Monday, Aug 19, 2019
 
search SGN
SERVING SEATTLE AND THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST FOR 42 YEARS!

click to visit advertiser's website


Javascript DHTML Drop Down Menu Powered by dhtml-menu-builder.com

Last Weeks Edition
   
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 




 

 
 

 

 

[Valid RSS]

click to go to advertisers website
to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, December 25, 2015 - Volume 43 Issue 52
Movie Reviews
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
  next story
Slight Daddy's Home a minor comedic adventure
by Sara Michelle Fetters - SGN A&E Writer

DADDY'S HOME
Now playing


Brad (Will Ferrell) is a successful advertising executive working at a Smooth Jazz radio station. He is married to the beautiful Sarah (Linda Cardellini), trying his best to be a loving, approachable and caring stepfather to her two children, Megan (Scarlett Estevez) and Dylan (Owen Vaccaro). Just as things appear to be turning a corner, right when acceptance by the pint-sized duo is about to be achieved, back into their lives comes Sarah's mysterious, free-wheeling, world traveler ex-husband Dusty (Mark Wahlberg). Suddenly it's step-dad versus biological dad, the two men trying to one-up one another in an attempt to win approval from Megan and Dylan while also proving to their mother just how awesome each of them can be.

Daddy's Home feels like a half-baked 'Saturday Night Live' skit that's for some reason been stretched out to feature length. The basic thrust is rather simplistic, and where things are headed is obvious from the first moment Brad attempts to pick up Dusty at the airport. Director Sean Anders (Horrible Bosses 2), co-writing the script with Brian Burns (a staff writer on 'Blue Bloods') and John Morris (We're the Millers), doesn't attempt to go anyplace unexpected, keeping things moderately simple for every single one of the comedy's quickly paced 96 minutes.

That it isn't a complete waste of time is a testament to the talent involved, and I'm not just talking about Ferrell and Wahlberg. Supporting players like Thomas Haden Church and Hannibal Buress play vital roles, both arguably having more laugh-out-loud moments than either of their above-the-title co-stars do. Additionally, for a PG-13 feature that pushes its rating right up to its edge (a sequence at a fertility clinic, anchored by a scene-stealing Bobby Cannavale, is especially ribald), Anders somehow still manages to craft a sweet, some might even call it saccharine, tone, fashioning an aura of familial warmth and understanding that's moderately heartwarming.

But it's Ferrell and Wahlberg who keep this engine revving like it does, a statement that shouldn't come as a shock for all of those who watched the pair's 2010 hit The Other Guys. They are a great comedic team, the two working off one another with an easygoing effortlessness that's wonderful. Wahlberg is particularly good, his awe-shucks demeanor concealing a lethally magnetic charm that borders on Machiavellian. He's a seductive hoot, and no matter how absurd or crazy situations might end up becoming he has a way of anchoring them in a form of uncertain, emotionally conflicted humanity that's kind of touching. Better, he's fearless, doing whatever he is asked, no matter how embarrassing, and as such a number of the laughs he generates feel more organic to the narrative and less robotically manufactured, a similar statement I cannot make as it pertains to Ferrell.

Still, as funny as the film can be, there's no denying there's not a lot going on, Anders and company stringing together a series of a loosely connected vignettes more than they've constructed a three act screenplay worth following all the way through to the finish line. Additionally, they've constructed a forgettably pedestrian role for the woefully underutilized Cardellini, the talented actress once again relegated to afterthought even though her character is the one both Ferrell and Wahlberg are going out of their way to impress. But Sarah has nothing to do other than to wag her finger at both men in her life as if they were bigger children than her actual kids, allowing Brad and Dusty to get away with boneheaded bouts of lunacy that should land them in jail, not vault them to the head of the parental honor roll.

There's a great climactic gag, one that I surmise is a callback to Trainwreck as it pertains to Wahlberg. I will also say a sequence at a father-daughter elementary school dance is both funny and touching, a nifty little directorial balancing act on Anders part I didn't see coming. But as funny as it might be, Daddy's Home is too inconsequential and slight to matter, the fact it does so little with its primary female character only augmenting my feelings on this front a substantial amount. Ferrell and Wahlberg remain a potent comedy team; I just hope the next time they join forces it's in a better movie than this one ultimately, and sadly, proves itself to be.


