Rough Night

Scarlett Johansson;Kate McKinnon;Jillian Bell;Ilana Glazer;Zoe Kravitz

You guys I liked it. I know it’s terrible and Girls Trip is way better and racism and Hollywood and they killed a fake stripper and all of that, but I still liked it!!

I think this movie was a classic dark comedy (***not a black comedy, that’s Girls Trip***) just maybe people aren’t used to seeing that now? Or there’s a different lens for judgement now that identity politics has taken the forefront as a means of analysis and people consider the implications of plot relying on throwing away certain identities as a joke? Which is all good, but this movie felt pretty self-aware to me. I know a large criticism was that they killed a stripper and how that is a classic devaluing (here’s a good article about this) but the guy they killed wasn’t even a stripper, he was a secret robber coming to hurt them also some of the characters have a conversation about these issues (ok it’s one line but it’s there). I don’t know how much it complicates or ameliorates anything (the detail that he’s not a stripper) and certainly there’s very valid emotions and reactions to objecting to that as even a hint of a plot device/being in the movie at all. But, simply, for me it was ok (just me!!) and I’d recommend watching it before you decide what you think about it. As it often is, comedy is a slippery fish and there’s so much subjectivity within context that affects overall judgements about a joke. ANYWAY–I’m gonna stop being defensive now. I liked it. If you think that makes me a bad person, that’s ok, I still liked it. 

I watched this in two sittings, initially I watched like the first 15-20 minutes and thought it was SHOCKINGLY bad. Like laughably, inexplicably bad. Then when I watched the rest of it, something changed!!! I think after they kill the guy (spoiler alert they kill a guy) the movie really finds itself!!

The main premise is that one of a group of friends (Jess, played by Scarlett Johansson) is getting married so all her friends from college (Jillian Bell as Alice, Zoe Kravitz as Blair, Ilana Glazer as Frankie) and her best friend from studying abroad in Australia (Kate McKinnon as Pippa) organize a bachelorette party in Miami, which includes hiring a stripper. One thing leads to another and wouldn’t you know, they accidentally kill him. They spend the rest of the movie trying to hide/dispose of the body and many hijinks occur.

Some of these hijinks include: the real stripper coming later and getting accidentally knocked out, the other two diamond thieves coming to find the loot their partner stole from them, all of them trying to fit in a jet ski/smart car, Blair having sex on the beach with a horny neighbor couple (played excellently by Demi Moore and Ty Burrell) to steal the security video footage, Jess’ fiancé’s cross country drive to win her back after he misunderstands a phone call, etc. etc. For not leaving their rental beach house for 2/3rds of the movie, a lot is happening.

That scene that happens in all movies where a group has to deal with a lot of stress happened, which is that it takes literal death to get people to open up about their feelings. There’s always a scene in movies like this where the pressure just gets to be TOO much and people start spilling secrets and they saying how they really feel (remember when they thought the plane was crashing in Almost Famous?) which was enjoyable. Maybe it’s because I’m a woman myself, but I love a group of women just laying out all their shit and being honest with each other. In an emotionally tense scene (relatively) we learn that Jess has been lying to Alice about knowing how to use Skype, and had a bridal shower she didn’t invite her to because she feels like Alice monopolizes her time. Alice is very hurt and almost leaves, but then two men with guns come and don’t let her.

They end up resolving it (Jess finds a very sweet card from Alice about how her mom’s Alzheimers will always keep them together) and then they are back, better than ever!

Kate McKinnon comes in after about 15 minutes and makes all the difference. She is so naturally funny. She brings the whole thing together and I think saves everyone. Her character is Australian (an accent she’s really good at) and she is very connected to the Earth and maybe gets rabies at one part, it’s kind of unclear. Kate also has a really beautiful singing voice! Something I didn’t know at all! She writes and sings a song after/during the credits that’s very funny and pretty and I didn’t know she could sing.

Zoe Kravitz is the thinnest most beautiful person in the world and she doesn’t seem real to me. In this movie her character is going through a custody battle and has a lot of orgasms on the beach. She also has an uncle who advises them on the legality of murder. (Not very!)

Ilana Glazer kind of plays the same character she always is, herself. If you love it, you love it, if you find it kind of abrasive and derivative, then it’s that still! I’m somewhere in the middle of those on her- I don’t HATE her, I do think some of it is funny, but she always seems like she JUST did coke and that can be too much for me. Coincidentally in this movie she does a lot of coke. (Also I saw her do stand up and her stand up is truly horrible and that affects my judgement of her probably more than it should, but I can’t change who I am!!!).

Jillian Bell is so underused in the world in general, I think she is hilarious and I’m so happy for her every time I see her in Workaholics or this. She has really perfect timing and her control over her facial expressions is great. She somehow manages to combine masturbating and her bird, which I’m all for. Her character ends up finding the 2 million dollars worth of diamonds the police never found in a box of dick pasta which felt poetic somehow.

Scarlet Johansson hasn’t done a comedic character for a long time (not since The Nanny Diaries right?) and at times this seems a bit of a stretch for her. She does alright but I think out of everyone she has the most misses/jokes that fall flat. Really I will never forgive her for so many roles (Matchpoint?? In Good Company???) and that kind of clouds her for me. She has a short haircut in this, I think to make her look serious because she’s running for political office? Whatever the reason I liked it.

Jess’ fiancé, (Peter played by Paul W. Downs) gets better as the movie goes on. First he seems like a wet blanket and boring, but soon we go to his Bachelor party and you see that he is a wet blanket but that’s kind of his thing. He does a wine tasting with all his friends- who are made up of shockingly obscure and famous comedians (Bo Burnham, Hasan Minhaj, Eric André) who quickly counsel him to drive to Miami and convince Jess to take him back. He gets a lot of Red Bull, some Russian adderall and diapers for the journey (inspired by a woman astronaut who drove many hours straight without stopping to go to the bathroom for love apparently) in a song montaged shopping trip that is quite funny. He also connects two star-crossed lovers at a truck stop who share a love of meth and blowjobs. Peter ends up saving the day then immediately passing out. He and Jess get married the next day with everyone there in the middle of a foam party.

The funniest detail of the whole movie to me was during the final wedding scene, where Scarlett gets a call from her campaign assistant. He relays that word has spread of how she and her friends stopped a group of diamond thieves (the guy they killed was on the run from the cops and they were absolved of any wrong-doing) and that Jess was going to win the election/needed to start doing a press tour immediately. She responds by telling him she’s in the middle of her wedding and will be there first thing Monday morning, then takes the phone away from her ear to take pictures. But right after she says she’s at her wedding, her assistant says into the phone, “You’re getting married? Jess I’m in love with you.” This was hilarious to me and I couldn’t tell you why. Maybe because it’s hinting at this completely other storyline we never get that’s centered around him, or imagining this main character we’ve spent so much time with as merely a piece in someone else’s story? Maybe because it’s such an intense emotional admission and they never explain it or do anything with it?? She never even hears it!! Whatever it was, it tickled me.

The biggest problem with this movie is that it seemed Hollywood made a white and black version of the same movie (literally saw an article titled exactly that) and there were big picture ASTOUNDING similarities between the two that caused them to be compared: ensemble female comedic cast, same month release, a group of college friends travel to a new city to get back together because one of them has an important life event, the first scene of the movie is a college flashback with them doing a choreographed dance, like astounding.

But aside from those structural things, the content/movies themselves are actually pretty different. Girls Trip is more character driven and focused. We learn more backstory, motivation, we feel for the characters more and see them all as complete and complex people. It’s also just funny. Knee-slapping funny. In Rough Night we don’t know that much about anyone, it’s mostly about how the group dynamic is reacting to the situation they find themselves in, and the vibe is totally different: tenuous and awkward and it’s not trying to be funny the whole time. It’s not just a straight comedy. Truthfully, it never stood a chance the second it was compared to Girls Trip because it’s just not as good but despite everything, they’re not that similar of movies.

So basically, I liked it- I think if you’re willing to go suspension of disbelief/cognitively know that sex workers lives aren’t disposable, you’re not a bad person for liking this movie. (But also sit with how bad white women are for a lil bit! Can’t hurt).

Equality to me is that women get to make shitty insensitive comedies that history (and also blogs right now!) will look unkindly on/judge them for and Rough Night is that comedy!! For women!!!

3.5/5 beach tampons, would masturbate again

 

 

 

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Raw

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This movie blew me away. It was like a sexy coming of age movie for cannibals!

The main character, a thin French girl, (aren’t they always??) is headed to veterinary school for the first time, a family tradition apparently. Her sister is there (we meet her at a blood rave later) and both her parents went there.

The first night of veterinary school is a lot of hazing (who knew!), where older students throw your mattress out a window and make you take ecstasy and dance in a basement with blood covered stuffed animals hanging from the ceiling. Justine (the main character) finds her sister in jean shorts dancing on a ledge with her dog (in vet school, the dogs can come to the parties!) and they hug and go over some emotions. Her sister takes her to a secret picture wall in the basement where they find some framed shots of their parents covered in blood and smiling. Normal!!!!

The next day all the first years are going through more hazing (to save a horse’s life, you MUST master greek life) where they dump blood on everyone (fun, normal) and everyone must eat a rabbit’s kidney. Justine is adamantly opposed because she was raised vegetarian. Her sister comes over and forces her to eat the rabbit’s kidney, which later causes an itchy rash (a VERY intense rash. A makeup artist could get a scholarship to college on this rash) to spread over her entire body. She goes to the school nurse, who tells her a story about a girl who was fat that she treated like a person, and then gave her a cream to put on her rash and tells her to fast for a day.

Justine puts the cream on and tries not to eat but also keeps being drawn to the smell of meat. She ends up stealing a loose hamburger patty in the pocket of her white coat during lunch, then throws it away when the lunch lady sees it dripping grease from the her pocket. She also eats a raw chicken breast in the middle of the night and lies to her  gay roommate named Alex about it, who she maybe has sexual tension with, or maybe wants to eat, it’s very unclear.

