Virginia Madsen

The Hot Flashes

With the release of its first trailer, the Brooke Shields-led “getting older” comedy The Hot Flashes is reminiscent of a few recent comedies, both of which fall wildly to either end of the quality spectrum. On one side it’s a little like Adam Sandler’s Grown Ups film (and its forthcoming sequel), ruminating on the fact that getting older is funny. On the other hand, it’s hard not to think a bit of Bridesmaids, because there’s plenty of women saying and doing somewhat raunchy things. To which side does The Hot Flashes lean most, the trailer doesn’t seem to want to say. My guess is that it’s not going to end well, especially considering the following observations.

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The Best Short Films

Why Watch? In 2007, Kate Hudson made her first movie as a director (complete with a Humble Pie reference), and the free spirit of youth and antique love is on full display. Kristen Stewart‘s best work might also be on display. She and Dakota Fanning play young girls discovering true desire, but instead of dumb boys, they’re swooning over a classic car and a sweet guitar. Virginia Madsen and Kurt Russell play a father and mother (each responding to their offspring’s Must Have Mentality), and the whole simple story plays out with the tension that comes naturally from needing something badly without knowing if you’ll get it. It’s something anyone who has ever had to haggle over the price of something they’re pretending not to care about knows. Hudson and company capture the sentiment well – the heart of it residing in Stewart’s eyes as she first spots a shiny Cutlass with a price tag on it and the sun rays flood in. Nostalgia and bad ass chicks. Nothing wrong with either. What will it cost? Only 13 minutes. Skip Work. You’ve Got Time For More Short Films

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Red Riding Hood is the single most confusing movie-going experience of the last decade. The movie itself is not confusing. No, no. Far from it. The movie itself is about as straightforward as it gets. The characters all say either exactly what’s happening or exactly what’s on their minds pretty much at all times. It’s the few moments of pure storytelling inspiration, cliche-busting plot turns, and great performances amidst a sea of terrible that’s completely baffling. How can things that great be involved in something so awful?

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Poet Sylvia Plath’s only novel (which she wrote under a pen name) is a tragic descent into depression that stands as a parallel to the author’s own life. It would be an excruciating subject matter to explore. In fact, Plath committed suicide just after the first print run. However, Julia Stiles is staring that psychological pressure down by signing on to produce and star in The Bell Jar. By starring, she’ll take on the role of Esther Greenwood, and she’ll be joined by Virginia Madsen who will play Dr. Nolan – the female therapist Greenwood sees after unsuccessful sessions with a male psychiatrist. Nicole Kassell (who directed The Woodsman and is directing a movie where Whoopi Goldberg plays God) will be directing. There’s no way that this thing doesn’t pass the Bechdel Test. [IndieWire]

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haunting-in-conn

The only thing haunting about The Haunting in Connecticut is how similar it is to every other haunted house movie of the last three decades.

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Wonder Woman Animated DVD

From the same team that got us all excited then left us profoundly disappointed with Batman: Gotham Knight comes Wonder Woman. Though thankfully, when I say “team” I am referring to the producers and up.

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