Posts Tagged ‘review’

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This is the first I’m hearing about this movie.

‘The Report’: Torture Meets Truth in Obama’s Washington

 

 

I’m not convinced from the trailer or the review that anyone involved understands why it happened. The character acts like it’s some unforeseen consequence that they can’t prosecute the people they tortured, when in reality that was the reason for doing so in the first place. Cover-up was the motive, the 9/11 cover-up to be more specific. It is 9/11 being not what we were sold that is at the heart of all this, and not any of the gibberish that officials spout. It’s not about “saving American lives.” It’s not about “getting information.”

When they had Abu Zubaydah talking with FBI interrogators–spilling the beans on Saudi and Pakistani military ties–he started telling them too much, and the CIA moved in and … drum rolldidn’t do anything with him for a month and a half. Then the CIA started torturing him. If they were so keen to get info, they would have asked him questions during that initial month and a half. They tipped their hand. The point was cover-up. Period. They made everything secret and beyond the reach of Congress and the public by committing glaring war crimes. And we all know no one has the balls to prosecute the CIA for war crimes.

 

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I have a vested interest and highly subjective relationship with this season of AHS, as I thought of the concept a full 10-months before they did…

 

 

And in my version of US politics as horror, it would have hit a little harder and at both teams.

AHS Cult turns Trump’s “white nationalist” sympathizers into a literal cult, with clown heads and a supreme ruler, a twenty-something angry white male named Kai. In typical Hollywood pulp fashion, it veers away from reality to make it all about these particular characters and their quirky plights. It continues, however, to allude to the national political events even as it rewrites Jim Jones, Charles Manson, the woman who shot Andy Warhol, the Zodiac Killer, and even randomly throws in some of their former evil clowns for no discernible reason.

 

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Yeah, it’s a bit of a mess. But, aren’t they all?

So, a pair of lesbians and their young son endure the Trumpocalypse, as a clown van full of murderers terrorize their small Michigan town. Piling twist after twist, the plot kind of jumps the shark midway, but that would require spoilers.

As with the series, and with long-form TV generally, the characters start to grow on you after living with them for a sufficient amount of screen time. They’re nasty, and yet all have vulnerabilities. No one is really in charge, kind of a metaphor for politics.

 

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I only wish that they had used the opportunity to indict the real horrors coming out of Washington, the endless wars, millions of victims across the world and the smug willful ignorance of the majority about what their empire does to the world, even as they cry victim over every trivial slight. It could have impaled the audience, as well they deserve it. AHS Cult kind of tickled them instead, and isn’t that the real problem?

 

 

 

 


Demigods are here.


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Twisted Satire

Somewhere between Salo and Oh Brother, Where Art Thou, this surprising journey twists things around unexpectedly.

I found this story amazing and disturbing, but with gag moments thrown in to lighten the mood. It’s a very strange take down of the fascist mindset, by having a rogue fascist, a deserter no less, turn the tables and out-fascist the fascists.

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It kind of boggles the mind what Private Herold managed to accomplish, more so as we learn that this is a true story! 

The character gets darker and darker and darker. If that’s your kind of tale…

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Brilliant filmmaking, and the second I saw the trailer I knew this was my kind of movie.

This is a satirical drama from Iceland, and it’s also a great tour of Iceland. Locations span the gamut. It’s also tightly plotted with elements that all pay off by the end.

American films could do this kind of story, but they don’t.

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We have a real revolutionary, a one-woman army, and being a woman’s story, there’s also the mom angle. In this case she has to adopt, so if she’s caught as Iceland’s greatest industrial saboteur then that’s the end of her motherhood.

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I feel I’ve said enough already, and you’ll get the rest from the trailer. Funnily enough, there’s a selection of musicians that also follow her around making the soundtrack during the scenes! It’s utterly hilarious, particularly when the tuba player retweets some news. This is one of the best movies I’ve seen in 2019.

 

 

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The theocratic mob is excited.

An Anti-Abortion Propaganda Film Is Selling Out Theaters Across the U.S.

 The Guardian called it “ridiculous,” “ham-handed” and “a gory mess;” The Hollywood Reporter wrote that it “resembles a basic cable television movie in its mediocre production values and subpar performances.”

