carbon copy male fantasy character and more of a fleshed out character.

Mark Webber I think was miscast in this role but then I can say the same for the others. His character just seems to be devoid of anything. Maybe this was a directoral choice but if I had it my way I would have casted Patrick Fugit (who plays his coworker) as Jason because at least he would play off the situations more.

I think that is the main problem is I feel alot of these good actors were just miscast. I am thinking most of them came in for Bill Paxton because he is the exec producer of this movie, who knows.

The two people who really do well in this movie is Chris Klein who plays the ultra duchebag thug and Donal Logue who plays Jason’s brother. Probably the disgusting characters in the movie, these actors do such a great job and making you hate them with minimal effort and I think alot of that comes from the writing as well as the actors.

I don’t really care for spoiling this movie but the thing I didn’t like the most about the movie was the ending. One this that was good about the movie was that it was built up on a boiling point where Jason was finally going to do something instead of just surviving. While I understand that he doesn’t kill the thug and he decides to finally leave but I feel it was so anti climactic. Like what was the point of the gun to begin with if all he was going to do is fire it at the sky.

Made no sense, granted killing the thug would have put him jail, what is the difference since he fire a gun that would have caused a stir and two police cops are right there to detain Jason then so he would have been in trouble regardless. I think the movie could have ended with a strong message but instead decided to do what it did for most of the movie which was drag and under perform from the get go.

Bottom line is this film is well written and has very good actors in it however if you are looking for them to do well then don’t have high expectations. Only Chris Klein and Donal shine in this movie. Patrick too but he is not given much time in this movie. There are some nice moments in this movie and the over all message this movie has is a good one. It means well but it just under performs and makes you wish it had more or did. I much rather watch this movie over most other movies of this area for the cast and message/story alone but the film doesn’t go very far after that so I give it CC3/4 on the Corey Scale.

Guardians of The Galaxy - CCCC1/4

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This movie is the ultimate proof of how streamlined the Marvel movie making machine (say that a hundred times fast) is. Marvel/Disney have basically created their own world and market for their movies and basically can just print money because they know if they just follow the formula they are on the nerds/geeks and fans will come. You know they will because the geek has inherited the Earth. And I love it!

It all started with Iron man, when I mean by started I mean the this machine we are talking about or the formula to which they do their films. Comic book movies exploded with X Men but I feel the formula was made with Iron Man because lets face it before Iron Man the only marketable characters Marvel had was Wolverine and Spiderman. Iron Man became a house hold name after that movie and has been ever since.

Marvel found out a way to take a general Marvel character and through the use of the right casting, director and right tone to take it made a killing out of it. They have been basically been using that same formula ever since.

Unlike DC there has been very many failures unless you count the FOX and Sony movies but they don’t count because they are not operated completely by Marvel/Disney which sucks but within Marvel/Disney the only one they have made that felt wasn’t that great was Thor and even then it was still better than X Men Origins: Wolverine or X3.

Each movie they casted perfectly, found the right director who provided the right tone the movie should take. Thinking about each movie they all are basically the same movie to me but it’s like AC/DC music, you are technically getting the same thing over and over but its the variations and the fact is it works and if it is not broke don’t fix it.

Now I don’t need to tell you this a a good movie because I am sure most of the people I know who read this already know this movie was awesome because of all the above things.

Great cast, great tone, great directing.

I am more interested in maybe dissecting the Marvel movie to see what makes it work where so many other comic books (mainly DC in my opinion) have failed.

I have contemplated this before and I am pretty sure I have talked about this before is that for the longest time I have been of the mind that there are two ways to make a comic book movie. In reality there are other ways but I feel like they are grey areas that fall inbetween these two methods.

1) Make the movie within the comic universe, good examples of this is Sin City. The film doesn’t bother making the stories realistic the film basically puts you into that world. Dick Tracy to me is the first comci book movie that I can recall who did that.

2) Make a movie where the comic is based off reality, a good example of this is Spiderman and X Men, the Fox/Sony model which has hit and miss. Christopher Nolan’s Batman is the greatest example of this.

Again there are other ways but I feel that those are all inbetween these two ways.

Some comics serve better with one and less of the other. Prior to Iron Man I think it was nearly a form of alchemy for Hollywood on whether they would be able to get the right mix or not.

