Lucky Logan

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The milieu this film depicts is only known to me through my obsessive childhood viewing of The Dukes of Hazard and Smokey and the Bandit. Just like Bo, Luke and Daisy or the Bandit and Cledus, brothers Jimmy (Channing Tatum), Clyde (Adam Driver) and sister Mellie (Riley Keough) try to break out of a streak of bad luck by making money on the other side of the law.

There are some bizarre casting choices. The only word that comes to mind is incongruous. Like Daniel Craig as Joe Bang, the genius bomb maker. It’s wonderful to see him act and he does steal this film but at the same time, you are constantly wondering what James Bond is doing locked up in West Virginia jail cell. Not too dissimilar is Hilary Swank’s turn as FBI agent Grayson. It seems to me these actors should be doing some Globe Theatre work on the West End but are forcing out performances here for some reason. Did they lose a bet at director Soderbergh’s weekly poker game? Finally and most glaringly there is Seth MacFarlane, the voice of Stewie on Family Guy. Here he is doing the voice of Stewie as an evil stock car driver with a bad pasted on mustache. I can’t suspend disbelief that long and no one should ask me to.  If you are looking for a comedic bad guy NASCAR driver, it will be a long time before anyone tops Sacha Baron Cohen in Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.  To paraphrase Lloyd Bentson, “Sir, I’ve seen Talladega Nights and this is no Talladega Nights.”

For all the A list stars in this film, I was not a fan of the cinematography. After the impressive and tightly choreographed camera movements in last years heist favorite Hell or High Water, there is no excuse for shaky, motivated or unmotivated camera moves. And also, natural lighting doesn’t mean you let the characters fall into shadow. It’s not that kind of film. I don’t know the reason but I guess most of the budget was spent on the car racing segment because those scenes look like they are from a totally different film.

Besides all these thorny issues this film can even melt the heart of a hardened Yankee like myself with a sweet rendition of Take Me Home Country Roads by John Denver. If this song doesn’t get you, doesn’t pull at your heart strings, you should really have your circuitry checked out, because you are a robot. Even if this moment does come at the expense of Rhianna. What did Rihanna ever do to writer Rebecca Blunt? But I can accept that like Waylon Jennings’ Dukes theme song Good Ol’ Boys, the movie is just trying to have a little fun without meanin’ no harm. So if you can lower the bar and just want to go along for a hi-octane ride you can still enjoy Lucky Logan.

The Big Sick

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I went into The Big Sick with higher than usual expectations and it did not disappoint. That is saying something. The film is produced by Amazon Studios. In 2016 we saw another notable Amazon film, Love and Friendship, which was an excellent work from Director Whit Stillman. Each year it will feel less and less odd that online companies are also in the film biz as producers. In this case Amazon was smart enough to team up with Judd Apatow and in turn with Kumail Nanjiani and Emily Gordon. Kumail, who is also the star, and Emily are the writers and The Big Sick is based on their life experiences.

I am not exactly sure how The Big Sick got an R rating. D explained to me that F bombs are dropped. Is that all it takes these days? Well, it’s a shame because I think younger folks would get a lot out of watching this movie. It’s not preachy but it is intelligent and gets its points about relationships and culture across in a humorous and meaningful way. On the other hand, kids will stream it on Amazon. So much for the MPAA and its outdated ratings system.

This film reminded me a lot of When Harry Met Sally. There is even a scene at a batting cage. Though it is not the theme, the movie is driven by the question, “When do you know you’re in love?” The twists here involve the cultural roadblocks Kumail faces in pursuing his relationship with Emily, in a strong performance by Zoe Kazan.

Some of the best moments happen when Holly Hunter as Beth and Ray Romano as Terry, Emily’s parents, storm onto the scene.  This is a critical part of the film as one of the main stars is in a coma i.e. the sick part of The Big Sick. At this point the movie really heats up with some high drama at a comedy club involving Hunter and a xenophobic heckler and Romano having an intense heart to heart talk with Kumail on an air mattress. The film never sinks to schmaltz, the actors bring it —  the emotion and intensity — and the writing remains honest and moving.

One cool and interesting thing to me is its long and eclectic soundtrack. Everything from Boz Scaggs to Veilumuth Chitralekha.  And as well as it is doing in the theatre, I think The Big Sick will even have greater success as a streaming title.  I thought The Big Sick was an excellent film that gave new angles to a story that feels familiar.