A scene that’s a big turning point in the film is when Justine goes over to borrow slutty clothes from her sister (more hazing). In her sister’s bathroom she finds the same cream the nurse gave her for her rash but doesn’t say anything about it. Later, after Alexia (big sis) tries to teach her to pee standing up on a rooftop (“Jut your hips out and push really hard”) Justine asks if she can sleep over. They do fun sleepover things like play video games, share secrets, and examine body hair. Alexia makes fun of Justine’s armpit hair, then checks out her pussy because they’re family (whenever they go to Olive Garden it’s INSANE), and decides to give her a Brazilian on the bed. So they’re doing the vagina waxing, (the camera angles for this are great by the way, just a down-the-barrel-of-the-gun kind of thing), and Alexia’s pulling the strips off and they hurt, but then one gets STUCK, so Alexia goes to get scissors to cut it off at the base.

Justine is understandably very nervous and doesn’t like the scissors plan and pushes her away really hard saying, “It’s my pussy!” because I don’t think she thought her sister understood it was her real life vagina, or knew it was but didn’t care/wouldn’t be gentle. Either way she pushes her away while Alexia’s holding the scissors at an odd angle and she falls, and ends up cutting her finger off (whoops!) then passing out from shock and blood loss. Justine calls an ambulance and while she’s waiting for them she starts to smell the blood and EATS THE FINGER LIKE A CHICKEN BONE. Alexia comes to and is pissed (Omg you guys you know when your sister eats your finger??? So annoying!!) but mysterious kind of and when their parents take them to the ER Alexia tells everyone the dog ate it and they put the dog down which is totally unfair and sad.

Right after getting out of the hospital (like stands up from a wheelchair in the parking lot), Alexia takes her sister to this abandoned road (btw a car accident on this road is the first scene in the movie) and throws herself into oncoming traffic. The guys in the car try to swerve and not hit her but run into a tree and both die. Then Alexia starts EATING them and she’s like, “I did this for you” to Justine, clearly to usher her into the sisterhood that is consuming human flesh, but Justine isn’t emotionally there yet so she walks home on the side of the highway. For some reason she takes her shirt off and walks home in her bra.

More stuff happens with Justine (she fucks her gay roommate, her sister brings her into a morgue and films her trying to eat the limbs, she makes out with a guy while they’re both covered in paint and tries to eat his tongue, etc, etc.) and she sort of makes this transition where it seems like she’s reached a happy balance of stuff and by that I don’t really mean that at all but she has a dance scene in front of a mirror where it seems like she’s accepting her sexuality/personhood/identity/flesh-eating. But then she gets into a public fight with her sister on the quad or wherever and Alexia bites a piece of Justine’s cheek off. Happy Thanksgiving!

The next day Justine wakes up in a bed next to Alex (her gay/bi/whatever he wants roommate) and she’s kind of stroking his face and goes for the dick and her hand comes back covered in blood!!!! She lifts up the blanket to find his whole right thigh and leg EATEN, and her sister on the other side of the room covered in blood playing video games (so chill). She seems to think about killing her sister with a ski pole, but then takes her into the shower instead and cleans her off by rubbing down her entire body with her hands.

This movie has a lot of sexual things: women/girls in their underwear doing stuff, boobs, sex, rash-scratching, etc. But the camera never lingers and The Gaze doesn’t seem to be there, it’s feels like life when stuff is just happening when you happen to not be wearing that much clothes. I really really liked the camera work and art direction in this movie, it is gorgeous and shockingly new and it feels insightful in this intimate visual way. 

The whole thing is in French by the way-I think I forgot to say that. You know how in Goodfellas they say fuck a record number of times and in The Sopranos they’re eating like every third scene? Well, this movie set those records but with blood. In almost every scene, someone’s covered with blood, bleeding, eating something dripping blood, getting a nosebleed, or some dead animal is being splayed on some surface. That’s another thing- because the entire thing takes place in veterinary school, there’s a lot of scenes of weird animal violence (not the right word but I can’t think of what is). Like there’s a scene where they tranquilize a horse and immobilize it and string it upside down and put a bit in it’s mouth and manipulate its tongue in this really visceral way, there’s a dog dissection scene, dead baby cows suspended in clear jars, the aforementioned raw rabbits kidneys, etc. Heavy on the animal gore I’d say.

I genuinely loved this movie, it made me CRINGE and gasp and be uncomfortable quite often, the way it’s done is incredibly vivid and real and I haven’t seen a lot like it and I loved it and I’m happy I saw it.

Five out of five raw chicken breast midnight snacks, would masturbate again.

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The DUFF

The_Duff_poster

As a general rule for myself & this blog I try not to do really obscure movies because I feel like people only like to read/click on things they have seen/heard of, but maybe this one is just for me.

This is a movie I got on a whim from the library because I was interested to see if Bella Thorne could act (she can kind of?) and I love Mae Whitman (she can definitely!). I almost returned without watching but renewed instead (there’s some metaphor about life in that somewhere!!!) and just watched right now.

I loved this movie. And not in an ironic, ‘it’s so bad it’s good’ way, in a very genuine real way. The script is the best thing about it, it’s based on a book, and either the screen adapter person is incredible or the author did it and the book is really good too. I don’t even want to read the book though because I feel like I got it and I really liked the vehicle it was in and I liked the vehicle more than the ideas maybe?

Like ok, yes, there were some profound things in it but I didn’t feel I was connecting on a deep reverent “Art” level but something about this felt deeply personal to me and I loved it a lot and I DID cry and that’s fine but what’s weird is I feel bad now? Normally after watching a movie I really like I get a feeling of satisfaction but I kind of just feel empty and sad and I think it’s cause it was too real????? I’m also just in a place and very vulnerable to emotions right now.

This movie centers around the concept of one word/acronym, that also was a huge devastating blow to me when I found out about it- there are some words that truly are a terrible discovery because it means there’s this concept people are naming and calling out and aware of for this terrible feeling you thought was a secret that no one knew, and it makes you feel like ‘society’ is just a place that has categorizations and judgements for things that correlate with value and this is an example of where you fall short/fail. FUPA is an example of this. DUFF, the title of the movie, is also one. (Why are they always acronyms?)

DUFF stands for ‘Designated Ugly Fat Friend’ and it is used to describe a person (usually girl but the movie is very deliberate to point out it is gender neutral/can be used on anyone) who is less attractive than their group of friends who people trying to fuck the hot friends use to get to them. That’s probably too many ambiguous pronouns for one sentence (what is this German???) but you get it.

Learning what this word was in high school (and early college!) DEVASTATED me because I was like, “is that all I am to people??” and this movie is ENTIRELY that journey. Except, during this journey, the main character is actually very pretty and is best friends with the hottest guy in school and he’s helping her and they fall in love and they end up together. Oooh I think I just figured out why I feel terrible!

The whole point of this movie is to dispel that concept and say, “Labels are meaningless! Just be yourself!” which I agree with, but it kind of makes it hard to believe that when the narrative of the story uses things that align with societal values to validate an idea saying societal values are meaningless? Does that makes sense?

Like, ok. I shaved my head a few months ago. I did it to be ugly honestly. Because I wanted to get rid of the security blanket that hair is for me and just face my insecurities of being seen as ugly or unfeminine or undesirable, and I didn’t want to worry about what I looked like all the time and I thought if I just took it out of my own hands and looked ‘bad’ (by my own estimation) there would HAVE to come a time during the long growing out process when I just truly couldn’t worry/care anymore and I would be set free.

Then when I shaved my head people LOVED it and told me I was beautiful (which was tight as hell) BUT in my mind I kind of thought then that I would never experience the other, (then God was like NUH UH BITCH) because I moved and now it’s growing out and doing a weird goth Florence Henderson thing and I am having to meet all these people when I feel ugly and like a French boy going through puberty and it’s testing me!!!

During this time, I certainly don’t have the hottest guy in school (what is the New York comedy scene equivalent of that??? Conan O’Brien??) validating me, and that’s difficult. I’ve almost never had a guy (let alone the hottest one!!!) validating me and I forgot that that can be great too though. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that experience in a movie where someone’s just validating themselves for the whole thing? (It doesn’t count if it’s a weird false empowerment thing for one scene, OR only in the beginning of the movie as a means of attracting the guy she ends up being with).

Part of me doesn’t want to post this because I aM meeting all these new people and this goes directly against the whole ‘sexy fun carefree!!!’ vibe I think I’m supposed to be committing to but I feel like my hair is already letting people in on that lil secret 🙂

The other part of me that doesn’t want to post this (it’s almost all the parts!) is because it reads more like a diary entry during a TED talk on body dysmorphia rather than a movie review but, it’s my blog bitch!!!! ( I really like saying bitch now!! It kind of came out of nowhere).

ALSO I’m realizing a huge OTHER part of this is when you’re body positive and plus size people want you to be Yas Qween all the time because they haven’t confronted the fucked up body stuff that they believe so when you feel insecure or have doubts they don’t know how to deal/comfort you at ALL because they believe all the fucked up bad things you’re feeling, but I’m not Yas Qween all the time!! I feel bad too and fat women are supposed to be CONFIDENT and sometimes sassy and it feels like you’re not allowed to have nuance of emotion publicly because it makes other people uncomfortable because then they have to acknowledge your body and they don’t know how to do that. ALSO sometimes people start to see you through your own insecurities and then you’re like, ‘damn I should be able to express this to you without it changing your opinion of me because I’m a whole person and I’m allowed to have flaws!!’ Whew!

