Posts tagged seth rogen

Review: Take This Waltz

The amazing thing about Canadian actress Sarah Polley’s sophomore film, Take This Waltz, is we identify with its main character, a terrific Michelle Williams, when we could just as easily have been repulsed by her.

"Life has a gap in it… You don’t go crazy trying to fill it, like some lunatic," says Williams’ sister-in-law, Sarah Silverman. Silverman’s advice falls on deaf ears. Williams faces the plight of a contented gone complacent marriage threatened with the emergence of a third party. Though she’s careful and deliberate at first, Williams breaks stride with cookbook author Seth Rogen despite their cooing babytalk and comfortable insults produced from years of trustworthy, easy camaraderie. In the end, Williams’ faith in the contented marriage and subsequent intoxicating infatuation achieve a parity that flattens into a similar unfulfillment. The moral sure seems to be to change yourself from within before looking outside yourself.

Inventiveness here outweighs artifice, but not by a whole lot. On the one hand, a nonverbal funhouse ride scene screeches with meaning and resonance. On the other, a taken aback Williams, upon meeting her new beau, a rickshaw-bearing free spirit, Luke Kirby, announces she’s “afraid of being afraid.” A surprisingly expressive Rogen, upon learning of Williams’ extracurricular stuff, is given an uninterrupted, solo, jump-cut focus. Later, an is-it-real/or-is-it fantasy elongated sex scene includes group sex that doesn’t add up, exposition-wise. It seems self-indulgent. Fresh on the heels of her excellent first film, Away from Her, Polley here ups the ante in the risk-taking department. Though not all pays off, it’s refreshing to see a young director break such ground. Her ability to bring to life the little things that occur in relationships is astounding.

Now to Williams. Wendy and Lucy. Blue Valentine. My Week With Marilyn. Meek’s Cutoff. Now, Take This Waltz. She’s probably our finest film actress these days, period. And her expressive nuances are the major reason we hang with her character here in all her indecisiveness. Some have questioned use of the throwaway 80s Buggles hit,‘“Video KIlled The Radio Star” in the film. It underlines the aforementioned funhouse ride scene and is later reprised. It’s simultaneously about the archaic and the new. Taken in conjunction with a moving scene in which Williams and Silverman shower nude with female members of an older generation, it all makes sense. The older women comment on Silverman’s “gap” statement with, essentially, a shrugging “everything new gets old.” Deal with it, Polley is pleading.

3.5 Everything New Gets Old Blues Riffs (out of 5)

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Review: Paul

Two nerds + one Foul mouthed alien = The best comedy of 2011 so far.

From the moment this film begins to when it ends, Paul is one big continual reference for every single Alien/Nerd/Trekky/Star Wars like movie ever created. If you hate anything involving any of the above than this movie may go right over your Football-loving-Sausage-eating head. Now for all of you who have seen Shaun of the Dead or Hot Fuzz you can understand the whole concept of taking a genre and remixing it in a way that not only references but also creates it’s own. Paul goes down both roads very successfully, however the one (creating a standalone story) needs a bit of work.

Seth Rogen, as worried as every NERD was, is absolutely hilarious. His CGI-ness doesn’t miss a beat, mainly because he never stops talking. They chose quantity over quality, however there is enough in Paul’s rants to keep you going. With Paul’s introduction the film turns hard R. Before his appearance the film could have been a PG kids film until Seth Rogen blurts out the fuck word about 30 times a minute. Without this though, the movie, dare I say it, would have been fucked. The humor works only because it is foul mouthed and over the top. That combined with the feel of the film (over the top NERDGASIM) this film will please anyone who has even dabbled in something that would show at Comic Con. If that’s not you, Paul still offers enough fart and penis jokes to keep you going through your “collar” night out.

8.5 bad CGI aliens out of 10

Review: The Green Hornet - Artistic Comedy

Months back I read on the interwebs that The Green Hornet was going to be a piece of crap. Thank god that rumor was as trustworthy as a Verizon iPhone rumor from the Wall Street Journal. The Green Hornet is quite possibly the most fun I’ve had in the theaters since Piranha. The action was completely different than anything we’ve seen done before, mixing styles found in comic book movies (Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World) along with hints of the action in The Matrix movies, and the good Jackie Chan movies. This unique combo created a film that is pure enjoyment to watch (minus the incredibly not hot Cameron Diaz).

You can tell this movie is held together by Michel Gondry who used his unique visual style to bring something new to the “action movie” The fight scenes feel fluid and create a sweet sense of power. Kickin’ ass and taking names. Seth Rogen, and kinda most of this movie, is rough around the edges in the beginning, they all seem to not understand what the fuck their doing. But if you can get through the first 10 minutes or so Seth Rogen becomes entertaining without constantly smoking pot and Christoph Waltz plays a very unique and hilarious villain.

The story, the plot, the total lack of anything referencing the original creates a fresh new look into what a comic book movie can be. I thought I was going to get more and more aggravated with all these comic book films. Green Hornet has changed my mind about that.If you like movies at all do yourself a favor and go see this. 3D or not you will leave happy. If your a Green Hornet fanboy… you’ll be upset, but what did you expect with Rogen?

9 Double Barreled Guns out of 10 

Film snob score - 7.5/10 (They need more arc to keep me believing)

Michel Gondry - Green Hornet’s Rescue - Part 1 - Music Videos

The Green Hornet is a film written by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg (you know… that stoner and his writing partner….) What makes this script full of pop-culture and wit different is the director. Michel Gondry. A man who is known mainly for his Indie classic Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, a film that is pretty much on any hipsters top ten films of all time. The visually appealing film uses its visual effects to take reality and bend it to create something new. Michel has now jumped into 3D with The Green Hornet. Unlike Avatar though and movies like it The Green Hornet was shot in 2D and post-converted to 3D. Wait! Stay and hear what Michel has to say. I know you lost some of your childhood memories watching Clash of the Titans in 3D but Michel is proving to be different with his post conversion. His conversion supervisor Rob Engle said in a press release that….

"Shooting in 3D, what you see is what you get. But the way we did it, it actually opens up the door to using 3D in a creative way and manipulating 3D in unexpected ways. I think that’s what really excites Michel. For example, in certain places, he’s taking elements of one shot, and at the cut, he will carry over elements – bits of glass or a weapon – to the next shot. In that way, there’s a sense of continuity of 3D space that you wouldn’t have naturally with 3D photography."

With Michel don’t you think that’s a good thing?

Join us on an adventure through Michel Gondry’s work. and at the end you decide if this master of visual effects can handle Pineapple Express, 3D, and a comic book hero all at once….

Music Videos

Jesus Christ has Michel Gondry done a LOT of music videos. From the Rolling Stones to Beck to to Kanye West to The White Stripes he has done it all. The reason? His vision and understanding of the visual effect you can achieve with a camera. His stop motion with “Walkie Talkie Man” and his use of projectors with Flight of the Conchords make his style unique more so than any other director of the past 30 years.

The Rolling Stones - “Like a Rolling Stone” (1995)

Daft Punk - “Around the World” (1997)

Radiohead - “Knives Out” (1998)

Michel Andrews and Gary Jules - “Mad World” (2001)

The White Stripes - “Fell In Love With A Girl” (2002)

Steriogram - “Walkie Talkie Man” (2004)

Kanye West (Feat. Adam Levine) “Never Heard Em Say” (2006)

Beck - Cellphone’s Dead (2007)

Flight of the Conchords - Too Many Dicks on the Dancefloor (2010)

Flight of the Conchords - “Carol Brown” (2010)