Valentines Day

Review: Winter's Tale

Feb 26 // Mike Cosimano
[embed]217345:41273:0[/embed] Winter's TaleDirector: Akira GoldsmanRelease Date: February 14th, 2014Rating: PG-13  Winter’s Tale certainly does not open the way one would expect. Oh, the ponderous, laugh-inducing narration about miracles and love delivered in the flattest of monotones is about par for the course, but that’s only the very first scene. Within seconds, the audience is introduced to a world of demons and magic space horses. This is not the movie I expected, you guys. The whole affair begins in 1900s-era New York City, with thief Peter Lake (Colin Farrell) escaping from demon/gangster/Irishman Pearly Soames (Russell Crowe) with the assistance of aforementioned magic space horse. On Lake’s way out of town, the horse convinces him (seriously) to rob one last mansion. Inside, he meets the lovely Beverly Penn (Jessica Brown Findlay, who I guess was on Downton Abbey?), who is dying of tuberculosis. They fall in love almost immediately, and Lake starts making plans to stick it up her. So far, this seems fairly straightforward. Period piece, romanticization of literally everything on the planet, doomed love, the actual Biblical Satan played by Will Smith. You know, the usual Valentine’s Day fare. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention the whole Lucifer thing. Apparently, the love between Peter and Beverly angers Demon Russell Crowe, so he uses human blood to paint a picture of Beverly (seriously) before trying to stab her in the gut. You see -- and bear with me while I try and figure this out, the movie isn’t totally clear on this -- each person has a “Miracle” they can impart on another human being. And the forces of Hell are very anti-miracle. As Crowe says, “I’ve been crushing miracles for longer than I can remember.” Demon Russell Crowe has a vendetta against Peter Lake because Lake was once part of Crowe’s gang and thought not murdering people was the right way to go about life. So of course, Demon Russell Crowe takes it upon himself to make sure this miracle is crushed right before he murders Lake. To go any further would spoil a good amount of the best surprises Winter’s Tale has to offer. This is a film stuffed to the brim with visuals, lines of dialogue, and plot points that no sane person should have approved, and yet they’re right there! For everyone to see, in this big-budget movie released in cinemas! And yet… I absolutely loved Winter’s Tale, in the same way I “love” Birdemic: Shock and Terror or The Room. I can say with absolute certainty that I have found a new classic bad movie to pull out when my friends are in the mood for an unintentional comedy. Perhaps the best reason to go see Winter’s Tale is Russell Crowe. The reason this movie uses so much greenscreen is because around the second act, there was no more scenery to use. Ol’ Russ had eaten it all. Just about everyone in Winter’s Tale is doing their best -- especially Will Smith -- but only Crowe seems to be having any fun. And believe me, it shows. It’s only February, but I feel confident in calling Pearly Soames one of the year’s funniest characters. He’s twitchy, pompous, and delightfully over-the-top. It’s also hard to imagine anyone other than Russell Crowe portraying this face-splitting Irishman. He embodies this role so well, but I have to imagine that comes from a place of trying to do something interesting with an otherwise forgettable villain. Farrell and Brown Findlay, on the other hand, aren’t exactly phoning this one in, but they add very little to the material. Lines like “Is it possible to love someone so much that they simply can’t die?” are tripe, plain and simple. It’s a shame that both actors play the material straight. Beverly’s father (William Hurt) does not play the material straight. In fact, one might say he does not play the material in any direction, choosing instead to sleepwalk through the entire picture. His tone...well, it’s almost like he’s editing the dialogue as he says it. Hurt barks “What are your intentions with my daughter?” without any real emotion. I half expected him to follow that line up with “What the hell kind of dialogue is this? This isn’t period work, it’s just garbage. Cut it. Cut it, and when you’re done cutting, get my agent on the line. Between this and The Host, I think it’s time to find a new goddamn representative.” That’s just my interpretation, anyway. The effects are terrible, but it’s hard to notice when you’re laughing so hard. Remember that magic horse I mentioned earlier? There’s a scene where it flies through present-day Manhattan with some of the worst greenscreen I’ve seen in my life. But it’s a magic horse flying through present-day Manhattan while black sedans manned by Russell Crowe’s Demon Stockbrokers (seriously!!!) give chase. I only noticed the poor effects towards the end of the sequence, as my laughter subsided. Some of my most beloved film memories revolve around terrible movies, like the offensively low-budget yet dead serious The Amazing Bulk. Watching that fifty-car pileup with my family & friends was an utter delight; one I won’t forget any time soon. I don’t think Winter’s Tale is quite in the same canon as an Amazing Bulk or a Birdemic. But this flick is perfect for the kind of bad movie nights that spawn excellent, lasting inside jokes between good friends. Winter’s Tale is a god-awful love story, but it’ll bring you closer to the people you love. And isn’t that what going to the movies is really all about? No? Ahh, whatever. It’s still hilarious.
Winter's Tale Review photo
Sympathy for the Devils
The poster for Winter’s Tale proudly declares that the film is not a true story. And brother, they couldn’t be more right. Of all the words one could use to describe Winter’s Tale, “true” is ...

