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Seeing this film's premise, one can’t help but wonder what would have happened had filmmakers cast Christian Bale as the protagonist in every Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson movie. On its face, the movie's plot doesn’t stray too far from your basic vengeance action flick: a wrong man goes up against a seemingly unstoppable force of evil to rescue/ avenge his loved ones. This movie is a true testament to what an incredible cast can do for a script.
Mention Boys Town and, chances are, someone will reply, 'Oh yes, that 1930s movie about the priest. Didn’t Spencer Tracy win the Academy Award for best actor that year?' The answer, of course, is yes. But there’s so much more to the story.
Vince Vaughn stars in yet another mediocre sell-out; this time, playing an average Joe, who, through sperm donations, has fathered hundreds of children. It’s a 5.
I’m confused. This movie has received a ton of award buzz, particularly for the lead acting performance of Oscar favorite Bruce Dern and the breakout dramatic performance of SNL alum Will Forte. Suffice it to say, the bar was set high. To say the movie failed to live up to expectations is an understatement.
Well, I’m not delighted. I’m not disappointed. I’m not teary (not too teary). I’m not charmed. What I am is incensed. This movie pulls what I refer to as a 'trailer dupe.' That’s where the trailer leads you to believe a movie is one thing—in this case a heartwarming comic adventure to reunite a mother with her long-lost son--but the film is something else entirely.
Every year, LN salutes local nonprofits commemorating milestone anniversaries. Whether distributing and planting trees, providing a safe home for children in need or supporting those touched by cancer, these organizations continue to make a difference in St. Louis. To celebrate, we’ve shared a few of their histories and goals for the future.
Frankly, this is one of those movie reviews where the space would be better filled by giving you my savory beef stew recipe than actually discussing the film. I mean, I could tell you that halfway through the movie, pigmies run in and jab the audience with pointy sticks. But if you’re going to see it, you’re going to see it. On the flip side, I could tell you that going to see this movie is like watching Pretty Woman, sitting next to George Clooney, while getting a foot massage, eating Champagne truffles on Prozac. But if you don’t want to see it, you’re not going to see it.
If all you really wanted for Christmas was a movie you could go to without contemplating asking for your money back, Hollywood may be able to help…finally. Here’s what coming in December:
The work of legendary Hollywood costume designer Edith Head can be seen in classic movies such as Roman Holiday, To Catch A Thief and Funny Face, work by the likes of Ginger Rogers, Bette Davis, Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn and others. With more than eight Academy Awards and 35 nominations under her belt, it’s no wonder Head inspired actress, writer and artistic director Susan Claassen to pen a one-woman play in her honor. In December, Claassen will bring A Conversation With Edith Head to St. Louis. Claassen spoke with Ladue News about creating the show and what it’s like to portray the great Ms. Head.
In the midst of all the shopping and the planning, it’s easy to forget that the holidays are really all about making time to be with family and friends. We asked local experts for tips to make this year’s seasonal gathering the most memorable one yet.
It seems a lot of people had very high hopes for this film. Critics certainly predicted it would have a presence come awards season. Matthew McConaughey definitely had big ambitions as he continues to chase the ever-elusive Oscar predicted for him so many years ago. Most important, audiences had the bar set high in anticipation of a thought-provoking, touching and beautifully acted film. All I can say is, don’t shoot the messenger.
The Baldwin report
If you need a break from your Oscar checklist, or simply prefer to watch some of the early contenders from the comfort of your couch, here are the latest releases on DVD (and most popular downloads). It’s a good week for action fans. For your convenience, I’ve divided them into two categories: Worth a Watch and Must Miss.
I’m always iffy about time-travel movies--there’s always that over-analysis of plot points that strain the willing suspension of disbelief. That being said, this romantic dra-medy employs time-travel as both a comedic device and a catalyst for the life lesson that is the film’s focus. So, in a way, the logic--or lack thereof--of traveling back in time to relive an event is less important than the bigger picture. That’s all a very wordy way of saying, Don’t think too much about it, just enjoy it.
One can’t help but immediately be struck by the striking similarity between this film and another Oscar contender, Gravity. Neither is a plot-driven film, and both feature a lone character fighting for survival against a powerful force of nature. Instead of Sandra Bullock’s frenetic stream-of-consciousness chatter, here we have Robert Redford’s stoic sailor. For those of you who have thought through the years that Redford is so spectacularly attractive you could just watch him for two hours, here’s your chance.
This month, we bring you the story of Tom Schlafly. It was 22 years ago that Schlafly had the audacity to think that he could start a microbrewery in the hometown of the King of Beers.
Story: The well-to-do Duncans of Main Line, Philadelphia seem to live in a TV sitcom from the ‘50s. Arthur is a bank president, his wife Grace spends her days dressed in heels and jewelry on shopping sprees and daughter Emma is a bundle of frazzled nerves from her wide eyes down to her bobby socks. She desperately longs for boyfriend Tommy to pop the question so they can get married and she can start her own idyllic family. Instead, Grace orders Tommy to put on a maid’s uniform and get busy with his new chores, since she’s unimpressed that he’s a waiter.
Here, we have the golden years’ version of The Hangover: Four friends head to Vegas for a bachelor party; this time, the groom is 70. So far, so good. No doubt four lifelong buddies heading out to Sin City would provide a seamless vein of comedy to mine, one would think.
Here’s the thing: Is it possible to dislike this movie? Surely, one can loathe slavery, inhumanity and evil, and not particularly like a film about it. This movie tells an unfathomably horrible true story about the abduction and enslavement of a free black man in mid-19th century America. It’s painful to watch—often because of the subject matter and occasionally because of some awkward film-making and direction that doesn't seem to trust the power of the story itself.
OK. So it’s no secret that Hollywood is a shining example of environmentalism. I mean, when it comes to reuse and recycle, the film industry is unrivaled. If a movie’s a hit, they make it another hit and then another. Let’s see if we can hit a 10-figure, worldwide box-office gross without burning a single creative calorie. The film industry will squeeze every dollar out of a good movie down to the last action figure. It’s the soul-less version of using all the parts of the buffalo.
Students at The Wilson School used cardboard, recycled materials and their imaginations to design and build creations as part of this year’s Cardboard Challenge. The global event involved almost 77,000 people, and the students used a broad range of skills to prepare for, promote and participate in the challenge. Projects ranged from cardboard vehicles designed by pre-kindergarteners to arcade games engineered and constructed by upper-school students.