Subtly intimate Carol a fiercely independent stunner
by Sara Michelle Fetters - SGN A&E Writer

CAROL
Opening December 25


If all you know of Patricia Highsmith is that she brought the literary world a charming psychopathic chameleon in the form of one Thomas Ripley, then you're only scratching the surface of the timeless treasures brought to life inside any number of her masterful novels. Not only were her books the basis for The Talented Mr. Ripley, Purple Noon and The American Friend, it was also she that fueled Alfred Hitchcock's timeless Strangers on a Train and helped breathe life into Hossein Amini's 2014 thriller The Two Faces of January. Between 1950 and 1995, the year of her death from cancer, Highsmith published 22 novels, and while I have not read them all, the ones I have I adore with all my heart, her rich, complicatedly elegant prose a celebration of words and ideas beyond reproach.

Her second novel, The Price of Salt, published in 1952, is as groundbreaking as they come. Highsmith was forced to publish it under a pseudonym, Claire Morgan, the Lesbian content of the tome so diametrically different than the tricky theatrics of Strangers on a Train the publisher, as well as the author, feared the controversial nature of the story could derail a promising career before it even had the opportunity to begin. Now, over half a century later, even with Marriage Equality the law of the land, the inherent passions driving this tale forward are as potent as ever, and as such it's no surprise at all a director like Todd Haynes would be interested in adapting it into a movie.

The result of these efforts, Carol, is an extraordinary achievement. Working with screenwriter Phyllis Nagy (Mrs. Harris), the film makes an obvious companion piece to the director's Douglas Sirk-inspired melodrama Far from Heaven as well as his award-winning HBO miniseries adaptation of Mildred Pierce. For those with narrower mindsets, it could also be described as some sort of female variant on Brokeback Mountain, but seeing as the two tales end up in entirely different places and their views on the human condition aren't entirely comparable I'm not too sure how apropos this actually is.

New York City in the 1950s. A shopgirl at a posh Manhattan department store, Therese Belivet (Rooney Mara), does a good deed for one her store's best customers, Carol Aird (Cate Blanchett), posting her a pair of gloves she misplaced while shopping. The wealthy and affluent wife and mother is touched by the young woman's kindness, going back to the store to express her thanks the best way she knows how, by attempting to give her a tip. But this is money Therese firmly, if still kindly, refuses, claiming returning the gloves was all part of her job and that she's just happy Carol is pleased to have them back.

Thus starts a journey neither woman anticipated. Lunch becomes dinner. Dinner becomes trips to the country. Trips to the country become sojourns that require Therese to leave her position at the store and trust that Carol won't strand her at a random hotel somewhere in the middle of the United States. The two are falling in love, whether they want to admit it or not, each learning things about themselves and what they want from life that go way beyond their feelings of intimacy.

The complications, however, are immense. Carol's loveless marriage to Harge (Kyle Chandler) might be ending, but that doesn't mean he wants to let it go without a fight, threatening to take the couple's daughter Rindi (twins Sadie Heim and Kk Heim) away from her mother unless she stops seeing Therese. As for the former shopgirl, she's got two different men (Jake Lacy and John Magaro) eyeing her, while the New York Times has taken interest in her talents as a photographer, messing any of that up by engaging in an affair with another woman not something polite society would consider appropriate or smart.

Haynes is in Sirk territory once again, the look and feel of the motion picture easily comparable to the likes of Imitation of Life, Written on the Wind and All That Heaven Allows. But Therese's journey (and, make no mistake, she is the main character) of self-discovery and inspiration goes beyond simple ideas of sexuality and gender norms. This is a young woman looking for direction, attempting to discover who she is and what mark she wants to leave on the world, Carol coming into her life at just the right moment to give her the kick in the pants she needs. Haynes and Nagy analyze and dissect this evolution with grace and intensity, peeling back layers, revealing the person aching to burst forth from deep inside a broken shell the world doesn't notice is as damaged as it is. It's a stunning portrait, one that fits the era flawlessly, but at the same time is just as appropriate in today's world even with things having changed as much as they have; the basic truths as potent then as they are right now.

