R.I.P.D. Review

This is what Comic-Con has begat. This scenario: Some producer with a three picture deal with some studio rushes down to San Diego one summer in a panic, trolling the booths, looking for a “hot property” to license to get all these dressed up nerds into a movie theatre. Over there, in the Dark Horse booth, is one that is about a police department made up of dead cops who have to come back to earth to capture escaped dead people, or dead-o’s as they are called. “Awesome, I’ll take it!” says the producer. Armed with a stack of these newly found comic books, he slams them down on the desk Monday morning in the  L.A. production office. “This is the movie we’re making, and the good news is, it’s already storyboarded!!”

A Band Called Death Review

Holy sczihizit – I LOVE THIS DOC!

How did I miss this band, Death? A 1973 Detroit African American proto punk band that pre-dates the Ramones!!! I was in an awful punk bank in 1982 in Canada called Truncheon Scars. We were suburban kids who just screamed and thrashed away. The rest of the time we listened to obscure punk records of bands like Personality Crisis, Stretch Marks, and Youth War. Yet Death’s band name, seemed to hinder their ability to catch the 1977 British Sex Pistols/Clash wave, even though their sound was superior. They were offered a massive music contract in ’76 if they changed their name. One brother held out, and the rest hung with him, and that led them into obscurity. You would think that the story would end there. But it doesn’t. This is a story of  struggle, conviction, and redemption.

Hitchcock Review

Based on the book Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho, this 94 minute looong pedestrian look at Alfred Hitchcock’s life should have been called “Hitchcock really relied on his wife, Alma!” Anthony Hopkins does a passible Hitchcock impression and Helen Mirren probably does a good Mrs. Hitchcock, having never heard the real one speak, but instead of really getting details on how he made his most successful movie, Psycho, it is mostly comprised of his married life and the emotional insecurity he brought to relationship.

Skyfall Review

In short, this Bond is awesome. AMAZINGLY, it reboots the franchise, not by erasing what came before but by digging deeper into the past: James Bond’s past, M’s past, MI6’s past, our collective past when we fought a cold war with spies in tuxedoes, and a film making past when films told a story with actors and not with jump cuts full of digital effects. It is so fitting that Adele sings the theme song (The best since Shirley Bassey) since her retro-modern sound is exactly the tone that Skyfall and all future Bond films can take from here on in.