Movie Monday for February 17, 2014

Feb 17 // Michael Jordan
Stories Expendabelles gets a plot description and director First Look at Guardians of the Galaxy Marvel Legends What is the worst date movie? 10 Movie Valentines for 2014 Here are some Age of Ultron Vision costume details Transporter series getting rebooted with a new trilogy   Reviews Review: A Field in England Review: Robocop   Trailers First trailer for Drive Hard confirms driving... hard Check out this trailer for Oscar nominated short Feral First trailer for The Purge: Anarchy shows potential New trailer for 'Under the Skin' is still hot and strange New trailer for Brick Mansions featuring Paul Walker New trailer: Transcendence First full trailer for Planes: Fire and Rescue Trailer: Zombeavers
Movie Monday - 2/17/14 photo
A bit late, but you were hung over anyway
Welcome to an extremely late version of Movie Monday, but it was Presidents day so I knew you would have a super hangover. Be sure to check the links below.

What is the worst date movie?

Feb 14 // Alec Kubas-Meyer
Worst Date Movies photo
We answer The (Movie) Question!
Happy Valentine's Day everybody! Some of you are watching this video because you have nothing else to do today, and others are terrified that they're going to show their significant other the wrong thing and end their nights...


10 Movie Valentines for 2014

Feb 14 // Michael Jordan
Let us start with the nice before getting a bit "naughty." 5. Ride Along  4. American Hustle 3. That Awkward Moment 2. Frozen 1. Robocop   Now lets get to the more naughty.  5. The Wolf of Wallstreet 4. Noah 3. The Monuments Men 2. Nut Job 1. The Lego Movie   And from everyone here at Flixist, Happy Valentine's Day!
Be my Flixentine photo
5 naughty and 5 nice
Lets face it, Valentine's Day has become so compressed with corporate Hallmark cards, that no company has the chance to make Valentines with the reckless abandon that we used to see back in the late 80's and early 90's. ...

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Flixistentialism 08 - Butt Fries


yo ho ho and a bottle of rum
Feb 15
// Andres Bolivar
Oh boy. So on this episode ...we celebrate being single on Valentine's Day by getting drunk and talking movies. Also, Nick sings a sweet rendition of Sisqo's "The Thong Song. I'm a little drunk as I write this and I'm not quite sure what happened... so I appologize in advance. Rate us, suscribe us, love us.  

