3 items from 2014
Wow, what happened to Odd Thomas? Upon the announcement that Stephen Sommers (GI Joe: Rise Of Cobra/The Mummy) would be adapting Dean Koontz’s supernatural “comedy,” people were excited (maybe?)! Anton Yelchin signed on, Willem Dafoe signed on, and all seemed business as usual until something truly odd happened – no one cared. A few critics saw it, some negative reviews poured out, and suddenly Odd Thomas turned into a Direct-to-DirectTV movie, not that being straight VOD is a negative, but it’s a strange telltale at times. Did that scare me away? Of course not, this fearless critic dared to follow Odd Thomas into battle - and now here we are talking about a pancake-flipping Nancy Drew wannabe. Why didn’t I listen?
- Matt Donato
To say that Gregg Araki’s bigscreen version of “White Bird in a Blizzard” isn’t quite what one imagined when reading the Laura Kasischke novel is like complaining that Picasso’s “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon” doesn’t capture the models who posed for it. With the exception of Tim Burton, few American directors have maintained a stronger auteurial hold on their careers than Araki, who seizes on “White Bird” as a chance to explore familiar issues of body image, sexual awakening and extreme family dysfunction with his trademark mix of uneasy seduce-and-repel tactics. It’s naughty, campy and wildly uneven — “a film by Gregg Araki,” in other words, with all the commercial limitations that implies.
Whereas Kasischke’s eloquent novel was loosely inspired by a true story, speculating on a Midwest housewife’s sudden disappearance, Araki’s often-clunky adaptation edges the material into a hyper-stylized parallel dimension, where the »
- Peter Debruge
Veronica Mars has moved on. Ten years after graduating from high school, she’s a promising New York attorney with a serious boyfriend. Her days of playing Nancy Drew over. But that alone would be a horrible waste of $5.7 million in Kickstarter funds.
In the first trailer for the big-screen Mars movie, Kristen Bell’s Veronica is drawn back to Neptune to prove that Logan didn’t kill his girlfriend. Conveniently, the mystery coincides with her class’s 10th reunion, so all her friends and frenemies are in town to pick up where they left off.
Beware, there is some catch-phrasing. »
- Jeff Labrecque
3 items from 2014
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