It’s Kind of a Funny Story

Writing and directing duo Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden stunned me with the left hook that was their 2006 film Half Nelson. That project was a Ryan Gosling-starring film about a drug-addicted teacher trying to touch the lives of inner city children. Then they knocked me on my ass with the quick uppercut that was their 2008 film Sugar, which was a look at the life of a man from the Dominican Republic who is recruited to come to the U.S. and play professional baseball, but who doesn’t quite find it to be the glamorous experience one might expect. After that, they made It’s Kind of a Funny Story in 2010, and that saw me regaining my wits and getting back to my feet, because it was kind of a crappy movie. So, here I am, standing here dazed, waiting for Fleck and Boden’s next punch, what’s it going to be? According to Variety, it will be a drama called Hate Mail, which follows the intersecting lives of a series of Manhattanites who have all had relationship-ruining experiences regarding the receipt of hate mail. That’s about all of the information out there regarding this film so far, but it’s news to me just because of the filmmakers attached. I thought Half Nelson and Sugar put these two right up there with Ramin Bahrani when it comes to modern, minimalist filmmakers, so I’m hoping that It’s Kind of a Funny Story was just a momentary misstep. I guess Hate Mail will […]

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This Week in Blu-ray

This week’s entry into the world of Blu-ray punditry is sponsored by the letter W, as in WTF. For those following along at home, that’s the internet acronym for “what the f**k?” It’s usually accompanied with a grammatically incorrect smattering of exclamation marks and a comment about how we should all start building an Ark. Quick, someone grab all of the typing cats. We wouldn’t want to lose those in the flood! Yes, this week is bringing about the apocalypse for plenty of reasons: horror movies that make me want to take a shotgun up the colon, dramedies that use David Bowie in strange ways, a Pam Anderson movie that doesn’t take place on a boat, the birth of internet porn and plenty of rape. WTF, indeed. Barb Wire This week’s big pick should be exemplary of the week as a whole. Because what kind of a week would lead me down the path of picking a mid-90s comic book adaptation starring a mostly nude Pamela Anderson — or more to the point, one of the worst movies of all times or any times, including future times. In a sea of releases, there wasn’t much to choose from, so why shouldn’t you head over to your local retailer’s bargain bin (where you’ll undoubtedly already find this gem) and pick up a movie. On your way home, you can go get a barb wire tattoo around your arm and a tramp-stamp on your lower back. It’s classy all the way, this […]

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This Week in DVD

The FSR family is many things. Knowledgeable, opinionated, 99% white males… But the best thing about the collective writers here is their ability to turn my usual grinch-like personality into one that embraces the spirit of giving. I’ve given pickup lines to Robert Fure and written school papers for Landon Palmer. I’ve bought alcohol for Jack Giroux and comfortable shoes for Merrill Barr. I even gave Neil Miller the idea of actually turning his “weekly” Blu-ray column into a weekly Blu-ray column. But now I’m finally getting something in return. I’ve stolen Miller’s brand new “PICK OF THE WEEK” concept as well as his idea of including titles I haven’t seen yet but still have an opinion about. Presumptuous? Probably. But you can handle it. If you can’t, feel free to give Cole Abaius a pruning with a pair of rusty shears. Wild Target Emily Blunt stars as a petty thief who rips off the wrong guy (Rupert Everett) and finds herself targeted for murder. The hitman (Bill Nighy) hired to kill her falls for her quirky criminal tendencies instead, and soon the two are on the run alongside a hapless ginger (Rupert Grint). This is lightweight entertainment to be sure and isn’t necessarily worth a purchase, but it’s still a lot of fun and doesn’t deserve to get lost in the DVD shuffle. It has a loose and casual spirit, Blunt and Grint get to cut loose and act zany, and Nighy is just fantastic as the aged hitman […]

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We realize that you’re probably sitting at home right now, chewing your own nails off and wondering what movies are coming out this month. Maybe you’re even wondering why no one on the entire internet has said anything about them by now. Strange, we know. Fortunately, Rob Hunter and Cole Abaius spent the entire month of September searching EBSCO Host, making phone calls to important producers and making fan trailers out of peanut butter and marshmallows to make sure that you, dear reader, are in the know about what’s coming out in October. Wondering why it’s a few days late? Because we don’t run it until it’s perfect. Or something. Anyway, just check out the movies to see what you wanna see.

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From the use of the 500 Days of Summer font to the quirky premise and the extensive use of Ida Maria’s “Oh My God,” in the trailer, It’s Kind of a Funny Story could very well be the indie comedy that is contractually obligated to come out every year since Little Miss Sunshine had so much success. That’s not a knock on the film which features Zack Galifiniakis and is directed by Half Nelson helmers Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck. In fact, the trailer makes the movie look like a creative, sweet march down the insane asylum. Plus, you should watch it just to get Zack Galifianakis’s advise on picking up chicks.

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ZachGalifianakisPussinBoots

The beard enthusiast (and sometimes actor) is in talks to voice Humpty Dumpty. Beats getting high and agreeing to G-Force.

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ZachGalifianakisFunnyStory

Can Zach Galifianakis successfully change his image from a crazy slacker to a crazy slacker who is in a mental institution? And, more importantly, will Nurse Ratchet be there?

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published: 11.21.2014
D
published: 11.21.2014
B+
published: 11.19.2014
C+
published: 11.19.2014
B-, C


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