It’s always fun going back to the old stomping grounds by visiting your college town, that is if you’re not going through some problems like the main character in this movie is.
Written and directed by Kris Rey, “I Used to Go Here” follows Kate (Gillian Jacobs), an author whose first book was recently published. However, the sales aren’t going all that well, and her relationship status is difficult.
Needing a change of scenery, Kate accepts an invitation to speak at her alma mater, which was sent by a professor, David (Jemaine Clement), who taught one of her classes. During her time there, she talks with David about her career and also goes to a party at a frat house, which used to be where her and her friends lived while she attended school.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘I Used to Go Here’ is a charming indie dramedy”
I have a lot of respect for Jon Stewart. He made me laugh on a nightly basis with his show. But wow does he get local politics wrong.
Stewart writes and directs this feature starring Steve Carell as a political strategist for the Democratic Party named Gary Zimmer. Gary works out of Washington D.C. and mainly focuses on national races. After having a successful career, though, Gary is left rather down following the election of 2016 which was disastrous for Democrats.
He gets a spark of hope, though, when he sees a viral video of a man in rural Wisconsin making an impassioned speech about protecting benefits, such as SNAP. The man, who’s also a veteran, is viewed as the perfect Democrat to win in a more rural area of the country, and Gary decides to help him win a race for the small Wisconsin town’s mayoral seat. However, this also draws the attention of the national Republican party, and it sets up a big time political match in a small town not used to the Washington tactics.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Irresistible’ is irritating”
The King of Staten Island isn’t as cool of a title as The King of New York, but few people can be as cool as Christopher Walken.
While this 2020 movie has that title, main character Scott Carlin (Pete Davidson) is certainly no king. In this Judd Apatow-directed feature, Scott is a 24-year-old who lives with his mother Margie (Marisa Tomei) and isn’t a student attending college or working any job.
What Scott does instead is either get high with his friends, or work as an amateur tattoo artist. Much of this behavior is pinned to the death of Scott’s father, who was a firefighter who died in the line of duty. His way of life is challenged, though, when his sister Claire (Maude Apatow) moves to college and his mother begins a relationship with another person working in New York City’s Fire Department, Ray (Bill Burr).
Continue reading “REVIEW: Despite some good moments, ‘King of Staten Island’ can test patience”
This small Minnesota city on the Canadian border has a few claims to fame. It was the inspiration for Frostbite Falls in Rocky and Bullwinkle, it’s officially known as the Icebox of the Nation for its cold temperatures, the high school hockey team has a rich history winning seven state titles and it was the home of National Football League legend Bronko Nagurski.
I can’t say I was ever really expecting my hometown to be the setting for a motion picture, though. Yes, before leaving for college, the setting of this dramatic comedy was where I was born and raised.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘International Falls’ is a strong, amusing look at a stark situation”
“Downhill,” aka, “Marriage Story: On Ice.”
This movie taking place at a ski resort in Austria follows a family of four on vacation. The family includes the parents Billie (Julia Louis Dreyfus) and Pete (Will Ferrell), and their two sons Finn (Julian Grey) and Emerson (Ammon Jacob Ford). The family appears to have some stress from vacation traveling, but seem to be ready for a pleasant trip in Europe.
However, the situation gets rocky when a controlled avalanche to provide more snow on the slopes causes a sequence of events that results in a rift between the married couple. The rest of the trip explores their drama as they navigate the rest of their vacation.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Downhill’ enjoyable thanks to mix of drama, dark comedy”
The movie might bear the title “Late Night,” but it’s only worth an afternoon matinee price.
Emma Thompson stars in the flick as Katherine Newbury, a host of a long-running network evening show that comes up right after your local news. Despite hosting the program since the 90s, though, Newbury’s style on TV has become less popular over time, to the point where ratings have been on the decline for about a decade.
Needing some new energy in the show, and more diversity to boot, the show-runners decide to make a hire in the writing department. Enter Molly (Mindy Kaling), a young woman who works in a Pennsylvania chemical plant, moonlighting as an amateur comic. Molly is hired, through a bit of luck and joins the writing team. However, her some of her ideas clash with the other writers, and Newbury herself. Continue reading “REVIEW: Despite talented cast and crew, ‘Late Night’ stumbles”