Happy New Year!
Well, here we are, at the start of another year. Nothing but the calendar has changed, yet everything feels different. A year is now in the past, and we can label it with our words, and encapsulate it in our memories - any way we want to. Humorously, it will become harder and harder to remember anything all that specific from 2010 in just a few short years (Months? Minutes?), but right now it feels fresh and sharp. I have been reminding myself a bunch in the last several days about the awesome things that happened last year, just to prevent myself from condemning the entire catastrophic experience.
I don’t generally believe in New Year’s Resolutions, and this year is no different. However in Twenty Eleven, I will definitely do some things I have been meaning to do forever! I will most certainly purchase a flying car. I will also buy a jet pack. I will figure out how to redistribute material on the atomic scale so that I can 1) walk through walls, 2) get beamed places (both up and down), 3) scratch my back through my front. I also resolve to teleport, sunjump, market “brobots”, perfect nanotechnology, accelerate change, wear more silver, and fulfill the bigger promises of yoga. All in 2011!
But, not until I get back from New York, where I still am and where the snow is melting now and the city is a big living battery once again.
As we move into the 3rd year of the Worldwide Reorder, I also resolve to be less surprised at change, and to be more like the willows in the wind than ever. Swaying gently; rooted deeply.
To 2011, people! Here, here!
The first film related news that I have to relay is that Pete Postlethwaite died yesterday, January 2nd. Postlethwaite was only 64, sadly, and had been making movies since the 70’s. You may have seen him recently in THE TOWN or INCEPTION, but he’ll probably be best remembered for his role as Guissepe Conlon, Daniel Day-Lewis’s father in the 1993 film IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER about a young man and his family and friends implicated in a murderous IRA bombing. Postlethwaite was nominated for an Oscar for Best Support Actor (as was Leonardo DiCaprio for his role in WHAT’S EATING GILBERT GRAPE?), but ultimately lost to Tommy Lee Jones who was chasing Harrison Ford around in THE FUGITIVE. RIP Pete Postlethwaite and thanks for your work!
Big titles out this week include a comedy called DINNER WITH SCHMUCKS starring Paul Rudd and Steve Carell, a bloodfest by Robert Rodriguez called MACHETE starring Danny Trejo and may more. Some interesting television including BIG LOVE: THE COMPLETE FOURTH SEASON and an animated something or other that you may be crazy hot for called BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER: SEASON 8: MOTION COMIC!
Another title which I encourage you to check out is HOWL starring the ubiquitous James Franco as Allen Ginsberg and was co-written and directed by Jeffrey Friedman and Rob Epstein (who won an Oscar for his amazing 1984 documentary THE TIMES OF HARVEY MILK). Part documentary, part wild animation, part courtroom drama, it is the story of Ginsberg’s controversial and amazing poem “Howl” and how it was the subject of a famous obscenity trial in San Francisco. My brother-in-law Jake Pushinsky (A GUIDE TO RECOGNIZING YOUR SAINTS, CHOPS, THE SON OF NO ONE (not out yet)) is the film editor on this film, and I was lucky enough to see an advance version of the film. There were many things to like about it, and my favorite scenes are the ones where Franco does a reenactment of a smoky beat café reading of the poem. The poem itself is the true star of this film, and even after 55 years its passionate power is still at full strength: “O victory forget your underwear we’re free.”!
Alrighty, that’s all folks, hope to see you at the stores.
Love and Kisses,
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Renee Zellwegger/Ian McShane/Bradley Cooper.
Directed by Christian Alvart.
* Zellwegger plays a social worker who gets more involved in a case then maybe she should have.
DINNER FOR SCHMUCKS.****BD****
Paul Rudd/Steve Carell/Zach Galifianakis .
Directed by Jay Roach.
* Rudd brings schmuck Carell to the work dinner where the employees win a prize for bringing the most original personality.
* British comedy from 2000.
Directed by Amos Gitai.
* Binoche plays a French woman headed to the dangerous Gaza strip to find her daughter that she abandoned years ago.
THE LAST EXORCISM.****BD****
Directed by Daniel Stamm.
* Until the next one.
Danny Trejo/Jessica Alba/Michelle Rodriguez/Cheech Marin/Robert De Niro/Don Johnson/Lindsay Lohan.
Directed by Robert Rodriguez and Ethan Maniquis.
* A bloodfest about this crazy dude Machete (Trejo) who is out to avenge himself after being double crossed on a hit job gone bad. You know what is funny is reading the parents warning page on imdb about this film – the list of transgressions is amazing!
WHO LOVES THE SUN?
THE YELLOW HANDKERCHIEF .
William Hurt/Kristen Stewart/Maria Bello.
Directed by Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman.
* This is yet another trippy doc that many people think is a fake (like I’M STILL HERE and EXIT THROUGH THE GIFT SHOP). Check it.
DOUBLE TAKE .
* Very cool looking take on Alfred Hitchcock…I think!
James Franco/Mary-Louise Parker/Jon Hamm/David Straitharn.
Directed by Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman.
Edited by Jake Pushinsky.
* Allen Ginsberg’s poem Howl was the subject of an obscenity trial in San Francisco in the 1950’s. This documentary looks at the poem, examines it through animation, restages the famous reading of it at a coffee house in SF, and also restages the trial where we are schooled on the concept of obscenity and even more importantly, the concept of free speech. Everyone in this wacky documentary gives terrific performances, from Hamm (MAD MEN) as the defense attorney to Franco as the young Ginsberg.
INTO THE UNIVERSE WITH STEPHEN HAWKING .
BIG LOVE: THE COMPLETE FOURTH SEASON.
Bill Paxton/Jeanne Tripplehorn/Chloe Sevigny/Amanda Seyfried/Ginnifer Goodwin.
BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER: SEASON 8: MOTION COMIC.****BR****
RICKY GERVAIS: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON.
* Dude is super funny.
ROCKY AND BULLWINKLE: THE COMPLETE SERIES.
* This 18-disc set has 3670 minutes of epic social commentary from Rocky and Bullwinkle.
* I just got to point out, for all you EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS fans, that Michael Pare is in this film.
THE GARFIELD SHOW: ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE (AND PASTA).
SAMANTHA: AN AMERICAN GIRL HOLIDAY.
THOMAS & FRIENDS: WOBBLY WHEELS AND WHISTLES.
WOW WOW WUBBZY: WUBBZY BE MINE?