I guess most of all I’m shocked that a movie with Bella Thorne in it made me FEEL things? But it did. I moved three months ago and am going through a breakup (yes STILL-until I get married and/or fingered in a car I will be going through it ok???) and I’m trying to hang curtains and a shelf by myself, and life is a highway and I’m gonna ride it all night long!!

Speaking of riding stuff, this movie DOES have a very classic teen plot arc we have all come to know and love. There is a HOPELESS (read: still very hot) nerd character who is just TOO smart to be appreciated by the immature idiots in high school. They (she in this case) finds a hot idiot who’s actually NOT an idiot after all—but full of insight and hidden wisdom—to teach them in something that starts off flippant (as a bet or a game or a challenge!) that turns into something REAL and emotionally intricate for both of them. There is a dance at the end where people’s true selves are revealed, usually by finding a dress that they added plaid to because they just can’t bear to conform any longer.

This movie literally has all those things in it and they’re great and satisfying. It’s like watching someone tie a bow made entirely out of cliched tropes, on a present that is your memory. The guy is very hot in a way I wasn’t ready for (because I’m so alt!!!) and that’s always good, to remind yourself that you’re still attracted to very hot people.

I’ll say again, my fave part was definitely the script, it was really well done, light and the dialogue felt natural and genuinely funny, something that is rarer than any gemstone. I will take a natural-sounding genuinely funny script over a diamond any day pal, and don’t you think I won’t.

Great cameo roles from Ken Jeong and Allison Janney and some other people I recognized but don’t want to look up.

This is the most personal one of these I’ve ever written, and I really hope I don’t have any of those Joe Rogan reddit guys who were mad at me a while back following still because I don’t want to open up for them but maybe this is exactly what they need to hear to realize that women-nah it’s not and nothing ever will be! Joe Rogan is a plague on this Earth that only female-centered novels and diva cups can even hope to cure. (To me!!! My opinion!!!! I’m glad he taught you it was ok to be weird!)

Well, I think we’ve all learned something, you have learned some of my deepest and most lingering insecurities, and I have learned that sometimes I need a D list comedy from 2015 to access my feelings!! Win win because I watch those all the time!!

4.9/5 plaid prom dresses that your friend in high school who just so HAPPENS to be into fashion design and able to sew on a professional level made for you in like one hour with no notice before The Dance, would masturbate again

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Bachelorette

 

bachelorette-posterThis is me telling you to watch Bachelorette on Netflix. It’s so good. I love it. It’s BEEN so good, I don’t know why it isn’t everywhere and why people aren’t yelling about it to everyone.

This is one of those female-driven RAUNCHY comedies you’ve heard so much about! Starring all your wet dreams, Isla Fisher, Lizzy Caplan, and Kirsten Dunst as bridesmaids!! (It’s not that raunchy comedy though, this is a different one). Their friend from high school Becky (Rebel Wilson) is getting married! Except whoops, the night before the wedding they get high on coke and ruin her dress. They were trying to fit two people in it, in a cruel joke which could backfire on anyone. This launches them on a debaucherous nighttime journey to fix it, BUT ALSO THEMSELVES!!!!

Everyone has their own problems in addition to the shared main one, (I love how well the characters are written, they are casual and complex at the same time, just like REAL people!!). Lizzy Caplan, Gena, plays a girl who’s not over her ex-boyfriend from high school because he didn’t drive her to their abortion so she hates him but they were perfect together and she really still loves him but is too PROUD and GUARDED to admit it. (Also: Party Down fans- it felt like a fun little inside nod-her ex-boyfriend is Adam Scott!!! Isn’t that so perfect and wonderful??? Don’t we all miss that show?? Why didn’t it last forever?) Kirsten Dunst, Regan, plays a tough bitch who has her shit together and is a great friend but is also deeply unhappy and doesn’t know why. I LOVED Kirsten Dunst in this movie, mostly because this is the first time I’ve seen her play old and mean (of course she’s not that old, but she’s not a teen or ingenue or wide-eyed love interest/muse type) and she KILLS it. She was BORN to be old and mean!! Then my fave, Isla Fisher, Katie, the most interesting one to me, who is a fun ditz that loves to party but is also suicidal. And she plays it with this incredible control and subtlety that’s just, wow.

They go so many places for this dress, they go to the Bridal shop in the middle of the night to get a whole new dress but the only one they have in Becky’s size is Regan’s dream dress and she JUST CAN’T (white girl battle cry!!) so she makes them leave. She’s about to lick the sidewalk to prove how much the dress means to her, then somehow they get re-routed to a strip club where the Bachelor party is.

James Marsden plays Trevor, a lovable misogynist who refers to women as ‘things’ and encourages basically rape (2012!) and is the essential antithesis of his character Chris in 30 Rock. It’s fun to watch him be so believable in both. He and Regan have an interesting conversation where he “challenges” her and they have sex in a bathroom (basically acting out the idea that all powerful women just need to get fucked, but sometimes they do) which seems satisfying for everyone. I like that they don’t end up together.

This guy Joe from high school has been following Katie around all night and forever, he used to sell her weed and let her copy his homework and she doesn’t know his name but they are havin’ fun! Until the night takes a turn and Katie tries to kill herself. He is the one who finds her passed out after a Xanax OD attempt and he really cares about her/helps save her life. I like that they don’t end up together.

Gena somehow gets her ex-boyfriend (Clyde/Adam) out of a pickle at the strip club with a baby powder bottle full of coke and then they go to his MOM’s house, who is good at sewing. She ends up saving the day while her son and Gena have sex/eat pancakes. One of my favorite lines comes at this part, when Clyde gives Gena her pancake and says, “It’s got a frowny face on it cause the whole world’s an asshole” in a teasing tone making fun of her general demeanor and outlook.

Basically moms rule, and she finishes the dress. They get everything to the church/outdoor tent in time and get Becky down the aisle. But not before Becky calls Regan a blonde cunt, which felt like it needed to happen. They also don’t go down the aisle because collectively the three of them are covered in vomit, coming off a suicide attempt, and probably still a little coked up. I liked that all the main characters in this movie were cool failures.

The vibe the whole time was that these three girls used to make fun of Becky in high school and now it’s weird she’s more together than them, but we find out that Becky hid/took the blame for Regan’s bulimia the whole time, so really she’s been great this whole time, she’s just fat which often people conflate with “not doing well.” She even at one point, before marrying the man of her dreams who loves her, says, “Everyone thinks I’m too fat for him” which shows, even when YOU and YOUR PARTNER are happy, weight shit still affects identity and self-worth stuff if you let it. Fuck that! !

Sidenote: There was an article I read a while back that highlighted an excerpt from this man’s book who data-mined all these companies who log their search algorithms and an entire section was about porn and the most interesting part to me was that the MOST searched thing in the US was larger women. WHICH MEANS, that so many people are attracted to that body type but since we are all shamed into thinking it’s bad they don’t act on it because they’re afraid of what people will think, and then those women think no one wants them, and basically everyone could be happy if they accepted who they are and didn’t listen to companies trying to sell them jeans. Ok????

I liked the way relationships are communicated and handled in this movie, it feels pretty real and well-written. Like the funny friend in the movie is the same amount of funny your friends are in real life, not overdone or cheesy or staged. And even though they were doing coke out of a baby powder bottle or licking sidewalks or throwing up in bathtubs, I really would want to hang out with these characters! They were a mess and I can be a mess sometimes and it was fun to watch and I liked that no one had a real job I had to try to relate to.

In the end everything works out and everyone watches the wedding from a bench then drinks some more, and that’s how I want my wedding to be. If I could just sit in a corner and watch my wedding with my friends while we were drinking that would potentially be the best case scenario. And like stuff with my husband too, but not the WHOLE time.

This movie is also 1 hour and 20 min which is a GREAT LENGTH for a movie. You get engrossed and you’re watching something for longer than a show but none of your kids graduated college while you were in it, ya know? I just want all my kids to be happy is my main thing.

This movie is written and directed by Leslye Headland and it’s also based on the play she wrote. So, she seems great.

7/8 blood stains on ribbed satin, would masturbate again.

 

 

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The Standups

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People have been referencing this season (? What is it? Collection? Series?) on Netflix for what feels like a year and I saw a clip of it on fb and decided to watch it once and for all.

Nate Bargatze:

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Firstmost, Nate Bargatze, to me, is one of the most effortlessly funny people I have ever seen. I think he’s so funny, his delivery is so perfect and dry and I love that his material is usually something I wouldn’t even begin to know how to write a joke about. Just hammocks or something else completely mundane. It’s fascinating and cool because it’s so different from me/what I think like/write like. So that’s great.

In this special there were a lot of really good moments but for something that was 30 minutes I was expecting a lot more punches I guess. It didn’t seem like his jokes were landing as well as they normally do. I’ve seen him do this same material and murder and this response seemed pretty tepid, and he also didn’t seem that comfortable/into it. I also wasn’t laughing as much as I know I have. So that was generally just weird. It’s like rewatching a movie you know you love and suddenly not connecting with it. I wasn’t even really going to write a review because who needs my opinion on this?/I don’t really have that much of an opinion. I think he’s incredibly funny, but I don’t think this was a home run (that’s something he has great material on too!), and that’s really all the opinions I have on this special.

BUT then I HAD to write one because halfway through I noticed I THINK THERE WERE TWO AUDIENCES????? I think they filmed this twice and cut it together!!! Is that possible-who can confirm or deny this for me? I say this because I love looking in the audience during stand up specials and for the beginning I was like, JEsuS all the women in the front row are really beautiful, then they kept cutting back to the same angle (and I would CHECK-front row, no chairs in front of them-to make sure it wasn’t a different angle of a new row somehow) and it was different people! Then I was watching vigilantly and I identified two sets of people for the front row on each side and I am convinced they did a 7:00pm and a 9:00pm then cut them together depending on which jokes did better at which show.

