There is something very exciting about a directorial debut. Obviously, the filmmaker is excited about their first chance to step behind the camera on a feature film, but, as an audience member or film writer of any kind, it is so fascinating to see the choices being made. Sometimes some of the boldest and most imaginative filmmakers present us with instant classics, other times newcomers deliver a product that may not be extraordinary filmmaking but which may still be a moving or exciting motion picture. In this month’s best of the decade list, I’m honoring the very best directorial debuts. Some of them are first works for potential auteurs, while others are impressive blockbuster entertainment from untested new filmmakers just learning the ropes. Continue reading “Best of the 2010s: Directorial Debut Films”→
Comedy isn’t black-and-white. The genre most associated with films like your average American comedy like, say, American Pie or some Judd Apatow film is much more than its stereotype. There are stylish and quirky comedies, absurd and dark comedies. Comedy films come in all shapes and sizes, and the Best of the 2010s-list highlights multiple different types in the genre. Continue reading “Best of the 2010s: Top Ten Comedy Films”→
The following is a review of the second season of The Leftovers – Created by Damon Lindelof & Tom Perotta
After a terrific and underrated first season, the writers of The Leftovers decided to open their second season with a change of scenery. First, a supremely odd prologue that had me scratching my head and made me wonder if I was watching a different show. It’s a sequence that manages to foreshadow a lot of the events of the second season, but it was an odd way to open a season nonetheless.
Then, after the prologue ended, Axis Mundi – the first episode of the season – becomes a point of view-episode from the perspective of a family from Jarden, Texas — a town that lost zero people during the ‘Sudden Departure.’ We soon learn that these people are Kevin (played by Justin Theroux), Nora (played by Carrie Coon), and Jill’s (played by Margaret Qualley) new neighbors. Continue reading “REVIEW: The Leftovers – Season Two (2015)”→
It’s time for another Top Ten Tuesday. I’m still getting through the best heroes of this decade, and we’ve reached 2015. Do note that these characters aren’t solely ranked on how heroic their actions are. Also, some heroes may not be traditional heroes. In fact, this list includes groups of heroes too. Without further ado, here are the top ten movie heroes of 2015. Continue reading “Top Ten Movie Heroes of 2015”→
The following list contains spoilers for films from 2015.
It’s week seven of the Heroes and Villains period of Top Ten Tuesday, and that means I’m posting two top ten lists today. This is the final villains list for a little while, until I’m ready to release my 2016 list. Do note that these characters aren’t solely ranked on how evil their actions are. Without further ado, here are the top ten movie villains of 2015. Continue reading “Top Ten Movie Villains of 2015”→
The following is a quick review of 99 Homes, a Ramin Bahrani film.
Ramin Bahrani’s 99 Homes follows Dennis Nash (played by Andrew Garfield), a construction worker, who is supporting his mother (played by Laura Dern) and his own son. But soon after Dennis loses his job, he and his family are evicted from their home.
Rick Carver (played by Michael Shannon), a real estate operator, oversees the eviction, and one of his men end up taking a tool from Dennis’ house. When Dennis returns to retrieve it, Rick offers him a job, and soon Dennis, himself, starts to carry out evictions. Continue reading “REVIEW: 99 Homes (2015)”→
The following is a review of The Program, a Stephen Frears film.
I am a fan of the sport. I love watching the Tour de France every year. There are teams and riders that I support, and those that I strongly dislike. Lance Armstrong used to be in the first category for me, but has since become a symbol of what someone can do to hurt a sport. He made us question sports, sport federations, teams, and athletes. The story of Lance Armstrong deserves a great film.
Therefore I was happy to hear that the great Ben Foster would play him, and that Stephen Frears, the director of Philomena and High Fidelity, would direct the film. Somehow, however, I missed the film in theaters, and I had to wait for it to become available on video-on-demand in Denmark. The wait is over. I’ve seen The Program, and I while I didn’t really dislike the film, I have to admit that I am really disappointed with it. Continue reading “REVIEW: The Program (2015)”→