REVIEW: NOW YOU KNOW

 

 

CAST

Jeff Anderson (Clerks)
Jeremy Sisto (Thirteen)
Todd Babcock (Gods and Monsters)
Earl Boen (The Terminator)
Paget Brewster (Another Period)
Anthony Denison (wiseguy)
Debbe Dunning (Leprechaun 4)
Trevor Fehrman (Clerks II)
Heather Dubrow (That’s Life)
Rashida Jones (The Muppets)
Will Rothhaar (Battle: Los Angeles)
Jennifer Schwalbach Smith (Jersey Girl)
Kevin Smith (Teen Titans: TJC)
Louis Herthum (Westworld)

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On the eve of his bachelor party, Jeremy (Jeremy Sisto) learns that his fiancée, Kerri (Rashida Jones), wants to call off their wedding without providing a reason. He tries to determine what caused this sudden decision. The unmarried couple return to New Jersey to sort out their relationship. When Jeremy gets home, he hangs out with Gil and Biscuit, his old friends, who have made a hobby out of breaking into other people’s homes and rearranging the objects to freak out the homeowners. Their activities have begun to unnerve one unfortunate homeowner in particular, Mr. Victim (Stuart Pankin). Jeremy, Gil and Biscuit go to their local bar for a few drinks and talk about women and Jeremy’s aborted wedding. Meanwhile, Kerri and her best friend Marty go to a lesbian bar, when Marty tells her she is pregnant.nyk3The next morning Jeremy’s friend from Vegas, Shane, comes to visit as Biscuit and Gil throw him another bachelor party. The bachelor party goes awry when the stripper Biscuit hired arrives, and is revealed to be a transvestite, who tells Jeremy that she saw Kerri at the lesbian bar the night before, and everyone thinks she is in a lesbian relationship with Marty. Gil and Biscuit take Jeremy and Shane to go mess with the house again, but Mr. Victim has become paranoid and shoots wildly at them, grazing Jeremy’s ear. Faced with his own mortality, Jeremy, and the others drive to Kerri’s so he can talk to her. She tells him that he took her for granted. Jeremy tells her that he would do anything to have her back, just as Gil walks in, telling them that Marty is beating up Biscuit on the front lawn. Biscuit, thinking Marty and Kerri were gay, asked Marty if he could be their manager. During the fight, the men learn that Marty is pregnant, and that Gil is the father. Kerri and Jeremy give Gil and Marty their plane tickets that were for their honeymoon in Florida so the new couple can have some alone time, while Kerri and Jeremy hold hands, hinting toward a possible reconciliation.nyk2Jeff Anderson’s debut feature is very much a grown up romantic comedy. Admittedly I was expecting a Randal Graves style of humor that wasn’t delivered but that didn’t stop my enjoyment of the flick. I was pleasantly surprised at the sincerity of the characters and the believability of the dialogue. I’m certain that a lot of the more serious scenes would have been crude and sentimental in lesser hands. The Gil and Biscuit scenes give it just enough humor to counter the central storyline. There are of course certain issues with both Andersons direction and his own limited acting abilities, but in their own way they’re sort of charming. In short, the film is very enjoyable and Jeff shows a lot of potential as a Writer-Director.

