“I’m Paul Barlow, and this is my daughter Jo.”

“Malone.”

“You got a first name?”

“Yeah.”

Posts Tagged ‘Patton Oswalt’

Sorry To Bother You

Monday, July 23rd, 2018

SORRY TO BOTHER YOU is an absurd, inventive new comedy that’s so playful and funny that its acidic satire of soul-crushing capitalism comes across a little more like an inspirational rallying cry than blind fury at a seemingly insurmountable wall of corporate greed and dehumanization. Though it’s that too.

If I was required by law to describe it in terms of movies that already exist, I’d say “low-wage OFFICE SPACE by way of Michel Gondry.” But fuck the law, because it feels like something very new, distinctive and of the moment, from the cast headed by Lakeith Stanfield and Tessa Thompson to the soundtrack to even the cool fonts and logos by children’s book illustrator J. Otto Seibold. Stanfield plays Cassius Green (yes, it’s a pun), who lives in his uncle (Terry Crews, STREET KINGS)’s garage until he finds his calling (oh shit, another pun) at a new telemarketing job. I mean, the place is a hellhole on the verge of a strike led by Squeeze (Steven Yeun, formerly of The Walking Dead), but he turns out to be really good at it after co-worker Langston (Danny Glover, PREDATOR 2) teaches him the secret of the “white voice.” It’s not mere code-switching, but a near supernatural channeling of a voice with no worries that he manifests by being dubbed by David Cross (ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS). It’s a broad and hacky joke made almost profound by its layers of subtext and power to creep out his friends and loved ones. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Young Adult

Thursday, March 15th, 2012

tn_youngadultYou know how sometimes you’re watching a movie and you feel like you don’t like the character as much as you’re supposed to? They’re meant to be relatable but you just think they’re an asshole? Well, YOUNG ADULT is the rare case where I felt like I liked the protagonist more than I was probly supposed to. Mavis Gary (Charlize Theron) is a real selfish asshole, she’s trying to do something crazy and unethical that could ruin people’s lives. So I felt kinda guilty about how much I liked and related to her. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Big Fan

Thursday, November 26th, 2009

tn_bigfan(this review has more spoilers than usual because there’s alot to analyze.)

BIG FAN is the directational debut of Robert Siegel, known obviously to most Seagalogists as the writer of THE ONION MOVIE. He was the editor for The Onion comedy newspaper, then left to write scripts. This one caught the attention of Darren Aronofsky, who was gonna direct it for a while until he decided to have Siegel write a wrestling picture instead.

This one does have some things in common with THE WRESTLER. Both are smartly written, observant, bleak dramas about working class dudes in sports subcultures that don’t usually get much respect. The premise sounds like a comedy: an obsessive sports fan has to decide what to do after getting beaten up by his favorite player. I can imagine the Adam Sandler or Rob Schneider vehicle they could make out of that, but this is more of a drama with some squirmy, uncomfortable chuckles here and there, kind of a minimalistic TAXI DRIVER type character portrait. And for those of us who have written extensively about aikido masters it brings to mind some disturbing hypothetical scenarios. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Blade: Trinity

Sunday, December 12th, 2004

Man I tell you, I wish it was possible for lightning to strike 3 times in the same spot. It would be useful for many things including meteorological research and movie trilogies. But it’s not possible. Never happened. Not once. Only once has it hit the same exact place twice. And that place was the exact spot where Blade was standing at the time. Both times.

What I’m saying obviously is that BLADE III – and I will not call it BLADE TRINITY because what the hell kind of name for Blade III is BLADE TRINITY – is no BLADE or BLADE II. And there are many reasons why. The most immediate thing you notice: it just doesn’t look as good. Steve Norrington and Guillermo Del Toro were both so careful and artful. BLADE felt so exact and carefully composed, II was so spooky atmospheric with shiny gold tinted edges. III (directed by the guy Dave Goyer who wrote all the other ones but only directed the small indy drama ZIG ZAG) tries hard to imitate some of both of those looks. It has the same cinematagraphist as the last one, and I mean it’s not an ugly movie. But you can tell it’s not quite real. Not it’s own look, not quite capturing the previous looks. I think I read this was more expensive than the others but to me it feels cheaper. Almost like a really damn impressive TV version of the Blade universe. But not quite the real Blade universe. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.