Monthly Archives: January 2014

Stoker Review


Grade: B+

Directed by: Chan Wook-Park

Starring: Mia Wasikowska, Nicole Kidman, Matthew Goode


Chan Wook-Park arrives with his English directorial debut and make no mistake, this is his movie. That’s not to say that the actors aren’t good (they are) or the story isn’t solid (it’s effectively creepy, if a little predictable) but it’s his directorial flourishes and borderline showboating that delivers, and almost upends at times, the film. It’s interesting that his first english language film would be a gothic tale, a very western hemisphere type of story. If anything, he proves beyond a shadow of a doubt, that he belongs making films on this side of the pond.

Anna Karenina Review

Anna Karenina

Directed by: Joe Wright

Starring: Keira Knightley, Jude Law, Aaron Taylor-Johnson

Grade: B-

Art imitates life in Joe Wright’s new adaptation of the classic Tolstoy work. The pedigree is outstanding with Wright helming a script from Tom Stoppard and an all-star cast to boot, not to mention a high concept design to separate it from a typical period piece. So why was I left feeling a little underwhelmed? It’s a solid film from Wright, but it doesn’t hold par with his better works Atonement and Pride and Prejudice.

2014 Oscar Picks


Here are my 2014 Oscar Picks. I never win any contests. But that doesn’t stop me from being right. I have a love/hate relationship with the Academy Awards, but it’s my Super Bowl. Here’s my predictions with some analysis where I deemed necessary, hope you enjoy, and feel free to disagree!

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What the Hell Happened to Val Kilmer? Part Deux : A Retrospective Alternate Look at One Gifted, Talented, Complicated, Challenging Actor’s Career On and Off the Screen: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love The Saint

That’s right. It’s a sequel. We’re doing another WTHH with the one and only Val Kilmer.


I know. We’re shocked too.

So, first off, why does Val need another WTHH when LeBeau has covered it so well? A couple reasons, one is Val really doesn’t need one, but I think it would be fun to provide an alternate perspective. I’ll get it out of the way now and admit to being in the running for biggest Val Kilmer fan out there. That being said, I’m also an honest and objective person, I can see his career for what it is. I love Val enough that I can make fun of him, lament his decisions, and hope that he’s able to right some in the future. The fact is I’m something of an expert when it comes to the Val, so I have a different perspective, some other insights, and some funny things to talk about and say when it comes to the Iceman. So let’s get into it.

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Spring Breakers Review

Spring Breakers

Directed by: Harmony Korine

Starring: James Franco, Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens

Grade: A-

Who would’ve thunk it? Harmony Korine has made a critical and financial success of a film, without sacrificing any artistic integrity (eat your heart out David Gordon Green). Spring Breakers is by far his most accessible film, and his most fun, a trend he started with his contribution to the 4th Dimension with Val Kilmer. Spring Breakers is a burn it to the ground, scathing subversion of the hedonistic pop culture world we live in, and the neon bikini wearing sheep who are doing nothing but imitating what they vaguely think MTV told them to do. But the beauty of it is that it’s so brilliantly disguised by Korine’s mad cap, hallucinatory avant-garde style, that most of the people who see it who are anything like those portrayed, will only think that it’s just badass. Since Korine has freed himself of the dogme 95 rules, and is now playing with the idea of doing something more than just simply provoking his audience, he is showing some real flair.

“Twixt” Review

Twixt (2012)
Directed by: Francis Ford Coppola
Starring: Val Kilmer, Elle Fanning, Bruce Dern, Ben Chaplin, Joanne Whaley

Rating: A

This is Coppola cum David Lynch. In fact, if this were directed by Lynch it would be hailed as a return to form from the master of the surreal, however Coppola can’t seem to catch a break. I’ve been a big fan of his revitalized arthouse film making, admiring Youth Without Youth, and really loving Tetro. Here he continues the trend with a surreal film right up the Twin Peaks alley.

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Val Kilmer in “Citizen Twain” – Review (And a Dream Come True)

This is from my experience seeing Val Kilmer’s “Citizen Twain” in April of 2013.

So, for those of you who don’t know. I’m the biggest Val Kilmer fan out there. I own his entire filmography on DVD.  Val Kilmer has been my hero since I was about 8 years old. I saw the Ghost and the Darkness and it became my favorite movie, and has remained a personal love. I watched him in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, and the gag reel, and thought they looked like they were having so much fun, I had to try that out. And I did. I enrolled in an acting class and the rest is history. I’ve acted in over 15 shows the last 5 years. I’ve starred in several, and produced a couple that I’m very proud of. And I’m not even close to getting started. Acting changed my life. It allowed me to discover who I was as a person, gave my life direction, and finally allowed me to define my identity in a word: Actor. So thanks for that Val.

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Personal Musings: Flowers in the Attic

Flowers in the Attic 2014

Ever since it was announced, I have been looking forward to Lifetime’s adaptation of V.C. Andrews’ infamous novel, Flowers in the Attic.  I wasn’t proud of that fact for a few reasons.  One, it is a Lifetime movie.  I don’t have to explain the baggage that comes with that, right?  I mean, Lifetime movies are terrible.  That’s a given.  But here I was looking forward to watching one.

Secondly, the novel is at best a guilty pleasure.  If you’re not at least a little bit embarrassed about loving V.C. Andrews, well, you should be.  And I say that as someone who eagerly read all the sequels.

The movie premiered Saturday night and I was not disappointed.  Not one bit.  It was everything I expected it to be.  Of course I’m more than a little embarrassed by how much I enjoyed it.

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What the Hell Happened to Jean-Claude Van Damme?

jean claude van damme

Jean-Claude Van Damme

In the late 80s and early 90s, Jean-Claude Van Damme was part of a wave of martial artists turned movie stars.  Movies like Van Damme’s break-out role, Bloodsport, were cheap, easy to make and usually provided a great return on investment.  Van Damme in particular seemed poised to break out of low budget movies into legitimate movie stardom.  But instead, the action movie craze subsided and Van Damme was cast aside along with the other action heroes of the time.

What the hell happened?

van damme competition

Jean-Claude Van Damme

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What the Hell Happened to Linda Fiorentino?

The Rainbow Room

Linda Fiorentino

Linda Fiorentino was a rising star and a major sex symbol in the mid-nineties.  She scored critical acclaim with her role as a femme fatale in the neo noir film, The Last Seduction.  And then she achieved mainstream success in the sci-fi comedy blockbuster, Men in Black.  A few short years later amid rumors of difficult behavior, Fiorentino’s career had cooled to the point where she essentially retired.

What the hell happened?

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