I also have sadly conflicting feelings about Nate Bargatze because I have heard he’s Republican which makes me sad and I hope isn’t true and not that people can’t be Republican, but to be Republican during Trump is honestly deranged and indicative of a failing of some kind to me, (I’m sorry my entire extended family) and it just makes me sad. Sad! But comedy isn’t about agreeing with someone and like I said I think he’s one of the funniest people I’ve ever seen, it just hurts my heart.

Also, I googled the Trip Advisor review from the Wilmington serpentarium like he says and I found it,

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so that’s fun. That was one joke that I remember going sooo much better- I opened for him in New Orleans and I heard him do this bit and the hammock stuff and I was dying but here I just chuckled a few times. And maybe the other factors had some effect, hearing it for the first time vs. second, show environment vs. at home on Netflix, these totally come into play but it was a huge difference and I don’t think it was JUST that.

3/5 hammits, wouldn’t masturbate again to this specifically but would to him always.

Fortune Feimster:

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Now I think I’m just gonna do all of them. First of all, my audience theory is shaken by this one because it’s the same people so I don’t think they would make one audience sit through the same people two times each, that seems terrible. (Also why didn’t they rotate the audience? Usually when it’s the same night they move people around to make it look different, I’m curious as to why they didn’t here).

Anyway. I had never seen her stand up!! She’s so funny! My favorite joke (there were two) was when she was talking about the hardest time it was to be gay, which was when gay people started boycotting Chick-fil-A and she was like, “Cause I’m fat first, and a lesbian second” which had me ROLLING, that’s so fucking funny. There’s also another line where she was talking about Jesus judging people for being gay and she just had a surprised reaction where she was like, “Jesus!!!” that tickled me a lot.

I thought most of her set was pretty strong, but then at the end the whole last two minutes was callbacks and the last joke of the night had a punchline that was like just a series of callbacks to other jokes from the set, like 3 or 4 of them and that was too much for me. One can be good if it’s surprising but if I can see them coming they seem really formulaic and it seems like a cheap laugh somehow. But I really loved her stage presence she’s so engaging and likable, I really enjoyed her.

4/5 handy j’s (a great name for a handjob), would masturbate again.

Deon Cole:

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Weird. Interesting? Mostly not for me. It was a lot of “bitches are like this” and generally relying on things as being facts/understood that I don’t believe in, like that you hate your spouse because all relationships are like that, or gender is this, or women are this, etc. Some things I thought were funny, at one point he was like, “I hate when white people know more about black history than me” which I thought was really funny and wanted to hear more about but that was the whole thing. He did a lot of one-liners that were structured, “You know when you _____?” that seemed more like premises that were funny in themselves but unfinished.

He also brought a paper out with him that was his set list-at first he did a bit with it where he was pretending it was to keep track of what jokes worked or not but then it became clear he was reading off it, and even referenced, “you know when you write something but you can’t read your own handwriting?” then at the end of the set he was like, “I can’t find my last joke. Usually a comedian leaves on a big laugh, but I can’t find that joke. So I’m just going to leave.” Which shocked me and seemed incredibly unpolished? Unprofessional? I don’t know the word. It shocked me though. I was like, “You know this is being taped right?” in my head but he couldn’t hear me.

He did some funny stuff about his son cursing, and there were a few lines I laughed/smiled at but I also rolled my eyes a lot, which is never a great sign. The audience liked him though, he mostly did a good job I’d say. Just wasn’t for me.

1.5/5 b.a.n-words, would not masturbate again.

Nikki Glaser:

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Lol maybe I’m getting burned out? Nah, I think it’s just that i watch stand up so much I just don’t like a lot of it. But yeah, this one wasn’t really for me either. I know she’s really good friends with Amy Schumer and I felt that same vibe that was in Amy’s last special, you know the really terrible one, where it’s like, “I’m talking about a dog fucking my vagina!! Isn’t that crazy because I’m pretty and a woman?” And look, don’t get me wrong, I talk about fucking dogs all the time, but there’s an art to it. She honestly talked about her dog going down on her for 6-7 minutes. The whole special is like 28 minutes so that’s like a fourth of it-that’s what it felt like anyway.

This one felt really long to me, probably because I mostly wasn’t enjoying it, but I remember checking the time and being like, “It’s probably almost over” and she was only 10 minutes in. She has this delivery style that’s become really popular that I kind of can’t stand- it’s stating something false then letting it trail off? And then doing that like 4 more times about the same thing where it seems like you’re correcting but then you just say something else untrue and that’s the joke? A lot of people do it and I hate it. I don’t know how to describe it better than that but ugh. I’m sure I could remember or create an example but I really don’t like it so much I don’t want to. So just use your mind or go back and see.

Something also happening for me that I was struggling with during this one was trying not to hate her/write her off because she’s thin? I’m trying to distill out what’s internalized misogyny/feeling threatened by and competitive with women, or comparing myself to them and being mad that I don’t fit a standardized beauty norm that they do that gives them privileges that I don’t have, but also some of it is that I think being skinny is boring now? And I’m more interested in different body types (only in women though, so that’s something I should examine too) but I really loved watching Fortune Feimster and seeing her body on stage and watching people love her because you never see fat bodies presented like that/receiving love/acceptance and Nikki Glaser is just this thin hot blonde woman talking about her Match.com profile and how dating is hard for her because she doesn’t run and farts sometimes and there’s just nothing interesting to me there.

It also bothers me when women have these ideas of femininity that they perform and say on stage like it has to be performed because it reinforces that idea which I think is stupid- like she was saying that she held her farts in for four years because she didn’t want to fart in front of her boyfriend that she lived with (and yes of course she’s allowed to feel and do anything she wants, I just think it’s stupid and boring) and I’m watching, annoyed like, “women can fart!!!” but I don’t have a boyfriend either so maybe she’s right, I don’t know and I don’t care. I would rather be alone than have to be around someone all the time I couldn’t be myself with and that’s why I don’t really care about dating and if someone likes me they do but I’m not going to change myself to fit some idea of what some imperfect stranger wants me to be.

Anyway, this wasn’t really for me. (Am I a hater?) 2/5 dog vaginas, would not masturbate again.

Beth Stelling:

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Ok I loved this one!!!!! Fave so far. Really great. She’s such an incredible writer, this one was SO packed with jokes, it felt like there was a joke every 3 seconds. Even things I didn’t think were funny (one joke about froyo) were funny because her delivery is so interesting.

The only thing that bothered me was that her face foundation didn’t match her skin tone??? It was distracting and looked terrible and made me feel bad for her but she did so well it didn’t matter. This was the best one so far I think, she seemed so comfortable and the audience was WITH her, from the beginning and throughout and no one else has had that yet. They’ve gotten consistent laughs but it seems like they have to work for them and don’t get them every time/no one’s hit a rhythm yet.

This one it felt like she was in the zone and it passed so quickly, this is the only one that I wished was longer and was sad when it was over.

4.5/5 red sneakers (I LOVED her outfit), would definitely masturbate again.

Dan Soder:

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Eh. WASN’T FOR ME. That seems to be the vibe of so many of these. I don’t not like them, I don’t think they’re bad, I just don’t find them funny.

This guy, he laughs at SO many of his jokes. After them, in the middle of them, and it was distracting and whatever the opposite of endearing is. He also talked about his breakup and that his ex-gf was a bad person and when people didn’t laugh at that (why would they? it’s not a joke yet, you have to say the joke part) he was like, “Oh are all of you her friends? Good” and that was annoying because comics do that a lot- first of all you have to tell a joke to get a laugh and second of all, we didn’t date them and you haven’t established trust yet (even though this was like 20 min in) so you have to tell/show/whatever to get us on your side because we’re not there yet.

Idk, he talked a lot about things that I don’t care about/aren’t interesting to me. Like how the voice you use with your grandma affects your masculinity and how he thinks reality TV is stupid and video games are cool, and how setting wolves loose would help ‘society’ cause we’re just ‘all on our phones man,’ and how ponytails on men make them bad and how catcalling women is actually just about those men having so much confidence and he can’t believe someone has that much dick confidence and he’s not like that at all.

I think that was part of what turned me off to him was that he has this self-deprecating thing he kept coming back to, saying he didn’t have the confidence of all these other kinds of men, that he wears t-shirts to the pool, never works out, etc. Always making himself seem like the victim/lesser in these situations he would describe but he’s pretty attractive and it felt like a false humility? Idk. I’m sure there’s plenty for him to feel insecure about but it felt like he was just saying that because that’s what he thinks you have to do onstage to get the audience to like you.

Anyway, just not for me!! He did have a line I really liked about about ranch, he was like, “it’s gotta be from the valley, and it’s gotta be a secret!” (talking about Hidden Valley) and that’s very funny to me. But that was kind of it.

2/5 haunted ex-girlfriends, would not masturbate again.

 

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mother!

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Loved it. Absolutely loved it. I walked home for 20 blocks grinning because it made me giddy. Right off the bat-was a lot of it completely over the top? Yes, absolutely. The whole second half requires you make a huge leap with him and I completely get if people didn’t/wouldn’t do that. It was kind of insane and little too much like, “THIS IS A METAPHOR” but I was pretty on board and loveddddd where it went and the payoff was enough for me, but there were definitely moments where I had my doubts.

The film opens on someone putting a glass egg rock on a mount and we see life come back into a house and a person forms in bed who rolls over and says, “Baby?” looking for someone. It’s Jennifer Lawrence and she gets out of bed and pads around this entire empty beautiful house and opens the door to look outside and is surprised by Javier Bardem behind her.

The acting in this is incredible and this first shot establishes that immediately-right when he comes up behind her, she beams and kisses him and he says, “I must stink” and she says, “I like it” and he says, “I need to wash up” or something to that effect, and leaves to take his shower while she watches him climb the stairs and he never looks back. We instantly can tell that she loves him more than he loves her, we just don’t know why.