How to use movies to cure your Valentine's Day blues

Feb 14 // Liz Rugg
Part 1 - Watch Something Sad One thing that I think that people don't always understand about grief is that sometimes when you're sad, you just want to be sad. And there's absolutely nothing wrong with that. You just have to really feel the depths of that emotion before you can start to make the long climb back up to normalcy. Part 1 of Liz Rugg's Relationship Sadness Cure is to indulge in that - watch something that will make you sad, that will make you cry, that will make you want to call your best friend to talk about stuff. Here are some suggestions on things to watch to be sad: 1. Blue Valentine Reason number one: Ryan Gosling. Reason number two: relationship that seemed great at first but painfully disintegrates and everyone ends up getting hurt, including the children. 2. (500) Days of Summer (500) Days of Summer is a great movie to watch after a breakup, especially if you're the one who got broken up with. The reason for this is because (*spoilers*) (500) Days of Summer shows that some people are just not a right fit, but that does not mean that you won't have that right fit with someone else. Sometimes, as painful as it may be, the right thing to do is to just move on. 3. Rosemary's Baby Want a movie that will try to prove to you that love is dead, or at least Satanic? Rosemary's Baby is that movie. Lets just say that there is Satanic rape involved while Rosemary's husband watches - he's given the ok in exchange for Satan helping him to further his acting career. Actors, man! Also, Rosemary's Baby will make you not want to ever have sex for fear of producing a demon-child. 4. Lost In Translation Man, what can't be said about how perfect this movie is? Unhappy marriages, unrequited love, all coming to a head in a satisfying, though movingly disappointing ending. Also, I'm fairly sure that Bill Murray could be used as a home remedy for just about any ailment. Including a broken heart. 5. Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind Perpetual Geoffrey Henao favorite, Eternal Sunshine gives us a glimpse at what the world could be like if we had the power to truly erase all of our painful memories. (Again, *spoilers*) The true moral of Eternal Sunshine, however, is despite the fact that, though hypothetically you may be superficially more happy without those memories, there is something truly important - and truly human - about experiencing, enduring, and conquering pain that we all need. Yes, those memories may be painful now and may continue to be painful for a long time, but as they say, all of those memories collect into your experience as a person, and what we learn from our past is up to us. Part 2: Watch Some Guilty Pleasures No, this does not mean porn. So, we've been down the tunnel of sadness and we've reached the point where we're ready for a pick-me-up. Now's the time to pop in something that will make you feel better! Unfortunately, I can't tell you quite what that is - for me it was Studio Ghibli movies and Cowboy Bebop, but for some people it could be a slasher/horror movie. For some people, it's some cerebral, mind-bending movie; for others, possibly an old classic. Whatever it is, queue it up and watch the crap out of it. If it's truly your guilty pleasure, I guarantee that it will make you feel better. Part 3: (Optional) Take A Chance on Something New Part of - if not the only - upside to breaking up is that it's a chance for a fresh start. And that this can apply to whatever part of your life you want it to. Use this opportunity to watch those things you've heard a lot about and been meaning to try, but haven't gotten around to. Discovering something wonderful for the first time can give you a sense of bravery and excitement about the possibilities out there in the world.   Alright, if you've followed my instructions carefully, you should be in a much better place than where we started. Happy Valentine's Day to all my fellow single people out there, and remember that things will get better, but when they're not, there's always some movies to watch. Xoxoxo
Valentine's Day Cure photo
For single people's eyes only!
Whether you're happily or unhappily single, if you're single at all, Valentine's day will probably make you sick to your stomach. The important thing to realize today is that you're not alone in this. As someone who's freshly...

Die Hard Valentine's Day cards

Feb 14 // Hubert Vigilla
Die Hard Valentine Cards photo
A Valentine's Day gift to you from your pals at Flixist
