13 items from 2014
Directed by David Ayer.
Members of an elite DEA task force find themselves being taken down one by one after they rob a drug cartel safe house.
Arnold Schwarzenegger’s post political return to film has been a bit of a mixed bag thus far. Aside from a couple of token appearances in the first two Expendables films, his films have all tanked (including his token appearance in The Expendables 3). That’s not to say his output hasn’t been without merits. Arnold’s first proper re-introduction came in the simple, yet highly enjoyable The Last Stand, a film which grows on me every time I see it, and deserved to be watched by more than the half dozen people who actually bothered to see it in cinemas. »
- Gary Collinson
Directed by John McTiernan
The concept of a film within a film is an idea that provides for truly interesting cinema. Films that are self-referential, satiric, and make fun of their own genre are often hilarious, thought-provoking, and downright fun. 1993’s cult favorite Last Action Hero is an action-fantasy that pokes fun at the action film genre in more ways than one. It stars the incomparable blockbuster movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger who is playing himself. Last Action Hero pretty much has it all and if you are a fan of the Austrian star or just action cinema in general, then this is the perfect film for you.
The film focuses on Danny Madigan (Austin O’Brien), a 12-year-old troublemaker obsessed with movies, in particular those of action hero Jack Slater, a fictionalized version of Schwarzenegger. »
- Randall Unger
Maverick has a problem: Too. Much. Awesome.
Maverick isn’t just a pilot. He’s the best pilot there ever was or ever will be. He’s not the best of the best: He’s the best of the best…of the best. But his superiors can’t handle Maverick. He flies the way he wants to fly — awesomely. His superiors try to teach him the value of teamwork or whatever. The super-hot lady instructor with the boy’s name tries to heal him using totally sweet neon-lighted lovemaking, and also by getting him to deal with his emotionally distant father. »
- Darren Franich
Justified, Season 5, Episode 8: “Whistle Past the Graveyard” Written by Chris Provenzano Directed by Peter Werner Airs Tuesdays at 10pm Et on FX - Take what you can get: “Whistle Past the Graveyard” doesn’t fix what’s wrong with Season 5 of Justified, but it at least has the decency to provide a few jolts of the series’ trademark wit, character, and crackerjack pacing, which is a little more than could be said of last week’s outing.
The three main stories of the season represented this week (Art’s relationship with Raylan isn’t referenced) could not feel more segregated right now, which will probably be rectified before long, but it remains a persistent thorn in the side. The fact that series pro Chris Provenzano (“Raw Deal,” “Decoy”) takes the reigns this week but can’t marshal a whole lot of forwardmomentum is a troubling sign. Of the three, »
- Simon Howell
Review Matthew Giordano 6 Mar 2014 - 14:14
This week's Justified shows that so-called honour amongst thieves leaves much to be desired...
This review contains spoilers.
5.8 Whistle Past The Graveyard
Religion, family, and finding one’s place in the world were the core themes presented in this week’s episode of Justified. In particular, we had the dysfunctional Crowe family at the forefront when a shocking but predictable family secret was revealed in that Wendy is actually Kendall’s mother, not his aunt. Wendy explains that she got pregnant at twenty-two and that the father was a low-level schemer who simply did not want to be a father so they decided on another course of action to raise Kendall. “Uncle” Jack as we will find out, still has a habit of getting into trouble and rather than confront his problems he still prefers to cut and run. In all of this turmoil »
FX‘s Justified Raw Deal TV Show Review. This Justified: Season 5, Episode 7: Raw Deal TV show review is in video form utilizing the trailer promo for the episode. Justified: Season 5, Episode 7: Raw Deal‘s plot synopsis: “Raylan pursues a grifter. Meanwhile, Boyd and the Crowes head south for business.” Justified: Season [...]
Continue reading: Video TV Review: Justified: Season 5, Episode 7: Raw Deal [FX] »
- Michael Smith
Review Matthew Giordano 27 Feb 2014 - 07:50
Justified's otherwise excellent fifth season delivers its first disappointing episode. Here's Matthew's review...
This review contains spoilers.