Then there’s a lot of establishing shots following her around the house. He’s a writer, so he attempts to do that a lot and she sits around a lot watching him do that (girl!!!). She also has her own house stuff she does. We learn she’s fixed up almost the entire house by herself, it was his childhood home that burned to the ground that she’s rebuilt, sanded, reinforced, refurbished, all those words. One of the projects we see is her mixing plaster (?) and putting this dye/powder in it that she also later drinks (?) to make it different colors of beige and then uses a trowel to cover the wall with it. Why not paint? Why not a brush? Very unclear.

So this goes on for a while and it seems very terrible for her, she loves this person and he’s pretty emotionally withdrawn from her (only speaks to her briefly, always seems to want to get away) until one night when he’s “writing” (sitting in front of a blank piece of paper holding a pen) and they hear a knock at the door, spooky!

He tells her ‘stay here’ (ugh) and goes to answer. And it’s not spooky at all, it’s just Ed Harris! He’s a neurosurgeon and he’s come to stay because he thought it was a bed and breakfast. This is actually a lie and he’s a dying fan but we’ll get to that!!

He hits on Jennifer Lawrence and smokes in the house and generally gives her weird vibes. I forgot-before this she had a moment with the house where she pressed her hand against a wall and could feel a living thing with a heartbeat. She also keeps getting these dizzy spells that she drinks saffron for (the yellow dye) and it seems to help. Javier is like, ‘This isn’t a bed and breakfast but you can stay anyway, I hate my wife!’ And JLaw’s like ‘Wtf!!’ but caves because she’s too in love, which if not reciprocated, is a terrible blinding curse.

She goes to give Ed the linens for his bed later and finds him throwing up in the bathroom with Javier, with a huge gash on his back that they try to hide from her. Javier implores her to ‘give him some privacy’ in her own house but ok, and she leaves. She sees Ed’s lighter on an end table and pushes it off the edge to fall behind the dresser or whatever it is.

The next day his wife comes (Michelle Pfeiffer) and she is an alcoholic card. There’s a very tense scene where she’s asking Jennifer (no one has any names. The IMDB page is just, “Man, Woman, Him, Mother, Idler, Cupbearer, Damsel, Bumbler, Philaderer, Fool, etc.) why she doesn’t want kids, and how their sex life is, and it ends with her basically implying that Javier doesn’t love her anymore.

This movie escalates really quickly, people just keep coming into the house and Jennifer Lawrence is getting more and more upset, and finally the sons come and are arguing and one kills the other one (potential call to Cain and Abel? There’s a religious thing later we’ll get to) with a doorknob and leaves. The family rushes him to the hospital and Javier goes with them as Jennifer Lawrence is crying, “Please don’t leave me,” but of course he does, and she has to clean up the blood and everything by herself. This takes us on a magical realism tour of the house where the walls start crying blood and crumbling and she finds a passageway that a single toad hops out of. (Biblical reference to the plagues?) Jennifer was going to explore said cavern/hole but hears something upstairs. The brother who didn’t get murdered came back for his wallet and leaves but not before imparting, “He left you here alone? You really do understand” referencing how he was asking her if she understood while he cried, “They always leave me they were going to leave me all alone” and gripped her face in his blood covered hand. Hey buddy, buy a girl dinner first!

Javier comes back and she’s calmed momentarily, but then all these other people start pouring in because he said they could have the services at the house. This escalates more and more until people break the sink (it’s not braced!!) and she screams at everyone to leave.

This prompts a fight between Jennifer and Javier where she’s like, “I’m not enough and you want to have kids but you can never fuck me” then there’s a weirdly violent rape scene? He doesn’t rape her and it’s not violent violent but he’s kind of raping her then she ends up liking it and changes to be into it. (Sidenote: this was a scene where I was like, “Do I trust any men to tell stories? Not really” cause I don’t think you’ll find a movie with one of those scenes that’s directed by a woman but male directed movies are just littered with them).

Then she wakes up bathed in light and she *knows* that she’s pregnant (I think they did that cause how else were they gonna get a pregnancy test to this abandoned ass farm?? But yeah sure some women know 10 hrs after having sex they’re pregnant. The body can just tell! Legitimate rape!) and there is a BRIEF moment of happiness between them before he gets up and begins to write furiously. He keeps writing all morning and she’s like, “Well I don’t want to disturb you” then doesn’t for like 6 months until she feels the baby kick and runs to tell him and once again is eclipsed because he’s JUST finished his piece.

She reads it, and cries because it’s so beautiful but also she’s scared of losing him, which he assures her will never happen (lol, you can’t lose something you don’t have my bb). Then the phone rings and it’s his publisher (Kristen Wiig), she loves it. JLaw is like, “She’s seen it?” and he’s like, “Of course.” Then they do pregnancy stuff: buy a crib, put a rug over that blood stain on the floor where someone was murdered, knit a blanket, you know, pregnancy stuff!

Then JLaw is wearing a grecian cut cotton gown (the whole time he keeps calling her his ‘goddess,’ and also he’s a huge feminist on Twitter) and makeup for the first time and she’s cooked a huge feast and is putting it out on the dining room table to celebrate his book selling out in the first day. Then there’s a knock on the window and it’s some fans who want him to sign something and he goes out to bask in their adoration and she keeps asking him to come back inside but he keeps asking her to give him another minute. Then a woman and her child come in to use the bathroom and Jennifer’s like, “You have to get out” and the kid has an accident and she’s like, “Ok I’ll help you but then you really need to leave” then she sees that ALL these people are inside her house.

From this moment on we leave the reality that has been created/understood up until this point and the movie enters a fantastical realm. Many stages of society are enacted within the house, religious ceremony, war, sex trafficking, war, fighting, prayer, refuge, Kristen Wiig shooting someone in the head, etc. etc. Jennifer keeps trying to get out of her house and traveling through all these worlds that have seemingly just popped up-they seem like circles of hell, or different stages of revolution, or societal collapse. Sin maybe? I was thinking about what it could be a metaphor for, because it so clearly is meant to be non-literal, and I was thinking perhaps how ideas and art are co-opted for political gain/war, because the people keep justifying their misdeeds by the poem (when stealing things from the house: “everything is ours, just like the poet says”) and he’s this figurehead to them that represents some ideology that’s fueling all the chaos and damage.

It also made me think of Twitter (because that’s where my mind always is) and social media in general and boundaries- how people share parts of themselves but then others use it to invade and overrun, and how often people close to artists get wrapped up in that even though they didn’t want it/ask for it and often their private lives and details become a consumable for the public.

I also thought the house was a metaphor for something, possibly their relationship, because it had a heartbeat Jennifer kept checking on and throughout the movie it was slowly dying and at the end when she decides to leave him (after a crowd of people kill her baby), it’s dead. Also how on the nose is that for dating someone who’s broken? Rebuilding their house while you live in it? Yes.

Oh yeah, so she has the baby in the room he boarded up bc the guests broke the heart crystal from the beginning (so much symbolism!!! The english major in me is dying of happiness and wants to read/write a million analytical essays on this movie) and she keeps asking him to tell them to leave until finally he says he doesn’t want them to leave, then she won’t let him hold the baby. She falls asleep for one second and he takes it out and passes it around amongst the crowd. This baby is crowdsurfing like he’s at a NIN concert, until we hear a SICKENING crunch and JLaw loses it and rushes to get to him but he’s already dead and his body is on an alter and people are eating him. Then she goes nuts and starts stabbing people with a huge piece of glass, they turn on her and beat her while calling her a cunt until Javier comes over and stops it. He holds her and tells her they need to find it in their hearts to forgive the mob and she cries, “You killed my baby.”

Then she finds the lighter she pushed behind the dresser from before and goes down to the blood basement chamber and kicks in the furnace. While all the oil is spilling out, Javier pleads with her not to do it. She says, “You never loved me, you just loved how much I loved you”  and lights everything on fire and it all burns. YES BITCH.

Javier carries her somewhere and she’s crying, “I was never enough you took everything everything from me. What hurts the most is I was never enough” and he’s like, “You could never be enough, that’s the only way I can write, that’s how it has to be.” And she’s like “Just let me go I have nothing left to give.” And he’s like, “Do you still have your love?” and she nods while crying and he reaches into her belly, which collapses into ash, and pulls out a beating thing that immediately hardens and turns black. Then he cracks it open and inside is a beautiful glass rock that he carries it to the pedestal from the beginning. Once he puts it in the whole house revives and we see a figure form on the bed who rolls over (new actress, not Jennifer Lawrence) and says, “Baby?”

!!!!!!!! Amazing amazing amazing amazing. I am grinning just remembering it. I really want to ask Darren Aronofsky who hurt him-or maybe he’s incredibly self-aware, because it seems like this movie is all about the one-sidedness of some relationships and how some people use the love of others selfishly. Ugh, it was so good and I lovedddd it. Also the song that played right after this blackout, during the credits (which also might have been the only music in the movie? Is that right? There was a techno song that played when their house turned into a hell rave but other than that I don’t think there was a soundtrack) was a slowed down cover of The End of the World by Skeeter Davis which is what’s playing on the record player on repeat when Brittany Murphy hangs herself in Girl, Interrupted and Winona Ryder goes up and finds her.

I loved this movie. It reminded me of a play in a lot of ways. Minimal characters, an emotional build that gives depth to actions that would normally seem mundane, quick turns of events that heighten situations exponentially, etc. It felt so much like a play now that I’m thinking of it. Like I said, the acting was terrific. There was so much going on beyond the words everyone was saying, there were these scenes that were so loaded-it was incredible. I mean, Michelle Pfeiffer probably has maybe thirty lines if we counted them all out but her CHARACTER was incredible.

