January 2015 Movie Preview

E: I have to be honest: it will be a minor miracle if I see anything this month that actually officially opens in January.  It’s all Oscar for me, this month and next.  Why bother with this slate’s trifling offerings when there’s so much fantastic stuff out there that opened in December and November?

M: I’m unlikely to get to the theater in any given month, but yeah, with things I want to see (Selma, Theory of Everything) and things I feel like I should see (Hobbit, Mockingjay), this month’s openings might not make the list.

C: I mostly agree — heck, like M I’m still hoping to catch some stuff that came out in November, like The Theory of Everything — but it sounds like a few December movies aren’t as urgent as I thought they’d be. Based on the reviews, for instance, Unbroken could wait for DVD and we’re better off skipping Annie entirely. I still really want to see Selma, though.

E: Selma‘s at the top of my list for this season (and count me in on The Theory of Everything, too), but isn’t coming to a theater near me until the 9th.

M: I will defend Unbroken, which I did see. Everything they included from the book they did VERY well. My issue with it is that they ended it too soon, but it is a very good movie. And I didn’t see it, but my kids loved Annie.

E: Which is all to say, the January release list is so paltry and insignificant that, as you may have noticed, we completely forgot to write it up in a timely manner.

January 2nd

[REC 4] Apocalypse

E: Spanish horror movie.

M: Are we starting with this just because it comes first alphabetically, or to REALLY accentuate the point about January’s slate?

C: It’s a pretty bad slate.

E: Both.  As for the plot, cute/hot television reporter gets infected with demon spawn and wrecks havoc.  Obviously.

C: If I had a nickel for every time that happened…

The Search for General Tso

E: If you were wondering just how thin and pathetic the new offerings this weekend were, I needed to pad out the horror film fest with this documentary about the American-Chinese food favorite.  Was there a real General who made the famous chicken?  If you’d like to know, this is where you go to find out.

C: Not gonna lie — now I want to know!

M: Not gonna lie — now I want some Chinese food.

C: Picking up the phone as we speak.

The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death

E:  Really?  Well, I suppose since it has to contend with all the Christmas releases — Into the Woods, Unbroken, The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies — they might as well not even bother.

C: Would you expect the film to have a big release in some other month? I didn’t even know a sequel was contemplated, which makes me question whether Dan Radcliffe is in this one.

M: Nope, apparently it’s set 40 years later. But Helen “Narcissa Malfoy” McCrory is in it, so you know, that’s almost the same thing?

E: You can hardly find a British movie these days without at least one Harry Potter alum in it. While I’m sure the cast and crew don’t feel this way, this lame offering feels exactly like no one is bothering.

M: It only feels that way because no one is.

January 9th

Black November

M: Just by default, shouldn’t they have released this in November?

C: It does feel like they missed something obvious there.

E: Unchallenged.  Based on a true story, a Nigerian community comes together to protect their oil rich land from greedy multinational oil companies and their own corrupt government.

C: Aw, heartwarming!

E: There’s hostage-taking in L.A. (I’m not sure how factual that is), a loathsome oil company fat cat played by Mickey Rourke, and variously complicit compatriots played by Anne Heche, Vivica A. Fox, Sarah Wayne Callies and Kim Basinger, as well as the committed fighters Akon, Wyclef Jean and Mbong Amata (who appears to be the wife of the writer/director, Jeta Amata).

C: Wait… now I can’t tell if that’s heartwarming. Hostage-taking doesn’t sound heartwarming.

E: Yeah, not so much.

M: One of the things I really liked and appreciated about Unbroken was that it did not say “Based on” a true story. It proudly put up “A true story,” and stuck to facts. This one feels like it’s gonna be a lot of “based on” and not a lot of “true.” And with that cast, a buried January opening is a really bad sign.

E: The tone seems a bit muddled to me, somewhere between a thriller and an inspirational Disney movie with cartoonish characters.  It looks like it might be an important story told with perhaps not as much depth as the subject deserves.  On the other hand, even if it’s being released in the January graveyard, it’s probably a triumph that such a film was made and released at all.

M: Seriously? Hollywood taking on a movie demonizing an oil company, and you think it’s a triumph it got made? More like an inevitability.

C: It’s a tough job but somebody’s gotta do it.

E: Well, I meant a story told from an African point of view by an African writer and director, but I take you point.

M: Ah, and now I take yours as well.

Predestination

E: In case you’re not interested in the movies opening in wide release on this day — Selma and A Most Violent Year — you have this time travel flick in the vein of Looper and Minority Report.

M: Okay, I like both of those, to varying degrees.