Atomic Blonde

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Atomic Blonde tries really hard to tell a story that isn’t there to begin with and the attempt is a strain all around. It’s self-indulgent, it drags, there is needless exposition and even a strange epilogue. However, there are some memorable and cool moments in the film, including an especially jaw dropping/teeth clinching/jaw dropping car chase scene.

And if you think you’d like seeing Charlize Theron beat, kick, punch, stab with a 5 inch stiletto, strangle, psychologically accost and verbally berate dozens of guys, while sprinkling in a lesbian spy love affair, then by all means don’t miss this film.

The art direction was truly impressive with spot on depictions of the Berlin Wall and its blockades and guard towers. Apparently since the last war movie we saw dealing with the GDR, Spielberg’s Tom Hanks vehicle, Bridge of Spies, the sun still refuses to ever shine in communist East Berlin.

Scenes like the one in the nightclub where Theron rendezvous with a sexy French agent, Sofia Boutella, (who was strong in Star Trek and unsteady in The Mummy) are really well done in terms of their mix of realism and fantasy. Great dramatic tension and acting make it easy to suspend disbelief. Here, an adjacent space painted red with light next to a  packed dance floor allows for the privacy of a long conversation about the perils of espionage, some gun play and even foreplay. Why not!

James McAvoy proves once again without a shadow of a doubt that he has impeccable acting range. It’s a pleasure to watch him do his thing. And as a period piece, the soundtrack rocked with some favorite bands and songs of the era. This is one film that, like Baby Driver, will have you rockin’ and head bobbin’ to a killer soundtrack.

So the movie has a lot going for it. The style of a DePalma at the height of his kinetic powers, fantastic actors unleashed, solid art direction, fun music, some kicking royal ass action sequences. Ultimately the wonderful elements don’t add up to an exceptional film but Atomic Blonde does have its moments and there is no doubt Charlize Theron is a bona fide badass.

Atomic Blonde

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Atomic Blonde is the latest in a series of movie-length music videos, this one featuring the synthy sounds and backbeats of the late 1980s.  The movie’s action is set in East Berlin right at the cusp of the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the script is that of a low-grade Cold War espionage thriller.

The movie features Charlize Theron in the role of “Blonde, James Blonde,” a female incarnation of the invincible British secret agent, only Theron drinks Stoli on ice, no vermouth.  We first find her soaking in a tub of ice water with a body full of bumps and bruises and cuts and lacerations (but, remarkably, no broken bones, no limp, no discernible handicap), and then the movie proceeds to show us how she got that way. The film isn’t shy about showing Theron in the buff, beginning with an extended scene of her checking her beaten up body out in the mirror, but also featuring a couple of gratuitous lesbian exchanges.

If you don’t think about it terribly hard, the plot itself is pretty straightforward.  Theron sits down in an interview room with her “superior” (Toby James, that round-faced dude from Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy) and American CIA agent (John Goodman). There is also an even more superior boss man watching through the glass that probably signifies something important here, though not important enough for me to try to figure out. Theron then details how she was sent to East Berlin to meet up with a British agent embedded in the terrain (David MacAvoy) and recover some sort of important list that seems to be contained inside some guy’s watch.  Meanwhile, a young French agent (Sofia Boutella) is following Theron around taking pictures about as inconspicuously as a fashion model in a skin-tight leather suit riding around on a motorcycle in Communist Eastern Europe could back in those days.  Then there are a bunch of Russians and local thugs, and, well, you’ll figure it out.

But, who needs a plot when we’ve got action?  And there is plenty of action to go around. Theron survives at least three major car crashes and is in a couple of extended hand-to-hand melees reminiscent of early Apollo Creed-Rocky Balboa bouts (at one point L shouted: “Stay down, kid, stay down”).  Indeed, one of those fisticuffs was about three minutes too long, so it turned from drama to comedy as the kids in the back of the theater began to laugh, but it segued into a terrific car chase scene that probably constituted the best few minutes of the movie.

Then again, I’m not sure this movie was even an action movie.  It might be better described as a vehicle for Charlize Theron to show off her super awesome self in some super awesome clothing, with her duds even matching the lampshade at one point according to my more fashion-sensitive companion.  This was partly utilitarian, as she beat at least one person to death with her shoe.  But I was concerned from a narrative standpoint about how she fit an entire wardrobe into such a tiny suitcase.  Perhaps she went shopping?   But where do you get a screaming red dress in East Berlin in 1989?  The questions pile up quickly in this one.

