Saturday, September 15, 2018

NOW SHOWING:  'A Simple Favor'

ANNA KENDRICK and BLAKE LIVELY'S new movie plays like a candy coated minefield and is a delight to watch unfold. It's humorous, treacherous, sarcastic and sexy all at once.
ANNA KENDRICK plays a deceptively innocent Internet website entrepreneur named Stephanie that's been on a hidden emotionally fall since a personal tragedy. She then meets someone who (apparently!) is the exact opposite of her in the woman, Emily, played to the hilt by the lovely but rough around the edges-feeling BLAKE LIVELY.
Once the two get to know each other a little bit more -and I stress 'a little bit' they begin a game of mental cat and mouse that soon involves the character Sean, (the husband of Emily), acted to perfection by HENRY GOLDING. The plot of this film is practically irrelevant; it plays second fiddle to the more important thing on demonstration here: that the people you think you know are more complex than you think and what's worse they have only shown you what they want you to see... because they have plans for you.
The director, PAUL FEIG, and cinematographer, JOHN SCHWARTZMAN, each did excellent jobs in graphically alluding to and revealing the true darker natures of the characters. Using solid lighting effects, muted tones, and vivid colors along with any necessary shadow play the cinematographer kept the film visually appealing. Meanwhile the director's unflashy, unpretentious style kept you concerned only with the plot -as it should be. All of this was set off by a sometimes bouncy, definitely irreverent, and without a doubt sharp script by JESSICA SHARZAR.
Having noted all of these things one of the most important qualities you'll notice about this film is the refreshing nod to real life random diversity of racial interactions. You have Muslims, Blacks, Asians, Gays and of course Whites casually interacting on a constantly changing basis. Like your modern American city you can be talking to an Egyptian at one moment, take a call from your Asian secretary the next, then get stopped by an obviously Gay gentleman looking for directions -all within 5 to 10 minutes of each other. I haven't seen a movie display so many different types of people within it's narrative so effortlessly.
Another unexpected bonus I got from this film was ANNA KENDRICK'S 'secretly horny nerd girl' appeal. Her nascent loveliness is of course well known but this film reveals a another level of her acting skills and charisma in general.
No regrets watching this movie indeed. So if you want a good 'little' film that flirts with the murder-mystery lover in you then go watch it!
George Alan Booker © 2018 All Rights Reserved

Saturday, September 1, 2018


I managed to go see the new movie, 'Searching' a couple of days ago and came away from it largely entertained but also with a nagging feeling that somehow it had let me down.
After much thinking I realized that the mood I entered the theater with -that of a thriller fan about to see a good, suspenseful or at least shock filled movie, was ruined as soon as the film began by the presentation of a short film contest winner's work. The event was hosted by the director of 'Searching' himself.
Let me elaborate. At the beginning of the film the director addresses the audience and presents to you a short film contest winner  who made a light film about Internet driven searches. The plot of this short film was about a young man who mistakenly suspected that his girl was cheating on him and seeking confirmation of this by snooping into her phone contacts and then to other information services available on the Internet. The film was comedic and for what it was, well done. But without me realizing it the damn thing had all but destroyed my reasonably high level of anticipation for the thriller, 'Searching' that immediately followed it.
So after I watched the thriller (an unoriginal who-done-it drama that may have ripped off one or many TV detective tales...) I had this feeling that it LACKED some quintesential satisfaction. That feeling I soon found out came from the comedic film presented before it. I confirmed this with another person who saw the short film and he bitterly denounced the short film as a 'stupid thing to do'. I completely agreed.
I paid my money to watch a THRILLER, that many people said was good, and got shoveled a 15 minute or less AMATEUR and genre CONTRARY movie at the start of my evening. It was one of the most stupid and selfish things I've ever seen done to a captive audience such as a movie going public. It was a blatant PLUG for some AMATEUR DIRECTOR who I and I feel others COULD CARE LESS ABOUT. In a way I was hoodwinked into buying one piece of crap movie to watch a better one. Had that awful short film been placed AFTER the real movie -the thriller I went there to see- then I may have been more receptive to it's humorous take of jealousy driven Internet / social media snooping but it wasn't. I had to swallow this bitter pill up front and now I resent it.

