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items tagged with James Franco

Girls Gone Wilder: "Spring Breakers," "Application," and "The Croods"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2013-04-01 16:47:56

Selena Gomez, Rachel Korine, Vanessa Hudgens, and Ashley Benson in Spring BreakersSPRING BREAKERS

At the screening of Spring Breakers that I attended, I counted eight viewers who walked out of the movie, and stayed out, well before the end credits rolled. In all honesty, I’m amazed the tally wasn’t higher than that. The movie being touted in print and in trailers promises a rowdy, randy romp in the sun with built-in audience-grabbers: Disney princesses acting nasty! James Franco with cornrows and grillz! But the movie that writer/director Harmony Korine has actually made – despite, indeed, its also being a rowdy, randy romp in the sun – bears so little relation to its cheeky, borderline-innocuous advertising campaign that patrons can be easily forgiven for feeling badly misled and deciding to bolt. It would be like going to see Dumbo and instead getting Gus Van Sant’s Elephant.


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Wizard of Blahs: "Oz the Great & Powerful" and "Dead Man Down"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2013-03-10 03:08:36

James Franco in Oz the Great & PowerfulOZ THE GREAT & POWERFUL

As numerous effect-heavy entertainments have proved over the years, few film actors, and even fewer good ones, look altogether comfortable performing in wholly pixelated landscapes opposite wholly digitized characters. Yet I’m not sure I’ve seen any star look less connected with his artificial environment than James Franco does in Oz the Great & Powerful, director Sam Raimi’s mega-budgeted and intensely disappointing prequel to The Wizard of Oz.


Read More About Wizard Of Blahs: "Oz The Great & Powerful" And "Dead Man Down"...


Getting High School: "21 Jump Street" and "Casa de Mi Padre"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2012-03-20 18:14:50

Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum in 21 Jump Street21 JUMP STREET

As an undercover police officer who, in 21 Jump Street, can say to his platonic partner “I cherish you, man” in a way that’s both hysterical and intensely touching, Jonah Hill possesses a rare gift for completely unembarrassed sincerity. By now, it should go without saying that Hill is a sensational verbal comedian and a fearless physical one. But as in his bro-mantic scenes opposite Michael Cera in Superbad, the actor brings to this action comedy something few others would think to: absolute honesty and emotional transparency. Hill is funny as hell here, but his character is never a joke.

Yet the delightful shock of this parody of and homage to the late-’80s TV drama – a series that famously cast Johnny Depp as a pretty-boy cop who infiltrates schools and youth hangouts disguised as a student – is that Hill’s co-star actually matches him in earnestness and hilarity, and his name is Channing Tatum.


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War, Strife, and the House of Payne: "The Sitter," "Like Crazy," "Margin Call," "The Descendants," "New Year's Eve," and "Dog Jack"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2011-12-11 21:28:51

Landry Bender, Kevin Hernandez, Max Records, and Jonah Hill in The SitterIn a rather perverse bit of scheduling, at least for me, last weekend brought with it the area release of exactly zero debuting films, while this past weekend delivered six ... on the same weekend, I should add, that I had a lengthy road trip out of town and appeared in four performances of a local stage production. But I’m not one to complain. Onward!


Read More About War, Strife, And The House Of Payne: "The Sitter," "Like Crazy," "Margin Call," "The Descendants," "New Year's Eve," And "Dog Jack"...


Swap Meat: “The Change-Up” and “Rise of the Planet of the Apes”
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2011-08-07 00:13:07

Jason Bateman and Ryan Reynolds in The Change-UpTHE CHANGE-UP

The Change-Up, in which Jason Bateman’s discontented husband and father magically swaps bodies with Ryan Reynolds’ perfectly contented slacker dumb-ass, is an appallingly smutty and juvenile slapstick. In the segment that finds Reynolds (in Bateman’s body) preparing a late-night feeding for his pal’s infant twins – with one tot seen playing with butcher knives and the other reaching into the blender and sticking his tongue into an electrical socket – it features one of the most painfully unfunny scenes in cinema history, and I’m not excluding any given scene in Sophie’s Choice or Schindler’s List.


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