It is also possible that the movie is Theron’s response to getting passed over for the Wonder Woman role — she is definitely gorgeous and she definitely shows her chops as an action hero, even grabbing a bright yellow lasso of justice (a staple in most urban eastern bloc households, for sure) and beating the crap out of a bunch of Commie henchmen at one point. I guess you’d have to ask her.

Overall, over the $5 bar for its excellent music video qualities, but that’s kind of assuming you’ve seen the many high-quality action movies already out this summer – Wonder Woman, Spider Man, Baby Driver, Dunkirk.   It also assumes you sit in the theater with the good sound system (e.g., the Marcus SuperScreen DLX) for you to get your 99 Luftballoons on.

When writing this up I learned that this was directed by the guy who got his directorial start with John Wick, and, there it is, I buried the lede.   Evidently, he is also directing the second Deadpool movie, so here’s hoping that one goes a little better.

Dunkirk

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The script for Dunkirk must read something like this:

Page 1. The Battle of Dunkirk. / FADE TO BLACK /  The End

There is that much action and that little dialogue. And most of the dialogue is in any case unintelligible due to accent and vernacular. Luckily, the story of Dunkirk is not one of words but deeds.

The Director, Christopher Nolan, has great respect for the power of intersecting story structure. As in Memento, where he tells a story in reverse, Dunkirk follows three unique but intersecting strands. Unlike Moonlight where the three chapters come in chronological order, Dunkirk’s structure follows its own order. The acts, as explained through titles at the start include the sea, whose day long story is the anchor the others jockey towards and past. The story of the beach takes a week to unfold and the story of the air, one hour, or the amount of time that it takes for the gas tank of a Supermarine Spitfire fighter plane to run dry. Dunkirk is revealed in the cross cutting of these stories. As V.I. Pudovkin wrote in his 1930s seminal anthology Film Technique and Film Acting, it is through the control of time and space in editing that filmmaking is elevated into art. And that is true here. I can’t think of a war epic since Battleship Potemkin that has used editing in such a groundbreaking way. And in terms of the cinematography of Hoytema, the achievement is on par with Apocalypse Now and will no doubt be a front runner for the Academy Award next March.

Which brings me to the format of this film, IMAX 70mm. This is over twice the size of a typical 35mm film. In IMAX 70mm, the aspect ratio, or relationship between the vertical and horizontal, creates a large square frame. You may have seen an IMAX movie at a science museum. In the USA, the film is being screened in IMAX 70mm, the way Nolan shot it, in under 100 theaters. The nearest IMAX 70mm screening of Dunkirk to the L & D is at the Minnesota Zoo, four and a half hours away.  Weirdly, Alabama, not exactly known as a film mecca, actually has two theaters showing Dunkirk in IMAX 70mm. Here is a link to all the IMAX 70mm theaters screening Dunkirk: Dunkirk in IMAX 70mm.  The nearest cinema from the L &D screening the 70mm print is outside of Milwaukee in a place called Waukesha, about an hour and forty five minutes away. Here is a link to all the theaters showing the film in 70mm: Dunkirk in 70mm.

So what this means is that I watched Dunkirk in a cropped aspect ratio. The movie itself did not fill up the entire screen, neither sides nor top or bottom. Not knowing anything about the production of Dunkirk going into it, this definitely confused me. Back in the day, this issue would have been corrected by having a curtain come in from the sides and top and bottom to cover the blank parts of the screen. But theaters in the multiplex era are spartan affairs in this regard and the thinking is that ninety-nine percent of the films will have no issues since it is only Tarantino and Nolan who shoot features, like the The Hateful Eight, in 70mm. I found the blank screen distracting and it bugged me. An IMAX film camera goes for a million dollars. The quality of the resolution is off the charts. So it’s kind of a bummer not to be able to see Dunkirk in its full glory in terms of projection quality and aspect ratio.  However, if you are planning on waiting to watch this at home on Blu-ray, don’t bother, you won’t get it. Unless I suppose you are sitting about a foot away from your flat screen.

What to say about the rest of this film. There are flawless effects, brilliant combat scenes including the aerial dogfights, the acting is seamless and engaging. And I think its ultimate victory is something D said, it’s claustrophobic. For an IMAX formatted movie to be at once epic in its scope and claustrophobic in its atmosphere is a testament to the greatness of everyone who worked on this picture and the vision of Christopher Nolan.

