Thursday, May 28, 2009

[PODCAST] Adam Ross, R.I.P.


Joe and Mike pay tribute to a friend and ally to Greensboro filmmaking on this week’s episode of the Movie Show.

They also discuss the casting choice for the actress who will play Mark Wahlberg’s mother in The Fighter, Zack Braff’s first directorial effort after Garden State, and the winners at this year’s Cannes.

Reviews: Night at the Museum: Battle for the Smithsonian and Terminator: Salvation

Soundtrack Selections:
“Sunday Sun” by Neil Diamond from The Kid Stays in the Picture;
“The Only Living Boy in New York” by Simon & Garfunkel from Garden State;
“Son of a Preacherman” by Dusty Springfield from Pulp Fiction;
“Instruments of Destruction” by NRG from Transformers: The Movie

Stream it!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Trailer Park!

These are the trailers we'll be talking about on tonight's episode:


Sam Rockwell chilling out all by his lonesome on a space station. Kinda feels like MST3K, only the movie we'll be getting to watch this time looks good. Definitely my favorite trailer of the bunch.


A nice runner-up to Moon. The fact that someone convinced a studio to finance this lavish musical remake of Fellini's 8 and 1/2 earns director Rob Marshall huge props in my book. Probably had to do with the fact that he got Daniel Day-Lewis to play the lead. I wonder if Day-Lewis can sing as good as he acts?

The Road

We had made a big to do last fall about this film getting delayed by one year. Reason being Cormac McCarthy's "The Road" is one of my all-time favorite novels, and a superlative example of what genre fiction can be when writers stop using their subject matter as an excuse for cliches and weak prose. This trailer is totally busted - an action-packed trill ride that feels nothing at all like the film and stupidly explains the unexplained disaster responsible for the bleak events in the novel - but I still hold hope that Viggo Mortensen and director John Hillcoat managed to pull this bad boy off. The lingering sense of dread is still there, but the editing needlessly amps it up to an 11. Guess they want to fool audiences into thinking this will be an action-packed thrill ride so they'll be sorely disappointed? Not too wise in my book.


Just in time for Terminator: Salvation, we got the trailer for Surrogates, the newest film from Jonathan Mostow, director of Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. Interesting concept, but we'll see how it plays.

In an Aptow world.

Great music video for a song that's both funny and true.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Terminator: Salvation review.


When filmmaker James Cameron made The Terminator in 1984 - and its exponentially larger budgeted sequel, Terminator 2: Judgment Day, in 1991 – he essentially raised the bar for action filmmaking so high that few filmmakers have come close to touching it.

Unfortunately, the few who came close does not include the guy who calls himself McG, director of the newest Terminator outing called Terminator: Salvation. He lacks the almost scientific calculation Cameron used to generate thrills, and there are a few beats in McG's film that are no less goofy than the name he insists people call him.

Terminator: Salvation is the first outing of the Terminator franchise, which also includes a TV series and a theme park ride at Universal Studios, to completely address humanity’s war with the machines in the future.

Played by Christian Bale, freedom fighter John Connor leads the resistance against the machines that, like all mechanical creations in movies, turned against humanity shortly after they became self-aware. The resistance has discovered a radio signal that has the potential to stop the robots dead in their tracks, which Connor intends to use so that he and his fellow freedom fighters can level Skynet’s base of operations located in a bombed-out San Francisco. However, before Connor can allow the destruction of Skynet, be must discover the location of Kyle Reese, the man who would ultimately become Connor’s father after he sent him back in time in the first Terminator film to protect his mother.

This brings us to another character named Marcus Wright, who is played by Australian actor Sam Worthington. A man of mysterious origins, Marcus knows that Reese has in fact been kidnapped by Skynet, and will be executed unless they attempt a last-ditch rescue. There is of course a secret about the true nature of Marcus that anyone who’s seen the movie’s trailers will know about (i.e. that he is in fact a robot-human hybrid), and the film uses this to explore the notions of what makes machines like humans and vice versa. That said, the most recent incarnation of TV’s “Battlestar Galactica” handled the same topic in a far more engaging and thoughtful way.

But Terminator: Salvation has about as much to praise as it does to criticize. McG is not a confident action film director like Cameron, but he is competent one. He uses his skills to essentially mount action scenes from the first shot after the prologue until the credits in the end. He also packs in enough references to both the original and second “Terminator” films, that no fan of the series can watch the movie without smiling once or twice. The film could be best described as a gigantic-budgeted internet fan film. Or better yet, the cinematic equivalent to karaoke.

Sure, it doesn’t push for high artistic value like the original films, but for those who know all the lyrics, there are moments when it can still be a lot of fun. And if you're one of those people like my buddy Mike who thought Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines was 'good' or even 'okay,' you'll probably feel the same way about this movie.

Price of admission to Terminator: Salvation will get you...

-Sam Worthington slipping out of his character’s American accent into his native Australian one during the scenes where his character whispers -– an odd flaw, since he is a fairly capable actor otherwise.