25 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS: REVIEW: CLUELESS

CAST
Alicia Silverstone (Clueless)
Stacey Dash (View From The Top)
Brittany Murphy (Just Married)
Paul Rudd (Just Married)
Donald Faison (Scrubs)
Elisa Donovan (Sabrina: The Teenage Witch)
Breckin Meyer (Road Trip)
Jeremy Sisto (Wrong Turn)
Wallace Shawn (The Princess Bride)
Nicole Bilderback (Dark Angel)
Dan Hedaya (The Usual Suspects)
Cherilyn “Cher” Horowitz is a good-natured but superficial girl who is attractive, popular, and extremely wealthy. A few months shy of her sixteenth birthday, she has risen to the top of the high school social scene. She lives in a Beverly Hills mansion with her father Mel, a ferocious $500-an-hour litigator; her mother died from a freak accident during a routine liposuction procedure when Cher was a baby. Cher’s best friend is Dionne Davenport, who is also rich, pretty, and hip, and understands what it’s like to be envied. Though Dionne has a long-term relationship with popular student Murray, Cher claims that it is a pointless endeavor.
Among the few people to find much fault with Cher is Josh, her socially conscious ex-stepbrother, who visits during a break from college. Josh and Cher spar continually but without malice; she mocks his scruffy idealism, while he teases her for being selfish, vain, and superficial, and says that her only direction in life is “toward the mall.”
Illustrating that Cher’s selfishness is usually innocent and relatively harmless, Cher plays matchmaker for two lonely, nerdy, hard-grading teachers, Mr. Hall and Miss Geist. She achieves her ostensible purpose to make them relax their grading standards so she can renegotiate a bad report card but when she sees their newfound happiness, she realizes she enjoys doing good deeds. Cher decides to give back to the community by “adopting” a “tragically unhip” new girl at school, Tai Frasier. Cher and Dionne give Tai a makeover and initiate her into the mysteries of popularity. Cher also tries to extinguish the attraction between Tai and Travis Birkenstock, an amiable skateboarding slacker, and to steer her toward Elton, a popular rich snob.
Her second matchmaking scheme backfires when Elton rejects Tai and attempts to seduce Cher. When a handsome new student named Christian arrives at their school, Cher takes a shine to him and attempts to secure him as her boyfriend. Eventually, Murray spells it out to her and Dionne that Christian is not interested in her because he is gay.
Despite the failure of this endeavor, Cher remains on good terms with Christian, primarily due to her admiration of his taste in art and fashion. Matters get worse when Cher’s “project” works too well, and Tai’s popularity surpasses her own. The events afterward reach crisis stage after Cher fails her driver’s test and can’t “renegotiate” the result. When she returns home, crushed, Tai confides that she’s taken a fancy to Josh and wants Cher to help her “get” him. Cher says she doesn’t think Josh is right for Tai, and they quarrel. Feeling “totally clueless,” Cher reflects on her priorities and her repeated failures to understand or appreciate the people in her life.
After much soul searching, Cher realizes she is romantically interested in Josh. She begins making awkward but sincere efforts to live a more purposeful life, including captaining the school’s Pismo Beach disaster relief effort. Cher and Josh eventually admit their feelings for one another, culminating in a tender kiss. In the end, Mr. Hall and Miss Geist wed; Cher’s friendships with Tai and Dionne are solidified; Tai and Travis are in love; and Cher wins a $200 bet for catching the bouquet at the wedding. She embraces Josh, and they kiss as the film closes.
What makes Clueless stand out has a lot to do with the wonderful characters and of course the script. It’s much smarter than most films aimed at ‘young’ audiences today but it doesn’t try to be.  Watch it, escape and enjoy.

REVIEW: BATMAN VS ROBIN

CAST
Jason O’Mara (Resident Evil: Extinction)
Stuart Allan (Bad Teacher TV)
Jeremy Sisto (Wrong Turn)
Kevin Conroy (Batman: TAS)
Trevor Devall (Justice League: Gods and Monsters)
Robin Atkins Downes (Babylon 5)
Grey Griffin (Adventure Time)
Sean Maher (Firefly)
David McCallum (NCIS)
Weird Al Yankovic (Spy Hard)
Peter Onorati (Goodfellas)