Valentine's Day is an odd release date for A Good Day to Die Hard. Maybe Russian Orthodox Christmas on January 7th was too early. Regardless, we think the makers of A Good Day to Die Hard should have totally owned today's dat...

Some Like It Hot: Mary Elizabeth Winstead

Feb 14 // Sean Walsh
Name: Mary Elizabeth Winstead Birthday: November 28th, 1984 (28) Partial filmography: Sky High, Grindhouse: Death Proof, Live Free or Die Hard, Make It Happen, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, The Thing, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, A Good Day to Die Hard (view her IMDb page here) Background: The youngest of five kids, Mary Elizabeth Winstead was born in Rocky Mount, NC. From a young age, she demonstrated a knack for academic achievement and attended advanced classes as early as elementary school. She displayed obvious talent with singing and dancing, pursuing both ballet and choir, but at thirteen she realized that due to her height, ballet was not in her future. Instead, to the benefit of all of us, she took up acting. After a brief stint on Broadway, sharing a stage with Donnie Osmond in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, she made an appearance here or there in shows like Touched By an Angel and Promised Land. Her first really meaty role, however, came in 2005 when she appeared as antagonist Gwen Grayson in Sky High. The next year she starred in the lead role of Final Destination 3, and after that, she appeared in Black Christmas, Death Proof, and as John McClane's daughter in Live Free or Die Hard. In 2010, she donned several brightly-colored wigs and secured her nerd cred as Ramona Flowers in Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World. More recently, she appeared as the lead in The Thing and Mary Todd Lincoln in Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. That brings us to today, where she returns to the Die Hard franchise in A Good Day to Die Hard. Best feature: Her eyes Believe it or not, it's not always about butts and boobs with me. They say the eyes are the window to the soul, and if that's the case, MEW has one of the sexiest souls in Hollywood. Hottest role: Tie between Death Proof (2007) and Make It Happen (2008) [embed]214720:39618:0[/embed] Now, I haven't seen Make It Happen, but I've watched a couple of MEW's dance scenes and I approve. In Death Proof, she's a ditzy actress dressed like a cheerleader who is then bartered in exchange for taking a '70 Dodge Challenger for a test drive. If that's not fetish fuel I don't know what is. Where Nick Valdez would take her on a date: "Inspired by a 50's-inspired pinup shoot she's done in the past, I'd take her to a diner. Not one of those run down, "Betsy the Smoking Waitress" diners, but one of those nostalgic, 50s pastiche places. We'd then share a milkshake (because the diner would conveniently run out of glasses) with two straws just so I'd have an excuse to look into her eyes the whole time. After eating at the diner, we'd step outside and realize that my cool motorcycle, that we rode in on, had been "stolen." Then in search of my motorcycle, we'd come across a bunch of rowdy fellas in an alley who threaten to "bloody me up." Then I'd fight a bunch of Sharks and Jets, win, and we'd ride off into the sunset on my cooool motorcycle as Ritchie Valens's La Bamba plays in the background. Then I'd have to do it six more times because she's Ramona Flowers." - Nick Valdez In conclusion: A Swiss army knife of talent, Mary Elizabeth Winstead can do it all: acting, singing, dancing, and looking good great spectacular while doing all three. She loves horror films, she has an album coming out soon, and she hangs out with the likes of Rosario Dawson, Anna Kendrick, and Lacey Chabert. A sexy woman who takes sexy roles and has sexy friends is my kind of woman. I've harbored a big ol' crush on her since Sky High, and she's only gotten better since. That about wraps it up for this very special Valentine's Day post. As a special V-Day treat, there's a whole ton of pictures of Ms. Winstead in the gallery for you all to peruse. See you soon with another spotlight on one of Hollywood's sexiest starlets! Peep some other hotties in our Some Like It Hot gallery!
Mary Elizabeth Winstead photo
Worth fighting seven evil exes for
[Some Like It Hot shines a light on the men and women of film who have captured our hearts, and oftentimes, our libidos. It celebrates the cinematic sirens and strongmen of the silver screen that give us the vapors, tug on ou...