The name of this director (of 'Searching') I'll now remember as some sort of 'bait and switch' clown trying to be like Pixar or something without realizing how and why Pixar puts humorous or clever shorts in front of their damn HUMOROUS AND CLEVER MOVIES. They don't conflict, that's why. They don't show you a fucking Horror short film contest winner before the main Action-Adventure movie or a fucking Documentary on the Berlin Wall fall before Toy Story 5!
That's one way to get a negative review of your film, Mr. Director That Shall Not Be Mentioned. Instead of me acting like that masses of watermellon heads talking about how good the main feature was you got one explaining your self-serving, intellectual arrogancy. I'll make sure I watch your next film on a DVD I rent for a dollar if I watch any other movie you make at all.
One saving grace was the superb performance of lead actor John Cho. If you see this I'm-such-a-clever-writer / director' bullshit film then see it for how John Cho saves it.
Alan Booker

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

More Fake Star Wars From Disney

Get ready to duck because this garbage is coming our way far too soon (Christmas, 2019). Why in the sacred halls of the Jedi Temple do people call this Disney trilogy featuring that tomboy, Rey, part of the 'Skywalker Saga'?? None of these films are about Luke or Leia or Darth. Even that lousy SUB PLOT of Kylo Ren and his quest to become a Dark Lord of the Sith (I guess this was his quest until the lazy writers had him kill Snokes who I GUESS was training him...) was not enough to call these movies a part of the 'Skywalker Saga'.

These are the REY FILMS. THE REY TRILOGY. Let's clarify that right now. And who in the hell is REY?? We still don't know the answer to that simple question. And if she had bad parents (hinted at in 'The Last Jedi') then who the hell raised her?? A bunch of Jawas?? She was a young girl abandoned by her parents (in 'The Force Awakens') and yet we are TWO FILMS DEEP INTO HER STORY AND SHE HASN'T MENTIONED WHO THE FUCK RAISED HER!!!???!!
This Rey Trilogy is turning out to be some of the WORST examples of visual storytelling in film history. Put out by a major studio too!! WTF.

So if in the next and last Rey movie (hopefully!) Disney fails to address the 800 pound Bantha in the Death Star docking bay then it'll signal the end of Star Wars as we know it. If Jar Jar Abrams (J.J. Abrams to all those still in denial) fails to fix the mess THAT HIS COWARDLY ATTEMPT at visual storytelling caused; his and Disney's ARROGANT attempt at remaking a CLASSIC MOVIE SUCH AS 'STAR WARS-A NEW HOPE' when they made that POS  film, 'The Force Awakens'), then the forces of REVISIONISM have won.
For like an evil third world government that forments a revolution, claiming to be FOR THE PEOPLE, then after seizing power they become dictators while claiming that the REVOLUTION is STILL BEING FOUGHT, Disney intends on making us believe that the REBELLION was never successful and is an ONGOING BATTLE. They call the previously victorious Rebel Alliance 'The Resistance' now... STILL FIGHTING the war so that the CORPORATE DICTATORS can stay in power!

All this post rebel victory stuff was covered in the SW comic books and novels that Disney chucked out of the Falcon's window recklessly once they bought SW from Lucas. Now they're going to give us THEIR MEDIOCRE VERSION OF IT ALL?!?!? Hell no!!

Friday, August 3, 2018

Cruising... OUT OF CONTROL

MISSION: SIR TOM CRUISE-Sir Tom Cruise's (is this guy a knight yet??) latest movie is a huge, overblown mess.  By now everyone has heard about Sir Tom Cruise doing his own stunts but so what? Is that what this series of action films have come down to? Is that the main draw?? Is 'Mission: Impossible' a circus or a play (one that happens to be filmed)? I sure wish it were a play because right now the movies feel like circus acts with one amazing trick followed by another. Sir Tom's action pieces are reminiscent of fantastic big tent acts (meant to cause your jaw to drop only). To hell with the story because this movie moves from one 'jaw drop' to the next. Meanwhile the content of the story, what their is pacing, what there is of character arcs are either not there or sorely underdeveloped. So much so that we don't really buy into the idea that the world is in danger and super agent Ethan Hunt (the real alter BIG ego of Sir Tommy) is really out to save it. These movies are now about TOM CRUISE and when an actor outshines his subject matter  (in a particular film series especially) it means one or the other IS NOT GROWING.

Take for instance the LOUSY and UNIMAGINATIVE STORY given to us by ANOTHER Hollywood director who thinks he can write. (RESEARCH). A group of 3 nuclear bombs have been stolen (a cliché at this point in film history!) and are up for sale on the black market. Cruise and his team bungle a planned interception of a sale to a notorious crime Lord and are now desperate to get the nuke cores back. But because this is spy-land, all is not what it seems and everyone, I mean  EVERYONE is lying. So for 2 hrs and more we see the original premise mentioned above get stretched, trampled on and spit at by all of the 2 dimensional 'characters' and with each new 'the plot thickens' device Ethan / Cruise gets to do another wild stunt.

What gets me throughout watching this film is how little drama there was. How little jeopardy. Not for a moment did I think that ANYONE was really in trouble of being nuked or even scratched. To seemingly emphasize this point the film puts Sir Tom Cruise and others through A LOT of battles -many of them at high speed. But NONE of the principal characters get even remotely injured (except in real life where Sir Thompson actually busted or fractured or whatever his ankle during one of his hair-brained stunts). And speaking of other characters many of them had did nothing on the screen worth their acting abilities. This is a TOM CRUISE MOVIE we are told every 5 seconds -because he's never off screen for more than those 5 seconds -and don,"t you forget it!!

