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items tagged with Margo Martindale

Kitten Caboodle: "Keanu," "Ratchet & Clank," and "Mother’s Day"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2016-05-01 15:42:24

Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele in KeanuKEANU

One of the most revered sketches from Comedy Central’s Key & Peele – the sublime Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele series that ended its five-year run in September – is titled “Phone Call.” In it, Key stands at a street corner talking with his wife on his phone, sweetly promising to take her to the theatre. Out of a nearby building walks Peele in a black jacket and baggy jeans, dialing his own cell as he approaches the crosswalk. The men make fleeting, wary eye contact, and after they do, Key’s yuppie, assuming the role of street tough, resumes his conversation substituting “dem” for “them” and “dat” for “that,” and telling his wife, “I’mo’ pick yo’ ass up at 6:30, den!” Peele, who began his own phone convo with “’Sup, dawg?”, gives Key a nod of recognition and crosses the street. But the instant Key is out of earshot, Peele’s own tough-guy façade crumbles with his phone friend. “Oh my God, Christian,” he says with swishy panic, “I almost totally just got mugged right now!”

In many ways, Keanu, the first movie to boast Key and Peele as headliners, is like a feature-length, action-comedy take on that classic sketch – a tale of two mild-mannered suburbanites forced to adopt “street” poses and lingo to placate the sensibilities, or survive the wrath, of other blacks. The bitingly funny, incisive joke of “Phone Call,” however, took 47 seconds to tell, punchline and all. Keanu, by contrast, lasts just over an hour and a half, and both the joke and its capper are pretty much old news after the first 15 minutes. Without question, there are plenty of hilarious moments throughout, and the sharp-witted leads exude spectacular confidence and charisma. (I’m sure I’ll regret saying this someday, but at present, it’s unimaginable that any Key and Peele showcase wouldn’t be at least slightly worth viewing.) Yet you can have a pretty good time at director Peter Atencio’s big-screen debut and still wish – despite its stars, its concept, and the cutest damned kitten you’ve ever seen – that you were having a much better one.
Read More About Kitten Caboodle: "Keanu," "Ratchet & Clank," And "Mother’S Day"...


Near-Def Experience: "Heaven Is for Real," "Transcendence," "Bears," and "A Haunted House 2"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2014-04-21 18:25:09

Greg Kinnear and Kelly Reilly in Heaven Is for RealHEAVEN IS FOR REAL

So far this year, audiences for faith-based films at the multiplex have been treated to Son of God, God’s Not Dead, and Noah, and now there’s director Randall Wallace’s Heaven Is for Real to add to the mix. Have the Hollywood powers-that-be heard something about an imminent Rapture that the rest of us haven’t? Should I now be feeling awkward and guilty about my raucous laughter at This Is the End?


Read More About Near-Def Experience: "Heaven Is For Real," "Transcendence," "Bears," And "A Haunted House 2"...


Her and Her and Her and Her and Her and Her and … : "Her" and "August: Osage County"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2014-01-13 03:28:27

Joaquin Phoenix and Amy Adams in HerHER

Her, writer/director Spike Jonze’s tale of a man who falls in love with his computerized operating system, and “she” with him, casts a weirdly hypnotic spell. Although billed as comedy (as least by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association), you don’t really laugh much, and when you do, the laughter generally sticks in an odd, uncomfortable place in your throat; marveling at the unbridled sincerity of the thing, your chuckles are laced with a slight hint of mockery. Yet damned if Jonze, star Joaquin Phoenix, and the film’s superb supporting cast and designers don’t make this improbable project pay off in spades. Thoughtful, haunting, and perceptive, and at all times wickedly clever, Her is like a sci-fi Lost in Translation with a Scarlett Johansson you never get to see.


Read More About Her And Her And Her And Her And Her And Her And … : "Her" And "August: Osage County"...


Caster Roiled: "Beautiful Creatures" and "A Good Day to Die Hard"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2013-02-17 23:28:25

Viola Davis, Alice Englert, and Alden Ehrenreich in Beautiful CreaturesBEAUTIFUL CREATURES

As it concerns a sensitive high-schooler who enters a world of trouble after falling for a moodier version of Sabrina the Teenage Witch, it should come as no shock to learn that the supernatural romance Beautiful Creatures is based on the first in a series of popular young-adult novels. But while I’d never argue that the YA-lit genre is completely humorless, surely the gender-reversed Twilight knock-off by co-authors Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl can’t be as legitimately, intentionally hilarious as this big-screen adaptation, right?


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McCarthyism ... the Good Kind: "Win Win," "Fast Five," and "Hoodwinked Too! Hood Vs. Evil"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2011-05-02 13:33:21

Paul Giamatti and Alex Shaffer in Win WinWIN WIN

When I say that writer/director Tom McCarthy’s Win Win could easily serve as the inspiration for a long-running TV series, I don’t mean it in any way insultingly, partly because our current small-screen options are, in general, vastly superior to our big-screen ones. Mostly, though, it’s because this serious-minded comedy is so teeming with nuanced, empathetic characters and complicated yet wholly plausible situations and circumstances that you want to luxuriate in Win Win’s universe for far longer than the movie’s too-brief 100 minutes – like, for an hour a week over several seasons.


Read More About McCarthyism ... The Good Kind: "Win Win," "Fast Five," And "Hoodwinked Too! Hood Vs. Evil"...





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