REVIEW: Ball of Fire [1941]

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“Don’t tell me the jive session has beat off without baby!” With the likes of His Girl Friday, The Big Sleep, Rio Bravo, and Bringing Up Baby, it may seem odd that my first foray into Howard Hawks‘ oeuvre would be the screwball comedy Ball of Fire. Considering I’m criminally behind on catching up with [...]

Posterized Propaganda February 2012: The Dreadful and the Dread Inducing

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“Don’t Judge a Book by Its Cover” is a proverb whose simple existence proves the fact impressionable souls will do so without fail. This monthly column focuses on the film industry’s willingness to capitalize on this truth, releasing one-sheets to serve as not representations of what audiences are to expect, but as propaganda to fill [...]

REVIEW: Haywire [2012]

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“Oh, God. There’s a deer in the car.” If not for the cast list, I would treat Steven Soderbergh‘s Haywire as the newest entry to the experimental, off-the-beaten path section of his oeuvre. Without mentioning the larger scale Che—which is quite possibly his least mainstream film of the aughts—this quiet actioner fits right in as [...]

REVIEW: Man on a Ledge [2012]

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“I can see his leg shaking from here” I’ll give TV movie scribe Pablo F. Fenjves light applause for hooking me during the first two thirds, but the real kudos go to documentarian Asger Leth and his ability to make even the implausibly contrived and impossibly far-fetched finale not take away from the entertaining little [...]

REVIEW: 鋼の錬金術師 嘆きの丘(ミロス)の聖なる星 [Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos] [2011]

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“The myths of the Milosian people are stained in blood” Anime truly is a breed of its own and a genre not to be trifled with by the weak at heart. Just take the popular saga of “Fullmetal Alchemist” and the amount of work created from Hiromu Arakawa‘s world. Spawning two separate television series adapted [...]

REVIEW: The Artist [2011]

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“Farewell Norma. I never loved you.” It all starts with a kiss for the cameras and the dot of an eyeliner pen. From there a star is born in the form of Peppy Miller (Bérénice Bejo) while her accidental impetus to become an actress ends up an industry dinosaur of a bygone era overnight. Silent [...]

REVIEW: Underworld: Awakening [2012]

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“My heart isn’t cold, it’s broken” I like dark, sci-fi actioners and I’m unafraid to admit it. I’ve seen every Underworld and Resident Evil in the theatre and anticipate continuing that trend until their respective series die. My interest in each comes from different motivations, though. No matter how cheesy and overly stylish the vampire [...]

REVIEW: The Interrupters [2011]

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“Tell my mom I said hi” Until you’ve been there, you can’t understand. This is the theory behind those who call themselves The Interrupters in Steve James‘ new documentary. A group of former high ranking gang members from the streets of Chicago, these men and women meet to brainstorm and come up with solutions to [...]

DESIGN: FC Buffalo – Our City, Our Sport, Our Club

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The email said, “My idea is pretty simple and I know you can make it kick butt.” So I had to take the job. It was Nick Mendola and FC Buffalo looking to get a t-shirt made with the text, “Our City, Our Sport, Our Club”. The concept called for making the first ‘O’ a [...]

REVIEW: Being Elmo: A Puppeteer’s Journey [2011]

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“Kevin comes alive through Elmo” I was a Jim Henson kid growing up in the 80s. The Dark Crystal, Labyrinth, and “The Jim Henson Hour” were staples in my household and I even made my parents take me to see The Witches theatrically at eight. But where I enjoyed the stories and fantastical places his [...]

REVIEW: The Empty Playground [2010]

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“I can’t get you out of my mind” You could learn a whole lot about a person by showing them Phil Giordano‘s The Empty Playground and asking what he/she thought. Are you one who sees the good in people and metaphors of a lost child unable to be saved or does your cynical nature overpower [...]