Unplanned review – anti-abortion propaganda is a gory mess

Of course, Mike Pence loves it, in case there were any doubts.

Final word goes to Saint George:

Paul Jay on “Vice”

Posted: January 18, 2019 in -
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Wilkerson doesn’t seem to get 9/11.

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J. Giambrone

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There are a few must-see shows going around these days. I’ve posted extensively on Orphan Black. Black Mirror is another. Humans. The Strain will be the subject of an upcoming review. Mr. Robot should join their ranks.

This is an odd take on technology, revolution, and mental illness. Elliot is a freak, an oddball who seems to be on medication in every scene. He turns unreliable by the end of Season One, but not before taking down the financial system and inflicting quite a bit of damage on “Evil Corp.”

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I love the revolutionary spirit, the cult like hacker collectives, the skullduggery. It’s a paranoid thriller with twists you cannot see coming.

One thing that sets it apart–for good or bad–is the unconventional framing of the shots. This show takes lots of cognitive work to follow. It may give you a headache, particularly if you attempt to watch…

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J. Giambrone

FLORIDA PROJECT

If you see Willem Dafoe, you get the movie. Dafoe’s worst films are better than 95% of what Hollywood craps out.

Bonus, this film is an experience mostly told from the kids’ POV. It’s a trip, and while not solely confined to the feral gang of Florida motel brats, enough of the story is set in their world that this is a must-see.

Great cast.

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My thoughts began to wander somewhere near the middle, but the movie caught a plot eventually. The ending saves it. The little girl in the lead, Moonee, is so charismatic and carefree that you have to follow along.

This is life on the bottom in the shadow of Disneyworld. With a constant influx of tourists and low-lifes, the motel carries a sense of imminent danger to the small children stranded there.

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Moonee’s mother Hailey is a mess with anger issues and no job prospects. Her…

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I, Tonya – My Review

Posted: April 6, 2018 in Joe Giambrone
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J. Giambrone

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Although burned out on movie reviews, I, Tonya blew me away. This is a great American movie, one of the best around. Character-driven stupid crime, it’s got it all.

There’s a love/hate relationship with Tonya Harding. We all want to know if she was in on it or not. The film toys with the idea of her innocence, but it is a completely unreliable narrator. The genius is in having multiple unreliable, self-serving voices. One can’t be sure what actually happened from the movie alone.

Margot Robbie is outstanding. She brings Tonya to life both on and off the ice with depth and sensitivity. The film rocks from gut laughs to the occasional tear, and yet the reality is always in question. It’s a masterful faux documentary, somewhat like To Die For.

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One thing I did not know about Tonya Harding was that she was the…

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J. Giambrone

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Those creepy, bloodthirsty, white people.

This show is available on Amazon, and the second season appears to be up on Youtube. It reminded me of The Tudors, a similarly executed historical drama with copious amounts of copulation and beheading.

The White Queen tells the story of the first Queen Elizabeth, with the twist that she was a bit of a witch. The magic is included as legitimate, and apparently everyone at court believed it to be true.

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They also changed loyalties like they changed socks. What stands out most is the utter absurdity of monarchy and feudalism. Every noble with some vague claim to royalty can raise an army of dumb grunts and march on the capital. Even one’s brothers are not above suspicion, and for good reason.

There are no good people in this history. There is, however, the female perspective, and that’s relatively new. Elizabeth is the…

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J. Giambrone

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This British import arrived, and I knew not how nor why. But it’s a marvelous period piece, and the period is 1940. It’s also a movie about making a movie, and the characters are the screenwriters.

This nuanced tale tackles the sexism of the day. The main character is a Welsh girl who is suddenly called up by the Ministry of Information to help write “the slop,” which is female dialogue for their propaganda films.

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When Dunkirk inspires a heroic rescue story, the plot kicks into gear. A news article praises a pair of sisters who stole their drunken dad’s boat to join in the rescue. The government functionaries decide this is grade-A propaganda to inspire the working class to go fight the Germans.

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As Catrin develops the story with her co-writers, many tangents appear. Many obstacles to production too, and some are hilarious. Catrin grows as a writer…

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