Tuesday, March 25, 2008

run, fat boy, run

Shaun of the Dead's Simon Pegg seems destined to be a star, but movies like Run, Fat Boy, Run won't do much to help the cause.

Monday, March 24, 2008

black tide

These Miami teens love their old-school heavy metal. Light From Above is their first album: They have all the moves down cold, but they haven't found a personality yet.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

usc makes the big dance

The Trojans, led by freshman sensation O.J. Mayo, go to Omaha Thursday to play the Kansas State Wildcats in the first round of the NCAA college basketball tournament. I preview the matchup -- at least on the Trojan side of things -- at Deadspin.

who are these "gutter twins" you speak of?

Songwriters Greg Dulli and Mark Lanegan, formerly of, respectively, the Afghan Whigs and Screaming Trees, have teamed up as the Gutter Twins. Their first record together, Saturnalia, is out now, and it's an interesting mash-up of their differing dark styles.

Friday, March 14, 2008

never back down

Can Hollywood capitalize on the trendy sport of mixed martial arts? The new teen drama Never Back Down suggests that, in a pinch, they'll simply try to redo The Karate Kid. My review appears here.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

pete seeger

Pete Seeger: The Power of Song is an adoring, moving documentary about the protest folk singer. I review it in this week's Consumables, and I also take a listen to new singles from MGMT, Flo Rida (OK, "Low" isn't that new), the Raveonettes, and Mike Doughty.

Friday, March 07, 2008

college road trip

Disney's latest piece of pseudo-wholesome family entertainment, College Road Trip, opens today. Watching Martin Lawrence try to be adorable is simply too much to take.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

miss pettigrew lives for a day

Frances McDormand is terrific, Amy Adams is decent: That's the short review of Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day. The longer, more interesting version is here.

the los angeles brazilian film festival

The first annual Los Angeles Brazilian Film Festival kicks off Friday at the Landmark. For L.A. Weekly, I sampled some of the festival's offerings. I didn't love a lot of what I saw, but I did find one movie worth checking out: Not by Chance.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

david poland on barack obama

I've been reading wall-to-wall election coverage in the last 24 hours, but I'm not sure if anyone more accurately nailed the challenge ahead for Barack Obama -- and the potential for him to truly come into his own -- as David Poland, editor of Movie City News, has done in a recent blog post:

What we will now learn, really for the first time, is how Obama would represent the United States. Because, truth be told, it is not just about speeches. It is about action. And the hard reality of the world is that leaders are often called upon to push back when a threat comes to bear.

Will Obama push back? How will Obama push back if he does? And will be cross the lines of discourse that he has set out to uphold? Can he effectively respond without becoming what he has beheld?

These hard moments are when we see the true beauty of greatness… or the sad, sad death of the dream that greatness can still exist in our cynical times.

The whole thing can be read here.

married life: the movie

Chris Cooper and Patricia Clarkson are both terrific in Married Life, a dark comedy-drama about one middle-aged couple's seemingly happy marriage which is slowly falling apart. You can read my review here.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

r.e.m.: well, this is encouraging

I don't condone Monster bashing, but Josh Modell's review at Spin about R.E.M.'s forthcoming Accelerate has me very excited. 

Monday, March 03, 2008


Writer-director-actor Stephen Chow, the man behind Shaolin Soccer and Kung Fu Hustle, returns with CJ7, a hyperactive kids' movie that's a bit like E.T., except, y'know, not nearly as good.