Author: Grace Porter

Where Are All the Female Movie Critics?

Since clueless adults only seem to ask children, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I got that answer down and down fast. Veterinarian, duh. It’s the obligatory career desire of every young girl, and I was going to be no exception. Quickly, though, that answer morphed into trauma surgeon, mostly fueled by my favorite childhood program, Trauma: Life in the ER, a show I insisted watching while eating dinner much to my parents’ disgust. Not to spoil the ending, but in keeping with my childhood passions, naturally I chose to be an English teacher. But somewhere in...

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Minions: Lots of Cute with Little Heart

Overview: The henchmen from Despicable Me get their own movie. Universal Pictures; 2015; Rated PG; 91 minutes. Meh-nions: The final scene in Minions scored one of those worth-the-price-of-admission, total theater laughs. And while I can only speak for myself, I’m pretty sure a moderately amusing moment garnered such response because we’d spent 87 of the 91 minute runtime bored out of our minds. In all fairness, this is a kid’s movie, marketed for kids. In all reality, not even the kids seemed too enthused by the effort. It’s hard to compete with Disney, and it’s even harder to compete with...

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Netflix Hidden Gem #48: Last Night

Last Night (2010) Director: Massy Tadjedin Genre: Drama; Gaumont Synopsis: After seeing her husband’s stunning, but never-before-mentioned co-worker, Laura (Eva Mendes), Joanna (Keira Knightley) suspects Michael (Sam Worthington) has a reason to keep the woman a secret. After accusations fly, the two swiftly make up, that is before Michael leaves on an overnight business trip, which Laura will be attending as well. While Joanna grapples with the events of the night before, she runs into an old love she never quite got over. Overview:  Last Night works much like a stage play, with a restraint and subtlety too few films...

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5 Dinosaurs Scarier Than Anything In Jurassic Park

God creates dinosaurs. God destroys dinosaurs. God creates man. Man destroys God. Man creates dinosaurs. Woman makes list of dinosaurs scarier than anything seen in Jurassic Park. As we all eagerly await what is sure to be best film of all time (JURASSIC WORLD!), I’m here to talk about the second best part of the Jurassic Park franchise. (If you don’t immediately recognize the god that is Jeff Goldblum is the best part, you can’t be helped.) The dinosaurs are clearly a bit of a draw. A few iconic scenes have seared some of the coolest dinosaurs into our...

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Weekly Clickables: 6/2/2015

Happy rabbit, rabbit day, all. I hope everyone enjoyed the last of May. It’s June! Which means my summer blockbuster countdown is closer than ever. (12 days until Jurassic World! Not that you didn’t already know.) To kick off the week, we’ve got a few things for you:   Ever wonder what the Mad Max: Fury Road trailer redone in grindhouse ’80s style would look like? Wonder no more. The Playback Collective via the A.V. Club has you covered. Yeah, it’s as cool as it sounds. It isn’t exactly a new premise that machines and robots will be sucking up...

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Nicholas Sparks & the Tale of the Recycled Romantic Melodramas

With the release of Nicholas Sparks’ 17th published masterpiece (and 10th film), The Longest Ride, it seems an appropriate time to pull over and ask ourselves how we keep allowing this to fucking happen. I may not be the leading authority on Mr. Sparks’ catalog; I’ve read two of his 17 books, and I’ve seen five of his 10 movies. And that…that is a lot more than I thought. I still haven’t seen The Godfather, but I’ve seen half of Nicholas Sparks’ films? Nothing seems right at the moment. If you care anything about Nicholas Sparks (and by the...

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Three Night Stand

Overview: Attempting to reconnect, a married couple goes on a weekend ski trip only to find out that the husband’s ex, a woman he still pines for, owns the lodge. 2013; PNW Pictures; Not Rated; 86 minutes. What Story?: Taking your wife to the exact ski lodge you spent many romantic weekends with your ex (the one that got away) isn’t the brightest plan, but Carl (Sam Huntington) isn’t the brightest guy. The only way matters can be made worse is the moment you realize your ex, Robyn (Emmanuelle Chriqui) now owns the lodge and your wife, Sue (Meaghan Rath) is about to find out everything you never told her. I suppose there’s a good story somewhere in here. Perhaps there’s a story about reconciling the possibility that the love of your life and your spouse are two different people. Maybe there’s a story about the struggle surrounding maintaining intimacy in a monogamous relationship. It could potentially be a cautionary tale about seemingly insignificant decisions bearing lifelong consequences. But Three Night Stand isn’t concerned with any of those things.  The Dark Rom-Com: I suppose Three Night Stand would want to call itself a romantic comedy, though I’m sure the genre would wholeheartedly reject the notion. While there are moments of humor (largely supplied by an amusing, albeit an entirely unnecessary cast of supporting characters) and moments of romance (or,...

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7 Movies to Love on Valentine’s Day

If I’m completely honest, romantic dramas and comedies aren’t exactly my area of expertise. This is due, in part, to my opinion that the romantic comedy genre has all but disappeared, only to be replaced by lazy, underwhelming, and often insulting rom-com look alikes. My disdain for where the genre stands has had its perks; I was promptly asked to write for Audiences Everywhere after publicly proclaiming Nicholas Sparks has been shitting all over the film industry for nearly two decades. (This either makes me the best person to write this Valentine’s Day list or the worst. I’ll leave that one up...

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The Boy Next Door

Overview: Jennifer Lopez – playing someone who’s not supposed to be Jennifer Lopez – has a one night stand with her 19-year-old-but-looks-30-years-old next door neighbor and it somehow threatens to ruin her entire life. She also tries to convince audiences that she reads books. Universal Pictures; 2015; Rated R; 91 minutes. It Must Be January: There’s enjoyably terrible and then there’s terribly terrible. Bonus points if you can guess right now where this is going. Jennifer Lopez stars as Claire Peterson, a perfectly lip glossed high school English classics teacher, the classics being Homer, Byron, and…Zeppelin, of course. Take...

