All posts filed under: Film

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Pearl Jam Bring Citizen Dick To Record Store Day

If you remember the ’90s movie Singles, helmed by Cameron Crowe, you’ll recall the band Citizen Dick. Or rather, you’ll recall Pearl Jam stalwarts Eddie Vedder, Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament’s implausible backstory about the band and their one hit, “Touch Me I’m Dick.” Well if you’ve been craving this for around two decades, you’ll only have to wait a couple more weeks to get Citizen Dick in your hot little hands. What I meant to say was: Record Store Day on April 18 will at long last be bringing you the majority of Pearl Jam as Citizen Dick doing their sideways-leaning tribute (at least in name) to Mudhoney, “Touch Me I’m Dick.”  The opposite side of the single-sided 7-inch will have an engraving of quotes from the movie via Matt Dillon’s character. More info is available at the Record Store Day official site: http://www.recordstoreday.com/

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MOVIE REVIEW: “The Wrecking Crew” (documentary)

The Wrecking Crew is the brilliant new(ish) documentary from filmmaker Denny Tedesco; it’s a labor of love and small wonder – his late father Tommy was the brilliant guitarist who played in this incredible collective.  For those who really don’t know, “The Wrecking Crew” was the nickname coined by drummer Hal Blaine for the group of studio/session musicians who  played – often with no credit – on many recording sessions/releases during the ’60’s that came out of Los Angeles.  This “dream group” backed a countless number of popular singers – and became the studio version of many well-known bands – and are easily one, if not the single most successful groups of studio musicians in history.  What made The Wrecking Crew’s so special, as you quickly learn in the movie, is that they were musically versatile even though most came from a background of either jazz or classical training.  This group, which was referred to as “first call” players were used on literally every style of recording – not just pop records but television theme …

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MOVIE REVIEW: “St. Vincent” (2014)

To say that Bill Murray is getting better with age is an understatement; that he chooses interesting, meaty roles would probably be an accurate assumption.  Going back to his masterfully world-weary Herman Blume in Rushmore, he’s been consistent and worth the time spent watching, even if some of the films overall weren’t great.  With St. Vincent, he’s once again mastered the art of the curmudgeon with a soul. Murray stars as Vincent MacKenna, a Vietnam vet and retiree from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn; he’s irascible, unlikable, consistently drunk and broke due to gambling.  He has a wife in a nursing home with Alzheimer’s who he visits weekly.  He has regular encounters with a pregnant prostitute/dancer named Daka, played wonderfully by Naomi Watts.  Even though he’s a louse, people seem to like Vincent.  The always-brilliant Melissa McCarthy is his new neighbor, Maggie Bronstein, a newly-divorced single mom with an older-than-his-years son, Oliver – stunningly played by Jaeden Lieberher – they meet Vincent after their moving truck breaks a tree branch, which damages Vincent’s old LeBaron and destroys …

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Film Review: “Penguins of Madagascar”

Don’t blame the filmmakers of Penguins of Madagascar for the recent troubles at Dreamworks Animation. The movie may feel like the company just cashing in on the most popular characters of their Madagascar franchise (the animated TV show certainly did), but this movie is original and funny, two words I didn’t think I’d be writing about it. Moreover, I liked Penguins of Madagascar more than Big Hero 6, Disney’s Academy Award nominated blockbuster. The film opens in fine fashion with a prologue that explains how the four penguin heroes met at children. Skipper (Tom McGrath), Kowalski (Chris Miller) and Rico (Conrad Vernon), break away from their colony and rescue a lost egg from hungry leopard seals. All of this is done while Werner Herzong provides commentary and a human documentary crew films – quite funny. The egg hatches and turns out to be cuddly Private (Christopher Knights). After escaping a fiery boat explosion, the four young penguins drift off to sea on an iceberg, their future uncertain. Jump ahead ten years and the action picks …

George Lucas and Mickey in happier times.

EXCLUSIVE: George Lucas’ rejected plans for Star Wars VII revealed!

“The [story ideas] that I sold to Disney, they came up to the decision that they didn’t really want to do those,” George Lucas told CinemaBlend.com this week. And now, this leaked 2012 memo shows what George Lucas had in mind for the new “Star Wars” trilogy, probably. Nov. 8, 2012 To: Walt Disney Studios Chairman Alan Horn Fr: George Lucas Re: Story ideas for Star Wars Episode VII Dear Alan: Thanks for taking the time to review the plot outlines I’d been working on for Ep. VII. As you know, you’re under no obligation to use these, but as the creator of “Star Wars” I think I have a good sense of what longtime fans are looking for. (Although if you go in a different direction I’ll just have to drown my sorrows in my $4 billion — ha ha!) We’ll start with Han Solo, since he’ll obviously need to be central to the new trilogy. As Ep. VII kicks off, the former smuggler has ironically been named viceroy of the newly reestablished Trade Federation …

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DVD REVIEW: “Rye Coalition – The Story Of The Hard Luck 5”

It’s a sadly familiar story:  a hard-working band performs works their way to a major label deal only to have the rug pulled out from under them and…  nothing.  It’s been told so many time.  Rye Coalition, who hail from Jersey City, New Jersey were all friends from an early age when they decided to form a band.  These five teens starting playing anywhere and everywhere they could on the strength of a demo cassette (remember those?).  Never earning enough money to constitute a living wage, they nonetheless toured relentlessly, released several independent singles and albums (culminating with On Tap, produced by Steve Albini) and built a loyally rabid following.  At a point when spirits were starting to fray, they wind up getting an opening spot with Queens Of The Stone Age.  This leads to a contract with Dreamworks Records and Dave Grohl signs on to be their producer.  The culmination of everything this band has worked for comes to…  nothing.  In typical music business shenanigans, Dreamworks is bought out and dissolved by Universal and …

'Pixels' opens July 2015.

10 movies to look forward to that aren’t ‘Star Wars’

As I’m sure you’re aware if you’re a watcher of movies, if you were to put together a pie chart measuring anticipation for movies being released in 2015, about 60 percent of it would be taken up by “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” 25 by “Avengers: Age of Ultron” and 10 by “Jurassic World,” with a tiny little 5 percent sliver for everything else, both with colons in their titles and without. It’s not right. So to give those other flicks a fair shake, I’ve listed here my top 10 OTHER movies that haven’t come out yet, in as many disparate genres as possible, followed by my top 5 most likely stinkers of 2015, because pop culture writers can never be completely positive. It’s a law. POTENTIAL WINNERS: 1) “The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out Of Water” (February): If you thought they couldn’t improve upon the first SpongeBob movie, in which SpongeBob meets David Hasselhoff, think again: This one features live-action 3-D versions of SpongeBob and friends. And while it doesn’t have Hasselhoff, it does have Antonio Banderas, Seth Green …