Mara is sensational. She drives the movie forward, her wide eyes a sea of opportunity and adventure that burn with increasing dynamism as things progress. She's believable right from the start, her first scene with Blanchett at the department store counter a model of subtle emotional complexity. They way she fidgets, how she sits in a booth or allows Lacy or Magaro to brush up next to her, it all speaks to internal transformations taking hold of Therese, Mara crafting a mesmerizing portrait of self-actualization that's delicately profound yet viscerally cathartic.

Blanchett equals her, Carol's reaction when she discovers just how far Harge will go to bring her back into his web devastating in its animalistic ferocity. She shares a couple of wonderful moments with Sarah Paulson (playing her best friend, and former lover, Abby Gerhard), the two understanding how complicated their lives have become and just how outside the perceived norm they find themselves, each attempting to rise above with a reserved poise that's part posturing, part elite bourgeois classism and almost all a defense mechanism. There's also a terrific sequence between her and Chandler with their respective lawyers that held me spellbound, what the actress does here revealing universal truths few live up to and even less openly admit.

Haynes, the master craftsman as he is, has assembled his typical crackerjack team of technicians, chief of which being ace cinematographer Edward Lachman (The Limey) his masterful compositions, his use of light, shadow and color, beyond measure. Judy Becker's (American Hustle) production design and Jesse Rosenthal's (Trumbo) art direction are both equally incredible, while three-time Oscar-winner Sandy Powell's (Cinderella) costuming is up to her customary masterful standards. Best of all is veteran composer Howard Shore's (Fargo) haunting score, his music the perfect counterpoint to the dramatic actions taking place throughout the drama.

It's sad that Highsmith couldn't claim her own novel when it was first published. Was she Carol? Did she consider herself to be like Therese? Either way, she didn't just understand the relationship she had crafted for her two heroines, she was by all accounts living something similar herself. Haynes takes these themes and ideas and makes them sing, never losing focus as to who this story belongs to. Carol is a timeless, brilliantly realized drama that ranks up there with the finest features the director has ever had a hand in crafting, the smile of recognition and understanding that closes things out an unforgettable celebratory stunner that shook me right to my very core.


Tarantino's Eight a love/hate enigma
by Sara Michelle Fetters - SGN A&E Writer

THE HATEFUL EIGHT
Now playing


John 'The Hangman' Ruth (Kurt Russell) is taking the stagecoach to Red Rock, fugitive Daisy Domergue (Jennifer Jason Leigh) shackled next to him, the fearsome bounty hunter shepherding the murderess to town for a date with a rope swinging plaintively from a gallows. On the mountain road to Minnie's Haberdashery, with a hellish blizzard bearing down on them, the coach encounters a pair of stranded travelers. One is former Union war hero turned bounty hunter Major Marquis Warren (Samuel L. Jackson), the other a one-time Southern renegade, Chris Mannix (Walton Goggins), claiming to be the new Sheriff of Red Rock.

The distrustful quartet make it to Minnie's only to discover they're not the only ones looking for sanctuary from the storm at the mountainside stagecoach stopover, four men warmly ensconced within to wait out the coming blizzard. There's Bob (Demian Bichir), a Mexican claiming to be looking after the place while Minnie (Dana Gourrier) and her partner Sweet Dave (Gene Jones) are away. Joining him are fellow travelers Oswaldo Mobray (Tim Roth), the county hangman heading to Red Rock to facilitate Daisy's demise, cowpoke Joe Gage (Michael Madsen), going home to spend Christmas with his mother, and former Confederate General Sandy Smithers (Bruce Dern), a man Major Warren is only far too familiar with.

It will shock no one to learn that little is as it seems in Quentin Tarantino's latest genre free-for-all The Hateful Eight. One part intimate old school Western recalling William Wyler's The Big Country, another reveling in the Italian Spaghetti theatrics that directors like Sergio Leone (The Good, the Bad and the Ugly) and Sergio Corbucci (The Big Silence) practically invented, the movie's most obvious comparison might actually be the works of playwright Tennessee Williams, the scenario at hand owing more to Cat on a Hot Tin Roof than it does Once Upon a Time in the West or Shane.