E: Temporal Agent Ethan Hawke (looking thin, old, and just plain strange) routinely travels back in time to stop various criminals from committing their crimes. Now he goes back to solve one last case, the one that’s eluded him all his career (how original!): a devastating terrorist attack that killed thousands.

M: Two unoriginal formulas, but formulas not often combined. Still, I’ll probably just pop Frequency into the BluRay player instead.

C: Let’s just hope it doesn’t have the plot hole that ruined Frequency (an otherwise excellent film) for me.

E: The siblings — like many other sci fi-loving geeks — are picky about time travel stories.  It’ll be interesting to find out (assuming it’s worth us eventually seeing) if this movie strains our credulity or not.

Taken 3

E: Oh, Liam Neeson. Weren’t you an Oscar contender once?

M: This is an excellent lead in to another post we’re writing at this moment, where we discuss Russell Crowe’s comments about actresses needing to “act their age.”

C: Achem, Mr. Neeson…

The World Made Straight

E: This is an adaptation of Ron Rash’s coming-of-age story about a young man (Jeremy Irvine) trying to change his life in a backwoods community plagued by violent feuds and alcoholism.  Its combination of hopeless poverty and cyclical violence reminded me of the haunting Winter’s Bone; it looks and sounds well made. The supporting cast includes Noah Wyle, Haley Joel Osment and Minka Kelly.

C: Noah Wyle, star of the Librarian films? Wow! How did they get that guy?

M: Hey, stop that! Wylie is good and I want him to get more good roles. I don’t know Irvine (still haven’t seen War Horse), but he looks capable, and the plot looks dark but complex. I like Osment, or at least I want to, despite not having seen him in much of anything in the last decade plus. Kelly was good on Almost Human. Definite potential.

E: I also think this might be good, but I doubt it’s going to get a wide enough release to matter in the theaters.  It might be something worth seeking out to stream eventually, though.

January 16th

Blackhat

E: Again, there are some terrific looking 2014 films going into wide release this weekend — Still Alice, featuring best actress front runner Julianne Moore’s performance as a woman with Alzheimers, and Clint Eastwood’s thriller biopic American Sniper — you’ll be happy to know things are improving and you may find other viable option at the multiplex as well.

C: I don’t know how Julianne Moore never came up in our conversation about women over 40 who get good parts in movies. She is one of the five, for sure.

M: But, somehow, she is not in Blackhat. I can’t help but wonder at the person pitching this to a studio. The government needs the world’s greatest hacker to stop a cyber terrorist. That hacker happens to look like the sexiest man alive and have action hero fighting skills. Totally believable, right?

C: I KNOW. I could not contain my eye rolling throughout this trailer. It was just too much absurdity! And I love the Thor movies!

E: So, er, does this mean you’re going?

M: Oh, totally.

C: No. I’m serious. This looks utterly implausible, and also not fun. If you’re going to defy all belief, I need jokes.

Loitering With Intent

E: Quirky comedy about two Hollywood wannabes who have ten days to write the screenplay that will save their lives. When they seek peace and quiet out in the country, wackiness ensues instead in the form of Marisa Tomei and Sam Rockwell.

M: Not in the form of Kim Jong Un? That would be funnier.

C: Nope, I’m pretty sure Tomei and Rockwell are funnier. Though I’m not sure how they “ensue.”

M: I didn’t see a lot of ensuing in the trailer. Or a lot of funnier.

Paddington

E: Someone took the classic children’s book, chewed it up, and vomited it onto the screen.  Where are the words for this movie?  Vile.  Appalling. Astoundingly misguided and bad. That’s what I thought every single time I took my kids to a movie in the last six months and got assaulted by this hideous preview.

C: It’s like they put the story through some sort of experimental de-charming process.

E: The bathtub careening down the stairs.  The earwax on the toothbrushes.  Hugh Bonneville looking like a bumbling fool.  Everything. It’s just awful.

M: Okay, I have not seen a single preview for this, so I don’t have the same reaction as you, E. The only thing I’ve seen for it doesn’t really count: it was Nicole Kidman’s appearance on the Tonight Show, supposedly to promote this. She ended up not promoting it, however, when she and Jimmy Fallon recounted a previous encounter in 2005 when a mutual friend brought her to his apartment for them to meet. They were both single at the time, and she liked him, but he had no clue that’s what was going on until this interview. His reaction was PRICELESS.

E: Back me up, C.

C: I’ll back M up. It was priceless. But yes, I’ll also back you up: this movie looks less appealing than a bowl of cheese sauce left out on the back porch overnight in mosquito territory.

M: Mmmmmm… cheese sauce.

C: For our SANE readers, if you’re thinking right now about whether mosquitoes would land in a bowl of cheese sauce, you’ve already done more thinking than these screenwriters seem to have done.

