June 30, 2012

Moving On

As a friend of mine has taken to saying, "PACK YOUR PLAYSTATION AND GET OUT!"

Yes, the time has come. Films From the Supermassive Black Hole has enjoyed a good run in its current home. Truth be told, I'm absolutely thrilled with the time I spent here. The site went from this unknown entity with barely any content to a fairly thriving institution with a decent reader base.

I also made some great friends along the way.

But now, it's time a for a change of scenery. I'm been wrestling with this notion for a health portion of this, the year of our lord 2012. A guy at Sundance who I got to talking with recommended that I make the jump, as it gives me more credibility.

Alright. That's a brand of juju I can jive with. I've been working at this for a couple of weeks now, and, with some help from a few buds, I think it turned out all right.

Make sure you update your blogrolls, links, and what have you. Thanks all for making this experiment worthwhile. And don't worry, there's more to come.

As a compatriot of mine once so eloquently put, OUT WITH THE OLD...

June 20, 2012

Big Things On The Horizon

The Black Hole will be closed for the next few days.

Some of you are privy to this information already, but for the rest of you...

There's something I need to work on in the meantime.

Here's some Muse to hold you over!

June 19, 2012

Trailer Trash: Resident Evil: Retribution

It's time root through some trailers. What sorts of wonderful things will be alluded to today?


GOD DAMN IT!!! WHY??? Five of these? Really?

June 14, 2012

Screaming, and Loving It

Ridley Scott, for some strange reason, has gotten into the habit of switching gears completely during the production of his films. Recall that Robin Hood was initially supposed to be told from the perspective of the Sheriff of Nottingham, rather the the green bedazzled outlaw. That final product didn't turn out to be all that, so you'd be forgiven for being worried about Prometheus. Prometheus started life as a basic prequel to Scott's legendary sci-fi/horror masterpiece Alien. Somewhere along the way though, Scott's ambition got bigger. Rather than simply tell where the xenomorphs come from and how that ship ended up on LV-426, Scott is going for something much bigger, and more cerebral. In a film that is equal parts philosophical character study, horror movie, and effects vehicle, Prometheus asks tough questions. Questions about life, human nature, God, etc. And while it runs into some bumps, the ambition and scope of the project cannot be overlooked, and Prometheus delivers the goods and turns in a thought provoking, engrossing, and chilling sci-fi epic.

June 8, 2012

Trailer Trash: Django Unchained

It's time to root through some trailers. What sorts of wonderful things will be alluded to today?



June 6, 2012

What A Wicked Game To Play: Part 2

Sweet lion of Lannister!!! Has it been a year all ready? It seems like only yesterday since Ned Stark lost his head, Daenerys hatched her dragons, and Tyrion stole our hearts. My how the time flies. And now a second round with the denizens of the Seven Kingdoms has come to an end. We saw horrors beyond our comprehension. We saw warfare of untold magnitude and destruction. We saw savagery that would make the hardest person squirm. And there was some nudity as well. Wouldn't be Game of Thrones if there wasn't. 

This season was one of many triumphs and a parse few set backs that nevertheless lived up the standard of quality that the brilliant first season laid out. In many cases, it ever surpassed it. 


June 4, 2012

Black As Raven, Dumb As Bricks

I don't know what the whole Snow White craze in Hollywood is all about. Between this and Mirror Mirror, we're getting more than our fair share of the "fairest of them all". Maybe the gods of showbiz are aware of some growing trend, but whatever. I have no stomach for speculation. All I know is that if this trend continues, we are in for some dire circumstances. Though it has good ideas, boasts spiffy visuals, and has one hell of a villain, Snow White and the Huntsman is a pretty terrible movie, with an awful screenplay, undeveloped heroes and predictable plotting. It's all dirt and grime and loud noises, and while I think it's a great move taking something as kiddy as Snow White and making it hyper dark, this is not the way to do it.

I'm the God of Thunder. You love vampires. This will never work!

May 31, 2012

Trailer Trash: Les Miserables

It's time to root through some trailers. What sorts of wonderful things will be alluded to today?


Being that I'm kind of a musical theater nut, this particular project has been of great interest to me over the last few months, and this trailer pretty much alleviates whatever doubts I had.

First off, Anne Hathaway crooning out "I Dreamed a Dream" is damn good. Sure, she doesn't have the world's best voice, but she is doing it with such emotion that I really could care less.

And the fact that such a musical talent as Hugh Jackman is playing Jean Valjean makes it almost guaranteed that the songs in this will sting as much as they did on the stage.

It's a great trailer, showing off plenty of the epicness that the story is known for, while also showing plenty of the quieter, human moments, which look great. Tom Hooper no doubt has a lot to do with that.

Can't wait. Can't wait. Can it be December already?

May 28, 2012

Sink It!