Where does Marvel sit with these two methods. Personally I think they side with #1 more than #2 but each film that is sort of tweaked. I think they go #1 because Marvel comics is so embedded with their own movie company that they are able to basic take the character from comic to the screen and not have to worry about finding a writer outside their system who may not know it too well as they do or they have the ability to choose how the characters they know get portrayed. Maybe that sounds consuming but I feel like the system they found is the system DC/Warner Bros should have had to begin with because they company has almost always owned DC but it just seems to me from an observers POV that there seems to be so much BS between the comic company and the movies that they just don’t look in sync. Same goes for Sony and Fox, they are like 3rd party developers while Marvel is like Nintendo, they make their own stuff because they know how it works.

Plus I think experience plays into it, there needed to be movies like Batman & Robin, X Men Origins, X3, Punisher War Zone and all of the other horrible comic book movies to make Hollywood realize that if they want to make money of venture they have to get every detail right. At first you don’t succeed then try and try again.

But what makes all these Marvel movies unique? I am just spit balling here.

1) Light heartedness - None of the Marvel movies really take themselves too seriously.

2) Casting - Again, they have been able to cast the right people for the right roles that make sense. Not this Ben Affleck (which I have nothing against) plays Batman shit which winds up pissing more people off than causing intrigue. When they casted Robert Downey Jr as Iron man I can’t remember one person being angry about it, what it did was made people curious. Everyone knows RD Jr is a good actor but made people curious. That is mostly the same with every other choice they made except for Chris Evans only because he was typecasted mostly and everyone thought of him and Johnny Storm than they could think of him as Steve Rogers.

Music - I think only Iron Man and Guardians have used it mostly because there is no other character currently that can use it but AC/DC to Iron Man makes both synonymous, the music for Guardians makes that and music tied to it the same way. I am sure Blue Suede is thankful for allowing their song to be played with the movie.

Takes material seriously - while it is lighthearted, at the core the movies serve true to the comics where they come from I mean if Marvel can’t get their own characters right, who can?

To tell you the truth what i just said and all of the above stuff prior that I spoke of I think make what is the Marvel much and why it makes it so successful.

I just find it funny because Guardians is not what you would call a safe bt to make a movie on, I mean 10 years ago it would have been a hard sell, now because Marvel can do it I think they could probably throw any random Marvel character on a dart board and blindly throw the dart and decide what movie they can make next and it would probably be successful. Hell they are making a Antman movie!

Personally I am surprised a Doctor Strange movie hasn’t been mad yet.

So yeah this isn’t much of a review well I call it a review of a Marvel movie because in the end this is just like every other Marvel movie and that is not a bad thing because every other Marvel movie it is fun, light hearted, it takes the material seriously, well casted and further more well done. Guardians of The Galaxy is basically all of that.

Bottom line is if you are a fan of any other kind of Marvel movie, looking for a flat out fun science fiction adventure movie that you can turn your brain off to and enjoy then this is the ticket. You WILL have Hooked on a Feeling stuck in your head. I had a lot of fun watching this movie, more fun than I expected to and I like movies that exceed my expectations. I give this movie CCCC1/4 on the Corey Scale.

Snowpiercer - CCCC1/4

I thought about reviewing Guardians of The Galaxy but decided that this one could do more with what little publicity this blog would give. I think we all know GotG is a good movie but not many know about Snowpiercer, not even me up until recently. 

Even though thinking about it both are very very similar to each other int hat both are very simple stories, while one is serious and one is lighthearted both are so well casted and brilliantly directed and both are a delight in their own ways to watch.

I took up a public recommendation to watch this movie because I was looking for something new and unknown to watch one night and decided on this one. Didn’t know what it was about or anything about the cast and found myself entertained.

The movie is set in the future, world is getting to hot after the ozone layer is basically nil that scientist attempt to use this thing that would protect everyone from the sun. 

What ends up happening is it freezes the entire world and puts everything back into the stone age. However humans survived, all the lucky ones boarded a train that spans around the world and over again.

In this train there are classes and a whole system much like there was before it, only more prevalent and within short quarters. There are the rich people at the front of the train and there are the poor people at the very back of the train.

Of course there are middle end people but they  merely are there to serve both ends but mainly the rich as protection, guards, cooks, you know think middle class.

Curtis is the basically the leader of the people in the back of the train. After many years of mistreatment, nourishment and the front of the bush stealing children by the front of the bus he devises a rebellion in order to get to the front of the train and basically take control of the train.

The trouble is getting there and meeting adversity at every turn. He finds out that an security person was just arrested basically put in a box for life who may be able to help him named Namgoong. We find out that Nam has a daughter as well who is a clairvoyant. They will basically help Curtis and his army get through every area for drugs (both dad and daughter are junkies).