E: So, to sum up, let’s all watch that interview clip on Youtube and not this movie.

Spare Parts

E: Comedian George Lopez stars as a down-on-his-luck substitute teacher who inspires his inner city kids to enter a national robotics competition using only — you guessed it — spare parts.  Like tampons.  Marisa Tomei plays a fellow teacher, and Jamie Lee Curtis their beleaguered principal.

C: Tomei again! Good month for her. Haven’t seen her in a while. Or JLC for that matter. (Though I think they’ve been in things I just haven’t seen.)

M: Agreed about Tomei and Curtis. Also good, this doesn’t sound like something I’ve seen a hundred times. Oh wait, yes it does.

C: Actually, I’m interested. I often like this kind of movie, but what makes this great is that it’s a true story, and a pretty dang impressive one. A team of Mexican immigrant students with a budget of $800 beats M.I.T. in a national competition? I don’t think there’s a cap on the number of stories like that I want to hear!

M: That’s fair.

Still Life 

E: Unusual, well-reviewed contemporary British romance starring Bleak House‘s Eddie Marsan and Downton Abbey‘s Joanne Froggatt.

C: Hm. I can’t picture Marsan doing romance.

M: I didn’t think that the British did “contemporary.”

C: What’s Doctor Who, then?

M: Sci fi. Duh.

E: I don’t mean this in a mean way, because I love Anna and Bates, but Froggatt is young and gorgeous.  At some point, are casting agents going to pair her with a man in her own age- and looks-range?

M: Like Liam Neeson?

E: Right. What was I thinking?

Vice

C: Bruce Willis still starring in action movies? Where’s his letter from Russell Crowe?

M: To quote a local Boston radio legend, “You’re making… my point.” However, in this case, I don’t think that Willis is involved in the action part of the movie.

C: Vice basically stole the idea of Dollhouse, as far as I can tell. Only there’s a resort (run by Willis) where people go to do any disgusting thing they want with lifelike robot people, whose robot memories are wiped every day. But — don’t tell me you guessed this! — the pretty girl robot starts to remember, and then she runs away, and then some bulky guy played by Thomas Jane has to save her.

M: Right, so it takes a little bit of The Purge (let people get things out of their system in one place), and a bit of your run-of-the-mill sci fi/futuristic plot (one person or cyborg bucks the system that looks utopian but is actually dystopian). Oddly enough, this is the kind of plot that is in my wheelhouse. So much so that I’m a sucker for it. Heck, I even watch and kind of enjoy crappy movies like In Time. I feel like this will be like that, I’ll end up seeing it on video or cable at some point, think it’s not very good, but enjoy it.

E: I’m not sure what this has in common with In Time other than being lame sci fi, but okay.

M: It’s the “one person fights the supposedly utopian system” aspect. I can see how you’d miss that, though.

The Wedding Ringer

C: First of all, that name, seriously. It would be a clever play on words if there weren’t a movie called The Wedding Singer. I hope people will just watch that instead of this.

E: It’s Kevin Hart again, starring as a man who hires himself out as the best man guaranteed to give an amazing toast and be the life of your wedding even if no one actually knows him.

C: Oh, right, because none of your closest friends and relatives would think it odd that they’ve never met your best man before.

M: Seems like a combo of Hitch and Wedding Crashers, but without the promise of either, and, unfortunately, with Kevin Hart. Dude needs to slow down a bit, I think.

January 23rd

Mortdecai

E: Imagine if a devotee of Wes Anderson, James Bond and Austin Powers made a spy comedy thriller about a missing Goya painting and the quirky aristocrat — a blond, mustachioed Johnny Depp — sent to retrieve it.

C: From your description that sounds like something I might like, only I feel like this looks awful instead.

E: Ewan McGregor plays Depp’s boss, Gwyneth Paltrow his darling wife, Paul Bettany his manservant/muscle, and Olivia Munn an American femme fatale. You might hate me for saying it, but it doesn’t seem as dreadful as most Johnny Depp films of late.

M: I don’t. I saw the trailer, and half of me thinks that it could be abysmal, but the other half wonders if it could be a modern day Pink Panther. I hope for the latter, but not very confidently.

E: Well, that’s it exactly.  It’s probably drivel, but it just might be genius.

C: Is it weird that the “t” in the name really bothers me? I know, I know, it’s weird.

E: Is it weird that it bothers me too?

M: No, because they make a conscious effort to pronounce it, which just makes it sound wrong. I think that’s supposed to be part of the wacky charm of it, but instead it’s part of why I can’t figure out if it’s going to suck.