-One machine communicating to another in English as opposed to binary.

-John Connor rocking out to the same Guns n’ Roses song he used to listen to when he paled around with the red-headed kid from Nikelodeon’s “Salute Your Shorts.”


-A couple of inventive cameos by original “Terminator” stars Linda Hamilton and Arnold Schawtzenneger, both of whom got to appear in the film without spending a single day on the movie’s set.

This won’t be the film that turns new audiences into fans of the Cameron-spawned franchise, but I can’t deny that the film wasn’t an action packed-spectacle made for, and perhaps by, fans of the original films.

(** & 1/2 out of ****)

[PODCAST] Fake IMAXes and the Stupidest Quote of the Year


On this week’s episode of the Movie Show, Mike tells listeners whether Tom Hanks’ newest movie is an ‘Angel’ or a ‘Demon,’ Joe gives the advanced word on Terminator: Salvation, and together they ponder what a Battleship movie might do to director Peter Berg’s career and which actor should play Ol’ Blue Eyes in Scorsese’s Frank Sinatra biopic.

This week’s Soundtrack Selections:
“Brain” by The Action from Observe and Report;
“All My Days” by Alexi Murdoch from Away We Go (trailer);
“You Could Be Mine” by Guns N’ Roses from Terminator: Salvation;
“Dare” by Stan Bush from Transformers: The Movie (1986).

Steam it!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Mixed Tape presents 'Transformers: The Movie' (1986)


Whether or not you care for what Michael Bay has done - and will continue to do - with the series of live action films, all fans of Transformers can agree that the original 1986 film was pretty awesome. After all, it was the first U.S. animated feature since Bambi or Charlotte's Web where a major character dies. There's actually a good chance that the film introduced many children of the 1980's to the concept that death is absolute, and can claim anyone -- including the beloved Autobot leader Optimus Prime.

So it brings me great joy to announce that the Movie Show's Mixed Tape Film Series along with Acme Comics, is hosting this rare presentation of Transformers: The Movie at the Carousel Luxury Cinemas (1305 Battleground Ave.) on Thursday, June 4 at 7:30 & 9:30 p.m.

This is the 1986 film that, surprisingly enough, was the final cinematic bow for writer, director Orson Welles as the voice of the planet devouring robot Unicron. You've also got Star Trek's Leanard Nimoy, The Breakfast Club's Judd Nelson, Monty Python's Eric Idle, and as the voice of Prime himself, Peter Cullen.

As with all Mixed Tape screenings, there will be $1 beer, pizza, cookies, popcorn, and soda, but there's one thing we're going to be doing differently. Because of the new movie coming out, there's a high chance that Transformers will sell out. So instead of simply offering advanced tickets online, we're also letting fans duck the surcharges by heading over to Acme Comics on 2150 Lawndale Dr. where a limited number of advanced tickets will be available. Again, the number of advanced tickets is limited, so you might want to head over to Acme ASAP.

Acme will also have a table set up in the lobby filled with Transformers memorabilia, and before the film, I'll be presenting a special, hand-picked collection of video clips that should leave all Transformers fans cheering.

The "4 minute clip" from 'Terminator Salvation'

First I just want to point out that is is not a 'clip' so much as an extended trailer.

Check it out:

Rewind by about a year or two on our podcasts, and I am sure there will be plenty of audio from me badmouthing this project. After all, I am one of those Terminator fans who holds Cameron's films in the series as two of the greatest films ever made. But now that I've seen the trailers for the film, and have some idea as to what this film will be about, I've got to say I'm excited.

Mike actually said that he's benching the entire 'salvation' of movies in general on this film. My enthusiasm or hope for the project doesn't go that far, but I do believe we got a good summer movie on our hands.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Where I have been.

About four months ago, I found this amazingly powerful magnetic marble lying on the ground at the school where I work.

In terms of magnetism, you could roll this baby down a wall and watch it stop wherever there was a nail.

So one day, I rolled said marble across my table - the same table where I had left my MacBook running - and instead of going straight across the table, the marble decided it liked the metallic parts inside my computer and made a detour.

At the very moment the marble kissed my MacBook, all digital files, information, and programs I had accumulated for many, many years were gone. This includes about 40 gigs of music, including my impressive soundtrack collection and $500 worth of iTunes files I never backed up. This includes podcasts, celebrity interviews, and screenplay drafts that are most likely gone for good.

I'm working through the problem right now. I have this wonderful program called Data Rescue II, which among other things, seems pretty good at retrieving corrupted data files that were fubared by large magnets. I've saved about 15 gigs of data, but considering there were almost 100 gigs that I didn't retrieve, I still have little reason to see light at the end of the tunnel.

I am going to make another pass through my computer today before uploading a new OS onto the computer. Guess this is the perfect excuse to upgrade to Leopard.

At any rate, I promise to have something up by tomorrow. Sorry for the lengthy state of incommunicado.