War for the Planet of the Apes

If you are ready for some top-flight man on monkey violence, then War for the Planet of the Apes is the movie for you.   But it is so much more than that.   It is a nuanced exploration of racism, sexism, compassion, and possibly the greatest cinematic meditation on existential philosophy since The Seventh Seal.

Nah, I’m just kidding. It really just amounts to some good only man on monkey violence.  It’s not that the movie doesn’t try to do the things listed above, it just doesn’t do them very well.  The apes are generally set up in the “good camp” and the humans in the “bad camp” in this one, and we spend probably an hour of the movie literally watching the apes ape various stages of grief and angst and heartbreak while we wait around for the film to get to Woody Harrelson.

But, get to them they finally do, featuring one spectacular, borderline insane expository monologue that nearly saves the film along a number of fronts.  By the time they got around to the monologue, I had almost completely checked from the story, but he introduced enough material to bring the story back in play.  He is also able to almost — almost — blur the “good ape, bad man” line with his historic account, enough to give us a little sympathy for the human side.  Like the greats, he makes those around him better, so things that had been annoying me to that point got a little less annoying. But, alas, even the Hestonesque charismatic burst doesn’t save the film, and what we are left with is a few great pieces of film making in a movie that is pretty stupid and at least an hour too long (but do check out L’s review for a pro’s perspective on some of the legitimate cinematic achievements).

There are a couple of big plusses here.  Some of the action is great, including a super awesome wrinkle in the climactic scene.  Although I am kind of bashing on the movie here, even haters like me will take the drama seriously enough to enjoy the action in the context of the dramatic narrative, unlike action for action’s sake in, say, the Transformers or Alien v. Predator movies.  It’s probably worth mentioning again that Woody is must-see tv.  And, finally, this is one of the few movies where you can feel license to enjoy the fabulous Marcus 128 oz soda specials, because there are plenty of spaces between the pauses here to take a pit stop or two.

Over the $5 bar for some great action and for Woody, but I would have been willing to pay more for less for this one.

War for the Planet of the Apes (L)

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First of all, for the record, I love Woody Harrelson and could watch an entire feature film of him eating a salad. I’m not sure why it would take him an hour and a half to eat a salad but there you go. The movie Woody Salad I’m certain would have more unpredictable twists and turns than War for the Planet of the Apes. Big explosion at the end? Check. Not to pick on it, the last three films we have seen, Baby DriverSpiderman and Wonder Woman also end with big explosions. I think the screenwriters start all the movies with a massive explosion and reverse engineer a script from there.

This particular film could have undergone at least an hour of cutting. It has the scale, the sets, the score of Doctor Zhivago but without the story to prop it up for over 2 hours.

Personally, I did enjoy the film from a purely technical point of view. The apes themselves are a marvel. Not necessarily better than the original apes from Planet of the Apes in 1968, which garnered an honorary Academy Award for make-up artist John Chambers. Back then you could still tell who the actors were. You could see it was Roddy McDowall down there and that made it even better.  These days, it is more of a photorealistic effect, if you will. But it still works for me, it’s just different.

And then of course there is the aforementioned Woody, doing this wacky mix of an evil Michael Stipe meets Apocalypse Brando — and it works. His scenes form the apex of this film for me. If you are into this series, War for the Planet of the Apes is a must see but ultimately for the rest of us, popping in or streaming the original Planet of the Apes with McDowell, Heston and the Statue of Liberty would most likely be a more worthwhile experience.

Spider Man: Homecoming

Spider Man: Homecoming is really a special piece of film making, melding the chase-the- bad-guys-and-blow-stuff up action movie with the poignant teen adolescent drama to make for a really enjoyable experience.  We went in with high expectations, and we did not leave disappointed.  This is the sixth Spider Man movie in recent memory, and I will put it neck-and-neck with Spider Man 2 (the Doc Oc one) as the best of the lot.  Judging by the packed house and the generally enthusiastic audience response, this movie is going to make like a zillion dollars.