The Boy Next Door

E: It’s a Lifetime movie for the big screen!  What’s a hot high school teacher to do when she’s trapped in a loveless marriage to a philandering John Corbet?  If you’re Jennifer Lopez, you turn to the super hot and perfect-seeming teenage boy next door, who’s guaranteed to give you hot sex, and, eventually, violently stalk you and your family and ruin your life.

M: Could this be any more of a retread?

C: Well, I guess it’s often gender-swapped, but otherwise no.

M: Um, no it’s not. It’s always the female teacher, which for some reason is considered far less creepy. When it’s the other way around it’s just a hit song by The Police.

E: They did make those movies, but you’re right, we do see more of the female teacher ones these days.

C: I meant that the affair-gone-sour-turns-to-violent-stalking part is usually gender-swapped.

E: Costarring Kristin Chenoweth as the best friend and Pretty Little Liars‘ Ryan Guzman.  I expect that if this is in your wheelhouse, then it’ll do just what you want it to.

Cake

E: Jennifer Aniston makes a play for an Oscar nomination, and if the Golden Globes and Screen Actors Guild are to be believed, she just might get there.  At some point this film did officially premiere back in 2014 — so quietly we didn’t even hear about it and we keep our ears pretty low to the ground, as it were — but generally opens today.

M: Odd.

E: At any rate, Aniston eschews make-up–

C: Well then give her an Oscar, duh.

E: –to play a pill-popping mess who stalks the bereaved husband of a friend from support group after the friend (Anna Kendrick) kills herself.  Kendrick makes plenty of appearances talking to Aniston, so there’s real quirk, but the story centers around grief, depression and misery.

M: The holy trinity for a blockbuster film!

C: You mean an Oscar favorite.

E: The movie itself doesn’t seem to have drawn the same level of love from critics that Aniston’s performance has.  Odd, considering the presence of Kendrick, Sam Worthington as the husband, Felicity Huffman as the support group leader as well as William H. Macy, Mamie Gummer, and Oscar nominee Adriana Barraza.

M: Maybe it’s the grief, depression and misery? Wait, no, critics love those things.

E: The worst thing about this movie — which is sadly not the fact that I may have to see it — is the way critics boringly insist on using the title to inspire their reviews.  Sour center!  Crumbling!  It’s sweet!  There’s nothing sweet about it!  I hope it’s not the last slice of Aniston’s new found acting prowess!  UGH.

M: Really, that’s the worst thing? Do I need to bring the above three words back up again?

C: I’m with E here. Movie critics, put the puns down and slowly back away.

M: So you both thing that bad puns referencing the title are worse than a woman who’s a “pill-popping mess,” grief, depression or misery? See what I’m up against here, folks?

The Humbling

E: Creepfest — predictably written by Philip Roth — about a decrepit aging actor (Al Pacino) attempting to revive his career and also embarking on a strange affair with the lovestruck daughter (Greta Gerwig) of friends (Diane Wiest and Dan Hedaya).  Who’s actually a lesbian.  Just gross, self-serving, indulgent twaddle.

M: Who’s Philip Roth?

E: Famous American writer of such navel-gazing twaddle as Portnoy’s Complaint, The Human Stain and Goodbye, Columbus.  All whiny “why don’t all hot women want to sleep with me all the time/the world revolves around my private parts” idiocy.

C: Basically the poster boy of liberal intellectual misogyny.

M: Explains why I don’t know him. Thanks.

Mommy

E: Loving someone won’t save them, a nurse explains to a mother checking her son out of a hospital. Skeptics will be proven wrong, the gum-snapping mother replies. And so begins an adventure in which an unconventional woman tries to care for her intermittently violent son with the help of a neighbor (a teacher on leave).  This film won the grand jury prize at Cannes and raves (including a long shot at Oscar) for star Annie Dorval.

C: Interesting. Sounds more poignant or potential controversial than “adventuresome,” but could be intriguing.

M: Remember the comments at the start of this post about having things I want to see from previous months? This will not top those.

E: No, me neither.  Granted, I think you could make an amazing movie about the troubles of living with a disabled or mentally ill child.

M: Totally agree.

E: It’s a subject that could be addressed a lot more.  From the preview, however, I feel like they’re trying to make the struggle cutesy, somehow, which loses my interest.

Red Army

E: Well-reviewed documentary about the Soviet national hockey team.

M: Remember my comment on Mommy?

E: I’d sort of think this might be something you’d watch, though.  I mean, it seems interesting enough to me; I wouldn’t see it in a theater, but I’d watch it on cable.

M: Yes, well, my comment on Mommy was that it wasn’t going to jump ahead of the things I already wanted to see in the theater. Netflix is a different thing entirely. For both of these, actually.