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The Culture High

Overview: With marijuana legalization debates sweeping the country, this documentary takes aim at the pot prohibition shedding light on those who suffer and those who stand to gain from the ongoing criminalization of the substance. 2014; Phase 4 Films; Unrated; 120 minutes. “Getting All Potted Up On Weed”: When I moved to Southern California in 2011, everything about it was a far cry from that small town in West Virginia I was raised, especially the medical marijuana dispensary a mile from my new home. I didn’t have long to get used to it, though; just a few months into my residency, all medical marijuana stores vanished. A few days ago, I arrived early to a new doctor’s office to fill out a slew of forms. Of course there was a section asking for a detailed history of drug use. And of course the box for marijuana was next to the box for cocaine, next to the box for heroin, next to the box for methamphetamine. Medical marijuana dispensaries have popped back up since the feds first raided them, some not too far from the doctor whose paperwork outlined if a patient ever uses marijuana, or any illicit substance, he reserves the right to terminate that doctor-patient relationship. The Culture High is quick to point out the hypocrisy in the system – the War on Drugs sometimes looks like a...

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Into the Woods

Overview: A childless baker and his wife must acquire specific objects from the woods in order for the witch to break the spell upon them. Disney; 2014; Rated PG; 124 minutes. For the Tolerance of the Hollywood Musical Adaptation: Into the Woods is a mostly enjoyable film adaptation of a good musical. I need to get that out, because I’m sure that thought will be lost in everything I’m about to say. Adapted from the Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine musical and directed by Rob Marshall (Chicago, Nine), Into the Woods will basically draw in two audiences: the Sondheim fanatics and the casual holiday movie-goers. Neither will leave entirely satisfied. It’s no secret that sitting through musicals feels pretty enhanced-interrogation-tactic-y to me. But if you fear walking into a musical and walking out with a song bouncing around in your head for a month, fear not; every single song is sufficiently tolerable but immediately forgettable. (A bonus in my book.) Songs sing us the plot rather than punctuate the story–typical of Sondheim. The non-stop, over-the-top pageantry that plagues most every musical runs rampant in the first act. Vast expanses of magical woods appear in stage-like proportions, and each lost character seems to be within arm’s reach of whomever or whatever he’s seeking at all times – a problem acceptable only on stage. Despite some pacing issues, the first act still manages...

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The Longest Week

Overview: Three rich white people run around New York City complaining incessantly. 2014. YRF Entertainment. Rated PG-13. 86 minutes. Wes, Is That You?: I once had a writing teacher who ran around the classroom chirping, “There’s a fine line between inspiration and theft!” I imagine The Longest Week writer/director Peter Glanz would have been the smug punk in her class brazenly copying the e.e. cummings poem we read the week prior, claiming it to be his own because he used his own fucking pen. The average movie-goer wouldn’t be hard pressed to identify Glanz’s influences. If the aim were...

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Seven Movies We Can Stop Making

It’s almost Labor Day weekend, which is not only notorious for being the unofficial end of summer, but also historically one of the weakest weekends for new movie releases.  This weekend when you head to the theater you’re likely to think, “Wait, haven’t I seen this before?”   Hollywood loves nothing more than pumping out reboots and sequels. Because if something works once, why not keep doing it until audiences can’t stand it? Here are seven types of  films we’ve exhausted.   The Found Footage Film The Blair Witch Project (1999); Paranormal Activity (2007); Cloverfield (2008); Sinister (2012); V/H/S...

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Boyhood Measures Hypocrisy in Parental Judgment

Overview: Filmed over a groundbreaking twelve years, Boyhood is the story of a young boy growing up. IFC; 2014; Rated R; 164 minutes What Is This?: Boyhood garnered instant buzz when director Richard Linklater (Dazed and Confused) divulged he had been working on a film project over a decade. The movie warrants some explanation. Filmed in 39 days over 12 years with the same cast, Boyhood is an unprecedented feat in film history. In its essence, it’s simply a story that chronicles Mason’s (Ellar Coltrane) childhood, age 6 to 18 and “unfolds like a memory” with a powerful, documentary-like feel. Boyhood...

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16 Greatest F-Bombs in Film

Introduction The preeminent film in all things excess, The Wolf of Wall Street, fittingly sets the world record for the highest f-bomb count in any major motion picture. The ambivalently crafted Scorsese picture showcased an irreverent portrayal of notorious, real life Wall Street trader Jordan Belfor, stirring up controversy—in small part—due to the profanity. A staggering 569 f-bombs engulfed the 180 minute run time, putting the cursing count at 2.81 uses per minute. Just imagine the fucks per minute if Scorsese would have edited the flick. “Fuck” truly may be the single greatest word in the English language. But when the four letter offender gets diluted in a pool of excess expletives, it reduces the value of each. Scorsese is no stranger to profanity-ridden films; Casino ropes in 422 f-bombs, while Goodfellas is close behind with 400. Neither made my final cut. If you want a word to have impact, use it sparingly—or well. In honor of this record breaking swear-fest, I’m counting down the list of my top 16 greatest f-bombs in film. 16. Snakes on a Plane (2006) “I have had it with these motherfucking snakes on this motherfucking plane!” –Neville Flynn This Saturday Night Live caliber sketch turned feature length film has always bewildered me. It’s neither scary nor funny; Snakes on a Plane is ridiculous, stupid, and—somehow—a cult classic. I would bet that this was the only...

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