Top 5 Studio Ghibli Romances

Feb 14 // Liz Rugg
5. Porco and Gina: Porco Rosso Porco Rosso is a ladies man. You wouldn't know it by looking at him, but he gets all the ladies. One special lady in particular. Gina is a woman with a past, and even though she's tried starting over to make a new life, she has one weakness from that past: Porco. During the Great Depression, Porco Rosso is a former flying ace who works as a freelance pirate hunter. Gina runs a runs a hotel that Porco frequents and she can sing in French just like Edith Piaf. The hot-shot American pilot Curtis soon falls for her, but unfortunately for him, she only has eyes for Porco. Porco is also close to Fio, a young girl with a mind for engine mechanics who soon begsins to travel with Porco in order to fix his ship. When Porco raids the pirate island that Curtis is staying on, Curtis captures him and Fio and challenges Porco to a duel – and if Porco loses, Fio will have to marry Curtis. Porco accepts. It's eventually revealed that Gina was married to Proco's best friend and fellow pilot, but he was killed in a battle during presumably WWI. Since then Gina and Porco have maintained a close relationship. Porco and Gina's are the kind of kids that you just want to be together, even though feelings of guilt or shame plague their ability to move forward. Their relationship is definitely not that last in the world of Ghibli that will diffuse the line between men and beast... 4. Haru and The Baron: The Cat Returns In The Cat Returns, average middle school girl Haru enlists the help of the incredibly debonair and British-accented cat named Baron Humbert von Jikkingen to help her when a legion of cats who are trying to kidnap her and force her to marry the Cat Prince. The Baron is an orange cat who speaks, walks on two legs and wears a suit and has a top hat and cane, of course. I mean really, who wouldn't fall in love with that!? It's not just me, right? Right!? 3. San and Ashitaka: Princess Mononoke Ashitaka is the last prince of the embattled Emishi people. He is noble to a fault, but while defending his people from a rouge boar spirit poisoned by hatred and evil, Ashitaka accidentally gets poisoned himself and has to be sent away from his village. He makes his way toward where the boar spirit came from in hopes of lifting his curse. He eventually comes across several men who were drowning in a river after being attacked by the wolf spirits lead by the giant wolf Moro. Ashitaka sees the wolf spirits across the riverbank, accompanied by a young girl wearing a wolf pelt. Moro is hurt and bleeding, and the girl immediately tries to help her by sucking blood out of the wounded area. Yes, the first time Ashitaka meets San, Princess Mononoke, she has wolf blood all over her face. (My kind of woman.) The wolf spirits leave and San shouts at Ashitaka to “Go away.” Ashitaka and San's relationship is interesting because of how opposite they are. Ashitaka is the pinnacle of the intellectually and spiritually civilized human, and San is a wild beast who tries to kill Ashitaka on more than one occasion. Despite these obvious differences in practice and theory, Ashitaka falls hopelessly in love with San, and though his tireless efforts to show tenderness towards her, and through his intrinsic nobility, he brings a touch of her humanity back. Ashitaka never tires to change San, though. In fact he falls in love with her because of exactly who she is. Ashitaka and San use their different abilities and connections to work together for the peace of both of the worlds that they inhabit in Princess Mononoke. 2. Chihiro and Haku: Spirited Away Ten years old is a bit young for a full-fledged romance, but ten years old is a bit young for a lot of the stuff Chihiro does in Spirited Away. On her way to moving to a new home with her mom and dad, the family ends up stopping at an abandoned old amusement park, where Chihiro's mom and dad find some freshly prepared food sitting out and decide to help themselves. Chihiro wanders away from her parents and finds a grand old bathhouse and a young boy who warns her to leave right away. When Chihiro returns to her parents, she finds that they have magically been turned into hogs! Chihiro tries to get out of the park, but she finds that it is too late, that night has fallen and a mighty river has swollen between the park and the real world. Chihiro is soon met by Haku, the boy she met earlier, who escorts her into the bathhouse. It becomes apparent that Chihiro and her parents are stuck in the spirit world, more specifically, at a bathhouse for spirits. Haku tells Chihiro to make her way to the boiler room and to ask the boiler man for a job at the bathhouse, since that way Yubaba – the evil witch who rules the bathhouse - can't harm her. Chihiro eventually secures a job working in the bathhouse, under the condition that she change her name to Sen, since Yubaba controls her workers by stealing their names. Sen is warned that if she forgets her real name that she will be doomed to live in the spirit world forever. Through working at the bathhouse, Sen realizes that Haku can transform into a dragon. When Haku gets very injured by spirits in the form of paper birds, and Sen tries to protect him. The paper birds however, are actually being controlled by Yubaba's twin sister, Zeniba. Zeniba tells Sen that Yubaba stole Zeniba's golden seal on Yubaba's orders and that she must return it. Sen also learns from the boiler man that Haku has been placed under a spell by Yubaba and that if she went to return the golden seal that it might help him. Sen secures Haku in the boiler room and then escapes for Zeniba's house without a second thought of the consequences... Chihiro and Haku's relationship is like Ghibli's take on puppy love. The main characters are young, or at least appear to be, and their relationship is one of attachment, but with a twist of Ghibli magic. Spirited Away is one of the most beloved Ghibli movies, and it has a lot to do with Chihiro. She's a hardworking klutz, but has the best of intentions. Her arc within the movie shows her develop from a selfish child to an independent young lady. Haku's character has a quiet strength and refinement, but he is missing his sense of self until Chihiro helps him discover it. Their young love is a head-over-heels adventure that leads both characters to understand themselves better and grow as individuals. 1. Howl and Sophie: Howl's Moving Castle Howl starts off his relationship with Sophie by saving her from some aggressive guards and then telling her, “Don't be alarmed, but I'm being followed.” The young Sophie is soon turned into an old woman by the witch that is following and in love with Howl. Sophie then runs away from home and ends up seeking shelter in Howl's moving castle. Howl is soon summoned to serve the king in the war he's waging against a nearby kingdom. After Howl has a pity-party about accidentally dying his hair, Sophie agrees to go to the king in his stead - disguised as his mother - to report to the king's army that he is too much of a lazy son to be sent to battle. The King's witch tries to tell Sophie that Howl's heart was stolen by a demon and that he is too dangerous to be allowed to live without a heart. Sophie doesn't believe her. While speaking to the king's witch, Sophie accidentally lets it slip that she is in love with Howl. Howl arrives in time to save her from the king's witches, and tells Sophie that knowing that she'd be there gave him the courage to show up. Howl later creates an extra room in the moving castle for Sophie, and creates a portal to a secret garden for them to share. Throughout these events, Sophie's age curse slowly waivers and slips away when she lets her guard down around Howl. Her insecurities about her looks soon restore her age curse, though. The great thing about Howl and Sophie's romance is that they both need each other. Both are plagued by magical spells and by everyday insecurities. Once Howl, the notorious womanizer, realizes the he is in love with the plucky but unassuming Sophie, he realizes that he finally has something that he wants to protect, and that he must stop running away from his problems. Sophie begins to stand up for herself on the first day in the moving castle, after she admits being tired of being treated like an old woman, presumably for her whole life until that point. Eventually, the characters start referring to their rag-tag group as a “family” and you know it's all over from then on out. Ghibli is a studio full of romance, love and loss. However, through their trademark magical twists, Studio Ghibli's love stories don't feel forced or tired, but simultaneously believable and unreal. And that's the mark of a great love story.
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[All this week, Flixist is holding Ghibli Week by bringing you all sorts of Studio Ghibli related posts to celebrate the U.S. release of Ghibli's newest movie, The Secret World of Arrietty, on Friday, Febr...


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