During an investigation of missing children, Damian Wayne, AKA Robin, Batman’s son with Talia al Ghul, has taken the Batmobile out to an abandoned toy factory without Batman’s consent. He finds the perpetrator, Anton Schott, who has mutated some of the victims into dolls. Batman arrives, and in the resulting battle, Robin chases Schott while Batman knocks out the dolls with gas and frees the remaining children. Upon defeating Schott, Robin chooses to spare him, but an owl-masked assassin named Talon suddenly kills Schott and frames Robin for the murder. Batman is eventually convinced of Robin’s innocence after finding an owl feather at the crime scene.The next night, Bruce has dinner at Wayne Manor with fellow wealthy socialite Samantha Vanaver, who meets Damian. Later, he tries to connect with Damian, but he voices his frustration towards Bruce for never trusting him. Bruce goes out, leaving Damian with Nightwing to look after him (and calling off his date with Starfire in the process) and starts to investigate the owl feather, which leads him to the Gotham Museum of Natural History’s Hall of Owls. He is reminded of a childhood story about the Court of Owls, a secret society of wealthy men who ruled Gotham from the shadows and killed any who opposed them by sending agents called talons. On the night his parents were murdered, Bruce had seen an owl clutching a bat flying away from the crime scene. He became convinced that the Court of Owls was to blame, but after finding no evidence of their existence, Bruce dismissed the legend.While continuing to investigate, Batman is attacked by three undead, owl-masked assailants. After killing one, Batman witnesses the other two suddenly liquefying into black ooze. Meanwhile, Damian, having escaped Nightwing and fled the mansion, is approached by Talon, who encourages Robin’s choice of punishing criminals and offers Robin a chance to join him. Unsure of the decision, Robin returns home, where Bruce discovers him and warns him that he will be sent away to a school in Switzerland unless he learns to discipline himself.While driving to a date with Samantha, Bruce is kidnapped by white owl-masked people and he is brought before the Court of Owls, who offer Bruce a chance to join them. After Bruce leaves, given time to consider the offer, Talon reveals himself to be working for the Court of Owls, who are secretly raising an army of inhuman, undead talons to destroy Gotham City and allow the Court to rebuild it in their own image. However, their current talons are imperfect and dissolve after a period of time. It’s also revealed that Talon’s in a romantic relationship with Samantha, who’s secretly the Grandmaster of the Court of Owls. While the Court is planning for Talon to become one of their undead soldiers, with Robin serving as Talon’s replacement, Samantha’s secretly planning to save Talon from this procedure and have him become a member of the Court, so he can rule Gotham by her side.Damian, having contacted Talon, starts accompanying him to take out criminals, though he hesitates to kill them, which frustrates Talon. Sensing how Robin looks up to Batman as a father, Talon explains that after he gave his abusive thief father up to the police, who shot him, Talon was recruited by the Court of Owls. Batman shows up, having tracked Robin’s activity, but is blocked by Robin from capturing Talon. Batman tries to convince Robin that Talon and the Court of Owls are using him, but Robin is unconvinced, believing Batman is trying to hold him back from his potential. A confrontation breaks out between them, with Robin nearly getting the chance to kill Batman before leaving.Batman sneaks into the Court of Owls’s headquarters through the sewers, but is exposed to psychotropic gas by the Court, causing Batman to hallucinate. He is rescued by Nightwing and Alfred Pennyworth. Meanwhile, Talon introduces Robin to the Court and the Grandmaster. When Damian reveals himself to her, Samantha deduces that Batman is Bruce. When ordered to kill Damian, Talon instead turns against and overthrows the Court and kills every single member, including Samantha. Now in control of the Court’s army of talons, Talon leaves Damian behind, offering him another chance to join him once he has killed Batman.Talon and his soldiers attack Wayne Manor, breaking into the Batcave as Batman, Nightwing, and Alfred fight them off. Batman and Talon battle each other. Talon gains the upper hand until Robin, who escaped from the Court’s headquarters, intervenes and fights in Batman’s place. He eventually defeats Talon and holds a sai to his throat. However, Talon commits suicide by forcing Robin’s sai through his own neck, leaving Robin stunned and confused. Batman tries to welcome Robin back home, but Robin refuses, claiming he needs to sort out who he is. He leaves for a monastery in the Himalayas that Batman suggested to him.file_204535_4_Black_Moon_Rising_Tommy_Lee_JonesConsidering he began as the spawn of what was first considered one of DC’s non-canonical “Elseworlds” stories, Damian Wayne’s perseverance throughout the Batman narrative comes as a bit of a surprise, largely on the steam of Grant Morrison’s fondness for the character. Damian’s lineage and ruthless perspective add a dose of ideological conflict to the Batman formula that works towards justifying those misgivings. The key aspect of Batman vs. Robin comes, obviously, in that conflict between this volatile assassin-trained Robin and the life-preserving Batman, feeding into the rocky father-son relationship between the Waynes.