That is the crux of the movie basically is Chris Evans/Curtis and his army must get from one end of the train to the other. 

What makes this movie so good if it is so simple?

First of all the cast, Chris Evans keeps surprisingly lately and I love it. A couple of years ago I found him to be an annoying and flat actor because he seemed to only ever play pompous muscle bound teenage jerks in Push and Fantastic Four. Then he played Steve Rogers in Captain America and changed my opinion of him then I watched the Iceman where he was completely out of typecast and did well. Now there where make no mistake he is still a action hero in this movie but he played it brilliantly with the chops he has. Its hard to play that kind of reluctant hero without looking like a cry baby or just plain blant but he does it very well. He has went from being type cast as the arrogant SOB I couldn’t care less to relate to the every man I can relate to.

Tilda Swinton however steals the show, she is it for 2 thirds of the film but each and every time she is in it she makes it extremely easy for you to hate her guts.

While this is very much a star studded cast you nearly forget that John Hurt is the leader of the poor people to a degree or that Jamie Bell is a feisty side kick of Evans/Curtis.

One good thing I like about the movie is its visuals, this movie seems to find a great balance between being very showy in itself SFX and when it needs to be real and gritty. It’s pretty simple actually because the only really showy special effect is the train and the surroundings outside, everything else is kept for the most part on a real level and that is what makes it work.

While the plot in of itself is very simple I feel this is a character driven story. The movie takes most of its time having you get to know these characters in any way it can and casting really helps on this front that when things happen tot hem or when they are feeling certain things you are feeling them right with them and that is a sign of a good movie. I got pretty emotionally invested in this movie, most invested I’ve been since Bellflower though it didn’t come close as that movie did.

The ending surprised me in a good way but I wont spoil it. It’s one of those anti climactic ends that doesn’t really sow up everything but it makes sense and you can put the pieces together.

Bottom line is that this is a well done character driven action movie, well its sort of a half action and half drama and like everything else with the movie mixes all of it so well that by 20 minutes you will be fully engaged with everything that is going on. If you are a fan of Chris Evans or any of the other cast members then you will enjoy this one. I was fully engaged in this movie from beginning to end and believe this movie is well worth watching. While Guardians is a have fun and turn your brain off movie I believe this is a keep your brain on and enjoy the ride kind of movie. I give it CCCC1/4 on the Corey Scale.

Gone till 2015-ish

This is just to let anyone who follows me know that I will be gone for a couple months starting at August 26th as I will be going on a long time planned Euro trip for the first time. you can still following me on the link below if you wish.

http://coreytravelogue.tumblr.com/

That is where I am planning on documenting my travels whenever I find myself able to use free wifi.

I might be able to put in one or two reviews before the 26th but who knows as I am spending most of my time these days with family visiting and preparing for the trip.

Cheers!

Corey

Nymphomaniac - CCC3/4

Only Lars Von Trier could make a movie and if you know anything about this director it should not surprise you that he would make something like this.

I got into his work by accident when I was in Edmonton a couple years ago and found Anti Christ. When I got home and watched it on the floor (didn’t have furniture at my apartment at the time yet) I was completely shocked. Like he was purposely trying to do whatever he could to desensitize me in a very very subtle way yet keep me intrigued. Couldn’t help that I had/have a crush on Charlotte Gainsbourg for a long time because he looks like someone I used to seriously be attracted to years back, who knows.

When Melancholia came out I was fairly disappointed but then I seen it at the theater and learned that his movies are not theater friendly and are better at your home.

Enter Nymphomaniac which seems to be his 4 hour epic, all centered around the life of one.

This movie is about the lady above named Joe, we find her beaten and battered in a alley way. She is found and brought to shelter by a old man named Seligman. He is interested in how this woman got to how she is. Joe then would go on to pretty much tell him her life story for the most part through her sex addiction. Or int his case how her need for sexual fulfillment is very much part of her body and less of an escape like drug/booze abuse is.

I will stop there because there is just so much to cover and much of it is fairly important plot points but be safe to say it’s vintage LVT.

I needed a few days to digest this movie and even still I feel like I need more time. So what can I say about.

I like the message or at least what I think is the message. One thing must be said is this is not a porn or at least I don’t see it as a porn. Because unlike porn the sexual acts are not glorified.

I look at porn as a fiction documentary of the sexual act each time its performed therefore has to be glorified to see everything.

With this movie the sex is sex, nothing is focused, you just see them do it but not for very long. Only enough for you to get the idea of things. That being said it is very graphic sexually especially for a theatrical movie like this.