One of the most haunting things about this is that throughout people kind of make comments about their age difference (‘Must be hard when you have a decade between you’) and the cyclical nature of the ending makes you think he’s been doing this for years and years to so many women and that’s harrowing to consider. Also lol, my favorite lesson from this movie was that a lot of men like horror movies but don’t realize that the true horror is men who are emotionally unavailable 😎

I want to watch this movie again in like a year to see how I feel about it after sitting with it for a while and like I said I also want to read a million essays of interpretations of it. I wanted to write this first though so it wouldn’t be tainted. Maybe I will go back and include comments/theories of some of the good ones.

For right now, 8/10 bloody toads, would masturbate again.

 

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Gaga: Five Foot Two

GAGA

!!! The Lady Gaga doc is on Netflix right now and I watched it!!! K- honestly I didn’t know what I was going to think because she kind of lost me in the shock and awe campaign that was the meat dress and most of what followed it and then with Joanne, a lot of them don’t really seem like bangers they’re kind of melodically meandering and A Million Reasons is beautiful (especially in live recordings and when I saw her do it on carpool karaoke I cried which is embarrassing on a lot of different levels, but it’s also true about me and I need to embrace that) but this doc gave me a new respect which is probably exactly what it intended to do, and hey it worked!!!

SO to start. This doc starts sort of following the creation of her new album Joanne (is it a PR move to gain hype? Probably!). There’s lots of ‘strategy’ behind this kind of stuff that I do think is considered but also people can just want to share things and you can’t be cynical about everything otherwise what’s the point of living and sometimes you just have to accept someone’s art even if it’s in the form of a Netflix documentary. Great, now that we got that out of the way, I loved it!!! She was a producer so I thought that meant it would be kind of fluffy and only show her in a good light and mostly it did (Well, there are a lot of scenes of her crying and I guess you could argue that makes her sympathetic but I wouldn’t necessarily say that is ‘good’ light) but ANYWAY.

Basically, the name of the album and many of the songs revolve around her dad’s sister who died when she was 19 because she had Lupus and some other stuff and she was an artist and had lesions on her hands and the doctors kind of didn’t know what to do in the 70’s so they said they needed to amputate her hands which was heartbreaking because she was an artist but I also think the operation didn’t go well because she died shortly afterwards and it affected the whole family and Lady Gaga (Stephanie!) was little and was around this and absorbed it/was influenced by the effect it had on her whole family.

(That was one sentence and I know some of my old professors would be horrified but I’m proud that I could distill the impetus for her entire album in one breathless thought!!)

There’s a scene where she’s playing the title track for her Grandma and she’s crying and her dad has to leave the room and her Grandma says twice that it’s beautiful but not to get too maudlin about it because it was a long time ago and everyone needs to keep living. Her Grandma seemed like a fucking G and she had peaches and Lady Gaga was like, “Oh a peach! Can I have a peach Grandma?” and her Grandma was like, “Of course, anything you find in there you can have” and I think lots of Grandma’s sign a secret code where they all buy those hangers that are wrapped in ribbon/crocheted and agree to love unconditionally and be tough for the whole family.

The doc was beautifully shot, we went to a desert music video, the superbowl, a christening, a concert on a building in New York, many venues and places. I was surprised by how, I’m not sure the word, but maybe accessible she was? She just kinda puts it out there. Also something I learned that I liked was that she was talking about male producers and how they treat female artists especially in pop music and she was saying about how all her weird fashion and outfits were in a direct response to someone saying she had to be sexy/revealing and that it was her way of staying in control and feeling like herself.

Lady Gaga has fibromyalgia, and a lot of scenes focused on the pain she felt daily and the medical/physical stuff she had to do to deal with & live with that.

She hit her producer’s car one day and money was never mentioned. I’m sure they did off-screen? But imagine getting into a car accident and not being worried about it affecting your life in any way more than if the person was mad at you.

Her parents and sister were around (the christening was for her nephew, yes she looked better than the baby), her dad seems to be traveling with her/around the most.

Before she did the Superbowl (that was kind of what the second half of the doc was focused on, and the last scene is her going out to it) I was happily surprised that she was running around and joking with everyone-I would be nervous and testy and a mess probably but she was like, “I’m not gonna do this again so I have to have all the fun right now!” which is an incredibly healthy way to look at it.

For a lot of this I was struck by similarities between her and Amy Winehouse (and not just because her new look is big hair and mostly eyeliner) they’re both jazz focused/trained talented young TINY white women (Jewish & Italian respectively) that Tony Bennet loved, and I couldn’t help but thinking that this would perhaps be what Amy’s life looked like had she gone to rehab the first time (if you haven’t watched THAT doc it’s very well done and incredibly heartbreaking and you end up hating her dad).

The love stuff was also interesting, there’s one part where there’s her audio (no video) and she’s crying and saying how all her successes in life never line up, whenever her career is going well her love life takes a hit. She even lines it up, “I sell 10 million records I lose Matt. I sell 30 million records I lose Luc. I get a movie, I lose Taylor” referring to her ex-fiancé Taylor Kinney who she dated for five years and was breaking up with while this was shooting. It was sad. At one point she says, “I go from being touched all day and talked to, to being completely alone in silence” and that was a lot and I’m just glad she has a dog, those are necessary for these moments.

Love is difficult! I read that she’s dating someone now and I’m happy for her. I really like her after this!! I LOVED her in high school and college and like I said I kind of fell off for a while, but I’m back full force so this PR move definitely worked on me.

At one point when she’s describing Joanne (a very stripped down aesthetic-no costumes, no wigs, etc) she’s like, “It’s boring for me to be shocking everyone all the time. We’ve all seen it. I’m bored of it” but then later she’s wondering if she’s going to let down some of her older fans by not having the extravagance- it seems exhausting wondering what other people’s opinions of you will be all the time.

But she does look beautiful. And Tiny! So tiny! Mark Ronson came out looking great in this, like a collaborative feminist which I hope he is.

There’s a great scene where she buys her own CD in Walmart which was cute but also probably a marketing ploy???? (I hate that I’m being cynical now anticipating this through other’s eyes!! When I was watching it I felt genuine like for this scene/these things but I also felt the strategy. Can someone on this level ever be rid of it really?)

I love her and think she’s beautiful and I think the song A Million Reasons is gorgeous and about Taylor Kinney not her dead Aunt’s hands but art can be many things!!! Also the song Joanne is phenomenal and I want to buy the album now and this worked on me!!! I am a corporate shill!!!

It also made me jealous that I’m not a songwriter because there you can just write the words you feel and with comedy you have to find something that’s funny about it you can talk about otherwise it’s just self-indulgent and boring but there’s some parts of heartbreak/sadness that aren’t funny you’re just heartbroken and sad and you want to be vulnerable about that even if it doesn’t give anything to anyone else.

There’s also a weird “You Go Girl!” duet with her and Florence Welch that I wanted to be on board with but seemed a little corny and I didn’t like the song that much but I’m sure when it comes out I’ll love it unconditionally. We also see a lot of her tattoos in this movie because she’s not wearing very many clothes (approve!!) and there are some BEAUTIFUL ones and it made me want to get more connecting/abstract pieces.

3.5/5 pink felt hats, would masturbate again just for the Madonna mentions!!!

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The Doberman Gang

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WOWWWWWW ok so this is a movie from 1972 about a group of criminals who decide to train a bunch of dogs to rob a bank. But honestly it is so much more than that.

So, the first scene of the movie is three guys who successfully rob a bank, (Eddie, Sammy and Jojo) but put the money into the wrong car as they leave (the trunk was open! Classic mistake) and get away with nothing. Then we see a really interesting scene about masculinity that would never happen today where the three of them are just all really disappointed in themselves in a hotel room and no one’s mad at anyone. They all just take the blame themselves and feel like they let their friends down. So cute!

The mastermind, Eddie, laments for a while that he can’t rob a bank with robots, (he keeps saying how much humans make mistakes and I thought that would be a cool place to take a very different turn and have this be an AI crime movie) but he eventually just lands on dogs. After this thought he realizes the day’s disappointments are too much for him so he goes to where men with shaggy bowl cuts feel emotionally heard, a diner. It’s not a true diner experience unless you have sex with a waitress in what looks like a Joni Mitchell music video, so he does that too. After successfully having sex with a woman and drinking coffee, he goes on a walk at night to clear his head and just, figure this whole dang thing out.

During his walk at night (where I’m sure he wasn’t worried about being raped at all), he sees some youths jump a fence to a car lot. But before they can steal any thing, a group of Doberman Pinchers round them up and hold them until the owner calls the police. Eddie gives the dogs a smug but knowing grin, then goes back to his room.

The next day, without the internet, he tries to learn about dog training which is a journey in itself! Remember what the world used to be like? First he figures out what type of dogs he saw, because apparently that wasn’t common knowledge 40 years ago. Then he poses as a journalist (the next logical step) you know, for breaking all those hard hitting dog stories, and interviews this guy who works with the military training dogs,  Barney. Barney tells an amazing story about his buddy who lost his life saving him jumping on a landmine to protect him in Vietnam and he’s like, “You wanna see a picture?” and of course, you guessed it, his friend is a dog.

Eddie convinces Barney to quit the military and come train dogs with him, for little to no reason. Eddie then buys an entire barn somehow even though their last bank robbery was a failure, and the other two men steal six Doberman Pinschers and one bulldog (a baker’s dozen!) in a VW bus (it’s the 70’s) and get to trainin’.

The training of the dogs is the first full hour of the movie, which I respect a lot. You can’t just tell people six dogs are going to rob a bank and expect them to believe you, you have to show us. And wow, do they. There are only three dog training montages in this movie and the rest is in real-time. It’s a lot of dog training. The idea mostly revolves around specialized whistles, and tones. It’s very high tech, Barney brought this info from the military and it’s probably top secret.