C: I feel like, with Netflix, we live in an age where documentaries finally reach a large enough audience that the people who would be interested in their niche subject matter might actually get to see them. Which is nice.

M: I will say, when looking for the trailer, I had a hard time finding it. Mostly American Sniper trailers came up, and one version of this in spanish. Not necessarily the best sign for Netflix availability.

E: Oh, weird.  The one I saw was definitely not in Spanish.

Song One

E: After hearing that her younger brother lies in a coma, Franny (Anne Hathaway) flies home and — with the help of his journal — begins to record sounds that might tempt her brother back to the world.  One of her most significant finds is his favorite singer,  played by Johnny Flynn, who to Franny’s surprise begins to show up a the hospital to play for Henry.  Romance ensues.

C: Oh, my boyfriend’s a big Johnny Flynn fan, so he told me this was being made a while back; it slipped my mind. It sounds good — and I mean that literally, with Flynn’s nice soft voice and music written by Jenny Lewis and her boyfriend Johnathan Rice. Plus Anne Hathaway is likeable.

M: A little bit of a twist on While You Were Sleeping? If there’s a realistic, fun, quirky family and maybe a Cesar Romero reference or two, it could work.

E: The secret to making a successful romantic comedy: more Cesar Romero.

C: I don’t think this one’s a comedy, really. But “the more like While You Were Sleeping the better” is a good rule for any movie.

Strange Magic

E: Well made but derivative-looking animated fantasy involving tiny people, fairies, monsters, a magical potion, classic rock of the 70s, and heaven knows what else.

M: Huh, I thought you’d be all over this one, E. In addition to it being co-written by George Lucas, and having pretty great looking animation, the voice cast is pretty spectacular.

E: I can see why you’d think that (I do love all things little), but the animation doesn’t actually look that appealing to me.  And don’t hate me, but after the prequel trilogy I’m pretty skeptical about my old hero George Lucas.  Still, I’m always happy to see more good movies, and more good kids movies especially.

M: As you know, I have long ago soured on Lucas, too.

January 30th

Back Street Boys: Show ‘Em What You’re Made Of

M: Back Street Boys: Please don’t.

C: Everyone’s favorite genre the movie-about-a-real-band meets another favorite genre, movies-about-people-we-forgot. Get your tickets early.

Black or White

E: Kevin Costner’s been helping wife Jennifer Ehle raise their biracial granddaughter Eloise (Jillian Estell) right up until Ehle’s death.  Now he’s forced to let her other grandmother, Wiwi, further into his manicured life.  Of course Wiwi — played by the luminous Octavia Spencer — brings charm and a whole lot of messy life along with her. Also costars Anthony Mackie and Paula Newsome.

M: Don’t forget that Costner appears to be a drunkard, and the whole thing ends up in court. Looks like it could be a cross between St Vincent and Evelyn, not that I think it’ll be anywhere near as good as the latter. I’ll probably just watch that instead.

E: And kind of a racist, too.  But they all love Eloise!  And Wiwi’s going to teach him how to have fun!

C: So clever they’re being with the title, too. By the way, the fourth movie of the month with the word “black” in the title.

The Loft

E: Five guys (including James Marsden, Wentworth Miller, and Karl Urban) share a penthouse apartment, not to actually live in but as a sort of safe house where they can indulge in dark and risky behavior.  Will it surprise you that a woman’s murdered body ends up chained to the bed?

M: Shocker! And wait, did we actually post about this one months ago, or did we discuss it and figure out that it wasn’t releasing until later?

C: We definitely already wrote about this months ago. I remember saying it sounded like a gross(er?) version of The Apartment.

M: Thought so. That should tell our readers what the expectations for this film are. Pushed out by its distributor into the movie graveyard of January. Not. Good.

E: I think you can say this about the plot, too. Not. Good.

M: Everyone who disagrees raise your hand.

E: I don’t see any hands.

C: Well, that’s all, folks. Did you find anything you’re planning to go see? If so, let us know below!

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108 comments on “January 2015 Movie Preview

  1. MMGF says:

    Didn’t Colin Firth also back out as the voice of Paddington partway through? That doesn’t bode well, either. And, you know, while I tend to think that the trailer – which I’ve, too, seen about 100 times – finds a way to make the movie look both offensive and boring at the same time, people in the theater have laughed at it every time. So – it should be interesting to see how it does, and how its received.

    • E says:

      You know what astounded me? When the BAFTA noms came out this weekend, Paddington snagged one of the “Best British films” nominations! I can’t believe it. I think you’re spot on – it simultaneously looks offensive and boring, which is an impressive feat. Maybe that’s what BAFTA was responding to?

