Saturday, October 29, 2016

Misleading Men: Jackie Chan

Jackie Chan receives an Honorary Oscar next month. For my regular MEL feature "Misleading Men," I take a look at the Hong Kong action star and his uneven path to Hollywood stardom. (And once he achieved it, it wasn't quite what he imagined.) You can read it right here.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Anderson .Paak (Featuring ScHoolboy Q) - "Am I Wrong"

I'd be shocked if Malibu, Anderson .Paak's second album, doesn't end up in the Top 10 on the Pazz & Jop poll. My favorite track off the record? Probably "Am I Wrong."

Thursday, October 27, 2016

'Inferno' Review

Tom Hanks is back! In the franchise of his that nobody cares about! For The New Republic, I reviewed Inferno, which is total nonsense but not without some pleasures. Read all about it.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The Grierson & Leitch Podcast: 'Moonlight' and 'Weekend at Bernie's,' Together at Last

The 40th episode of the Grierson & Leitch podcast focuses on Moonlight, but we also dig into the Jack Reacher sequel and American Pastoral. And, for our Reboot segment, we do an autopsy on 1989's Weekend at Bernie's. Enjoy!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

'Doctor Strange' Review

Sufficiently amusing and pretty exciting, Doctor Strange is the Marvel movie where I started suspecting that the MCU may be spreading itself too thin. Even though this is the first chapter in the adventures of the Master of the Mystic Arts, I feel like I've seen many parts of this film before. Doctor Strange is good-enough, which may not end up being good enough. My review is up at Screen International.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Barbara Lewis - "Hello Stranger"

The best movie of the weekend is Moonlight. In its honor, here's a song off the soundtrack.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

'Moonlight' and 'Boyhood'

For MEL, I wrote about the magnificent Moonlight. Specifically, I compared it to another movie I love, Boyhood. They serve as excellent companion pieces, which I explain here.

'Jack Reacher: Never Go Back' Review

If you are desperate to watch Tom Cruise run, Jack Reacher: Never Go Back, I suppose, will satisfy your craving. But this is pretty weak tea: Two movies in, this franchise is certainly no Mission: Impossible. I reviewed the film for Screen International.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

The Grierson & Leitch Podcast: Talking Ben Affleck and Pink Floyd

This week's Grierson & Leitch podcast features four films. We lament the mediocre The Accountant. I tell you why Certain Women is terrific. I stick up for Christine. And, in our Reboot section, we dig into Pink Floyd: The Wall, which segued into a discussion about 1970s concept albums and rock star whining. Much to enjoy, and you can hear it all here.

Monday, October 17, 2016

'Press Play With Madeleine Brand': Justin Timberlake and the Modern Concert Film

I was on KCRW today to talk about Justin Timberlake + the Tennessee Kids. Is this a golden age of concert films? I've got some thoughts, and you can hear 'em here.

What's the Greatest Horror Movie of the 21st Century?

Glad you asked. Over at Rolling Stone, a bunch of smart critics and I wrote about this century's 50 best fright films. I had no say over the rankings, but I had plenty to say about the likes of 28 Days Later, The Conjuring and others. Check it out here.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Bob Dylan - "Not Dark Yet"

Congrats on the Nobel, Bob.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

On the Sad, Riveting 'Christine'

Christine, about late TV journalist Christine Chubbuck, was one of my favorite films at Sundance. I give it a second look over at The New Republic.

'Justin Timberlake + the Tennessee Kids' Review

For MEL, I reviewed the new Justin Timberlake concert film. All I know is, Netflix is making a terrible mistake not releasing this movie in theaters. Read all about it here.

'The Accountant' Review

The Accountant is this close to being a good movie that successfully executes its mixture of ludicrousness and drama. Alas, it doesn't quite get there. Ben Affleck plays an accountant who's also a butt-kicking, Jason Bourne-like killing machine. And he's autistic. It's a strange film, and I reviewed it for Screen International.

Why You Need to See 'Certain Women'

I've been singing the praises of writer-director Kelly Reichardt for a while. But, really, her latest is especially terrific. It's called Certain Women, and I get into its greatness over at The New Republic.

The Grierson & Leitch Podcast: 'The Birth of a Nation' and 'L.A. Confidential'

On this week's Grierson & Leitch podcast, we dive into The Birth of a Nation. But we also grapple with The Girl on the Train, which is so ugh. I ask Will some questions about Newtown. And in our Reboot section, we look back at L.A. Confidential. You can hear the whole thing here.

Sunday, October 09, 2016

'20th Century Women' Review

20th Century Women had its premiere on Saturday at the New York Film Festival. I reviewed the film for Screen International, and found it to be very reminiscent of writer-director Mike Mills' last movie, Beginners. It's lovely, a bit precious and definitely worth your time. Read all about it here.

Friday, October 07, 2016

Sampling 'The Birth of a Nation' for a Second Time

I was at the epic premiere screening for The Birth of a Nation at Sundance -- the one where there was a standing ovation before the movie and then an even longer one afterward. I thought the movie was solid but not amazing, but certainly affecting. Nine months later, how does it hold up? I let you know at The New Republic.

Wu-Tang Clan - "C.R.E.A.M."

Good lord, why has Wu-Tang Clan never been featured on Friday Video? That ends today.

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

The Grierson & Leitch Podcast: 'American Honey' and 'Barry Lyndon'

Do you like discussions about lengthy movies? Then this week's Grierson & Leitch podcast is for you. I sing the praises of American Honey, and in our Reboot section we tackle the mighty Barry Lyndon. Also, we've got reviews of Deepwater Horizon and Crisis in Six Scenes. You can hear the whole thing here.

Monday, October 03, 2016

'The Girl on the Train' Review

Yowza, The Girl on the Train is dumb dumb dumb. It's trashy and silly ... but, y'know, not in a good way. I survey the wreckage over at Screen International.

'Saturday Night Live' and the Donald Trump Pivot

On Saturday Night Live, Donald Trump has often been portrayed as an adorable buffoon. Not on Saturday, when Alec Baldwin played him as a monster. I didn't laugh so much as recoil, and I think that's the point. For MEL, I wrote about the show's (and the country's) changing attitude toward the Republican presidential candidate. You can read it right here.

Sunday, October 02, 2016

'I Am Not Your Negro' Review

Recently premiering at the Toronto Film Festival and now screening as part of the New York Film Festival, I Am Not Your Negro is a darn fine documentary about James Baldwin's unfinished book about the killing of three African-American activists of the 1960s. But the film also doubles as a solid Baldwin bio. Read all about it here.

'Press Play With Madeleine Brand': Talking 'Deepwater Horizon' and 'American Honey'

I was on KCRW's Press Play on Friday alongside Amy Nicholson to discuss this weekend's releases. This allowed me another chance to tell the world how dumb Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children is. Amy reviews Masterminds, and the two of us weigh in on Deepwater Horizon and American Honey. You can listen to the whole thing here.