Each dog has a different color collar and they are all named after bank robbers (Bonnie, Dillinger, Pretty Boy, etc). The trainer still somehow has no idea what is going on, he thinks they’re training them to be guard dogs (Why would a guard dog need to carry a scrolled up note and learn how to jump on a counter with it?) and then after he gets a crush on the waitress he decides to poke his nose around and find out what’s really going on. He goes into the barn, which has been turned into a full scale replica of the bank from some photos that Eddie took from a secret camera he hid in a cast.

The trainer is like, “I don’t want to do this” and Eddie’s like, “ok then we’ll just kill the dogs” which was smart because he needed Barney to finish/couldn’t do it without him /needed a reason for him to stay involved. Barney agrees on the condition that he gets half the money since he’s doing all the work, and one of the other guys threatens to kill him so then he agrees to split it four ways.

Meanwhile the waitress has asked for some money cause she’s doing a lot of work too and quit her job to be there every day and Eddie’s just like, “this is business but I’ll take care of you sugar tits” he doesn’t say that last part but he might as well have. They’re robbing the bank for like 600,000 dollars and he says he’ll give her ten thousand, which you don’t have to be good at math to know is not fractionally that great. She’s pissed so she starts kissing Barney in the woods. It’s not very sensual at all.

When Eddie finds out he calls HER a dog, to the trainer he says, “teach your dog some better manners,” RUDE so she throws soup on him (gotta always have some soup handy in case a man’s going to be misogynistic to you) then Eddie HITS HER and pushes her to the ground. Because this was the 70’s and women basically weren’t people yet, none of the men care, and this movie presents it as a light-hearted little tiff that they have that never gets mentioned again/handled.

Each dog gets spikes on their collar because at some point Eddie asks if anyone could stop them and Barney’s like, “I guess someone could grab them by the throat?” and he’s like, “Oh ok, so spikes then.” I like to think that’s how Spike TV began, just a bunch of dudes not wanting to get stopped by anyone.

They do a run through but someone draws the curtains at the bank so then they go back as a Drapery Business and take all the curtains down to be cleaned or something.

The dogs can’t get in the bank because it’s a pull handle, so they have to wait for people to enter and exit. No one really seems to notice or care as six Doberman Pinschers enter the bank with spiked collars and canvas saddlebags and lie down at strategic areas all throughout the bank. No one except the only black person in the entire movie, a janitor who keeps trying to alert people who ignore him. Is there a lesson and metaphor to be learned & extrapolated from this? You betcha!

The criminals see the janitor trying to tell the guard from their window perch a building away and blow the whistles that mean attack and one of the dogs mauls the security guard. Then when they have everyone’s attention the dog with the note in his mouth (the sensitive one) approaches the teller and she reads it out loud. The note says to fill the bags with money. The tellers first try to put stacks of paper in, “Will they be able to tell?” “I don’t think so, they’re dogs,” the dogs start growling because the dudes saw it from across the street and blow the whistle that means “that’s not real money..”

So, the dogs get all the money, no one gets mauled who hasn’t been mauled already and they head back to the barn. When the two guys who took the drapes down drove back to the barn, they drove slowly and spread dirt from the farm on the way back home like little breadcrumbs of scent for the dogs to follow. They do follow, but one of the dogs gets hit by a car on the way back and dies in the street. One of his friend dogs comes up like he’s going to try to help him in some way which I was very emotionally ready for, but he just takes his saddlebag full of money and keeps running. Cold as ice!!

When all the dogs get back the three original dudes (I forgot to say that the trainer quits right after all the dogs get in the bank, he takes a dramatic stand, “You forgot a dog saved my life once, and now I’m going to return the favor” but anyone can blow the whistles so they just keep going without him) are waiting pleased as punch BUT THEN the waitress blows the attack whistle from the top of the hill (they left the bank separately and she was strategically perched) and they MAUL all three of the dudes. She doesn’t call them off until they’re fully incapacitated (but not dead) and she lets the dude she was hooking up with who hit her get mauled the longest, which seems fair.

Then she calls them and they come to her and she’s so happy and proud, but when she tries to take the bags of money they all start growling at her. Then the BULLDOG takes the whistles and runs away and all the Dobermans follow him. Then the credits roll. It is implied that the trainer trained them all to bring him all the money, because after the credits there is a sound clip of him saying, “Good job” to the dogs and them like licking him or something. I like my personal interpretation that he and the bulldog were fucking the whole time, but I don’t think many people are going to get behind that.

The end of this movie was like in The Dark Knight when all the clowns in the heist for the Joker start killing the last person to help, except with dogs mauling people in a barn.

It was really fun and amazing, more than I could have ever hoped. First of all, the whole movie had a very chill vibe to it, all the scenes in the beginning, the bank robbery, the sex, the car-jacking then subsequent dog attack, it’s all incredibly mellow. Lulling even. I was watching this with my friend Laura and we had to turn on a light because everything was so soothing we were falling asleep. For a movie with a fair amount of dog murder, that is a feat.

Some things were hilarious, like in the beginning when the alarm goes off there’s just a big box outside the bank that says, “Bank Robbery Alarm” which I don’t really think is how that works but I also don’t own a bank.

The music!! It’s an original score and one of the songs is something like, “Man’s best friend, enemy number one” and it’s all about the dogs robbing the bank, as you might expect. The guy who scored this also scored Forest Gump and the Back to the Future trilogy which makes sense because it’s an expansive tale and there are some interesting choices involving banjos.

The main guy had a very weird vibe, his hair covered his ears but didn’t go to his shoulders which is a very untrustworthy length. He also wore his shoes all the time?? Even on the bed and probably during sex but I couldn’t see because there was a blanket. Maybe that’s the tradeoff, if you show vulnerability you have to be overly masculine in some other way, like never having bare feet. He also wore a lot of turtlenecks with blazers while the waitress wore some really cute crop tops and midi skirts and it’s like, ok, but what season is it?

There’s one weird scene where they all laugh too hard at dirt? The trainer is explaining how he can get the dogs to come back to the barn without following anyone even though it’s three miles away and he pulls out this Folger coffee can (it’s not a movie from the 70’s if there’s not a beat up old coffee can that’s integral to the plot somehow!) and he’s like, “I’m just gonna drop this dirt from the farm that’s a familiar scent and they’ll follow it” then everyone BURSTS into laughter for like 2 minutes, it felt very odd and excessive. There was also a shot in the beginning of Eddie in the diner before we know he’s fucking the waitress where she’s just pouring his coffee that lasts for like a minute and a half which, in movie time, feels like an eternity.

They say a lot of damaging things about Dobermans which seems irresponsible!!! Now that we see where the culture has headed with this breed, but that’s for another day! I was hoping for a redemption arc with the dogs that never came, they were portrayed as pretty cruel/bloodthirsty throughout but I know if I dated them long enough I could change them.

Overall so fun!!! There are two sequels, and one stars Fred Astaire which I hope means that that one is a musical.

8/11 dog collars, would definitely masturbate again.

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Wild Wild West

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It has recently been brought to my attention that some people don’t think this is a good movie. Number one, they are objectively wrong and number two, how dare they?

Recently I rewatched this movie (at 3:45 in the morning, the best time to do anything) and I loved it, it was so great. If you HAVEN’T seen this movie since 1999, I can do a little refresher. Wild Wild West is a steampunk western starring a black cowboy set directly after the Civil War. Doesn’t that sound amazing?? Well guess what, it is.

Will Smith plays James West (said cowboy) who doesn’t give a FUCK about your racism. Anyone who disrespects him he threatens to kill, and at one point he talks a group of people out of his own lynching. Topical! He also does all of this while wearing black leather pants and a crop top vest, which if I’m not mistaken is also a key look in Willow’s Whip My Hair video, so, families coming together artistically, the circle of life.

James is following/trying to catch and kill this general, Bloodbath McGrath (Ted Levine from Monk and Silence of the Lambs!!) because he murdered his family (along with an entire town of black people) at New Liberty. The President (played by Kevin Kline) is also trying to hunt McGrath down, but only because of his part in a larger plot to overthrow the US government that isn’t revealed until later, but seems to involve the world’s top scientists, and spiders.

On this journey Jim (he goes by both) West picks up two traveling companions, inventor Artemus Gordon (also played by Kevin Kline) and Rita Escobar (Salma Hayek). Artemus has been assigned by the President to assist, and Rita snuck her way onto the train AND into our hearts!!! (More about Rita later/P.S. Longer Rita Later)

The bad guy turns out not to be General Bloodbath McGrath (he is still bad though, he just dies and wasn’t behind the whole thing), but Dr. Arliss Loveless (Kenneth Branaugh/Gilderoy Lockhart). He is a “villan-inventor” (IMDB’s words not mine) who builds a giant metal spider in a hidden canyon city in the desert that he’s going to use to take over the government and give it back to different countries because he lost the Civil War and his legs.

Kenneth Branaugh does an excellent job, he’s a lascivious dude surrounded by an army of scantily clad women with punny names (Munitia, Ms. Lippenrieder) who create all these weapons that use science and cannons. At one point he has a costume party where he invites everyone to reveal his plan but he is overcome with anger at their indifference to their own ability and privilege and just yells at them about not having legs which was amazing to see.

This is where Kevin Kline finds Salma Hayek in a cage, a human-sized birdcage, that she’s locked in for some reason (this movie despite having no sex scenes has better bondage sex scenes than both 50 Shades of Grey movies). Kevin Kline has been dressing as a buxom woman on these missions to be covert but not tonight! He breaks her out of her cage (great title for an emo song) with a mechanized boot stirrup. The whole movie Kevin Kline’s character keeps employing these little inventions that both work and don’t.

Eventually James and Artemus have a stand off with Arliss (after James dresses as a belly dancer and steals the handcuff keys/Artemus invents a hang glider) where they kill a lot of metalhead dudes (so it’s great when Mad Max does it but not Wild Wild West? Mad Max is stupid and Wild Wild West is great and this is the hill I will die on) then finally destroy the giant spider with fire, and kill Arliss until his wheelchair bleeds orange (maybe one of the producers is a Clemson fan?).

