The F Word (What If)

Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan navigate "the friend zone" in The F Word (Photo credit)

Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan navigate “the friend zone” in The F Word. (Photo credit)

One of the highlights of the summer movie season for me this year was getting a sneak preview a couple of weeks ago of director Michael Dowse’s The F Word, an irreverent rom-com featuring plenty of comedic charm, a witty script, and a fresh new take on the familiar tale of “will they/won’t they”. The “F” word in question is “Friends” and when it comes to matters of the heart that can be the dirtiest word of all. Early on in its run, the TV show Friends cautioned us about being in “the friend zone” – once we’re in said zone, conventional wisdom, pop culture, and in some cases, personal experience all teach us it is fixed and unyielding. That without an initial spark or attraction, we are “doomed” to languish in friendship for all eternity. Wait… why is that bad, exactly? Continue reading

August, Osage County: A Study in Discomfort

Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, and Julianne Nicholson bring the somber in August: Osage County. (Photo credit)

Julianne Nicholson, Meryl Streep, and Julia Roberts bring the somber in August: Osage County. (Photo credit)

This is the time of year that I am frantically trying to catch up on all of the year’s best movies. Usually right around the end of January I realize I have seen very little of note and am scrambling to fill in the blanks by Oscar time. With Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts earning Globe, SAG and Oscar nominations for their roles, August: Osage County was high on my awards-season must-see list. Continue reading

Awards Season Round-up

First of all, faithful readers, I have an announcement to make – I think the weekly posting idea has proved a tad optimistic and for the new year, I’m going to aim for posting about once a month. My lack of time for movie-blogging has also carried over as lack of time for movie-watching – usually by now I would have seen at least 75% of the top nominees. I’m nowhere near that this year, which makes it hard to render opinions as to winners. So I’m going to flounder my way through the practically mandatory film blog “predictions” post, even without seeing the majority of nominees. Continue reading

Fall Movie Previews: My “Must-See” List

I love previews. I know a lot of people don’t care whether or not they catch the coming attractions shown before the movie starts, but for me, I derive almost as much entertainment value from the previews as I do from the feature. I get all excited about seeing upcoming films and lately I’ve seen a bunch of previews that have me hooked. So following from Saturday’s post where I summarized my mostly lackluster summer viewing, I thought I’d do a post that looks ahead to the fall and the potentially great movies that are coming out in the next few months. Continue reading

Summer Movie Recap: “Where’s the Beef?”

Is it just me, or has this summer been a bit of a dud, movie-wise? Lately, when I go see a movie, I’m way more excited about the previews than I am about the feature – generally not a good sign. As a self-professed cinephile, I’m very familiar with the Oscar-dictated ebbs and flows of seasonal cinematic patterns. I get that the summer is for blockbusters, and that producers/promoters hold off releasing potential Oscar contenders so they’ll be fresh on the minds of Academy voters come the Dec. 31 deadline. But even so, usually there are a number of guilty pleasure movies (at the very least) that are interesting and engaging during the summer. But I think I missed these this year and am left to look ahead to the next few months with eager anticipation to break the long drawn out dry spell I’ve been having at the theatre. Continue reading

My Movieful Weekend: Beasts of the Southern Wild

Saturday: I confronted the Beasts of the Southern Wild…

Quvenzhané Wallis as Hushpuppy in “Beasts of the Southern Wild” (Source)

I’ve had a difficult time writing this section of the post because I’m still not sure where I stand with Beasts. I think I had heard too much buzz about it before seeing it. Every critic, pundit, and filmophile has been singing its praises and predicting Oscar consideration since it first hit the festival circuit. And they’re probably right. This is exactly the kind of movie the Academy loves. But this type of priming around “Oscar buzz” reminds me of when “The English Patient” came out. Everyone went nuts for that movie. And if you weren’t totally crazy about it, even if you didn’t hate it, then clearly you didn’t know what you were talking about. Continue reading

The Dark Knight Rises: Batman Through the Years

Christian Bale in “The Dark Knight Rises”
Photograph: Allstar/Warner Bros/Sportsphoto Ltd (Source)

So this week I had a fantastic time hanging out with my sister and her boyfriend in Whitby, Ontario and we had a Batman mini-marathon starting with “The Dark Knight” in preparation for seeing him “Rise”. I confess that I didn’t remember a lot about “The Dark Knight” other than Heath Ledger’s artful and disturbing performance as the Joker and that it was action packed. The plot itself was a little muddy in my mind now four years later and, because Christopher Nolan’s series is intended as one continuous story, it was good that I had the refresher. Continue reading