REVIEW: JUSTICE LEAGUE: THE NEW FRONTIER

CAST
David Boreanaz (Angel)
Miguel Ferrer (Robocop)
Neil Patrick Harris (The Smurfs)
John Heard (Home Alone)
Lucy Lawless (Ash vs Evil Dead)
Kyle MacLachlan (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)
Lex Lang (Constantine TV)
Phil Morris (Smallville)
Kyra Sedgwick (The Closer)
Brooke Shields (The Blue Lagoon)
Jeremy Sisto (Wrong turn)
Keith David (Pitch Black)
Robin Atkin Downes (Babylon 5)
Joe Mantegna (The Simpsons)
Alan Ritchson (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2014)
Justice League: The New Frontier (2008)
Darwyn Cooke entered the comic book world via an animation career that included a stint on the staff of Batman: The Animated Series. He quickly impressed fans with his clean, classic illustration style, using old ideas as fodder for fresh visions. It’s kind of fitting, then, that things have come full circle, and now his old animation cohorts are adapting one of his comic books into a movie. Justice League: The New Frontier is directed by frequent Cooke collaborator David Bullock, and it is based on the 2004 comic book miniseries The New Frontier. In that drawn adventure novel, the writer/artist used his love of 1950s comics and culture to weave a complex tapestry using a host of genres, characters, and real world political touchstones. It is a gorgeous book, and for the most part, massively entertaining.

A 75-minute film is actually a far more compact means of expression than a sprawling comic book miniseries. Bullock, working with Cooke as a creative consultant, has dropped a lot of the backstory, relegating subplots on Monster Island with the Losers and the original Suicide Squad to quick mentions. This leaves the full running time devoted to the superhero mission and the rise of two new heroes.

Justice League: The New Frontier starts just at the end of the Korean War, putting America in the middle of the space race and the Red Scare. Superheroes have been swept up in the xenophobic hysteria, with the public being convinced that men hiding their identities behind masks are no better than the communists who plan revolutions behind closed doors. Superman (voiced by Kyle MacLachlan) is still functioning above board, having signed a loyalty oath to America. So does Wonder Woman (Lucy Lawless), though she is less enamored with the American Way the more paranoid and oppressive it gets. Other heroes, like Batman (Jeremy Sisto) and the Flash (Neil Patrick Harris), are still serving the public, but they risk arrest with every good deed they do. In the midst of all this fear and loathing, a primordial psychic force that has watched from the shadows as mankind has grown more dangerous and self-destructive over the centuries has begun shoring up its power to put an end to the human scourge. Calling itself “the Center” (as in “of all things”), this creature has become the stuff of cults and legends, controlling the minds of men and monsters alike.

Also coming to the fore at this time are two new super beings, and they are ostensibly the leads of the ensemble cast. Hal Jordan (David Boreanaz) is a veteran and a test pilot who many believe to be a coward due to his refusal to fire his guns in battle. His nobility will eventually lead to him being chosen as the Green Lantern, a cosmic defender assigned to protect Earth. The other hero is J’onn J’onzz, the Martian Manhunter (Miguel Ferrer), who through a quirk of science was teleported to and stranded on our planet. He is the most representative of the “other,” the things we fear because they are different. Jordan’s political ideas make him like the communists, whereas J’onzz’ green skin gives the storytellers room to tie his plight into race.