  2. boddhirocks says:

    I am so glad i found this post. Im a huge movie geek and im looking forward to reading more of what you guys have

    • M says:

      Thanks boddhirocks, and thanks for reading! We’re a family of movie geeks, too, and love taking the time to put these monthly previews together, even if it’s just to keep us on top of what’s coming out.

    • E says:

      We’re glad you’re here, too, Boddhirocks! What’s better than talking to fellow movie geeks? Not much! 🙂

    • MMGF says:

      You’ll become very addicted to this blog very quickly, I think. 🙂

  3. renofailure says:

    Love the conversational style here. Like listening to a podcast or watching a review show. Also the reviews fit my thinking.

  4. mitchteemley says:

    Selma’s excellent–no better time than MLK day to see it. Agree with you about Unbroken ending too soon–before the real crux of the story!

    • E says:

      I cannot wait to see Selma – it’s at the top of my list! Hopefully Mr. E and I can make it out Monday night before the MLK weekend ends.

      Thanks so much for commenting, Mitchteemley, and nice to meet you!

    • M says:

      Like my sister, I’m really hoping to see Selma, especially this weekend if I can. And I’ve been trying not to spoil anything for Unbroken, but yeah, as I said to friends I saw it with, without the stuff they barely mentioned at the end, Louie’s just a guy who went through some horrible stuff. What happened after he came home is what makes him such and inspiration to me! They tried to at least give a nod to it, while keeping what Hollywood sees as the dramatic ending, but in doing that they strip out part of the heart of the story.

  5. jbradin23 says:

    Agree with most everything on this list.

  6. abedaydin says:

    👍

  7. extremely happy 🙂 🙂 🙂

  8. WoodRtist says:

    I love the movies that make you jump out of your seat.

  9. brennalayne says:

    This is fantastic! You guys are hilarious. And sane.

  10. never2late4649 says:

    http://www.never2late4649.wordpress.com please check out my blog im new : ) love this post!

  11. Anne Driscoll says:

    Reblogged this on Twisted Branch Blog.

  12. I think an outstanding indian film “PK” should get nomimations too..

    • E says:

      It’s really unusual for films that aren’t in English — really, any nationality other than American or British — to get nominated, though it does happen. Two Days, One Night and IDA are this year’s examples, but Red, The Postman, Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, Amour, A Separation and Pan’s Labyrinth are great examples from the past. The recognition of non-European films has increased greatly in the last ten years, and hopefully will increase in the future.

  13. very nice exchange of conversation here : )

    • E says:

      Thanks so much for the reblog! You put a really interesting collection of pieces up on your site – we’re happy to be part of such an eclectic and well written group.

  14. Maura says:

    Laughed out loud at a couple of your comments. Liam Neeson, indeed. Great job, love the conversational aspect. I love movies but see very few in theaters, being somewhat of a snob. Unless the husband can drag me out of the house to see whatever it is he wants to see. This weekend, the family wanted to see Interstellar. I put my foot down having been told more of the plot than I wanted to know. We ended up seeing The Imitation Game. I feel so much better for having educated my children. Anyway – good job, keep it up.

    • E says:

      When I saw The Imitation Game, I immediately wanted to go out and read a book on Turing — which is one of my favorite reactions to a film! You should check out my Oscar posts to see more of the thought-provoking films that are out now; January’s not a great time for opening impressive new ones.

    • E says:

      BTW, Maura, thanks for writing in, and thanks for the kind words! They are very much appreciated.

  15. Jay says:

    Wow, that’s an awful lot of movies. I’m starting to feel discouraged! I do still have high hopes for Paddington though.

    • E says:

      Oh, don’t feel discouraged by this list; I doubt there’s a lot worth your time. And the British Academy liked Paddington well enough to nominate it for Best British film, so who knows? Maybe it’s charming after all.

  16. I enjoy Philip Roth as an author. I don’t think his outlook is that of horny whiny man, though that could be one of his protagonists positions, for which roth would then mock and punish him for. I see Roth as a rigid secular moralist. His characters tend to be flawed people who end up getting their comeuppance.

    • E says:

      We’re going to have to agree to disagree about Roth, my friend — but then if everyone had the same reaction to him that I did, he’d hardly have the acclaimed career he does!

  17. Shreya says:

    Excellent and funny ! really enjoyed reading

  18. john doe says:

    I never watch movies in theaters, I rent from the library https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYeEl38c2AI

  19. Great post! However i didnt see a review for American Sniper..Perhaps i missed it. American Sniper was trully an amazing film!

