“Oh, They’re Hopeless. A Disgrace to the Forces of Evil.”

Sleeping Beauty was never one of my favorite Disney movies. We didn’t own it, and I probably haven’t seen it since I was about six or seven. (I have vague memories of watching it at a friend’s house.) But since I’ve been working on fairy tale retellings all year, I thought I’d watch the movie again for inspiration/amusement.

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I am now seriously considering re-watching all the Disney Princess movies for next year’s film challenge. Anything has to be better than Best Picture Winners. Why did I do this to myself, WHY? They’re all 800 years long.

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“I Am Turning Thirty Next Week, and I Just Want to Go Home and Grow Oranges!”

A few months ago, I went to San Francisco. I don’t make it out to SF all that much, primarily because I don’t have a car and it’s a long damn bus ride. But when I do go, I usually try to get in a trip to Rasputin’s because, man, I just love that place. On my last visit, I bought a movie for three dollars purely because I knew it’d be fun to review. That movie?

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Oh, Identity. I’m not even quite sure where to begin with you.

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“You Still Picking Your Feet in Poughkeepsie?”

The movies that I tend to find interesting are rarely the kind of movies that win for Best Picture. There are exceptions, obviously (Chicago, Silence of the Lambs, Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King), but in general, I’m not drawn to the kind of film that gains accolades by the Academy.

This year, however, I’ve challenged myself to watch twelve of these movies. And already I regret it a little — do you know how long Gone With the Wind is? 238 minutes. That is two minutes shy of FOUR HOURS. For Christ’s sake, even RotK isn’t that long (The non-extended version anyway. The extended version is longer, but only by twelve minutes.)

So, I figured, You know, Carlie, let’s ease into this. We don’t need to start with the four hour plantation epic. There’s no reason to begin with the Holocaust movie that’s probably going to make you cry into your pillow all week. Let’s pick a movie closer to your own interests, starring actors that you generally enjoy. Cops. Drug dealers. Gene Hackman. Roy Scheider. This isn’t going to be so hard.

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But somedays my blog is aptly named because wow, did I not like The French Connection.

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The 2014 Movie Superlatives

Happy New Year, everybody! It’s that blessed time of the year when we all recover from our hangovers, growl at diet commercials, and guilt ourselves into exercising more. (Statistically speaking, the growling is more likely to occur than the exercising, but I guess it’s a little early in the year for cynicism.) It’s also the time when — if you’re constantly running behind schedule, as I am — to post the very last of your Year in Review posts. To that end: my 2014 Movie Superlatives!

Read on to discover who won 2014’s Most Fabulous Fashion, Chief Asshat, Creepiest Moment, Best Fight Scene, and more.

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“I Never Met Parry. But I Know Psychologically He’s No Killer.”

When I completed my 2013 Western Challenge, I was pretty burnt out on the genre. Basically, I didn’t want to look John Wayne or Clint Eastwood in the face for months. I couldn’t say the same for film noir, though, because — bullshit romances aside — I generally enjoy private detectives more than cowboys. And when Mek pitched the idea of renting Dark Passage, a Bogart/Bacall noir where Bogie’s face is obscured for at least half the movie, I was intrigued enough to give it a try. “Sure,” I said naively. “I’m working on a bunch of stuff right now, so I probably won’t get around to reviewing it, but yeah, let’s check it out.”

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But people, I had to review it. Because Dark Passage has problems. Serious problems.

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“Either You’ve Got the Car Started, or You’re a Dead Man.”

Interesting. By happy coincidence, Kirsten and I both recently ended up watching sequels from different horror franchises where an emotionally traumatized survivor named Tommy has to come face-to-face with the monster from his childhood.

Luckily for me, Friday the 13th: A New Beginning is a little better than Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers. I mean, don’t get me wrong: it’s not ART. But I actually liked it a lot more than I thought I would.

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“Did He Just Throw My Cat Out of the Window?”

Here’s one thing you can say about Wes Anderson: he has a very specific aesthetic. You will never, ever catch one of his movies on HBO and think to yourself, Huh, I wonder who directed that.

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The Grand Budapest Hotel is no exception, and yet the movie still feels like a bit of a departure for Anderson. The screwball comedy I expected, the cast of eccentric characters engaged in various shenanigans . . . I anticipated the wacky hijinks that did, indeed, ensue. But the darker tones? The comically abrupt violence? The actual ending?

It’s fair to say that Wes Anderson and The Grand Budapest Hotel took me by surprise.

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“I Want You To Be Honest With Me. Absolutely and Completely Honest. Have You Been Time Traveling?”

Tell me the truth: have you been missing my Teen Wolf season recaps? Hush, of course you have. Well, lucky for you, I have another one right here ready to read.

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Season 4 is the first season I’ve been able to watch while it’s actually airing (instead of obsessively marathoning it on Amazon). It’s also, unfortunately, probably the weakest season since the first one. But hey, Teen Wolf is my jam. (Sure, shows can be jams.) I will always love it. Even when it occasionally makes no sense of any kind.

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