God damn you Transformers! Look what you've done! Since the first BIG movie of the summer has now come and gone, we are now forced to sit through the smaller, though still loud and garish, feats of escapism. Loud and garish are certainly words that come to mind when describing the first of those said movies, Battleship. Other words that come to mind are brainless, pointless, derivative, overly long, and generally awful. Of all the movies to be coming out this summer, this one, above all others, has no reason to exist, nor does it deserve to.

We are so fucked!

May 27, 2012

Play Resumes...

... tomorrow.

I do apologize. But you try finding time to write posts when you have to review over 300 years of theater history, and then write a 10+ page paper on Nietzsche, Steiner, tragedy, the Greek Chorus, and so on.

I've also been busy rolling in #goldswagger, butting heads with a few tornadoes, and suffering from a severe withdrawal of irony while driving across the country with my dad. Gotta get my car registered in California. Fun times!

May 11, 2012

Trailer Trash: Gangster Squad

It's time to root through some trailers. What sorts of wonderful things will be alluded to today?

One of my most anticipated of the year has finally beached, and is ready to be analyzed.

And, yeah, it seems a lot of my fears came to fruition.

First off, it seems director Reuben Fleischer is bringing in that slo-mo thing with the action that he used to decent effect on Zombieland and 30 Seconds or Less. Personally, I think said slo-mo will not work at all here. It's completely wrong for the subject matter and tone that this movie is going for. This trailer really sells this thing as a full bore action movie, which is not what I was hoping for.

Also, the lines of dialogue they choose to highlight here are AWFUL!!! Absolutely terrible.

"No ma'am. I was just hoping to take you to bed."

Are you kidding me? The fact that a tomcat like Ryan Gosling is the one uttering that line makes it only marginally better.

Like, what is being done to differentiate this movie from The Untouchables? It seems like the exact same movie. Granted, I still have hopes. The cast is way too good for a rote clone of that particular slice of gangster paradise. But I am far more wary now.

May 10, 2012

Shameless: 2012 Lammy FYC

It is that time of year. The Lammys have begun!

I know I haven't been writing as much since last year's awards, and for that, I have no real excuse. Work really piled up for this year, and I had some trouble motivating myself to write things when I did find some free time.

That being said, I do believe that what I wrote was universally excellent, and award worthy.

So, with that, I'd like to offer my two cents on some things I think y'all should be aware of.

Best Blog: I have no expectations when it comes to this award. Just to be nominated would be a victory in my eyes.

Best Blog Name: Well, this award doesn't exist anymore, but I just like to point it out. It has a nice ring to it, yes?

Best Reviewer: I'll let the reviews speak for themselves. The Avengers, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, Sucker Punch

Funniest Writer: I mean, I think I'm funny.

Best Ratings System: See that sexy sidebar over there.

Best Festival Coverage: This is the big one. It's the only award in which I have any hope of winning. I'm am extremely proud of the Sundance coverage I provided this year. It was a fantastic experience, I saw a crap ton of eclectic movies, and I really hope I can go back. And like a certain, far more talented LAMB, I had a surreal moment with a certain actor that I really dig.

Best Blog-A-Thon: It's not really a Blog-A-Thon, but I'm still pretty proud of my 10 day retrospect of all things 2011.

What I'm saying here is not meant to sway you in any way. More than anything, I want you to vote for the sites you think are most deserving. There are so many blogs out there, that, like I said, even to be nominated is a victory for me. I hope you consider me when you cast your nominations. Cheers all. Happy Lammys.

May 8, 2012

Beautifully Assembled

As you are no doubt aware, I make my judgement of how any particular summer at the movies will be, quality wise, based on how well the first BIG movie is. Last year, the Marvel train was in full force, kicking things off with Thor, which I loved. And luckily, my prediction was right on the money. Summer 2011 was a great season, but if my prediction now is accurate, then it will in no way touch this summer. Let me just get it out of the way right now. I am expecting great things from Prometheus, cannot wait for Brave, am stoked for Ted and for GI Joe, and, of course, am anticipating the hell out of The Dark Knight Rises. But if any of those films can beat The Avengers for my number 1, then I will be floored. What Marvel studios, along with writer/director Joss Whedon have done is truly marvelous, a triumph of character mixed with spectacle mixed with humor mixed with emotion mixed with action. After five films and tons and tons of teases and build up, the wait is over. The Avengers have assembled, and they defy every expectation there was or could have been.

May 7, 2012

In Other News: Unprecedented Amounts of Bank

Marvel is gonna be partying it up tonight!!!


The Avengers has claimed to prize of biggest opening weekend ever. And not by any small margin either. You know how Deathly Hallows: Part 2 barely squeezed past The Dark Knight by a measly 11 million? Yeah, The Avengers soared past that by about 30 million, taking in a staggering 200 million over the weekend.

Whatever voodoo magic dark energy tesseract fueled machine Marvel is running over there is one to be very wary of. I'm not going to speak on the quality of the film right now. (In short: a triumph of character, effects, action, humor, and emotion.) But God Damn, I don't think anyone saw this one coming.