I feel the message is that women should be as sexually free as men are, while Joe does this and feels bad for it she should feel proud  (this is sort of a spoiler but not really if you are a forward thinker) for being a woman who has for the most part taken control of her sexuality and has no problem using it. While he methods of using many men wrongfully are bad but I mean men do it too. In the end both genders use each other for sex deep down.

Which brings me to the critiques I have for it.

*SPOILER ALERT*

I don’t like the ending, well I mean after thinking about it more I understand why he chose that ending but in the end I feel like it could have been done better or there could have been a better choice. it just felt I spent 4 hours in this and all you give me is Joe gunning down Seligman because he basically used her the same way she would use other men. 

I mean I understand that the message is that women and men are equally horny and equally misuse each other to feel like they can get what they want but I dunno, just seemed so stupid that here is this guy Seligman who seemed to be this one way for 4 hours then suddenly be no better than a 15 year old boy who realized what his erection is for.

*BACK TO READING*

First thing I have to talk about is the length of the movie, personally I think 4 hours is way to long for a movie like this, the first half of this movie is full of important stuff but I felt much of Vol 2 was full of dragging BS that could have been trimmed at least to make this a 3 hour movie. Maybe it is just me. I am interested in seeing if a Criterion version is ever made and how much deleted scenes are in this movie, likely it would be a 5 hour movie. 

LVT often likes to drag things to his pace but funny enough for as long the movie is it does movie very quickly so I guess he switches things up in that respect. A very long movie filled with a sped up amount of narrative.

Next is the acting, he always seems to get the most out of people you wouldn’t expect, or he uses people you wouldn’t expect him to use. You got Kristen Dunst in Melancholia; while I never considered her to be a bad actress I never thought she would do something like she did. Then you have Uma Thurman who only has one scene but that one scene she nearly steals the show. Then you have Christian Slater who seems to be acting for once, mind you it is still him but for once you can tell like he is really trying and puts in a very impressive performance. 

There is Shia, now don’t get me wrong I am not one of those bashers but there is nothing he ever did up to this point that really stood out for me. He actually sort of impressed me int his movie, mind you i think another actor could have been better for this movie. A younger Colin Farrell would have ruled this role but Shia is best.

To me the biggest star of this movie is the younger version of Joe played by Stacy Martin who is perfect in her role and I think should be considered for more awards than she probably is because I think she did most of the heavy lifting of this 4 hour movie. She really impressed me in the movie honestly and my god she is gorgeous. Already makes me fantasize about sitting in a train and hoping she would come around asking where the bathroom is.

Then there is the technical star of the movie Charlotte, I can’t say much because for some reason she just seems like the natural choice or face of LVT’s movies, she just seems so right each time.

Outside of the ending there is only really one more thing I don’t like about this movie and that is how they string the narrative along, just felt so generic and corny I think even the director knew it and made it as quick and painless as possible because it was often very quick but still enough to cringe at what it was.

Bottom line though is if you are a fan of LVT then you are basically getting two movies in one, everything that makes him the insane artist he is is in this in flying colors and in it’s glory. If you are a fan of art films that really make you think and talk at the end of it then this is a must see. If you are a fan of the cast then definitely see this because you will see different sides to them that will make you appreciate them more. I enjoyed this movie for what it was and its short comings, this is probably my favorite LVT movie. I still can’t figure out why any need to watch it again. I give it CCC3/4 on the Corey Scale.

Clean & Sober - CCCC

I am a big fan of Michael Keaton, I always have for as long as I could remember. Probably because much of the movies I have grown up watching even up to this point has been littered with him in it. 

He is one guy who has broken one pigeon hole made of him to create another only to sort of break that to where he is where I think he should be and I think even he would agree suits him better, being a character actor.

To understand this movie properly is to understand when this was made. This was made when he was considered a funny man in the 80s. One good comedy after another and he was considered a funny man that everyone felt he probably couldn’t do comedy. However I think we have all grown enough now to know that comedy men and women can do drama just as well as comedy but this was when people didn’t believe it could be done. Keaton did it with this movie and Batman.

This movie is sadly under rated, I would dare say it’s one of the most under rated movies I have ever seen which has so much in it that would surprise people. Michael Keaton in a serious role which would open up the serious roles he would undertake in the 90s, Morgan Freeman before he became……well…….Morgan Freeman. Not that that is a bad thing but there was a time where he was just considered a good character actor and not some sort other thing that he is now which I feel is more of a light hearted joke but I am sure he doesn’t care, VISA pays him very well and he has the stroke to do what he wants to do and good on him.

