Sunday, November 22, 2009

Up in the Air: High Clooney

"Up in the Air" is a movie that proves The Donald isn't the only one who utters those two freaking words.
Meet Ryan Bingham (George Clooney), a corporate downsizer who's paid big bucks to travel the country and say "You're fired," albeit in a kinder and gentler manner. And he does it very well, thank you, until a company decision to further impersonalize the process leads, the Movie Slut won't give that away.
Based on book of the same title by Walter Kirn, this is a movie with brains, edge and a third finger — pointing upwards — on the pulse of 21st-century America.
It does unravel into implausibility at the end, which the Movie Slut learned was a departure of the book. Still, don't miss this one, if only as a primer on how to tackle those heinous airport security lines.

Men Who Stare At Goats: Loony Clooney

"Worst movie evah!" said one of the Movie Slut's friends.
Oh, really?
MS loved this flick, which brought a Vietnam War sensibility to the Iraqi conflict. How else to address the absurdities of war?
What you get here — if you choose to see this movie — is a group of guys in a special army unit that brings "paranormal powers" to the battlefield and lots of pot and hallucinogens, too. You also get loony Clooney and Jeff Bridges reprising his role from "The Big Lebowski."
If you dug the Big L, you'll groove on this flick, too. That's a promise.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

2012: Mayan Shmayan

The world is coming to an end — again. Will movie makers ever tire of hokey apocalyptic flicks? The Movie Slut sincerely hopes not.
So here we go: The requisite early meager character development; the looming danger; the Earth-destroying event(s); the flight; the desperation; the displays of selfishness and humanity; the ultimate resolution when the good guys win to begin life all over again with the hope they've learned from their mistakes. Yeah, right!
Come to think of it, isn't this "Groundhog Day" all over again?
This time doom was predicted by the Mayan calendar and Jake Gyllenhaal is the misunderstood man who saves the day — and the Earth while he's at it.
2012 has more edge-of-your-seat moments than a woman in a Christian Lacroix pouf dress and it won't fit into your closet either.

Broken Embraces: It ain't broke

Director Pedro Almodovar knows what women want. And ever since "Woman on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown," he's been giving it to us.
Penelope Cruz is back in his new flick after her boffo performance in "Volver" and she steals the show in this twisting, swirling love story mystery about raging jealousy, raging ambition and raging lust. (Oh, yes, he knows what men want, too.)
As usual with Almodovar, there's nothing tepid on the screen. Zoom, don't walk, to your nearest theater and while you're at it, do rent "High Heels," the Movie Sluts fave Almodovar flick.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Pirate Radio: Fun, fun, fun 'til...

The 1960s: A great musical moment? Or, the greatest musical moment ever?
The movie slut chooses the latter with apologies to Mozart and Beethoven.
Has music ever been so insane, frenetic, fierce, liberating, energizing and life affirming?
Pirate Radio, a British flick with all the usual characters — (Kenneth Branagh, Bill Nighy, Nick Frost) where's Hugh Grant? — attempts to capture this time when rock was roaring and the British government banned it from the airwaves sending a ragtag team of rock-a-holics to the high seas to broadcast.
The movie succeeds when it moves on land to capture the madness of listeners caught up in the greatest musical moment — ever. In case you're interested, this soundtrack is on the Movie Slut's holiday wish list.

An Education: Not your father's Lolita

She's 16. He's 36 — give or take.
She's in high school. He's a man of a glam and shady world.
Sound familiar?
This girl-meets-older-guy flick defies the stereotype. Set in London, circa 1962, Jenny (Carey Mulligan) is no victim of David's (Peter's Sarsgaard) advances.
It may not be PC, but there's truth on the screen and super actors.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

A Serious Man: Seriously Side-splitting

The Coen brothers had the Movie Slut at "The Big Lebowski." Now, they have her falling off her seat laughing — again.
Meet Larry Gopnik, college prof, family man, observant Jew and all around nice guy. Too bad life has turned him into Mr. Job Kafka, victim of an absurd universe.
Larry's neighbor is a redneck, gun-toting goy. His wife has taken up with a smarmyesque Sen. Joe Leiberman clone. And his teen-age kids. Oy vey!
All he wants is an answer to the big question: WHAT IN THE NAME OF YAHWEH IS GOING ON?
Larry's odyssey for answers is the heart, soul and funny bone of this comedie noir.
Hint: Pay special attention to the wise words spoken by Rabbi No. 3.