Justice League: The New Frontier is an entertaining animated adventure. Based on a multi-leveled comic book by Darwyn Cooke, it features the greatest heroes of the DC Comics universe banding together in the 1950s to fight a villain who is feeding on the hatred and paranoia of the times to rid the Earth of the human scourge. The movie is more streamlined and has a solid story that fits well into the new Warner Bros. effort to bring slightly more adult cartoons directly to DVD. The animation is mostly clean and dynamic, and as a whole, it’s an impressive two-disc release filled with lots of extras.

REVIEW: WAITRESS

CAST

Keri Russell (Dawn of The Planet of The Apes)
Nathan Fillion (Firefly)
Cheryl Hines (The Ugly Truth)
Jeremy Sisto (Wrong Turn)
Andy Griffith (Spy Hard)
Adrienne Shelly (Trust)
Eddie Jemison (Izombie)
Keri Russell and Jeremy Sisto in Waitress (2007)
Jenna (Keri Russell) is a waitress living in the American South, trapped in an unhappy marriage with controlling bully Earl (Jeremy Sisto). She works in Joe’s Pie Diner, where her job includes creating inventive pies with unusual titles inspired by her life, such as the “Bad Baby Pie” she invents after her unwanted pregnancy is confirmed. The waitresses show up late for work, talk on the phone, spend much time with personal business, and talk back to the boss. Jenna longs to run away from her dismal marriage, and is slowly accumulating money to do so. She pins her hopes for escape on a pie contest in a nearby town, which offers a $25,000 grand prize, but her husband won’t let her go. Her only friends are co-workers Becky (Cheryl Hines) and Dawn (Adrienne Shelly) and regular customer Joe (Andy Griffith), the curmudgeonly owner of the diner and several other local businesses, who encourages her to begin a new life elsewhere.
Jenna’s life changes after she meets her new physician, Jim Pomatter (Nathan Fillion). He has moved to the small town to accommodate his wife, who is completing her residency at the local hospital, and is filling in for the woman who has been Jenna’s doctor since childhood. The two are attracted to each other, and over the course of several pre-natal appointments the attraction grows. After Dr. Pomatter invites her into the office under a quickly exposed pretext, she impulsively initiates a passionate affair. Prompted by the gift of a baby journal, Jenna begins to keep a diary, ostensibly for her unborn child, with voiceovers giving the viewer access to her thoughts about that future child and her own plans. Between these entries, her relationship with Dr. Pomatter, and the thoughts she reveals as she describes the various pies she creates, the audience gets to know her evolving hopes and dreams, concerns and fears, and slowly growing attachment to the baby she at first didn’t want.
After giving birth, Jenna bonds immediately with the baby girl she names Lulu. Earl, clearly disappointed it’s a girl, reminds Jenna of a promise he had forced her to make earlier not to love the baby more than she does him. That comment wipes away any concerns she has about her lack of money and her fear of her husband. With determined frankness she tells him bluntly she hasn’t loved him in years, will no longer put up with his possessiveness and abuse, and wants a divorce. (Its implied perhaps that she was worried that he would pass on his abusive nature with her daughter hence why she finally decided to leave him.) Later, while Becky and Dawn are helping her prepare to leave the hospital and letting her know that Joe had collapsed and went into a coma, Jenna remembers an envelope Joe had brought to her before the birth when she finds out he had been admitted as a patient in the same hospital. In the envelope she finds a handmade card with a sketch of her, a check for $270,450, and a message of friendship that urges her to start her life anew. While leaving the hospital, Dr. Pomatter wants to have a word with her in private regarding their affair and what is to happen now. She promptly breaks it off, handing him a chocolate Moon Pie and asks her friends to wheel her out. On the way out they ask her what that was all about, to which she coolly replies that she was having an affair with him and just ended it. An epilogue depicts Jenna winning the pie  contest, and becoming the new owner of the diner where she worked, now called Lulu’s Pies, serving brightly colored pies to her customers and friends. The final shot shows her walking home hand-in-hand with the now toddler-aged Lulu.
If you like quirky, imaginative movies with a charming but not rose coloured view, ‘Waitress’ is for you. All the shades of life are present. It’s funny but sad, romantic but realistic, colourful with occasional grey – it’s got the lot.