I find this entire movie is filled with characters at the top of their game taking aim at subject matter few movies do a good job at without going overboard which is substance abuse.

Been raised in Fort McMurray I seen addiction, not as hard as some but grew up with people who had to deal with being isolated 5 hours away from civilization with nothing to do but work yourself to the bone and make lots of money yet there was nothing or nowhere to spend it. Fort Mac only really had liquor stores and pizza parlors. As for drugs, who knows where they got it but with much money you can get what you want.

I am reminded of this movie because I just finished reading A Million Little Pieces which I felt had the same tone as this movie.

Make no mistake this movie doesn’t glamorize anything about the process of getting sober, in all ways the road to do that is much harder than the road to being a junkie and often if you can complete the journey you become 10 times stronger than you ever were probably were before you went down the wrong road. Maybe I am completely wrong because I never did any of that shit but I would like to think I get it in my own way.

The movie is about a guy named Glenn; a real estate business man who lives a very fast life. We first meet him waking up after night of heavy drugs, booze and sex. Wakes up, does a line on a woman’s bum to find out the woman he spent the night with is dead, she OD’d.

When the cops come around there really isn’t anything he can do to escape the fact that everyone now knows he is a addict, except him. The cops want to take him in because he is responsible for the most part of this lady’s death.

At first Glenn admits himself into rehab in order to dodge getting arrested and losing everything. However the only time you can learn to help yourself is when you finally realize you have a problem. It doesn’t take long after that for him to realize he has a problem.

His first and second time in rehab he meets a man who runs the facility named Craig who you can tell has seen this shit ten times over and from both sides. Craig attempts to help him as well as a large group of others through this process.

He also meets two other people who will become major players in his journey, one named Richard (played by a brilliant character actor Emment Walsh) who becomes his sponsor and the other named Charlie who is a addict just like Glenn and someone he falls in love with.

At first Glenn falls for Charlie basically because he is just horny and figures if he just goes with a woman like him and just has a fuck buddy they could get sober together but of course things don’t work out that way.

We learn Charlie has her own reasons for being a junkie which are far more understandable than Glenn and it’s through her journey that he realizes his problems.

I wont spoil this movie however what makes this movie good to me is not the resolution but the journey to it.

There isn’t much surprising about this movie, only that is pretty much states things very honestly, while still holding back to a degree because it is hollywood but still doesn’t shy away from it. What makes this movie a gem to me is the performances from everyone. You rarely go wrong when you cast a movie with nothing but character actors. You quickly forget that Mr. Mom is playing Glenn and you forget and don’t care who is playing him only that you are engulfed in the performance and believe Glenn is this jerk addict who cares about no one but himself.

I especially like the beginning and ending of this movie as it wraps things up very nicely. We begin with Richard who gives you a interesting perspective on addiction at a AA to when Glenn finally does it at the end when he is a changed man.

Bottom line is if you are a fan of Keaton and/or Freeman this is a film you should check out. Even if you are not it is worth taking a look at if you are looking for a well made character drama that doesn’t pull very many punches and tries to be as honest as it can while still being a Hollywood movie. I watched this movie not too long after coming out of film school and I got alot out of it and feel it sucks that movies like this get forgotten. I give this movie CCCC on the Corey Scale.

A Million Little Pieces by James Frey - CCCC

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Reading books have become part of my cardio routine, in fact it’s a perfect marriage between forcing myself to put 40 min a day into riding the stationary bike 3 to 5 times a week.

I have a hard time doing cardio because I get bored, I dont like staying in one place for a long period of time and I get lost in my thoughts too much. Reading a book allows me to focus on something mentally while doing something physically.

My friend Rae has been my guide into getting into books, through her I have become a fan of the Ender series. I still feel like I am a beginner with books but I have talked about all this before. Either way I appreciate her help with her picks in books. I am not really looking for reading the books everyone else I know reads I am more interested in reading books that are different but still engaging. This book is one of those kinds of books.

This is a semi fictional autobiography of James during his time as a addict trying to get clean, it his journey to sobriety. 

We find James like we often find most addicts who are finally ready to change as we often we have to truly be at our lowest to finally realize that things need to change. We basically find him barely alive and basically at his lowest point.

His parents then decide to throw him into what is considered the best rehab facility they know of in Chicago. This is where he must remain clean. If he leaves he can’t come back, he must not talk to women (who are in a separate area) and he must basically want to get better without rambling on.