You could probably add Agatha Christie to the mix, as the film has a Ten Little Indians quality that's understandably unavoidable. Even so, even with Robert Richardson's (Hugo) lush, marvelously refined Ultra Panavision 70 widescreen cinematography, even with picturesque images of a wintry Wyoming countryside (actually Telluride, Colorado, but who's complaining) under direct assault from Mother Nature, this story is all about how the characters interact, coupled with Tarantino's signature sing-song foul-mouthed dialogue. It's a character study, one involving a group of disparate travelers all under unfathomable duress, who they are and what their collective intentions might be only ascertained step by bloody, cranium-shattered step.

This is Tarantino's most overtly political film. Debates about race, gender, politics and economic disparity are littered throughout, none exactly coy about what it is that is being said nor how these conversations taking place in a post-Civil War U.S. relate to the discussions happening out in the zeitgeist today. Most of this, not surprisingly, directly involves Major Warren, his interactions with General Smithers, Chris Mannix and even Daisy Domergue walking a potentially inflammatory line with fearless aplomb. Jackson makes the most of these sequences, delighting in every turn of phrase, making the violence, usually coming from out of nowhere, pack a far meaner punch than it ever could have without his tremendous efforts.

Yet in a movie overflowing in glorious elements, there is a distasteful aura I found impossible to get beyond. While I'm sure Tarantino is aiming to make some rather profound statements in regards to gender norms and racial disparities in the modern world, and even though Leigh throws herself into things with wild-eyed ferocious glee, the misogynistic temperament permeating things drove me crazy. Daisy gets slapped around, punched, strangled, has teeth knocked out and is called all sorts of names, the majority rhyming with 'witch' and 'chore.' None of which would be too awful had her backstory even been slightly more fleshed out or realized, or if she could have exacted some sort of physical retribution against those manhandling her. Instead, she's really nothing more than a device, a way for the remainder of the characters to work out their personal issues or come senselessly flying to her defense.

There's something repugnant about this, a thing that annoys and disturbs me in ways I cannot for whatever reason put a name to or describe as fully as I would like to. Be that as it may, Daisy feels like someone who is only around for others to treat as a punching bag or a punchline, and by the time she had another poor soul's brains splattered all over her purple-bruised face I felt like Tarantino had forgotten about all those great female characters he'd created for Jackie Brown, Kill Bill, Inglourious Basterds and Death Proof. Instead, it was like he had become so obsessed with making a statement he somehow forgot along the way to make a reasoned, let alone well-thought-out, one, Leigh left holding a rather abhorrent bag as she valiantly attempted to make the most of a fairly disgusting situation.

Even so, there's so much going on inside The Hateful Eight I find I cannot stop thinking about it. Legendary composer Ennio Morricone (A Fistful of Dollars, The Untouchables) provides a stupendous, unnervingly magnificent score that fits the tone and mood perfectly, while Fred Raskin's (Guardians of the Galaxy) editing is some of the finest I've seen in all of 2015. The film is also a triumph of production design and art direction, Yohei Taneda's (The Flowers of War) handling of the former and Richard L. Johnson's (State of Play) crafting of the latter helping to give things a lived-in look and feel that's marvelous.

Then there is Goggins. The former 'Justified' scene-stealer is unbelievably great as Mannix. By all accounts playing the scenario's most challenging character, he's asked to go from being a cartoonish, absurdly racist buffoon, to mixed-up bumpkin in way out of his league, to level-headed lawman ready to do whatever it takes to see justice accomplished. Goggins went from provoking my disgust to achieving my sympathies, his complex emotional evolution revealing an innate humanity that's something close to incredible.

But what's the point? That's what I keep scratching my head over. Tarantino is riffing in one of his favorite genres, and it's clear he's having a great time. But it's also just as obvious he's got plenty on his mind and tons he wants to say. Problem is, little of it is clear. Worse, most of it gets drowned in so much guts and gore, not to mention irredeemable abuse and sexism, listening to it is close to impossible. The Hateful Eight has lots to love, but just as much to abhor, making it an elegant enigma that's as frustrating as it is impressive.


