Kill Bill

Coma patients

In the movie If I Stay, Chloe Grace Moretz plays a teenage girl who winds up in a coma when she’s in a car accident with her family. As her body lies in a hospital bed, her consciousness stands to the side, able to observe what’s going on in the room. She can watch her loved ones visit, see her boyfriend play her a song. And she also flashes back to past events while contemplating whether or not she should wake up and stay alive. Her choice, apparently. Do comatose patients actually have out-of-body experiences? Some claim so, but OBEs are not really scientifically recognized, at least not as anything other than a dream. Movies aren’t subject to the rules of accepted science, though, and that goes for depictions of comas in general. In 2006, a doctor conducted a study of 30 movies featuring comatose persons (not including Liz Garbus‘s solid HBO doc Coma, made after the study) and concluded that only two of them were accurately portrayed: Reversal of Fortune and The Dreamlife of Angels (the study is published in the medical journal “Neurology”, which you can pay to read here; but you can download the data-supplement list of movie titles here). That was mainly for what comas are like externally and for the patient afterward, however. There’s not really much to go on as far as what it’s like internally from the perspective of the person in the coma. So, this week’s edition of The Movies Tell Us is only briefly focused on […]

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Kill Bill Five Point Punch

In the midst of insane fight sequences and impossible violence, Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill gave me a moment of pause. In the second part of the movie, The Bride (Uma Thurman) finally confronts Bill (David Carradine), and ultimately dispatches him with a secret technique from their old master Pai Mei (Gordon Liu) known as the five-point-palm exploding heart technique. This closely-held secret move uses pressure points on a man’s chest that will stress the heart to a point that the victim can only travel five steps before his heart explodes and he falls dead. That’s a pretty cool technique, and would be quite handy in a pinch, so it got me thinking: Which martial art will teach it to me?

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Rin Takanashi in Like Someone in Love

Another month has passed, which means that another batch of movies has been added to or added back to Netflix’s Watch Instantly streaming service. Looking for a few that will be worth spending your time on? Obviously. And you’ve come to the right place, because we’ve got mad recommendations for good movies on Netflix this month. As always, click on the films’ titles to be taken to their Netflix page so that you can add them to your My List. Pick of the Month:  Like Someone in Love (2012) Seeing as Like Someone in Love didn’t get its (very) limited US release until 2013, technically we can call it one of the best movies of last year. Which we should, because it is, quite simply, one of the very best movies that came out in this country last year, and there are still far too many film fans that haven’t gotten a chance to see it. Hopefully that’s going to change now that it’s streaming on Netflix. Providing easy access to independent and foreign cinema, even to those of us living in the middle of the country, is one of the coolest side-effects of this digital age we’re living in. What do you get when you let Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami (Certified Copy) shoot in Tokyo? This gorgeous movie, which uses the lights and windows of the city to create a layered, enveloping world that looks like the one we live in, but maybe from a different angle than we’ve ever […]

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IntroRevenge

As the Oldboy remake approaches, the subject of revenge is no doubt teeming in everyone’s heads – at least in terms of punishing the people who decided to remake Oldboy. While there are so many lists out there about the most “brutal” or the most “satisfying” revenge films, perhaps it might be fun to explore the strangest, if not most laughable ways people enacted their justice.

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samantha

If you’re hoping for a deep exploration of the connection between women and firearms, Cathryne Czubek’s documentary A Girl and a Gun will fail you. There is little to this 76-minute film that isn’t very obvious and sometimes even oblivious. Or maybe the aim wasn’t to bother with the heavy psychoanalytic notions of guns being extensions of masculinity because of their phallic shape as much as their capability for dominance. It’s a light piece of nonfiction, not even going for much political address let alone agenda, in spite of the national conversation going on this year. As far as missing out on timeliness, though, it’s mostly a shame the doc was produced too soon to be informed by or point to Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers, with its strong barrel-fellating imagery. There are a lot of film clips here, too. Shots from your basic female-heavy action movies, such as Terminator 2, Aliens, Wanted, Resident Evil, Kick-Ass, Kill Bill, Foxy Brown, and wronged-women dramas like Enough and Sleeping With the Enemy, as well as a few films noir (albeit with little recognition of the femme fatale character in general) and all the way back to Edison’s Annie Oakley short from 1894. No mention of Jean-Luc Godard’s famous line about how all you need to make a film is “a girl and a gun,” but that doesn’t exactly have anything to do with a girl with a gun. Besides, this isn’t a film studies documentary.

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IntroBadassWounds

So you’ve been shot/stabbed/eaten/burned/dismembered/amputated/face melted by an ancient artifact, what are you going to do next? If you answered, “go into shock while screaming like an asshole” then you’re probably on track. In the movies, of course, that’s a different story – people like to do cool stuff while dying in movies, act all badass for our amusement. Let’s look at 20 such fallen heroes. Spoilers should go without saying. But we said it. Right there. So no one can complain.

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Django

Editor’s Note: This article contains spoilers for Django Unchained (and all of Tarantino’s other films). With Django Unchained, Quentin Tarantino has taken a decisive shift in his approach to storytelling. Abandoning the non-linear, present-set depictions of an organized criminal underworld in Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Jackie Brown and the Kill Bill films, Tarantino has not only transitioned to more conventional linear storytelling (with the exception of the requisite flashback), but chooses familiar historical contexts in which to tell these stories. With the WWII-set Inglourious Basterds and now with the pre-Civil War-era Western Django, Tarantino has made a habit of mixing the historical with the inventively anachronistic, and has turned recent modern histories of racial and ethnic oppression, dehumanization, and extermination into ostensibly cathartic fantasies of revenge against vast systemic structures of power.