5.7 Raw Deal
I almost want to say that Justified took a step back this week in regards to its narrative momentum, but to be fair, Raw Deal developed a few major plot points further. That said, now that Art is fully aware of Raylan's involvement in the death of Nicky Augustine it's becoming frustrating to have Art's decision about whether to turn Raylan in for his actions get dragged on for another week. Art has decided for now to put Raylan on extremely tedious and boring duty in which he has to be at work at seven Am and handle absolutely mindless cases. Of course, as luck would have it, Raylan's first case involves a man seeking compensation from the Us Marshals service for money he lost »
Written by VJ Boyd
Directed by Bill Johnson
Airs Tuesdays at 10pm Et on FX -
Why does it feel like so little happens in “Raw Deal”? A relatively major character bites the dust, Boyd’s Mexican adventure appears to be imperiled nice and early, Ava makes a play at being a state-pen kingpin in order to keep her dignity, and Raylan might very well be headed to work in a totally different Marshals office. That’s very far from nothing, but “Raw Deal” still feels curiously free of friction, a resource Justified does not usually lack for.
Part of the problem is the kinda-sorta-a-plot, a weirdly insubstantial trifle in which Raylan tracks down a hacker named T.C. (played by T.J. Linnard, who also plays C.J. on Looking — got all that?) who swindles his way into a $250K payday by passing »
- Simon Howell
If there were an Olympics for burning through plot, Justified would be a front-runner for the gold. At the end of "Raw Deal" — written by V.J. Boyd and directed by Bill Johnson — everything seems to have been re-oriented yet again. By the end of the episode, Boyd Crowder's treacherous cousin Johnny lies dead on rocky Mexican terrain, along with the henchmen he presumably poached from his onetime ally Rodney "Hot Rod" Dunham. (A marvelous, predictive exchange earlier finds Johnny asking Boyd to tell him how Hot Rod tipped him off. "Some questions don't get answered till the afterlife," Boyd drawls. "The good news is, you'll find out soon enough.") Boyd had gone to Mexico to retrieve his 25 kilos of heroin — he's living the life of a freelancer these days. The hothead Danny Crowe jump-started the massacre when he mistakenly thought one of Johnny's goons was going for a piece. »
- Matt Zoller Seitz
Now that much of the Justified's encumbering characters have been shaved away (Lee Paxton, Mooney, Mara), season five has been able to focus on more engaging aspects of the story. And while the writers have always been great at juggling multiple storylines, this season feels the most disjointed so far. Particularly on Raylan's side of town, where this week seemed to be a disconnected one-off story. I guess Raylan needed something to do while Boyd and the Crowes headed south of the border. We're now seven episodes deep and it's still blurry how all these plots are going to collide. More on the entertaining as hell "Raw Deal" after the break. So far this season Raylan's story has been mainly about our favorite marshal's guilt over what he's done. He feels no remorse over his implicitness in Nicky Augustine's execution, hell no. But there are some pangs of guilt hitting him by leaving Tim, »
- Patrick Cooper
Spoiler alert! If you haven’t watched this week’s episode of Justified, “Raw Deal” written by VJ Boyd and directed by Bill Johnson, stop reading now. As he’ll do throughout the season, showrunner Graham Yost takes us inside the writers room.
Entertainment Weekly: Let’s start with Art putting Raylan on walk-in duty. In the end, Raylan was pissed enough to tell Art that he’s taking a vacation and when he gets back Art will either treat him like a deputy again or transfer him.
Graham Yost: We were just like, how are we going to kick off this story? »
- Mandi Bierly
Let's examine just how raw things were for everyone.
Art has gone from punching Raylan in the face in the previous episode to freezing him out now, putting Raylan on crummy tasks like handling walk-in cases and delivering his orders through Rachel rather than directly. A walk-in leads Raylan to a case involving a hacker who's tangentially connected to Charles Monroe, and it's a nicely contained, very Elmore Leonard-ish little story.
The bigger story, though, comes when Raylan finally has a conversation with Art about the freeze-out. Art continues to brush him off, to the point where Raylan tells him "I don't need this s***" and asks for a transfer. He says he's taking some vacation time to go to Florida and see his child. »
A review of tonight's "Justified" coming up just as soon as I'm more of a cribbage guy... "Justified" has treated Raylan and Boyd as co-leads for a while now, but there have been times this season where Boyd has gotten so much to do — and been connected to so many different ongoing stories (Ava in prison, Lee Paxton, Cousin Johnny, the Mexican cartel and now this team-up with the Crowes) — that it's felt like he's now the lead and Raylan is a supporting character in his own show. "Raw Deal" certainly does not skimp on Boyd and Boyd-related shenanigans. Ava gets involved with the prison's heroin-smuggling operation and — in part to avoid regular sex with a guard — arranges to have Boyd take over the supply. There's a lengthy interlude in Mexico where it seems like Johnny has gotten one over on Boyd, until it turns out that Yoon wouldn't break »
- Alan Sepinwall
13 items from 2014
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