Queen Latifah

You know what sort of movie you’ve gotten with Joyful Noise long before Dolly Parton announces, apropos of nothing, that “I know what to do, yodel lee hee hoo.” You’ve already seen Parton grab spaghetti off a diner’s plate and throw it in co-star Queen Latifah’s face. You’ve seen Keke Palmer lead a rousing gospel choir rendition of “Man in the Mirror.” You’ve experienced the ups and downs of the wild, inconsistent shifts in tone and the perils of Todd Graff’s loose-limbed direction. But that unprompted half-a-yodel is a litmus test. Perhaps you’ve bought into the schlock Graff is slinging, shut off your mental faculties and embraced the Latifah-Parton show, in which case it’s just Dolly being Dolly. Alternatively, that avalanche of vomit that’s been amassing inside your throat with each inane, lazy moment finally finds its way onto the floor. I found myself somewhere between the two extremes throughout this exceptionally mediocre film, which only benefits from the fact that it’s never boring. The story of a small-town gospel choir prepping for a singing competition is singularly uninteresting, even if things pick up when they perform their pop covers (Usher and the Beatles are among those victimized alongside Michael Jackson).

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Aural Fixation - Large

Whether or not you are not a fan of gospel music or are even well-versed (har) in the genre, almost everyone has experienced the transcendent nature of music, no matter what style you may have been listening to at the time. For some, that experience comes from listening to a choir of people praise God, for others it can happen in the middle of a Muse concert when Matt Bellamy hits that opening refrain on “Butterflies and Hurricanes” (or maybe that was just me.) While gospel music certainly has its own distinct sound, the feeling it works to evoke in its listeners can be felt through almost any type of music, making gospel an almost fluid genre that many different styles can run through. Even if you prefer rock or rap, it’s more than likely you’ve heard a gospel tune or two over the years, or at least heard the presence of a gospel choir. Popular music has long been a fan of bringing in gospel choirs to accompany performances to help elevate the experience for audiences. And it is hard to deny the impact and effect hearing a group of people singing in harmony can have on one’s ears. One of the more popular songs featured in writer/director Todd Graff‘s Joyful Noise is Michael Jackson’s “Man In The Mirror,” which is fitting seeing as the lyrics have a message of selflessness and bettering yourself as a person. While the beat and instrumentation (and Jackson’s performance of it) made this song […]

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr isn’t a very merry man, taking a look at Robin Hood, Letters to Juliet and Just Wright.

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Fat Guys at the Movies

Kevin and Neil decide to be outlaws and scamper around the Magical Studio in the Sky like a bunch of merry men. This gives them an opportunity to impale Ridley Scott’s new version of Robin Hood while Kevin declares Letters to Juliet a better film.

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Kevin Carr sits his chubbiness down and sees if The Wolfman, Valentine’s Day and Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief can make the grade.

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The Secret Life of Bees

Every year, a movie is released that is so torturous to sit through that it almost violates the terms of the Geneva Convention. This is the one for 2008.

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The Magical Studio in the Sky is struck by a wayward comet, sending Kevin and Neil in different directions. But take heart, they manage to link up through the interwebs to form the Virtual Studio in the Sky.

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If a List of 10 Rap Artists that crossed over into film with varying degrees of success doesn’t seem timely, it should, because a movie about hardcore rappers came out just last Friday: Step Brothers.

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Just in time for Christmas, we’ve got a great new giveaway courtesy of Yari Film Group’s new film The Perfect Holiday.

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