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Quentin Tarantino

Emerging from a nitrate fire in 1963, Quentin Tarantino was fed only exploitation films, spaghetti Westerns and actual spaghetti until he was old enough to thirst for blood. He found his way into the film industry as a PA on a Dolph Lundgren workout video, as a store clerk at Video Archives and by getting encouragement to write a screenplay by the very man who would make a name for himself producing Tarantino’s films. Peter Bogdanovich (and probably many others) think of him as the most influential director of his generation, and he’s got the legendary story to back it up — not to mention line-busting movies like Pulp Fiction, Inglourious Basterds and Django Unchained under his belt. He’s also the kind of name that makes introductions like this useless. So here’s a bit of free film school (for fans and filmmakers alike) from a guy who really loves Hi Diddle Diddle and plans to keep 35mm alive as long as he’s rich enough to do it.

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The Walking Dead Blog

Editor’s Note: These blog entries are meant to be a discussion of the most current episode of The Walking Dead, so we recommend you watch said episode before reading to avoid spoilers. Keep your eyes peeled for them every Monday morning. On last week’s episode, The Governor was revealed to have a zombie daughter, Michonne left Andrea behind at Woodbury, Rick went into shock after Lori’s death, and Daryl and Maggie went on the search for baby formula. This week’s installment, “Hounded,” was another inconsistent one – somewhat of a mash-up between an existential one man show, a middle-aged romance film, and violent revenge flick. Revenge flick worked… the others didn’t… although this episode is important in setting up the eventual coming together of Rick and The Governor, finally marrying the prison and Woodbury. Fingers crossed the payoff will be worthwhile.

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Foreign Objects - Large

Quentin Tarantino has never shied away from the debt he owes to foreign cinema when it comes to his own films, and whether they’re called homages or ripoffs the bottom line remains that certain movies from overseas inspired some of his most well known features. Reservoir Dogs is a blatant lift of Ringo Lam’s City on Fire, Inglourious Basterds found inspiration from Enzo Castellari’s The Inglorious Bastards and Tarantino’s two-part, female led revenge thriller Kill Bill? You need look no further than Toshiya Fujita‘s 1973 classic, Lady Snowblood. Japan, 1874, and the cries of a newborn baby can be heard echoing in the cells of a women’s prison. Deemed a “child of the netherworld” upon her birth we next see Yuki Kashima (Meiko Kaji) twenty years later as an adult walking a secluded and snowy road. A group of men approach carting their gang boss leader in a rickshaw, and when they attempt to forcibly move Kashima she slices and dices her way through them like blood filled bags of butter, painting the snow red as she goes. As the gang leader falls beneath her blade he asks who sent her, and he dies knowing only that it was revenge.

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It’s hard to have a wedding in a movie where something terrible doesn’t happen; it wouldn’t really be that fun to watch otherwise. It’s not totally unrealistic – after all, crazy people get married too. If we actually lived in a world of mutants and superheroes, they too would get married and it would probably go as well in real life as it does in the movies. Here are some of the most extreme weddings in films – weddings that, provided the bride and groom survive (and not all do), are going to produce some incredibly crazy offspring.

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The 2011 Gift Guide: Music for Movie Lovers

Welcome to The Holiday Gift Guide, our yearly stroll through all the things you absolutely should have on your Christmas list this year. To begin, we encourage you to strap on your little, tiny headphones, and get ready for more giving suggestions from your favorite Rejects. Do you have a friend or family member on your Christmas list that always has their fingers on the pulse of the music scene, making buying them anything music-related nearly impossible? Have no fear – I turned to the silver screen to find music they may not have heard from movies they might also enjoy. And, as has been the trend lately with popular artists starting to compose for film, I rounded up some current composers and the bands you may not know they started out in. Plus a few artists you may not know who have begun composing for films. This list features movies that came out this year with kick-ass soundtracks as well as albums from artists-turned-composers. If you have someone in your life that is a music lover and into movies, then this is the list for you. And if you are that person, this list may give you some ideas of what to include on your own wish list. Of course, this is not a comprehensive list, but merely suggestions to help inspire ideas and give you a jumping off point. And if there is a great suggestion I overlooked, feel free to sound off in the comments and let our […]

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What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a focused, coordinated strike upon the oppressive barrage of movie blogs who think you should really be reading 700 words on the latest third-tier casting rumors for the next Adam Shankman movie. We take all the interesting news and otherwise notable articles of the day and bring them together, in one place, where you can kick ass and gain knowledge quickly. It also includes some funny videos. Because everyone loves funny videos. With Jason Eisener’s Hobo with a Shotgun finally getting to theaters (and iTunes — go watch it!), Canuxploitation is on its way. To celebrate, Quiet Earth asked Canadian grindhouse cinema expert Paul Corupe to write of Canuxploitation’s weidest, wildest Canadian exploitation movies. Yes.

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As you may have noticed, the blogosphere is all a-twitter with Best of the Decade lists. To our credit, we here at FSR have published two lists. Now it is time to look at what everyone else is saying…

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davidcarradine

Celebrate the career of David Carradine by sharing your favorite performance.

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revenge-header

There’s a long, illustrious history of movies that feature characters on quests for vengeance. Here are what we believe to be the ten most notable.

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Artistic license, originality, worthwhile dialogue and the meaning of life are all discussed as Film School Rejects Conrad Rothbaum and Robert Fure go head-to-head in the first entry in the new FSR feature, “Shouting Match.”

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Officially Cool

Are you the type of person who loves to share movie quotes and one-liners with friends. Who doesn’t love the funny or iconic dialog from their favorite films. Well I found something sure to brighten up your day.

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Kiss My Ass, Harvey and Bob!

There was a time when Harvey and Bob Weinstein were the heroes of American cinema. Now, we are seeing that these guys are just big douchebags, like so many other people in the business.

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