Which brings me to my concluding point / question. Why, oh why is Sir Thom Cruise STEALING WORK FROM THE MASSES OF UNEMPLOYED STUNT MEN HANGING AROUND THE HOLLYWOOD SIGN ON ANY GIVEN DAY OF THE WEEK?!?! It was a shame when CGI (computer generated imagery) put our REAL AMERICAN HEROES -the stunt men, out of work. Now Tom Cruise is putting the final nail in the coffin. Even his co-star, Henry Caville (who can almost have his own 'Mission' series, he's quite entertaining in this movie) said he did his own stunts. So, this movie let it's two biggest stars do their own stunts, sometimes in the hundreds of times (Thom Cruise's HALO jump took over 100 takes to get it right or so they claim) and in so doing sent maybe a dozen stunt men to the food kitchen or the welfare office in the process. A damn shame. Cruise hogging all of the fame on his films. Damn shame. LET THE OTHERS SHINE MORE, CRUISY-BOY. IT WON'T HURT YOU ONE BIT.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

REALLY Transformed 'Transformers: The Last Knight'

ANOTHER Hollywood piece of trash filmmaking splashes down in your nearest theater's toilet!! 'TRANSFORMERS: Part Whatever'! This story is so bad that I rewrote it in order to entertain myself as I watched this dumbass movie. So kick back and enjoy my transformed Transformers (it's better than Hollywood's!)


STARRING (in ant-like marching order)
-MARK WAHLBERG as Struggling Actor Unable To Make The Transition To More Serious Films
-ISABELA MONER as the actress with the sexy last name that no producer could ignore!
-JOSH DUHAMEL as the actor who threatened to quit 3 times during the making of the film.
-ANTHONY HOPKINS as the shameless Scrooge-actor out to make every single dime off of his past history of being a classy thesbian (rhymes uncomfortably with LESBIAN doesn't it?) -MAN DRINKING COLD BEER as himself.
-THE TRANSFORMERS as real space aliens who choose to work for free in order to help Hollywood offset the cost of illegal movie downloads and high agents' (not stars) fees.

-The NRA (National Rifle Association) in association with Planned Parenthood

-Jack Shakespeare (William Shakespeare's direct descendant)
-Stan Lee
-Ivanka Trump

-Domino's Pizza (fake cheese masters)

-The Motion Picture Academy
-The Screen Director's Guild
-The Actor's Guild
-The Movie Caterer's Association (food trucks)
-Every acting school and film school within the continental United States

-Bruce Lee Tea

"I want my check, motherfuckers. And I want it by the end of the day." -Bill the Studio Janitor

In a world increasingly turning to green or natural resources for fuel the gasoline guzzling Transformers set out on a mission to prove that climate change is a lie and that gasoline is still the best way to get from zero to 60 MPH in under one minute. But their evil, ex bad guy nemesis, Megatron, has vowed to stop them!

Another Michael Bay special effects jerk-off fest!!! Hell yeah!! I brought by cybernetic nerd-boy raincoat to stroke off in the corner of the theater at all of the disguised male testosterone splashed up on the screen!! When I came I screamed out, "Michael Baayy!! I fucking love you!!!" Then the surly usher came in a said, "Shut the fuck up, you creep! You're disturbing the other viewers!"

THE REVIEW: This film was great! Go see it right now and don't pay like I did by donning a pair of Dickey's worker clothing and telling the stupid theater employees that you're there to check the HVAC (air conditioning). They'll wave you through.

THE BOTTOM LINE: Stay at home and mail your money to the studios with a letter that states, 'PLEASE REMOVE THIS WORTHLESS CRAP FROM MY LOCAL CINEMA. THANK YOU'. This way you can be honest and kinda hip by telling your idiot pals that did see it that you paid to NOT see it.

Copyright © 2017 George Alan Booker -All Rights Reserved on this planet (Earth) or any of the new planets recently discovered by NASA.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

The Guardians of the Puritanical Galaxy!

Just watched a soulless movie (and by soulless I also mean 'sexless') that all but forgot about romance and affection, 'Guardians of the Galaxy 2'. The over-eager to please director and producers filled this film with so much material junk that not a single aspect of affection beyond a long delayed 'hand around the waist of another'is seen. A cold and uninvolving waste of time!! Shit blowing up left and right, forced humor, dull performances (do to a lackluster script). This movie is best summed up by paraphrasing a better writer, William Shakespeare, and his legendary 'Macbeth':

"Sequels, and reboots, and remakes,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief theater lights!
Movies are but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets an hour or more upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing."