I was really feeling the adult-adolescent nexus portrayals here and, despite not being a superhero myself, found the Tony Stark grooming his protege angle quite compelling. At one point I leaned over to L and said, “I am really identifying with the authority figures here.”  In the front end of the movie, the adults generally didn’t know what was going on with the younger set, and mostly didn’t care, either.  Rather than Scooby Doo the whole thing, the plot suggests that this cuts both ways — in some cases the adults should be listening, but in others the kids really are meddling when they should be minding their own business.  Jon Favreau is occasionally funny as the mostly inept intermediary for the Spidey-Tony relationship.   Then, remarkably, the story spins this to illustrate that in many cases the kids don’t know what’s going on with the adults, either.  This makes for some excellent dramatic narrative and a couple genuine surprises, not something that is characteristic of superhero genre.

The adults here included many of the usual suspects, with Tony Stark and Iron Man being central characters throughout.  This is the first Spidey movie set squarely in the Marvel Universe on the heels of the Captain America: Civil War story trajectory.  One consequence of this is that the plot line involves Michael Keaton building a criminal enterprise on the back of repurposing alien technology left behind in that affair.   Keaton eventually shows himself as the Vulture, more than possibly a hat tip to his role in Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance), which is amusing for a number of reasons.  The Vulture isn’t particularly interesting, but the plot built around him is.  The story sets up and mostly moves along at a good clip, without pausing too much to show off.  A second consequence is that Spidey has access to a suit equipped with Stark technology, so the high-tech elements of the Iron Man series are pervasive within this new universe.   I had mixed feelings about the high-tech Spider Man, as most of it was done really well and is consistent with the technology frontiers in these other movies. On the other hand, c’mon, man!

Mostly for better, this movie does not begin with the genesis story and does not dwell on the guilt over Uncle Ben’s death that is so central to the other two Spider Man movie incarnations (and the comic books I remember from my youth).  As Fenwick would probably say, it’s been done.  The movie also strips Peter Parker of his solely internal struggles, as he inadvertently reveals to his buddy that he is Spider Man, so much of the movie involves the interplay with these two rather than Peter going it alone.  This revelation is probably one of the reasons why the writers were able to develop the adolescent characters and setting so well.  There is plenty to say about that, too, so the movie leaves us with a lot to chew on.

A couple other things, Marisa Tomei as Aunt May worked well, and she got at least one great line in (or most of it, at least).  Tyne Daly (Cagney or Lacey) shows up as a government security bigwig, which is nice, though her role is perfunctory.  And Michael Mando of Breaking Bad fame is evidently being groomed as the next super villain, and what’s not to like about that?

Overall, well above the $5 bar.  I found myself laughing out loud, including several times when I was the only one in the theater doing so.  At other points, the theater laughed whilst I nodded or maybe grinned.  There is definitely something for most of us.   I’m guessing I will see it again (and again and again on TNT).

The Beguiled

One of the problems with heading off to see a movie like The Beguiled is that you might not be exactly sure what “beguiled” means.  Well, let me assure you that 45 minutes into this one you will have a pretty good idea.

The film is set at a boarding school for girls in rural Virginia some time at the back end of the Civil War.  One of the girls is out picking mushrooms and she happens upon Colin Farrell under a willow tree with a badly wounded leg (Farrell has the wounded leg, not the willow tree).   She assists the blue-bellied Yankee back to the seminary, and what unfolds from there is pretty much what you might expect when Colin Farrell is introduced to a group of mostly sheltered females ranging in age from pre-pubescent to Nicole Kidman.  There are a couple of catches, of course.  Firstly, it’s 1860s Virginia, not Hollywood, so the hostesses are trying to maintain a level of decorum commensurate with Southern ladies.  Secondly, despite the masculine intrigue, they aren’t quite sure if the cad soldier will rape and murder them given the chance.

The film is beautifully shot, both the outdoor shots and the interior of the household.  Despite the expanse of the wilderness, there is a claustrophobic vibe running throughout, with themes of being locked in, what it means to be locked in, and the precarious nature of locks recurring again and again.   The vulnerability of a female seminary on the outskirts of a warzone is continuously reintroduced, vis a vis both the Yankee in their midst and the Rebels that happen by.  Ultimately, the movie explores many themes relating to communication, trust, friends and foes, and group behavior (among others) with startling levels of sexual tension and stark, brutal reality helping to set and re-set the background mood.  The state of beguility, it turns out, might just affect your perspective and behavior.