We don’t really need to guess what a rehab place is, I’ve seen enough movies to know what it may look like even though it’s just movies. This book actually reminds me of a movie I may just wind up reviewing today because this book refreshes my mind on that movie because they are very similar. The movie is called Clean & Sober which is a sadly forgotten character drama that had a great cast and has awesome performance from Michael Keaton breaking out his comedic pigeonhole.

It’s funny how it’s been 2 weeks since I read this and I am having a hard time remembering a lot of the characters, i think because there are quite a few characters in this one that I found it hard to keep track.

Thinking about what I liked about the book firstly was the structure, mind you I know nothing about most books but reading this it wake nothing I had seen before and you know what I felt it refreshing and more easier for me to digest through than I think if I was done as regular text.

Next was the characters, all were good and bad and there were no real bad guys because in the end they are all flawed people in there, even the strongest ones. I think the villains for the book at some point is the establishment though you can understand why the rules are there and people usually don’t know what they want.

I am probably just a sucker for it but I found the relationship between James and Lily, the author did a good job of branching them out enough to force me to wait that you could understand why James wants to be around her all of them, maybe its just me being a hopeless romantic who goes gaga over such things.

The book is fairly straight forward though, man goes into rehab, forces himself to get sober and often falls in love and finds a reason to stay sober and clean and rises above. Mind you it’s a spoiler saying there is a happy ending but there are many pitfalls in this book and parts that may shock you.

Either way it’s basically one man’s journey of self hatred, loneliness where he spent most of his life filling the empty spaces in his life with drugs and booze to a guy who winds up having a new direction in his life and there is hope, A feel good story disguised as a rigid tale of rebellion within a rehabilitation center.

Bottom line is I found this to be a good read, the characters are very identifiable and easy to get with, I am not a addict of any kind and I could understand and connect with most of the people, I especially connect with one page in this book which describes how I feel about something but I wont get into it. I just found it to be a good read. I don’t think I would reread it but I got something out of it and glad that I got to read it. I give it CCCC on the Corey Scale.

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen - CCC

This is another one of those movies I found at HMV and for some reason felt drawn to, it was either the title being so random or the fact that Emily Blunt is in it and I am developing a huge celeb crush on her ever seen Edge of Tomorrow (realistic bad ass ladies turn me on what can I say). Plus Ewan is in it and he is usually good as well as Kristen. The plot also seemed fairly original even though has all the trimmings of a typical rom com. I decided to give it a shot.

Movie is about two people basically; there is Alfred who is a agriculture guy and fishing expert, Harriet is a assistant/financial adviser to a rich oil baron from Yemen. This Oil baron I will call him is a avid fisher and wishes to bring salmon to n which is nearly a desert. Sounds impossible right?

Well this entire movie about them making it impossible, while they are doing this Alfred and Harriet get to know each other and well…..you get the idea.

It really is as simple as that when it comes to a rom com, throw some simple plot moving device to bring two people together and you got a rom com but that doesn’t mean its a bad movie.

What keeps this from being a carbon copy rom com that we have all seen a hundred times before is the writing. I really found this movie to have very snappy dialogue that seemed realistic and made sense.

On top of that the acting was pretty much top notch from everyone but in all honesty it was Kristen Scott Thomas who steals the show, she seems to be incredible at playing a bitch and revels in it.

There really isn’t much left to say about this movie, there isn’t anything special with it, its a rom com that has very good dialogue and a premise that is a little original and it’s heart is in the right place.

Bottom line is if you are a fan of Emily Blunt, Ewan McGregor, KST and rom coms that while are very much cookie cutter but adds a little bit of new to it then you will enjoy watching this one night but this is one of those kooky date night movies you watch. I don’t think people who normally go to the regular rom coms that have the regular rom com cats would dig this one I think this is one for kooky couples, I guess because it is a kooky kind of rom com. I did mind it and I watched it alone so that makes me double kooky, I give it CCC on the Corey Scale.

How I Live Now - CCCC

I discovered this movie the way I prefer or desire to discover them, at a video store. When I mean video store I mean a rental store but they don’t exist anymore. Closest I can with that is at librarys but I often don’t have time to go which seems like a hypocrite statement since i have more time to go to HMV instead. Don’t ask. When DVDs were the main format and reasonably cheap to find when you knew how to look (bargain bin) I was more willing to take a chance but with bluray now being the new format and it’s a tad more pricey the chances of me taking chances with movies is lower.

