So, I’ve been thinking a lot about connections, the ones you make and have with friends and lovers. Those people who finish your sentences, the ones who bring a bit of calm to the chaos. Ones that you’re there for, and are there for you. Those things Justine Frischmann was singing about in 1994.

I’ve always been a short-term pessimist but a long-term optimist. That is, I think tomorrow will probably suck but things will be better in the future. Despite this gloomily sunny outlook, I’ve reached the point where I’m afraid I’m unable to make long-term connections with anyone anymore. I have friends and acquaintances. Some people who might read this fall into one of those categories. And I love my friends, I really do. But I’m not sure I have a real connection with any of them. We all share some interests, and we might like hanging out, but something is missing. (more…)

Hot Fuzz is a goofy send-up of action movies from the folks responsible for the equally goofy—and possibly better—Shaun of the Dead. It’s an over-the-top action movie in the Michael Bay mold, full of useless fast cuts, incomprehensible fight scenes, and as much homoeroticism as the truly horrific Bad Boys II. (It even has a bunch of inexplicable homages to the legendary Point Break with Keanu Reeves and an equally “whoa”-tastic Patrick Swayze.) It’s also laugh-out-loud funny.

Shaun of the Dead star (and co-writer) Simon Pegg plays Nicholas Angel, who’s such a great London cop that he makes everyone else look so bad and is sent back to a picturesque small town with no crime. It helps for the audience to be a bit of an Anglophile, as the small-town London setting is full of the usual eccentrics, gardeners, a bizarre version of Romeo & Juliet that somehow involves The Cardigan’s “Love Fool,” and a renegade swan that Pegg and Frost are unable to bring to justice. Oh, and a lot of incredibly graphic deaths.

The first half of the movie is Pegg and co-star Nick Frost running around town, with the possibly retarded Frost character constantly talking about all of this favorite action scenes. It’s inevitable that things will go all to hell in the second half of the movie, as they get to act out many of those very scenes, usually with painfully funny conclusions.

If there’s a flaw with Hot Fuzz it’s that most action movies have already become so self-aware and silly that a lot of the gags in Hot Fuzz will probably be in the next Die Hard. Though maybe not the priest packing some serious heat and the old lady that Pegg gives a flying kick to the face; that might be too much for even Bruce Willis.

I’m a Douchebag!I’m not sure why I thought it was a good idea to spend three hours with Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino, but I saw “Grindhouse” on Friday. Aside from further cementing my view that Rosario Dawson is one of the hottest women on the planet (though she’s starting to look a bit skeletal; get that girl a cheeseburger, stat!), it was… er, a bit of a grind.

Conceptually, it’s pretty dumb to spend $60 million to perfectly emulate a double feature of movies that probably cost $600K or less to make; that, my friends, is why these are B-movies. It isn’t a chosen aesthetic; it’s one mandated by limitations both budgetary and, lets face it, talent. For every Martin Scorsese that found the artistry in cheese like “Boxcar Bertha” in the early 70s, there were dozens of Doris Wishman’s pumping out swill like “Deadly Weapons” (featuring the appropriately named Chesty Morgan, who in the movie’s best scene, clubs a guy to death with her enormous boobs). (more…)

300.jpg300 is one of the gayest movies ever made, not that there’s anything wrong with that. It’s about a bunch of sweaty, half-naked steroidal men fighting an enormous army led by a drag queen who sports all manner of body piercings and a giant codpiece.

It’s also a videogame, full of in-engine, 360-degree spins and pre-rendered backgrounds. Gamers may reflexively reach for their mouse, keyboard, or gamepad to reposition the camera for maximum viewing impact. It shares with games an obsession/fetishization with cool violence, cheesy macho posturing, and an adolescent view of sexuality. (Most women are useless unless they’re lesbians, in which case they’re awesome! The oracle has nipples that could cut glass!)

It’s a giant comic book… oh, wait, that’s intentional. Never mind, then. (more…)

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