Friday, August 24, 2012

Netflix Instant: Cool TV and Movie Picks- Back to School Edition

So it's the end of summer for me. I'm a teacher, and I've been back in the classroom this week with the kids showing up bright and early Monday morning. So, for my picks this week I have two that feature child actors, and one that makes me laugh and will help me get through this week. 

Not a perfect film, but it has wonderful nostalgia for anyone who's a fan of the Spielberg's Amblin Entertainment films. It's a fun walk down your childhood when kids went outside and created things with their imagination. Check out my review here.

I heard about this Australian series on our Alamo Drafthouse Media tour (here's part one and part two of that adventure). I'm a sucker for anything dance related, and I spent this summer obsessing over Bunheads. This series follows a girl, Tara, as she auditions and makes the National Academy of Dance.  Some of the dialogue is a little cheesy, but I have really enjoyed some of the dance sequences and characters. 

Finally! One of my favorite comedies from the past few years is now streaming. Forget the 2010 remake, the original has the English dry sense of humor and wit. If you're a fan of English comedy, check it out immediately. 

That's it for me this week. And here's to another great school year!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Tony Scott 1944-2012

What horrible news to wake up to. Yesterday, director Tony Scott took his life by jumping to his death from the Vincent Thomas Bridge, according to Los Angeles County coroner officials. First reports were murky as to why Scott would decide to take his life, but now ABC News is reporting from independent sources that Scott was recently diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer.

Here's the report from the Daily Breeze:
Scott, 68, climbed a fence on the south side of the bridge's apex and leapt off "without hesitation" around 12:30 p.m., according to the Coroner's Department and port police. 
A suicide note was found inside Scott's black Toyota Prius, which was parked on one of the eastbound lanes of the bridge, said U.S. Coast Guard Lt. Jennifer Osburn.

Scott was known for his unique style and editing of his films. Some of his credits include one of my favorites, TOP GUN, TRUE ROMANCE, CRIMSON TIDE, MAN ON FIRE, THE HUNGER, DEJA VU, THE TAKING OF PHELHAM 123, and his most recent film, UNSTOPPABLE. He also has produced films with his brother, Ridley Scott, including PROMETHEUS, and he was set to help produce the sequel.

We lost a truly unique voice in film making yesterday, and our thoughts go out to his wife and two sons as they begin to deal with this horrible tragedy.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Listen to Karen O's new song for the FRANKENWEENIE soundtrack.

My own feelings of Tim Burton's recent work aside, FRANKENWEENIE will be a must see for me. In addition to that, the soundtrack actually sounds pretty good. Robert Smith, The Flaming Lips and Passion Pit will be on the there contributing material. The album will be titled "Frankenweenie Unleashed!" out September 25. Thanks to Pitchfork, we have the song that Karen O wrote just for the soundtrack, "Strange Love", and which you can preview clicking on the link. I quite enjoyed the song and I can't wait to hear the full album. The juxtaposition between the ukelele-type of instrument and the theremin sound is t Between her contributions to the WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE and GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO soundtracks, I feel she's got a good career in music soundtracks should the Yeah Yeah Yeahs ever break up.

FRANKENWEENIE comes out October 5. It is directed by Tim Burton and stars Charlie Tahan, Catherine O'Hara, Martin Short,  and Tom Kenny.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Alamo Drafthouse DFW Magical Mystery Bus Tour Part 2

Let me say that I've been an Alamo Drafthouse fangirl every since my first experience a few years ago. The love of the film going experience is evident by everyone who works for the company down to the bartenders. Anytime they announce a new special event or series, I feel a stab of jealously that I don't live down in Austin. But now in eight short months, we don't have to worry because we will get one of our very own!

Javi wrote an amazing part one to our Mystery Bus Tour. You can catch up with it here. And now, onto part 2....

Netflix Instant: TV & Movies Picks- Clawhammer edition

Over the last few weeks, I've felt like Hurley from LOST because I keep on seeing something at random places. But instead of seeing a demonic set of numbers, I saw banjos everywhere. It all started with the debut of a new banjo-tastic Mumford and Sons song  "I Will Wait." Then, I met a classy lady that happens to play banjo and finally, I watched GIVE ME THE BANJO which gave me the inspiration for this week's column. I wanted to highlight this documentary and others that deal with this instrument and a certain legendary jazz guitarist. Check them out after the jump.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Alamo Drafthouse DFW Magical Mystery Bus Tour Part 1

As most of you Dallas locals know, we have a brand new theater moving into town, the Alamo Drafthouse. We were lucky to be asked to be part of a group of journalists and movie enthusiasts from the Dallas/Fort Worth area as a way of introducing us to the Alamo Drafthouse in Richardson, its owner Bill DiGaetano, and the Drafthouse as a brand. At first, I thought it was a little strange considering that most of the people that I know that are into movies know the greatness that is the Drafthouse. But we found the trip to be rather informative and reinforces the need for a place like this in Dallas. If you want to follow some of the chatter that was going on that day, you can follow the #AlamoMystery hashtag on Twitter. We do encourage people to comment and let us know what they want to see the Drafthouse do when it eventually opens. I know that we are personally excited for some original and eccentric programming. I'll be writing a recap of the first half of the trip, and Jonesy will be covering the rest tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Directed by: Tony Gilroy 
Written by: Tony and Dan Gilroy
Starring: Jeremy Renner, Rachel Weisz, and Edward Norton 
Synopsis: After the events of THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM, an agent is on the run after his black-ops program is violently terminated. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

For Funsies: Epic Tea Time with Alan Rickman

I heard of this video from a podcast I was listening to and just had to check it out. I'm usually skeptical of any video with the word "epic" in the title, but this one lives up to the title. If you have seven minutes to kill, here is Alan Rickman, in all his glory, drinking tea...epically.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Netflix Instant: Cool TV and Movie Picks

Happy Friday everyone. Today we are lucky enough to be part of a group from Dallas traveling to Austin to check out the Alamo Drafthouse Theatre. As you know, there will be an Alamo Drafthouse opening up here in Dallas next year, and they want to bring some of us down to show us the workings of the theatre in Austin. Pretty awesome experience, and we're excited to go. We will have a full report next week with all the details of what we learn.

