Drinking Buddies (2013)
That’s the problem with heartbreak, to you it’s like an atomic bomb and to the rest of the world it’s just really cliche, because in the end we all have the same experience.
One of the things I try to do is imagine myself in the exact moment of the artist’s life before the paint even dries on the canvas, or when that last note is written, or the final sentence crafted. That does wonders for wonder.
nobody knows shit in this fuckin show
we need to talk about Rectify.
August is pretty much a wasteland at your local multiplex (aside from Guardians of the Galaxy, which was awesome), but luckily the Ritz theaters in Old City play quality movies year-round, so I’ve been taking advantage of the better (and cheaper) options this past month. Here are some mini reviews!
What If (Michael Dowse)
Unfortunately, “romantic comedy” has become synonymous with contrived, cliched stories starring boring leads that hit all the right notes en route to that moment at the end where these two assholes finally kiss as a Coldplay song rolls over the credits. Of course, What If is still guilty of checking off some of these familiar boxes, but thanks to the chemistry and charming banter between Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan, I really didn’t care. This movie was damn cute, and when done correctly (500 Days of Summer, Before Sunrise, Drinking Buddies), I’m a sucker for some on-screen 20-somethings flirting up a storm. Give me more of that, cinema. Sure, there’s some silly parts, but overall it’s a delight. Plus a supporting Adam Driver is always welcomed.
Frank (Lenny Abrahamson)
Frank gets substantial points right off the bat for its off-beat, high-concept plot involving an eccentric rock band fronted by a man who perpetually lives inside a large paper-mâché mask, and it was an even bigger sell for me that the man inside that fake head is Oscar-nominee Michael Fassbender. In what’s one of the bravest roles in recent memory, Fassbender (who, let’s face it, is a beautiful man) obstructs his marketable movie-star looks but nevertheless still shows why he’s one of the greatest on the planet. He’s so good in fact that, like the world surrounding the fake band Soronprfbs (sic), you begin to accept Frank as more than just the man in the mask and even begin to forget about it. Frank is an often hilarious parody of rising to fame and a surprisingly touching study of living with mental illness. It also has a couple of great original songs that would never in a million years be nominated for an Oscar — "I Love You All" and "Frank’s Most Likable Song Ever."
Calvary (John Michael McDonagh)
There’s some spoiler-y plot things that I don’t want to get into here, but at its core, Calvary delves deep into the psyche of an Irish priest, whose everyday interaction with the less-than-admirable townsfolk of his quiet County Sligo town begins to put his faith into question. That aspect of the movie works well, especially thanks to a powerful, mesmerizing performance from Brendan Gleeson. His ability to balance Father James’ demons from a flawed past with his current role as the de-facto mentor figure for this bunch of misfits is masterful. The third act didn’t really work for me (re: previously-mentioned spoilers), but Gleeson’s presence plus incredible cinematography of the Irish countryside makes Calvary a captivating watch.
Go support your local indie theater, people!
I’m going to kill you Father. I’m going to kill you because you’re innocent.
Calgary (McDonagh, 2014)
A Koala reflecting on his sins, his triumphs, and the inevitability of death.