Rambunctious Short a satirical time bomb
by Sara Michelle Fetters - SGN A&E Writer

THE BIG SHORT
Now playing


In 2005, oddball San Jose money manager Dr. Michael Bury (Christian Bale) discovers an anomaly in the housing market, quickly coming to the realization that the big banks have built themselves a house of cards that's going to tumble down into pieces sooner rather than later. Much to the shock of his investors, he decides to bet the entire value of the hedge fund he runs against what at the moment is a booming market, 'shorting' housing, as it were, doing something now financial analyst anywhere at any point in history would never recommend doing.

Over in New York City, Wall Street banker Jared Vennett (Ryan Gosling) discovers Bury's plan, quickly realizing he's only scratching the surface of what's going on with the economy as well as just how much money could be made from knowing this information first. He in turn approaches angry hedge-fund manager Mark Baum (Steve Carell) and his crack team of analysts (Jeremy Strong, Hamish Linklater, Rafe Spall) to finance his play on the housing market, the group initially skeptical of what it is he's telling them. But once they do their own inquiries, they learn things are far worse than anyone has imagined, the bubble that's about to burst one that won't just effect housing, but will likely tank the entire U.S. economy right along with it.

Based on the novel by Michael Lewis, the guy who found a way to make baseball, math and statistics fascinating with Moneyball, the satirical chronicling of the 2008 housing market collapse The Big Short isn't exactly an inspirational riot, even if there are ample laughs to be found littered throughout the film. Director and co-writer Adam McKay (The Other Guys), working with screenwriter Charles Randolph (Love & Other Drugs), has crafted a star-studded, character-driven think piece that's as funny as it is edifying. The film breaks down all that happened and took place but does so in ways that are easy to understand and simple to digest, bringing together a ragtag group of eccentrics who end up making off like bandits, even if they don't exactly feel too good about doing so afterwards.

There are essentially three plots running on parallel courses here, the two fleshed out in that synopsis as well as a third revolving around two small town analysts (Finn Wittrock, John Magaro) and a banker-turned-paranoid-environmentalist (Brad Pitt) who make the biggest play against the housing market out of all of them. Each dissects the coming crisis with procedural-like exactitude, the trio of stories revealing different pieces of an interconnected puzzle one would guess the big banks, and likely the government agencies that were supposed to be keeping an eye on them, would rather not have the average layperson put together.

What's most interesting is how McKay and Randolph tackle the most complicated aspects of the collapse, revealing how things work and what terms like CDO and mortgage-backed securities mean using a theatrical device Woody Allen would be proud of. Taking a cue from Annie Hall, the filmmakers enlist the help of celebrities like Margot Robbie, Selena Gomez, Anthony Bourdain and renowned behavioral economist Dr. Richard Thaler to shatter the fourth wall and talk to the audience directly, breaking things down in ways that are both funny as well as refreshingly insightful. It's a great conceit, one the director pulls off brilliantly, and each time it happened I inched forward in my seat eager to learn more in regards to what these out-of-nowhere, seemingly random guests were about to tell me.

As for the rest of the movie, it's pretty terrific, due in large part to McKay and Randolph's dynamically intricate script. Same time, the director doesn't always appear to have the best handle on things, some scenes going on much longer than necessary while others cut themselves off too quickly. There's also some visual inorganic lumpiness that calls too much attention to the camerawork while not paying enough of it to the story being told within the confines of herky-jerky visuals. That third scenario, the one with Pitt, Wittrock and Magaro, also doesn't play as well as the other two, and while it's never bad, per se, it just doesn't feel as refined, nor anywhere near as complete, as the other two major subplots do.

Even so, the acting is universally excellent, especially on the parts of Bale and Carell, the two of them commanding the screen every time they walk into the frame. This is also a major step up in vision and in quality for McKay, the longtime Will Ferrell compatriot branching out in a way that gets me understandably excited to see what he's going to be up to next. While The Big Short is hardly uplifting, it still manages to tell a rambunctiously funny tale that's as informative as it is entertaining, humor walking hand-in-hand with tragedy to ultimately craft a comedy that's impossible to dismiss.


