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Archive for February, 2011

Movie Review by Matthew Schuchman- One and a Half out of Five ‘Staches.

If you cannot tell already, I am not really the biggest fan of big budget animated films.  There are things out there I like, no doubt about it, but really nothing has knocked my socks off.  It feels like all of these companies are trying too hard to put out a story that would appeal to kids and adults, alike.  “Rango” is no different, and besides the  spectacular animation, it does not have much to offer. (more…)

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Movie Review by Matthew Schuchman- Four out of Five ‘Staches.

Even in the middle of watching “Hobo With A Shotgun” I thought to myself, “How can I even begin to try to rate a film like this, even if I enjoyed the whole thing?”  This morning however, the more I thought about the movie, the more I smiled and laughed again.  My original intention was to not rank it at all and just talk about it, but I can no longer hold back, “Hobo With A Shotgun” is a master stroke and does everything right that “Machete” missed on. (more…)

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Movie Review by Matthew Schuchman- Three out of Five ‘Staches.

“Win Win” is definitely one of those makes you feel good movies where troubled characters find their way out of a rut that seems to be an expansive pit of quicksand.  It is a cute film and a funny film (mainly due to Bobby Cannavale), my only major issue with the film is that its message only works for the events contained within it; let me expand. (more…)

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Movie Review by Matthew Schuchman-Two and a Half out of Five ‘Staches.

Some people are still surprised that Liam Neeson has become something of an action star. Yes, he showed us his ass-kicking skills in the thriller “Taken,” but a lot of people forget his true action roots in such classics as “Darkman” and “Krull.” His newest thriller, “Unknown” is being subliminally marketed as, “Taken 2: Liam Kicks More Ass.”  Low and behold, while some ass does receive kicking, “Unknown” is a much more story driven and slow building movie that is decent in the end but has some major flaws and tries its best, not to shock you. (more…)

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Movie Review by Matthew Schuchman- Four and a half out of Five ‘Staches. (No real photos from the film are available yet as it still listed as being in post production, so enjoy this Adrien Brody headshot, instead).

Tony Kaye, the director of “Detachment” is best known for making “American History X.”  He has done a handful of films since, but nothing seemed to garner much attention.  While “Detachment” is still in post production, a lot of the work that has to be done deals more with sound than anything else. They could put the film in theaters the way it is now and have no worries as “Detachment” is nothing less than incredible. (more…)

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This past weekend, Matthew Schuchman attended screenings at the first annual Athena Film Festival.  The festival that celebrates women in film was held at Barnard College in uptown NYC.  Here are three short reviews from some films viewed during the festival.

Bhutto- Three ‘Staches.

Benazir Bhutto is one of the most important politicians this world has ever seen.  The first female prime minister of Pakistan, she was assassinated after returning to the country after 8 years of exile to run for a third seat as the PM.  The documentary does a good job of showing all sides of Bhutto and not just showering her with praise the whole time and even adds the doubts and issues that people like her niece have bought up about her.  The one problem with the movie is though, it seems to focus a lot of time about Pakistan’s history and sometimes feels like it is more of a history lesson then about this amazing woman.  That being said, the history of this country is something that I think a lot of American’s are clueless about and need to learn, especially in this troubled world climate where every Middle Eastern state is being clumped together as one in the minds of people who don’t know any better.

My So Called Enemy- Two ‘Staches.

“My So Called Enemy” documents  a group of teenage girls who take part in a camp (Building Bridges for Peace)  that brings Palestinians and Israelis together to talk out their fears and attempt to build bridges between them.  It is an interesting process to watch and it is hard to really side with either argument, but intentionally or not, the film does show what the fight is like between these two states; emotional teenage girls who refuse to listen to each other, even when they get along.

Chisolm ’72: Unbought and Unbossed-Two ‘Staches.

Before Barack Obama, there was Shirley Chisolm, who in 1972 was the first black woman to be in the primaries as a nominee for the President of the United States. She was tough, smart and didn’t take any crap from anyone.  She may have not had a chance to win but she did play a big role in the way things turned out during the primaries.  This interesting piece of our history is presented as nothing more than information rather than statement on more current political climates.

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Movie Review by Matthew Schuchman- Two and a Half out of Five ‘Staches.

Just looking at the cast of “Peep World” had me worried I was walking into a disaster.  Michael C. Hall, Rainn Wilson, Sarah Silverman, Ron Rifkin, Judy Greer, Lesley Ann Warren, Taraji P. Henson, Steven Tobolowsky, Alicia Witt, Ben Schwartz, Kate Mara and narration by Lewis Black, to name the main players, and you will recognize a few other faces in there as well.  Large well-known casts usually spell doom unless you are in a Robert Altman film and even then it is not guaranteed things will go well.  While “Peep World” turns out not to be a bad movie, it never really does anything to make you jump out of your seat and praise its name. (more…)

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