I was looking to buy a movie and I noticed this one and seen that it was directed by the guy who did The Last King of Scotland, that immediately intrigued me and made me wonder where did the guy go. Often when a movie wins that many awards the director is often going to find able employment somewhere so I was surprised I didn’t hear of him since.

Read up about it, about a anti social person….check, post apocalyptic….check, good director…check ok I am in.

Decided to take a chance on it. 

The movie is about a girl named Daisy who suffers from anorexia as well as depression and anxiety. She comes to see her passed away mother’s side of the family or should say her aunt’s family.

She is sort of bitch however this film does do a good job of having you see her side of her bitchiness. While she is a bitch to people you can see how she is thinking and her thought processes behind it, the trick they use I am definitely approve of. We never really know why she has the problems she does, you better get used to that because this is a sort of film that wont bother telling you, it is what it is.

When she arrives we learn something bad is going on, bombings happening all over Europe and be never really know what is going on (again get used to it) all we know is that a war is coming.

Daisy meets her aunt’s family all of whom are completely different to her, all are farm folk, nice, level headed and down to earth, think of the Weasleys, inf act exactly like them. 

The more she lives with them the more comfortable she becomes with them but as soon as things seem to get better with her all hell breaks loose. London is under strike of a unknown military force as martial law is taken. What happens is basically what would happen if your country is at world and you are basically caught in the cross fire.

It’s really hard to explain it any other way without royally spoiling the movie.

What this movie is is basically a movie about a woman whom changes for the better despite all the bad things that happen to her, sort of a what does not kill you makes you stronger. Adverstiy doesn’t build character it reveals it….well that is what I believe but this movie is more adversity builds character in terms of her. In the beginning of the movie she is a total bitch that despite knowing her inner turmoil have a hard time connecting with her but as she develops a way to become better by the end of the you are with her and totally understand her.

I don’t know but there is something about the director of this film that makes this film as well as the other seem so dreamy yet real. He seems to have that effect with his films, at times things feel dreamy and surreal and then all of a sudden things are very vividly real. His style seems to swerve from surreal to brutality which really works in his favor just like Last King of Scotland did.

I have a hard time really pinpointing a weakness in this film, i think it starts a bit slow, well not slow just not well where you wonder why you should follow this main character but as the film develops you are right there with her and you are in it.

I actually like that this film purposely tells you very little of the background however that is often a double edged sword. Sometimes it works sometimes as I learn yesterday watching a show that seemed to be all about showing you stuff but telling you nothing that it doesn’t always work. I think there needs to be direction or particular reason to not explain, this film I think tells you enough just to get by and just expects you to roll with it, I rolled with it and got it because I think explaining certain things too much would not have served the film as well as not saying. Best to leave some things to the audience to put their own beliefs.

Bottom line however if you are looking for a original post apocalyptic movie that goes in places you don’t expect as well as sort of expect then you can get your fill with this one. It’s not the best one out there but if you are a fan of Last King of Scotland and style of that film this film feels like its from the same vein. I give it CCCC on the Corey Scale.

Jack the Bear - CCC2/3

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I thought about the top 5 coming of age stories that I liked and realized that this has to be done with two lists. One being a list of movies of this genre I liked as a kid while I was growing up and the other of movies I like now as a adult. I wont get into what i have on either list but I will say Jack The Bear is on the one I liked as a kid.

There is only three movies that have ever made me cry in my life and this one was one of them. What made me cry about this movie as a kid was the part where the main character remembers how he lost his mother. I didn’t care much or remembered much of the movie then as a kid but that particular scene made me cry and want to hold my mom (I was 8 years old at the time). Don’t know why but the scene made the thought of me losing my mom the worst thing ever. I connected with the scene.

Child, teen or adult if you can get me connect to the point where I evoke some sort of emotion then you are doing something only maybe 3% of movies have ever done, that is a good thing.

The thing is Jack the Bear isn’t even that special of a movie, it’s just I will always remember that movie for the fact that as a 8 year old it made me ball. And that is enough.

The movie is about a kid named Jack who lives with his younger brother Dylan and his widowed father John. They are your average family for the most part, at least normal in my opinion. John is a horror movie host on a local television channel and is sort of a local celebrity. They are all basically grieving in their own way the loss of Elizabeth who is John’s wife and Jack and Dylan’s mother.

John is basically a man committed to his work but not exactly committed to his parents, that is rough to say but i mean is a father figure who is missing the mother figure in the household and he is forced to do both jobs.

They try and get by and as they do events as well as life events come around to challenge them. John tries to deal with loss as well as alcoholism to a degree while Jack deals with….well growing up and becoming a man.