  20. Fabiola Jean-Baptiste says:

    Hello, i’m kind of new on wordpress. I would like to have some help. Please take a look at my blog if you can, share or follow if you want. Please. *I’m Haitian and i write in english and french on the blog*
    iambohemian.wordpress.com

    Thanks.

  21. maria102688 says:

    I love this back and forth about film. It’s brillant! It’s something I would love to do. Also, The Theory of Everything is an exqusite film. I have seen it and it was every emotion you could experience at once. Thank you for this gem.

    • E says:

      This is pretty much what sitting down with us at dinner sounds like. Except here we take turns talking. 😉

      The Theory of Everything is next up on my list of Oscar movies – got to Selma and Whiplash this week and hoping to see TToE tomorrow. I’m glad to hear how much you liked it!

      BTW, I just checked out your blog, too, and really enjoyed reading your poems, Maria. Thanks for sharing them!

  22. My friends and I are going to see the wedding ringer this teusday. We all got a kick from reading your review, but now we jave been warned. Lolol

  23. fluffydstroyer1 says:

    Predestination was an amazing mindf**k, and I loved it 😉

  24. juditcodony says:

    Please can you follow my blog? Thanks!

  25. Hopelessly Romantic Cinderella says:

    Cool blog.

    Would love if you follow mine too. You could make a great movie from my story.

    http://www.hoplessleyromanticcinderella.wordpress.com

    • E says:

      I wish we could make our own movies, Cinderella! BTW, I did check out your stuff, and I agree, that’s a whole lot of drama! Good luck in this period of working on yourself and your own dreams. I hope for the best for you!

      • Hopelessly Romantic Cinderella says:

        Hehe thanks for reading. Well my story is still unfolding so lets watch this space…maybe it will b Z-RATE movie worthy. x

  26. snippett says:

    Whoa why the hate for Paddington? Ben Whishaw + 98% on Rotten Tomatoes? I think the film gives a good account of the source material.

    • E says:

      Hey Snippett! The hate was based on the trailer (which I saw repeatedly) but it does seem like that impression was off base. Actually, one of the best quotes on Rotten Tomatoes mentions this: “Despite its terrible trailers, the movie is a surprising delight.”

      • snippett says:

        Haha yeah maybe it wasn’t marketed very well. Its a really bad time to release a goofy film as well, when all anyone is going to talk about is whether Eddie Redmayne acted disabled enough to deserve an Oscar, whether Clint Eastwood is going to make a ‘Letters from Iwo Jima’-esque Iraqi follow-up to American Sniper, and whether there’s any other acting criteria at the Oscars than ‘you have to be white, and be able to produce a decent amount of salty tears.’ Cool blog though, definitely worth a read! Maybe one day you could do some entertainment-themed snippetts for us 🙂

        • E says:

          Thanks, Snippett! That’s a great offer – we would love to, so let us know. (C’s an academic so she may be the most up your alley.)

          While I’m very focused on the Oscars (and agree, it’s a year of extremely frustrating omissions), I think there’s always room for a good family film. There’s never a season where parents aren’t looking for good entertainment, whether their kids are suffering from heat exhaustion or cabin fever.

          • snippett says:

            Well, just let us know. We’ve got an email address at snippettinfo@aol.co.uk, and we’re looking to branch out into more diverse topics. Our articles are easy, brevity is our M.O. Well, I think the frontrunners of family films have shifted to animation. While Disney used to rule the roost with the kids, and the families sat down to cheesy, wacky films (usually starring Steve Martin), Pixar has changed the game and done what the Simpsons and South Park et al. have been doing for years – carefully balancing on the line between adult and child humour. So animation has taken over, I think anyway.

  27. Mandy says:

    Great post ! Haha

  28. ditchthebun says:

    Blackhat
    Well hang on now… they have to get him out of prison right? Perhaps that is where he had to beef up and learn to fight in order to protect his sweet man meat? LOL

    Spare Parts
    I know this is a true story and all, but it kind of reminds me of the movie ‘Race the Sun’ (1996) based on the true story of the Konawaena High School Solar Car Team, which finished 18th in the 1990 World Solar Challenge and first place among high school entries. It features Halle Berry, Jim Belushi and baby Casey Affleck and Eliza Dushku.

    Vice
    I would be willing to bet that the writers are a fan of Dollhouse! I have no idea how they are not being sued to be honest.

    Mortdecai
    I totally agree with ‘M’ my first thought was that this sounded like a modern day Pink Panther. My love for Depp stands strong though so I shall probably go and see it.

    Cake
    This one sounds interesting and the casting director earned his/her money getting that cast together. Let’s hope the movie lives up to it.