Salma, who has been kind of flirting her way through, reveals that the scientist she was trying to find/save wasn’t her dad but *gasp, twist* her HUSBAND! Which wasn’t that shocking because he’s a hot scientist with a salt & pepper beard, and I’m sure she had a great dad, but it’s treated like it’s a big shock.

One of the weapons from the beginning were these metal collars that once activated, have a magnetized pull to a circular blade that follows the victim until it catches up to them, and decapitates them. Artemus finds one of the scientists killed in this way (“Expert in the field of metallurgy, discovered in a field of alfalfa”) and uses his head as a projector, “the last images before death are burned onto the back of the retina” and that’s how we find the clues to the master plan/party.

Everything is cool. They have a gadget train they ride through the desert, Will Smith has a floating sex picnic with a woman in the town’s water tower (just contaminating an entire city’s water supply but no one cares because he’s so cool) and generally is breaking hearts left and right. This was also during a magical time when if Will Smith was cast in a movie, it meant he wrote a custom rap song for that movie which gave us the wonderful song of the same name that starts, “Jim West, desperado/Rough Rider no you don’t want nada” and samples a Stevie Wonder song, (which means that Stevie Wonder is listed as one of the writers of the Wild Wild West soundtrack) that Sisqo is also on. It’s amazing. “You don’t wanna see my hand where my hip be at/With Artemus, from the start of this” is another line, I won’t go on but you should listen to it, a lotta good stuff in there.

I genuinely don’t understand how anyone couldn’t like this movie. Do they not like fun? Like, it’s not changing the face of modern cinema but it was so FUN and everything holds up and everyone does an amazing job. The art direction is also gorgeous-I feel like I could pull stills from this movie and most of you wouldn’t be able to tell what was this movie and what was a Lorde music video. Everything’s good! There’s also high art stuff too, for example, Kevin Kline plays both Artemus Gordon and the President and there’s a scene where Artemus dresses up as the President then the President comes in and tells him to knock it off?? How do mirrors even work?? High art!!

ALSO: a lil conspiracy theory of my own, at the end of this movie when the President is congratulating West and Gordon he says, “Gentlemen you’ll be happy to know i’m creating a new agency” and it’s the secret service BUT what if it’s ALSO the Men in Black and this movie is a prequel to Men in Black!!!!!! I think it is and until someone finds hard proof that it’s not I’m going to continue to think that.

The original website for the movie is still up and what a treat that is, it’s all pop ups and bad graphics (99 baby!!) and Salma Hayek’s name is misspelled in the link! It also tries to get you to download an audio file when you enter? What a time the 90’s were.

Also apparently Will Smith doesn’t think it’s a good movie? But guess what he does think is good? Donating money to the Church of Scientology. So clearly we can’t trust his judgement anymore. It’s on Netflix, don’t take the word of me or a black millionaire, judge for yourself!!!

4/5 metal death collars, will definitely masturbate again and you should too!!!

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Death Note

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Lemme save you some time. Don’t watch this, it’s so bad. Bad on almost a new level that I hadn’t anticipated or felt anything near to in a WHILE.

This is an adaptation based on a manga (I think that’s the right use? It’s a Japanese serialized novel) that my brother gave me for Christmas one year because I asked him which ones he thought I would like and he gave me like the first 10 issues of Death Note and Monster and wow was he right those are really good ones I enjoyed them both a lot.

So when I saw Netflix was making it I was kind of excited, just to revisit the story, and see what they did. Two huge things right from the start: the main dude was cast as a white. Why????? How by this point, do you see the backlash from Ghost in the Shell/Tilda Swinton/Emma Stone and not think to yourself, “Perhaps this Japanese cartoon should star someone from the culture it originated from?” It seems just willfully ignorant at this point. There’s no way the higher ups at Netflix, who I’m sure have a graph for every projected profit margin/viewer demographic that exists, know this stuff, they just don’t care. Anyway. The white boy that they cast didn’t do a good job either. He overacted (and underacted!! How do you do both??) like a motherfucker and he had these weird stringy blond highlights and no conveyed emotional or internal motivation in a single scene and it’s not surprising at all to see on his imdb page that his other big projects are “The Fault in Our Stars” and “Paper Towns.”

The second huge problem (did you forget there were two?) was that they made it a MOVIE! I clicked on it thinking I was starting a series, meanwhile an hour in, it’s still going and it just hadn’t even OCCURRED to me that it would be a movie. The whole thing is 108 chapters in 12 volumes and it’s been made into a TV show before in Japan into 37 twenty minute episodes, which makes fucking sense because it’s long and complicated. To try to fit the entire story into 1 hour and 41 minutes is insane, the Sex and the City movie is 2 hours and 31 minutes for heavens sake.

The major plot device of this story is this notebook (Death Note) that when you write someone’s name in it, they die. There’s a bunch of other rules: you have to be thinking of their face, it has to be their full/real name, etc. There’s a death guide (a shinigami) that comes with the book that only the owner can see, (Ryuk, voiced by Willem Dafoe) who is kind of a sinister prankster and doesn’t have the owner’s best interests in mind & whose face and head seem to be made of porcupine spikes. We meet him when he creates a windstorm in a science lab full of craft supplies (what branch of science uses colored feathers?) and he mostly just sits in the dark while his eyes glow.

Where do I start? The kid who gets the notebook, Light Turner (whose name should be Light Yagami) tests it out on a kid at his school who is bullying someone and decapitates him (you can specify how someone dies) and then from there he tells this edgy cheerleader

(they establish she’s edgy by having 3 shots back to back: all the girls cheering and her just standing with her arms crossed,  her being vaulted to the top of the pyramid and crossing her arms again and rolling her eyes, and lastly a group of girls celebrating and her smoking a cigarette in the middle of it then walking out. It’s like a visual crossword puzzle where every clue is ‘teen angst’)

who turns out to be a sociopath about the book and it makes them fall in love? There’s this weird montage of them having implied sex and a bunch of people from the news dying that’s super weird and looks like if David Lynch did a commercial for bralettes.

The girl was annoying to me 1. because I don’t remember her from the books/I don’t think her character existed and 2. her character was just, “high school is boring, I want to kill people” which feels like not enough and too much all at the same time and 3. It felt like they just shoehorned a romance in there to make people more engaged, but if you had conveyed the story right they would already be engaged? It’s like taking something cool then stripping it of what makes it cool to just try to make it like everything else that’s bad.

There is a famous detective “L” on the case played by Lakeith Stanfield (who does great and no I don’t mind blind casting when it’s an actor of color) who does a great job with what he’s given. In the books the relationship between Light and L is much more of a cat and mouse game, it continues through Light going to college, but in this movie they have like 2 conversations before the movie devolves into a chase scene and everything is bad and I hated it.

Light’s dad is a member of the police and L has him give a speech taunting Kira (the media’s name for this anonymous killer- in the books it’s because of the way “Killer” is written/pronounced in Japanese, in this it’s anyone’s fucking guess. There was some half-hearted attempt to explain why a white dude made all the people he killed write something in perfect Japanese, a language he does not speak, before their deaths but did it suffice? Does it ever? In this version Light basically tells Mia that Kira means ‘light’ in Keltic and Russian right before reminding her that Irish people were slaves too) to see if Kira would spare him which he does, cementing L’s idea that the killer is the police officer’s son.

The movie rushheeeeddd through so much. The police trying to figure out/learning clues was such a fun part of this I remember and in this there’s MAYBE 20 minutes before L basically knows who Kira is. Something I just read reminded me that in the beginning Light would write in the Death Note right as he got out of school, which led police to wonder why a ‘local spree of murders was only being carried out at a specific time of day’ which in the books is why they brought L in at all.

There really is no plot- Light tries to get Watari (L’s assistant/friend) to give him L’s real name (he’s a government orphan trained to be a detective) so he can kill him. He fails, Watari dies, Light’s girlfriend sabotages the plan and writes Light’s name in the book so she can get it but then also be reunited after she brings him back from the dead with fire. They’re at a high school dance then falling off a collapsing Ferris Wheel, in a coma, out of a coma, everyone dies.

It’s just too much. I was honestly happy when everyone died at the end. Lakeith did a good job and he is the only one, everyone else should feel bad. The girl (Margaret Qualley) was ok and the dad were ok. And Watari played by Paul Nakauchi (the only Asian actor in the entire movie) was good even though he died pretty early.

Watching Lakeith act in this was like when you get those off-brand bags of candy for Halloween from CVS that have all gross ones and then a few Snickers. He is the Snickers. You appreciate what he’s doing but it’s not enough. The rest of this movie is those weird wax chewy things that come in unmarked orange and black wrappers. Or a green caramel apple lollipop. Or Necco Wafers. Whatever bad candy is to you really. This is a good analogy because L is always eating candy. In the books he “dies peacefully while eating a chocolate bar.” God bless. Anything to escape this right?

I don’t really have much else to say, it was SO bad. Except also the music seemed to have a rule that it could only be from the 80’s? They played 80’s slow songs at all the important moments regardless of what was going on: a police interruption of a school dance, two teens falling off a defunct Ferris Wheel, an alley fight, waking up from a coma, etc. All 80’s songs. And while I respect that discipline, the execution was horrible and misguided. And it rained for the whole middle third of the movie? Does bad acting look better in the rain?

If you want a better review you should read this one, I don’t have it in me to dissect anything because there was literally no merit in this film at all. I think it’d be more entertaining to read the Wikipedia page for the series, than watch this movie, it was very bad.

HALF an eaten apple (Ryuk likes those and they kind of showed it but not really) out of five possible full apples, will NOT masturbate again, even if I was in a cum desert.

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