A man named Norman comes into the neighbourhood or maybe I should say was already there who plays a negative part in the household’s life. He assumes care of Dexter who is Jack’s friend. Norman is basically a  nazi who basically puts everyone at harm.

I wont say anything else because I will spoil it but there really isn’t much new with this coming of age movie. This movie basically has most of everything you would expect from a coming of age movie, so it’s not that special. I feel what makes it’s special is the cast. I think this movie displays a very under rated acting job by Danny Devito. I think just about everyone does a decent job on this movie though I think at times the kid stretch it to corny levels but if I recall they never cross that line.

You will even be surprised to find Reese Witherspoon in this as a young girl playing the puppy love interest for Jack.

So why do I give it a good rating, well evokes emotion from me, not now as a adult but I can definitely see and remember how it did as a kid. Watching it now I still find it enjoyable and I connect with the movie. If anything it more reflects my childhood than the other movies, with that it only reflects it by 20%. I don’t connect with much coming of age movies, I enjoy them and find pieces but not entirely.

This movie really doesn’t do anything special honestly but I found within all the cliche things around it it is a very original story. The movie doesn’t glorify anyone, everyone feels very real like you know these people from down the road and that is all you can ask for with these kinds of movies.

Maybe I give it a good rating because of the memories and you are probably right but I don’t really care. I do think this is a forgotten gem from the 90s. It’s no Perks of Being a Wallflower but I think it deserves to be seen and talked of more.

Bottom line is if you are a fan of the genre and Danny Devito then I think you should check this one out some time, while it is very generic there are some things in it that make it stand out from others. Sadly it’s a very forgotten movie from the 90s, however i haven’t forgotten it and I doubt I ever will, therefore I give it CCC2/3 on the Corey Scale.

Good movie questions (taken from youcantcallitfroley)

  1. VHS, DVD or BluRay? VHS
  2. Cinema or at home on your computer? Cinema alone
  3. What was the movie that made you fall in love with movies? I always loved movies, right from the cradle but the movie that made me think of the craft behind it was Bringing Out The Dead
  4. Who is your #1 director crush? (because everyone has more than one) as in attracted to that director then Sophia Coppola without question. As in great admirer of work then I don’t know I don’t have a favourite anymore if anyone Wong Kar Wai, how he makes movies is how I want to make them.
  5. If you could have drinks with the cast of one movie which one would it be? hmmmmmmmmm……….I would say X Men Days of Future Past or any of the X Men/Wolverine movies
  6. Quentin Tarantino or Martin Scorsese? Scorsese without a doubt
  7. Favorite B Movie? National Lampoons Last Resort
  8. Favorite film from 2007? Lars & The Real Girl
  9. Comfort film(s)? Life Aquatic, Lars & The Real Girl, Hobo With A Shotgun, Goon, Year of The Carnivore
  10. A film you love for its aesthetic? The Grandmaster
  11. A movie that you hate from a director you love? Cosmopolis
  12. Exploitation Films or French New Wave? Exploitation
  13. Derek Cianfrance or Steve McQueen? Steve McQueen hands down
  14. A movie that made you uncomfortable and why? 12 Years a Slave, how could people of my colour do this or even look themselves in the mirror to believe that that was right. Makes me ashamed.
  15. A movie you regret paying for? Neighbours
  16. Long epics or short indies? Short indies
  17. Cate Blanchett or Kate Winslet? So hard to decide……..I would say Kate Winslet
  18. Least favorite genre? Hollywood Action
  19. A movie you want everyone to know about? Year of The Carnivore
  20. Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings? Game of Thrones
  21. Describe yourself in three films? Science of Sleep, Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind, Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
  22. A movie you couldn’t watch with your parents? Shame
  23. Favorite sex scene? Terminator
  24. Do you prefer to watch movies alone, with friends or an audience? I prefer to watch alone, I often get antsy with others around
  25. Nicolas Winding Refn or Lars von Trier? Lars because I never heard of the other guy
  26. A movie that portrays your ideal world? Good question, Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind only because I can’t think of anything else and I would like that technology 
  27. A movie that makes you nostalgic? Tank Girl
  28. Cannes or the Oscars? Cannes
  29. Favorite country for cinema outside of the UK, U.S. and Canada? Very good question! I would say Japan or France, I am split between the two
  30. Favorite movie ending? The Color of Money, anti climactic but if you seen The Hustler then watched this movie it makes sense and it doesn’t matter who would have won.