    Song One
    I have not heard of this movie, but I am totally on the wanting to see it bandwagon already. I previously worked as a Science & Health Librarian and there was a study I read on the types of things families/doctors/therapists have tried for coma patients as far as sound therapy goes. At the time I randomly thought that it would make a cool album, turns out it might make a half decent film.

    Strange Magic
    I am interested in this one, partly become I am always looking for interesting engaging shows to have as back up when I mind my niece and she does her 4am wake up LOL. More so because it is loosely based on a Midsummer Night’s Dream which I love – and can I just say, thank god it is not another Romeo & Juliet knockoff! The cast is pretty decent too, love Alan Cumming!

    Back Street Boys – Just, No!

    The Loft
    The part that creeps me out about this is that I can totally imagine 5 guys (or girls) buying an apartment for naughty liaisons. There are just people like that out there. I am pretty uninterested in everything to do with this film except for the fact that there is some random Aussie “talent” in it, shout out to Isabelle Lucas – AKA the creepiest Decepticon ever

    • E says:

      Hey there, Ditch the Bun. Love the moniker! I’m also a little amused by it because I used to work in libraries and my hair is in fact in a bun at this moment. Mostly because it’s the middle of the night here! 😉 Er, not to sound stalkery – when someone likes us it just feels polite to check out what they’re writing. I love your 52 books in 52 weeks idea, btw! And for my money, one of the best things about working in a library is getting to read things on all sorts of topics you wouldn’t naturally run across, like studies on coma patients. Very cool!

      You make me more interested in Strange Magic; Alan Cummings is definitely an inducement, not to mention Shakespeare. I’m usually all about tiny things – I liked the movie Epic from two years ago – but something about the animation here turned me off. I’ll have to investigate the reviews.

      Thanks for writing in! Let us know what you think about the February movie slate – we’ll have that one out on Friday at the latest.

      • ditchthebun says:

        Hi There, thanks for the stalkage :). I am flattered.
        Funny you should mention the bun, I’m having a ‘get the house in shape’ day and whipped my hair into a lazy bun this morning… it’s now fallen out into a ponytail hahaha. Shh don’t tell anyone 🙂
        I hadn’t actually heard of Strange Magic until I saw your post and then I went looking for more information. Funny how the highlights I particularly noticed have stoked your interest 🙂
        I have always been a book and movie girl. My Dad’s a movie fiend and my Mum’s a book master so I got the best of both worlds 🙂
        Out of interest (if you are okay with sharing), why did you decide to leave Libraries? I was considering it because of the lack of work, but it made me too sad to think about it 🙂
        I will definitely be checking out the February one. Hope you don’t mind my long winded responses. I just felt like you guys had put so much effort into the post that I wanted to give a thoughtful response 🙂
        Meanwhile as a direct result of you writing about Vice, my friend and I who are Whedon fans have been having great fun bashing the film. We have decided to go and see it together when it is released in Australia for a laugh – he lives 3 hours away and we barely see each other so I am quite excited 🙂

        • E says:

          You’ve brought a huge smile to my face. 🙂 That sounds like so much fun, ripping apart Vice with your friend. I’m glad to indirectly have influenced your excursion. I too have long distance friends who’re Whedon fans – I think I’m jealous of your plans!

          And of course I don’t mind long responses! It’s a super cool thing to talk to someone on the other side of the world with similar interests and backgrounds – our Dad is a huge movie buff and trained his three children up to be the same. We’re all voracious readers as well (I can’t attribute this only to our mum, but she’s a teacher and the main reader of fiction in their house) though for whatever reason don’t blog about that as much.

          I left libraries not because of a lack of love, but an overabundance of children. 😉 Now my youngest is in school full time and I’m trying to figure out what to do with myself again. I don’t know that it’ll be library work (that’s not what my degree’s in, so really getting a job would require graduate work, money, time and an uncertain employment future) so I’m trying to figure it out. I wish I could find someone who’d pay me to blog! Ah well. You can’t have everything. 😉

          • ditchthebun says:

            Glad to have made you smile.
            I feel the same, had to laugh when you said your Mum is a teacher. Mine started as an English teacher and retrained as a Teacher Librarian. Hahaha the similarities are so amusing. Apparently movie lovers and teachers = book loving, movie going kids LOL.

            I understand what you mean about the ‘lack of love’. My roles before libraries suffered from that. You may have read my profile during your stalking phase and seen the quote from my Grandfather, “find something that you love, that makes your soul sing and find a way to make money doing it”. I think that saying made me do something about my soul crushing jobs. Maybe use the time now to find something you love 🙂

  29. pulinsingh says:

    Reblogged this on whatyouneedtolookat and commented:
    See enema.

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