REVIEW: SOME GIRL

CAST
Marissa Ribisi (100 Girls)
Juliette Lewis (Natural Born Killers)
Michael Rapaport (The 6th Day)
Giovanni Ribisi (Ted)
Glenn Quinn (Angel)
Kristin Dattilo (Intolerable Cruelty)
Jeremy Sisto (Wrong Turn)
Kris Iyer (Buffy)
Mariah O’Brien (Halloween 6)
Adam Goldberg (God Friended Me)
Mike O’Malley (My Name Is Earl)
Mark Valley (Human Target)
A group of emotionally driven twenty somethings in LA in the 90’s. Claire (Marissa Ribisi) is trying to find a decent man anwhere she can after having her heart broken several times. Her best friend April(Juliette Lewis) having sex with any man she can find while stringing Neil(M.Rapaport) along who is completely in love with her.
Giovanni Ribisi who plays Jason Claire’s eccentric brother due to his awkward bluntness has a hard time finding girls but is totally in love with the jaded older Jenn. His dialogue is cleverly genuis. Claire finally thinks she found the man of her dreams falling for an aspiring actor Chad (Jeremy Sisto) but finds out he really is an actor with the ladies & is a liar. The ending is outragously funny. A unique script and amazing acting by pretty much the whole cast. Entertaining movie about people in their 20’s dealing with the hardships of relationships & love.

REVIEW: THE 60S

 

CAST

Josh Hamilton (The Bourne Identity)
Julia Stiles (Silver Linings Playbook)
Jerry O’Connell (Sliders)
Jeremy Sisto (Wrong Turn)
Jordana Brewster (The Fast and The Furious)
Leonard Roberts (Heroes)
Bill Smitrovich (Ted)
David Alan Grier (Jumanji)
Marc Blucas (Red State)
Carnie Wilson (Bridesmaids)
Kimberly Scott (The Abyss)
Elisabeth Rohm (American Hustle)
Brian Klugman (Bones)
Rosanna Arquette (Pulp Fiction)
Charles S. Dutton (Alien 3)
David Denman (Power Rangers)
Michael Maize (Power Rangers In Space)
James DeBello (Cabin Fever)

The Herlihys are a working class family from Chicago whose three children take wildly divergent paths: Brian joins the Marines right out of High School and goes to Vietnam, Michael becomes involved in the civil rights movement and after campaigning for Bobby Kennedy and Eugene McCarthy becomes involved in radical politics, and Katie gets pregnant, moves to San Francisco and joins a hippie commune. Meanwhile, the Taylors are an African-American family living in the deep South. When Willie Taylor, a minister and civil rights organizer, is shot to death, his son Emmet moves to the city and eventually joins the Black Panthers, serving as a bodyguard for Fred Hampton.

The illustrations of the emotional uproar at the time was so excellently done that people may feel like there experiencing it for them self. The portrayl of the characters development, as well as the Social Issues of the time, was wonderfully intense. Many of the sense were so so emotionally rich that I even cried a few times, even when it wasn’t a particularly sad scene.

The NBC news clips furthered the feeling of experiencing the important events of the sixties, such as JFKs assasination, yourself. Watching what so many saw back in 1963 evokes a feeling of empathy for everyone who heard the news so long ago.

One main aspect of the sixties was the feeling of hope, and that anyone could make a difference, which was clealy evident in the film. For those not very interested with the culture and history of the sixties, chances are that the film still possess something they would enjoy.

Overall The Sixties was a great film.