The acting is great, led by the amazing Nicole Kidman and almost equally amazing Kirsten Dunst, who may or may not be competing for the soldier’s affections. Kidman is certainly not sheltered in her role as the decisive head of the operation, and I think what is going on in her head makes for the toughest read in the movie.  In contrast, Elle Fanning is cast as just old enough to drop a handkerchief, and she is pretty much as transparent as they come.  I’m not sure who all those younger girls were, but they didn’t skip a beat, either.   And, Farrell is gorgeous in his role as the Dubliner mercenary, showing a range from sensitive to psychotic.  Director Sofia Coppola is pulling the strings here, and I continue to enjoy the films she is putting out.

This soars over the $5 bar and is pretty much as good a movie as you are likely to see in the theaters.  Big ups from the L&D crew.

L&D Picks for 2016

Here is our long-awaited (mostly by us) list of the top five movies of 2106, taken from the universe of movies viewed by both L & D in 2016.   The rankings are based on a proprietary L&D weighting formula that you can just bet Netflix would kill for.

And here we go:

6. (tie) The Girl on the Train:  *The Girl on the Train* was reminiscent of the great French New Wave Director Claude Chabrol who concerned himself with the police procedural, bourgeois family life in small towns and murder. It also crossed paths with the neurosis found in many of the female leads of Hitchcock’s films and with the idea of a society turned against the protagonist, also a mainstay of Hitchcockiana. Again, going in with low expectations, I thoroughly enjoyed this film and found the production values, cinematography, set and costume design, makeup, story, editing, acting, sound design and even score (by The Simpsons theme own Danny Elfman) to be above average if not under par. So why does this film not get the hype it deserves? Well dammit it should. Perhaps a better title would have been “Murder on the Hudson”.

6. (tie) The Arrival:  (Marketed outside the US as *The Giant Space Turd Movie*)  *The Arrival* revisits the standard alien romance drama with the strong female lead made famous by Jodie Foster in *Contact*, but without the benefit of Matthew McConaughey’s Matthew McConaugheyness. Only this time, it’s Amy Adams as the lead egghead, and she is pretty terrific. If you like aliens and you like romance, there is probably something for you here.

4.  Rogue One:  The last Star Wars movie was a greatest hits album and so of course people liked it, because, who doesn’t like the hits?  But *Rouge One* was the story I have been waiting for. Not to mention I am a big Diego Luna fan. His company produced a film I worked on in Mexico called Voy a Explotar. I was fortunate enough to meet him on a rooftop in Guanajuato during production. Great guy and actor. One of my favorite films of his is called Rudo y Cursi, a fútbol comedy well worth watching. But hey, you are here to read about *Rouge One*. Yes, I knew the ending but I still enjoyed the ride getting there. And basically I enjoyed everything about it. We watched in 3D and to be honest, I can’t tell the difference. But is it because it’s so good? If it’s working, it’s working in a subtle way and maybe that’s for the best. Except for the credits. Credits in 3D are always amazing. (L)

3.  Snowden:  Oliver Stone hit it out of the park. This film could easily have been a geeky dud, filled with computer screens and talking heads but it was a classic Hollywood film wrapped around a social document told in an arresting, cinematic way. Not to mention fantastic, measured performances including Nicholas Cage. It was impressive. Everyone who watches this film will get something worthwhile out of it.

1.   (tie)  Hell or High Water:  *Hell or High Water* delivers on its promise to be the best modern western since *No Country for Old Men*. Ben Foster deserves leading-man credit for keeping his usual psychotic character under wraps to let the movie happen around him. Jeff Bridges reprises his role of Rooster Coburn as the surly,aging lawman, though he too is a little more reserved in this role. Chris Pine is a better Captain Kirk than sad sack, and is too good looking to be terribly convincing, but he does alright. We haven’t seen this all before, but it seems like we’ve seen most of this before. Nonetheless, there are a few surprises, and the compelling plot and characters, along with some reasonable action sequences and a number of provocative thematic elements, mask some of the weak links of the story line. Of particularly interest is the Evangelical Christian Native American Texas Ranger, who didn’t deal well with Bridges’ many ethnic slurs. This is definitely one of the best couple movies we’ve seen this year.

1.   (tie)  Deadpool   With action sequences targeting 15-year old boys and jokes targeting 40-something men, it’s probably no big surprise that it was a hit with the L&D crowd.  If you like the opening sequence, you’ll probably love the rest.

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Our thank yous to the Marcus Valley Cinema for $5 Tuesday and $5 student Thursday nights, which made this all possible.

See you Tuesday on the barcalounger!