But for now, here are my Netflix Instant picks for this week.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

For Funsies: Watch Melisandre totally murder Norman Osborn in a music video.

As a fan of both art forms, I am always ecstatic when movies and music collide in a very gorgeous way like they do in today's video for Antony and the Johnson's song, "Cut The World." It is so gorgeous and hearing the song live is great as well.  Thanks to the AVClub for posting the music video which stars Willem Dafoe and Carice Van Houten, who is better know as Melisandre from GAME OF THRONES. Check out the video below.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

This Daniel Day-Lewis Abraham Lincoln picture makes ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER look like a cheap imitation.

I think my headline says it all. Simply put, he looks amazing. This is the first official picture we've received from the upcoming Steven Spielberg LINCOLN movie courtesy of EW. Considering that Daniel Day-Lewis' work is the reason why this blog has a name, it's needless to say that I'm pretty pumped for this movie.

LINCOLN comes out on November 16, 2012. It is directed by Steven Spielberg and stars Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field, Jackie Earl Haley, Tommy Lee Jones, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt. 

Monday, August 6, 2012


When one wins an Oscar for best director, it almost feels that the next project is just as important. Three years after her victory for THE HURT LOCKER, Kathryn Bigelow is back with a teaser for her upcoming Osama Bin Laden film, ZERO DARK THIRTY.

Bin Laden was captured and killed over a year ago, and Bigelow and writer Mark Boal were already hard at work at creating a film about the terrorist. Then, when Seal Team Six came into the picture, they began reworking their film into what it is today. Not much is known about the film, other than the basic premise and obviously the ending.

The film is not without controversy, of course. Originally it was scheduled for release in October just before the election, but many argued it was propaganda for the Obama administration, so the date has been pushed back to December.

Check the trailer after the break

Sunday, August 5, 2012

For Funsies: GAME OF THRONES Season 2 as a 16-Bit RPG.

So, it's been a couple of months since GAME OF THRONES' second season ended. Thankfully, I've still BREAKING BAD to watch so that lessened the fact that we have to wait another year for the next season. But those that still need their Westoros fix can check out this great video from College Humor. Check it out below:

Very much like the BOYS trailer that I posted the other day, I like this video because you can tell the people behind it are into the show. They also lovingly poke fun at some of the issues that have plagued the show in its second season. I imagine Littlefinger Dance Parties might become the rage with the nerdier hipsters out there.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Netflix Instant - Cool TV & Movies: Sportsball Edition!

So if any of your cats and kittens know me in real life, you know I have no clue what the hell sports are all about. It's ironic, really. My dad was a linebacker in college, you'd think I would've picked up some of that passion from him. Nope, my rebellion was learning guitar and listening to Pantera instead. In the interest of learning new things, I was actually pretty excited when I heard that ESPN's 30 FOR 30 documentary series hit Netflix Instant. A lot of legitimately great directors have been involved in this series and the topics all seem to be a hell of a lot more interesting than most ESPN programming. Below are my 3 picks that I will be checking out this weekend:

Wayne Gretzky is a name I know mostly from the SNES games that were named after him but this story about his contract negotions sounds intense.

C'mon, the OJ White Bronco fiasco through the eyes of the sports world? That sounds interesting!

I was never too much into Mountain Dew or XTREME!!! sports like BMX or any of that, but seeing Spike Jonze's name attached to this documentary

So that's it for this week. If anyone of your more sports oriented types know of any other good installments of this series, please let me know. I'm up for checking them out.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

For Funsies: Trailer for BOYS, a Parody of GIRLS

Lena Dunham seems to inspire some crazy internet rage wherever she goes. It's started ever since her debut film, TINY FURNITURE made it to the Criterion collection. Her portrayal of the (reductively speaking) lazy, privileged 20 something struck a nerve with so many people that she's been keeping the comments sections on movie sites ablaze whenever any posts about her are posted. Now that she has a great new show on HBO, GIRLS, which deals with a quartet of ladies in New York trying to figure something out, the discussions have become more numerous.

I am a pretty big fan of GIRLS. It's got some of the strongest writing I've seen on a show not called COMMUNITY or GAME OF THRONES. Even if I hate the characters, I can appreciate that they're very well written and have lots of layers. That is why I'm happy to share this "trailer" for BOYS, the male counterpart of GIRLS. Thanks to The Wrap for posting this:

What I love about the video is that you have to have seen the entire first season to really get a lot of the jokes. For example, one of the guys is constantly naked to an uncomfortable degree, much like Dunham herself. And for fans of the show, it will be coming back for a 10 episode season in January 2013 according to friend of the blog, @ReelVixen who is at the TV Critic's Association and was covering the HBO panel live on Twitter. Hope you guys enjoyed the video, you guys!