Zip out for the weekend before our great Friday night content? Miss a day of movie coverage? Check here every Friday afternoon for all the great original content Cinematical published over the last week and play catch up!
'Tyrannosaur' Review: Like a Boot to the Head
Jenni Miller reviews Paddy Considine's film, noting: "While the film moves towards a sort of higher meaning about damaged people finding solace in each other or some such mumbo-jumbo, the ending feels like an empty coda meant to placate the viewer."
'Hop' Review: The Easter Bunny Lays an Egg
Eric D. Snider wasn't thrilled with 'Hop,' and noted the flick's faulty history: "it's probably good that the current Easter Bunny is about to retire (or die?), as he doesn't seem to grasp some of the fundamentals of the holiday he represents. He is mystified at not being beloved in China, evidently unaware that Easter is a Christian observance and the vast majority of Chinese are not Christian. He also tries to appeal to E.B.'s sense of duty by reminding him of the Easter Bunny's 'four thousand years of tradition' -- which means they started delivering candy and eggs to commemorate the resurrection of Christ some two thousand years before the birth of Christ, which demonstrates remarkable foresight."
Plus past film fest reviews:
'Super' offers up satire "with a good deal of vim, vigor, and uniquely twisted jokes." [Scott Weinberg]
'Source Code' is "not nearly as original as his first film, but it is the next best thing to unique: it's two or three familiar ideas tossed into a blender, whipped into a tasty concoction, and delivered with a great deal of style and confidence." [S. Weinberg]
'Insidious' "dares to be different, and that's enough to forgive it some of its tonal indiscretions." [Joe Utichi]
Top 5 Blu-ray Picks of the Week: 'Black Swan,' 'The Ten Commandments'
Peter Martin writes of 'Commandments': "This writer will not argue that the last feature by the legendary Cecil B. De Mille is a good movie, but it is filled with a multitude of visual delights and is a stirring tale."
Girls on Film: Faux Feminism in 'Sucker Punch'
After seeing Zack Snyder's latest, Monika Bartyzel writes: "Snyder doesn't only keep the story from ever definitively offering freedom, he also goes so far as to tear apart every female connection -- mother to daughter, sister to sister, doctor to patients, madam to mistresses and even dragon mother to dragon child. At every level, interpersonal female contact must be destroyed."
Shelf Life: Kill Bill Vols. 1 & 2
Todd Gilchrist revisits Uma Thurman's sword-wielding power and determines: "Genre pastiche had certainly become more commonplace in the time since Tarantino made his industry-breaker 'Pulp Fiction,' but he proved that no one could do it better, grander or more effectively."
The Week in Geek: New G.I. Joe Documentary 'Code Name: Blast Off' Goes Behind-the-Scenes at Hasbro
John Gholson chats with Tristan Rudat, the man behind the new Joe documentary. "Years later, I am often reminded of the impact these characters have had on people from around the world. It's still truly amazing."
Doc Talk: What's the Most Important Ethical Concern for Documentary Today?
Christopher Campbell talks to movie types and filmmakers about the ethics of documentaries: "Basically the most important ethical concern for the majority of people can be boiled down to what a well known director, who requested anonymity, replied: 'arguments are fine; propaganda is not.' This documentary filmmaker clarifies that the issue isn't about objectivity, 'which is ridiculous and impossible,' but rather 'the need to be fair and to embrace the contradictions of everyday life' without distorting the truth."
Criterion Corner #6: The 10 Best Criterion Covers
David Ehrlich digs into ten stellar Criterion covers that "speak to their respective films. The illustrations actually deepen and clarify the movie masterpieces they represent. The greatest designs not only allow Criterion collectors to better display their cinematic classics, but to better understand them as well."
Framed: Bright Star
Alison Nastasi basks in Jane Campion's 'Bright Star' and writes: "Any given frame from 'Bright Star' could be an Impressionist painting or a watercolor brought to life. This week's image of Brawne reclining in bed, luxuriating in the warmth of her romance with Keats is no different. The whispering air and soft light from the window are as palpable as the emotions felt during this scene."
Actors We Miss: Robert Culp
Monika Bartyzel reminisces about Robert Culp, stating: "Perhaps it was this heart that made Culp's impact so notable for his fans -- there was never a sense of overtaking his co-stars, though he certainly had the charisma to follow through."
The Basics: 'Used Cars' and Satisfying Endings
For his last post of the series, William Goss discovers this forgotten Zemeckis film, noting: "Few modern comedies bother with such a calculated and satisfying sense of escalation, instead dawdling their way to the two-hour mark (I'm looking at you, Judd Apatow)."
Stars in Rewind: Jake Gyllenhaal, Age 10, Meets the Press
Well before 'October Sky' and 'Donnie Darko,' Jake was making the rounds for 'City Slickers.' Peter Martin writes: "Gyllenhaal, even as a child dressed up in a cowboy hat, looks very serious as he discusses his craft, and displays an engaging smile. Could anyone imagine that, 14 years later, he would be nominated for an Academy Award for his performance in 'Brokeback Mountain'?"
Is The Criterion Collection Too Cool?
In response to a piece that labels the collection as hipster, resident Criterion fiend David Ehrlich argues: "Their cumulative output has become synonymous with the idea that filmmakers who remain true to their voices are the ones who continue to rock the cinema and change the world, and that's something that will never go out of style. "
Scenes We Love: Moon
Perri Nemiroff gushes over a scene in 'Moon,' stating: "This moment pops up a little way into Sam and Sam's relationship, but beautifully highlights the dynamic between the two as well as their dire situation. It's a mere 42 seconds of the film, but if you're looking for a sample of what Jones and, more so Rockwell, have to offer in this unique sci-fi experience, this is it."
Their Best Role: Barbara Hershey in 'The Portrait of a Lady'
Peter Martin gushes about Hershey's best role: "There's not a more perfect example of her ability to sketch a portrait in shades of gray than in her portrayal of Madame Serena Merle in 'The Portrait of a Lady,' based on the classic novel by Henry James. Watch it and you won't question why Hershey was nominated for an Academy Award for her supporting role."
Their First Time: Q&A With Duncan Jones, Director of 'Source Code'
Erik Davis chats with Duncan Jones for our new interview series, offering up goodies like: "My first paying job as a director was for MTV for an advert for a dating game show they had. I got paid peanuts and had to rope all my friends into doing it, but I remember being so excited that I was finally going to earn money for directing."
Cinematical Seven: Of Time Travel and Paradoxes (Among Other Things)
Inspired by 'Source Code,' Mel Valentin digs into time travel and paradoxes like 'The Time Machine': "Wells' novel caused little consternation or frustration on its release more 116 years ago, most likely because Wells' unnamed time traveler and the titular time machine don't journey into the past, but 800,000 years into the future."