Unrelentingly terrible Point Break a ghastly remake
by Sara Michelle Fetters - SGN A&E Writer

POINT BREAK
Now playing


After the tragic death of a fellow extreme sports star, Johnny Utah (Luke Bracey) attempts to reassess his life, spending the next three years striving to be the best of the best and become an FBI agent. At the end of his training, but still under the watchful eye of his by-the-book instructor Agent Hall (Delroy Lindo), the wannabe crime fighter makes a startling discovery. Looking at surveillance footage of a diamond heist where the crooks flew out of the top floor of a skyscraper on motorcycles and then parachuted to safety, he connects the crime to another bizarre theft where the criminals plummeted out of a cargo plane into the jungle below.

With Hall's tentative blessing, Utah is sent back into the world of the extreme sports athlete, heading into the middle of the ocean for a big wave surfing competition he's positive the crew responsible for the two brazen robberies will be a part of. It is here he comes face-to-face with Bodhi (Édgar Ramírez), a persuasive, charismatic man of the world who looks at his own feats of improbable strength and athletic prowess as a way to honor the forces of Nature. Utah is captivated by this fearless guru, but when it turns out Bodhi's willing to do whatever it takes to bring what he sees as balance back to a planet teetering on the edge of self-destruction, the FBI trainee must decide whether to bring Bodhi to justice or let him carry out his idealistic plans no matter what the consequences or who gets hurt.

I'm not going to try and make the case that director Kathryn Bigelow's 1991 cult favorite Point Break is some unassailable action classic. The film, which chronicles a young FBI agent (played by Keanu Reeves) infiltrating a group of hippie-like surfers (under the command of a charming Patrick Swayze) to bring a tight-knit crew of California bank robbers to justice, is undeniably silly, so unabashedly dopey it's hard not to imagine writers Rick King and W. Peter Iliff intended it to be that way. But Bigelow's handling of the film is aces, the Zero Dark Thirty, Strange Days and The Hurt Locker auteur staging a number of unforgettably crackerjack sequences where the kinetic intensity is freakishly high. More, she allows Reeves and Swayze room to cut loose, the latter, in particular, manufacturing a signature character ranking as one of the absolute best of his entire career.

Still, I do get why Warner Bros. was eager to remake the film, and I can also see glimmers of what must have inspired director Ericson Core (Invincible) and screenwriter Kurt Wimmer (Total Recall, Salt) - who fleshed out the new story with original writers King and Iliff - to get excited about tackling the project. Bigelow's film, as memorable as it might be, was far from perfect, and as remakes of Hollywood pulp favorites of yesteryear go this honestly didn't sound like that dreadful an idea.

Maybe on paper it might not have been, expanding things to allow extreme sports ranging from motocross racing, snowboarding, free climbing and cliff jumping (from the top of a mountain wearing wing-suits, no less) to sit alongside the big wave surfing, but execution is another thing entirely. While I respect the athletes who helped make all of the eye-popping stunt work possible, the truth is that Wimmer's script is so horrendous it makes King and Iliff's work on the 1991 original appear Oscar-worthy. Additionally, Core's staging of many of the big action set pieces is laughably incoherent, the filmmaker, who also served as his own cinematographer, working with his gaggle of editors (three are credited) to craft a visually muddled smorgasbord of mayhem and madness that's about as appealing as a snowy face-plant into the side of a rocky mountain.

Let's start with the plot. Utah's journey to the FBI is rightfully glossed over, as anyone who actually thinks a shamed nincompoop who helped get his riding partner killed flying over the side of a cliff would end up at Quantico probably thinks The Smurfs is an informative documentary about miniature blue people who wear cute white hats. That aside, Utah isn't a character, he's a walking, talking compendium of clichés, his motivations and transformation having more to do with making sure the movie gets to the next big stunt sequence than they do anything else. He's a big, lumbering charisma-free idiot, Bracey not exactly helping by delivering a wooden, emotionally nonchalant performance that's about as appealing as a lump of coal resting inside a Christmas stocking.

But he's only part of the problem. How Utah ends up meeting Bodhi. Why he in turns allows the undercover agent to infiltrate his crew. The elements that are fueling the crimes taking place throughout the film. None of that has any weight, any meaning, and as such none of the characters - including Ramírez's Bodhi - are allowed to make anything close to an impression. This ends up making death meaningless, and by the time hero and villain finally stood face-to-face I could have cared less about either of them and likely wouldn't have shed a single tear had the movie thrown the ultimate twist and drowned both under a massive 100-foot wave.

