REVIEW: The Grand Budapest Hotel [2014]

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“Who’s got the throat-slitter?” The films of Wes Anderson have always resided in some sort of parallel universe full of stylistic flights of fancy, but never has one been so completely defined by its fantasy than The Grand Budapest Hotel. His previous work exists to pay homage with stories filled to the brim by aesthetic […]

REVIEW: Draft Day [2014]

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“Who’s the most desperate guy you know?” You’ve gotta love a prerelease screening Buffalo audience applauding for a skyline aerial of their beloved city and Ralph Wilson Stadium, oblivious to the fact Scott Rothman and Rajiv Joseph originally composed their Draft Day screenplay to actually take place here before costs initiated a move to Cleveland. […]

REVIEW: Bottle Rocket [1996]

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“You know there’s nothing to steal from my mom and Craig” Released two years after writer/director Wes Anderson brought its eponymous short film to Sundance, Bottle Rocket improves upon its predecessor’s shortcomings, makes good on its potential, and provides a prototype for the more commercial successes that would follow. A character-driven piece full of deflection […]

REVIEW: Noah [2014]

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“Maybe we’ll learn to be kind” Religion likes to talk about mercy, forgiveness, and acceptance as though such grace was instilled in humanity before we decided to ignore it for carnal pleasure, bloodlust, and greed. This is why most films depicting Biblical stories go heavy on angels and enlightenment, giving pithy parables with “a-ha” lessons […]

FILM MARATHON: 2014 Schrembs Movie Showcase #2: The Abyss [1989]

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The 2014 Schrembs Movie Showcase: Film #2: If you have been around me for any a length of time, chances are you became immediately irritated for a number of reasons, especially if the topic of movies came up. It’s worth noting that I have seen less than 10 science fiction movies in my lifetime, that […]

REVIEW: Bottle Rocket [1994]

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“It has the logic of a dream” The career of writer/director Wes Anderson begins with his University of Texas at Austin buddy Owen Wilson and their 13-minute short film Bottle Rocket. Screened at the 1994 Sundance Film Festival, it tells the story of two friends and their aspiration towards crime. Dignan (Owen) and Anthony (Luke […]

REVIEW: Veronica Mars [2014]

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“And you have what we in the business call a crazy-ass murder wall” Are you Team Piz? Team Logan? Do you have any clue what I’m talking about? Well, if it’s the latter I’m prescribing you rent all three seasons of “Veronica Mars” on DVD now. I didn’t want anything to do with little Kristen […]

REVIEW: Le Week-End [2013]

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“That’s the nicest thing I’ve ever put in my mouth” Children are our legacy—our immortality. We sacrifice everything to raise them in our image, hoping for the best until they’re set free as fully formed adults ready to continue the cycle. And through our rosy-colored glasses of optimism we assume the journey ends happily in […]

REVIEW: Broken [2013]

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“Nice shot” A Frenchman who has been working as an assistant director in Hollywood since 2009, Mathieu Turi is leveraging his experiences into a budding career as an original filmmaker too. His second short entitled Broken is a visually arduous movie that takes place almost entirely inside a stuck elevator trapping two strangers together: English-speaking […]

REVIEW: Le passé [The Past] [2013]

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“Some things can’t be forgiven” If A Separation didn’t cause writer/director Asghar Farhadi to be revered as an auteur who understood domestic strife and illness’ lasting effect on those left to pick up the pieces, you better believe he is now. Switching to France for Le passé [The Past], the filmmaker brings us into an […]

REVIEW: 一代宗師 [The Grandmaster] [2013]

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“Keep the light burning” I think 一代宗師 [The Grandmaster] loses something in its translation for an American who couldn’t spot the differences between Kung Fu and Karate if his life depended on it (besides the former being Chinese and latter Japanese, of course). There’s the significance of the dark rain beating down on multiple fight […]