Somebody at Marvel or Disney or whoever the hell owns 'Guardians of the Galaxy' (Fox?) owes me $9.75!! The price of my movie ticket!! You bastards! You thieves in the night. You highway robbers lured me in with snazzy visuals then dumped your junk on my consciousness in a movie that's over 2 FUCKING HOURS which won't add a bit of relief to the continuous misery that is my life!! And if you cheat me there you've cheated me everywhere because that's why I and others go to watch your crap --to get away from our crappy lives! But you DENIED ME THAT ESCAPE with your BULLSHIT. You have millions of dollars to hire professional writers but what do you do? You allow your director who has the writing skills of a detention-surfing high school loser to use that money as if it were a multi-million dollar writing class!!! Fucking bullshit ass film.

-George Alan Booker

NOTE: to be fair I actually slept through half of the film (late showing) but whenever I woke up all I saw was shit hitting the fan! Nothing else. Not one smooch between lead characters Peter and Gamora!!

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The Last 'Force Awakens' Rant You'll Ever Need To Read

What a lousy design concept for a Star Wars villain. I was looking for more 'Star Wars 8:
The Last Jedi' news to deride when I came across this pic of Daffy Duck in a hood looking creepy. Couldn't help but think of that poorly motivated 'The Force Awakens' villain, Kylo Ren. I don't have to talk about why it resembles him, now do I?

I say Kylo Ren's character is poorly motivated because if the insinuations and indications are to be believed, that he trained under Luke Skywalker before betraying him, then almost certainly Luke would've told Kylo that his father was redeemed in the end by the Force. That Vader, after his death, would never approve of anyone wishing to be like him. Recall how he told his son Luke at the end of 'Return of the Jedi' that Luke was right about him (meaning that he wasn't a lost cause).

Now here comes Kylo, years later, the son of both Leai and Han, who also would've told him about Vader's turn from evil. SOMEHOW Kylo ignores all of these significant figures in his life, and pretends that their appraisal of Vader was a LIE. That Vader is STILL EVIL. He virtually prays to the recovered helmet of Vader in 'The Force Awakens', expressing admiration for his evil.

This is DOUBLY STUPID. It means that Kylo or another had to go to the Moon of Endor and in the process of recovering Vader's melted helmet actually VERIFY part of Luke, Han, and Leia's story about Vader's end.

Now if all this isn't enough to convince you that Disney simply intends on treating OUR beloved Star Wars as a FAT CASH COW then get this: Rumors are already circulating that Star Wars 8: The Last Jedi, the sequel in the new Rey trilogy is building up to be simply a REMAKE of the EMPIRE STRIKES BACK (the 2nd film in the Luke Skywalker trilogy). Another goddamn remake?? Of course it won't exactly mirror 'The Empire Strikes Back' but script leaks and other hints suggest that it will be dark in tone like 'Empire' was and that Rey will lose a hand or other body part like Luke did in his 2nd film. What else are they going to monkey? Will we get another battle on a snow planet like Hoth??

All this points to a sad fact: The people in charge of Hollywood's major studios, for the most part, are not storytellers. Take a look at this little gaff that I just noticed: In the entire film 'The Force Awakens', no one really questions Rey's origins? For all they know she could be an Imperial spy! She was not vetted when she arrived at the RESISTANCE BASE. She and Finn were not checked out at all! Fantastically stupid 'writing'. They could easily have been SUICIDE BOMBERS who could have blown up ALL of the Rebels -or excuse me- 'The Resistance's' leaders by sitting in on one meeting with them!! What a fucking joke this 'story' was.

Notice that Rey's last name is never revealed. Yet this startling lack of admission by any of the characters points to the whole thing as being a PLOT DEVICE. Something created in an ad hoc manner to move the plot on easily, but without having an explanation for it's own existence. Had the heroes began to question Rey's lack of a last name then questions about her (real) identity and thus her actual allegiances would have risen. But the Disney hustlers were too busy looking for a way to get her into the Resistance fast enough to imitate the plot of 'A New Hope', the original Star Wars film, so they could get back the 4 billion dollars they spent in purchasing the Star Wars saga from George Lucas.

Anyway this whole new Star Wars saga starring Rey is a joke and should be treated as one -especially from a professional point of view. Only film illiterate people are raving about this film. People who don't give a fuck about originality or pacing or plotting, etc. and / or who only like the actors in the storyline because they did at least try to make the stupid unoriginal script seem legitimate. And fuck all those people who say that originality is an untrue idea. If your shit reminds others of other people's shit then it's NOT ORIGINAL. If it doesn't remind them of it but is the first of it's kind --in quality, in execution, in detail, then it's ORIGINAL. The original (first) Star Wars was full of stuff that REMINDED you of other films but the quality of it, the execution, the designs, the details were ORIGINAL. Therefore it wasn't attacked as being a rip-off like 'The Force Awakens' has been. 

Coyright 2017 by George Alan Booker, All Rights Reserved