None of which would matter near as much if the action sequences lived up to the obvious efforts Core and his crackerjack team of athletes and stuntmen put into them. In a year where we've thrilled over the practical thrills and chills offered up in summertime tent poles Mad Max: Fury Road and Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation, Point Break had the potential to outdo both of them with the adrenaline-fueled set pieces it devotes the majority of its focus to. Unfortunately, most are nothing more than hyperactively edited, visually nonsensical hogwash, the majestic spectacle somehow inexplicably lost in all the senseless Sturm und Drang.

There is one exception, and it is admittedly glorious. Bodhi and his team convince Utah to follow them on a mysterious hike to the top of an exceedingly high mountain, at the summit of which they spend the night. The following morning? They jump off wearing those aforementioned wing-suits and the resulting sequence is positively wondrous. Core's camerawork is exemplary, while the editing is smoothly organized and visually seductive. It's also the only point Tom Holkenborg's (Black Mass) rambunctious score becomes one with the movie around it, everything coming together in a way that only made the anemic awfulness of all the rest stand out that much more.

Awful is potentially kind. Ramírez is a legitimately great actor, and somehow this movie makes him look amateurish and unfocused. But the same could be said about Lindo and Ray Winstone (taking over the role of Utah's seasoned partner Pappas, failing to make as memorable an imprint as Gary Busey did in the original), Wimmer's script throwing all three under a bus almost as if it didn't want anything to do with any of them.

Then there is Teresa Palmer, playing the lone female character, the wistful flower child Samsara, and potential love interest fort [***change to for] Utah. In a year with so many kick-butt heroines (Imperator Furiosa, Gaby Teller, Katniss Everdeen, Sin-Dee, Ilsa Faust, Nelly Lenz and Star Wars: The Force Awakens' Jedi-in-the-making Rey all come to mind), this might just be the most regressive female character in any major Hollywood feature this year. The movie slaps Samsara around, treats her like a tattoo-covered sex object and little else, her whole arc about as senseless, and as insulting, as anything I've personally seen in quite some time, something made even worse when you consider the 1991 testosterone-laden original film and the magnetic imprint Lori Petty still managed to make inside of it.

Again, I'm not going to say remaking Point Break was a bad idea in and of itself. But missing the point of Bigelow's original, failing to equal the bristling, comic book machismo it reveled in, while also sabotaging the efforts of the death-defying stunt people working so hard to bring the remake's action sequences to life, Core and Wimmer don't just make a bad movie, they make one so terrible it's flabbergasting just how ghastly it actually is. Rarely have I ever wanted to walk out of a film before it was over. This was one of those instances where I wished I could have done just that. You've been warned.


Best Theater of 2015
------------------------------
Laughter, Giggles, Moans and Groans; Beyond 50 Shades of Sexy
------------------------------
2015 FILM RECAP
------------------------------
Truth be told
------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------
Seattle LGBT Community Center
------------------------------
Seattle musicians Brandi Carlile, Death Cab for Cutie, and Seattle Symphony earn Grammy nominations
------------------------------
Slight Daddy's Home a minor comedic adventure
------------------------------
Subtly intimate Carol a fiercely independent stunner
------------------------------
Tarantino's Eight a love/hate enigma
------------------------------
Rambunctious Short a satirical time bomb
------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

click to visit advertiser's website

click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
Seattle Gay Blog post your own information on
the Seattle Gay Blog
 
 

gay news feeds gay news readers gay rss gay
http://sgn.org/rss.xml | what is RSS? | Add to Google use Google to set up your RSS feed
SGN Calendar For Mobile Phones http://sgn.org/rssCalendarMobile.xml
SGN Calendar http://sgn.org/rssCalendar.xml

Seattle Gay News - SGN
1707 23rd Ave
Seattle, WA 98122

Phone 206-324-4297
Fax 206-322-7188

email: sgn2@sgn.org
website suggestions: web@sgn.org

copyright Seattle Gay News 2015 - DigitalTeamWorks 2015

USA Gay News American News American Gay News USA American Gay News United States American Lesbian News USA American Lesbian News United States USA News
Pacific Northwest News in Seattle News in Washington State News