The marketing has really been clever on this one, hasn't it. I mean, no one else has employed the tactics Marvel has used to take over the world, but I'm getting the feeling that we're going to see a lot more of it. Methinks a Justice League franchise is now being feverishly green lit over at DC.

A lot of people were no doubt betting that The Dark Knight Rises would be the champion of this summer. And I bet all of those people are just as stunned as I am. If TDKR can top this haul in its opening weekend, then... I don't know. Guess the world really will end after all.

Well played Marvel. Well played indeed!

May 1, 2012

Trailer Trash: The Dark Knight Rises

It's time to root through some trailers. What's sorts of wonderful things will be alluded to today?

It's rare that I do Trailer Trash two days in a row, but this is a special occasion.

Basically, it all makes sense. It all just clicked for me, what Christopher Nolan is trying to accomplish, what he is trying to say, why he chose that title. And, believe me when I say, he has already succeeded with this trailer alone. What we have here in these 2 minutes is one of the most intimate portrayals of a man, tired and at the end of his line, doing everything he can to be the hero the people deserve.

Bear in mind, that I'm talking about a trailer here, not the actual movie. If this is what the trailer provides us, then I can't wait to see what the full thing has in store.

Couple that with some jaw dropping imagery (the bridge explosion, anyone?), the fact that our perceptions of JoGo as a minor character seem completely off the mark, and some juicy shots of that quintessential, gritty, Nolan violence?

I didn't think I could anticipate this movie anymore, but I can. I can.

April 30, 2012

Trailer Trash: Prometheus

It's time to root through some trailers. What sorts of wonderful things will be alluded to today?

So this new one offers up plenty of sexy new info, providing new insight on what Charlize Theron's character is all about. It seems she's the resident Weyland-Yutani company prick who clearly knows more than she's telling. And then there are even more cryptic shots of what ever it is that is terrorizing the crew. What's that weird snake thing? And HOLY BALLS A DUDE'S FACE MELTS!!!

But, come on. What else do I have to say?

It's the new Prometheus trailer...

... and it will make you shit your pants!

April 26, 2012

This Is Important: First Django Unchained Photos




So, as new begins to trickle in about Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained, a tale of revenge, blood, violence, and sheer swag set against abolitionist era America, the advertisement branch of the project has been fired up.

A few weeks ago, we got a cryptic yet sweet poster. And now we have...


... AND THIS!!!!


But no, seriously. Aren't those awesome? Waltz and Foxx look all kinds of five different types of badass, and if Leo is not nearly as ridiculous and evil as this photo makes him out to be, than there is no God!!!


April 16, 2012

Horror By Design

Before you proceed, a word of warning. You've probably seen said warnings on other reviews, but I cannot overstate this enough. If you have not seen The Cabin in the Woods yet, do not, I repeat, DO NOT, click that "Take a Leap" button. There will be spoilers aplenty, and believe me when I say, you do not want to be privy to any spoilers when you go into this movie. All you need to know is this. The Cabin in the Woods is sort of being advertised as your standard slasher flick where a bunch of teens do stupid things and get butchered, but hear me when I say that it is not! Cabin in the Woods is a smart, funny, scary, devilishly clever take on the horror genre that breathes new life into what was fast becoming one of the most predictable style of movies around. Boasting genuine scares and thrills, an instantly quotable script, and a premise too ingenious for words, Cabin in the Woods is one you cannot afford to miss. And that's it. If you haven't seen it, stop right here. Leave! Vanish!

Are they gone? Good. Now, all you who have seen it, click that button and let's get into it.

This is the work of Loki!

April 13, 2012

Trailer Trash: Looper

It's time to root through some trailers. What sorts of wonderful things will be alluded to today?

Well, it's here.

The first trailer for Looper has arrived, and with it, our first look at what is sure to be one of my favorites of the year.

I could go on, on, and on about how the movie looks absolutely sexy, how the make up used to make JoGo a convincing younger version of Bruce Willis is sublime, how the fact that such a talented beauty as Emily Blunt is in this puts it even higher on the must watch list, how the action looks intimate and vicious, and how the concept burns with such blue fire intensity I can feel the sparks off it.

But, it would be fruitless, for someone else summed it all up for me, and did in less than ten words.

Well said brother!!!

April 4, 2012

Wrath and Cheese

No one was really expecting anything from Wrath of the Titans. I mean, no one was really expecting anything from Clash of the Titans, yet that one still managed to disappoint. Regardless, a boatful of money can be very persuasive, and a sequel has befallen us underserving mortals. Boasting much of the same "talent", but with the scale ramped way up, Wrath of the Titans sits poised to deliver exactly what I had hoped for from the first. A ridiculous, relentless, effects heavy action flick. The first one was one of the most boring films I can recall seeing that year. This one... not so much. Sure, Wrath of the Titans doesn't have anything resembling a decent plot or a single well developed character. But it is so generous with the gonzo violence that I find myself strangely impressed by it. Though that could just have to do with my lowered expectations. Hm...

Whatever. Let's get into it.

Take me back James Cameron!

April 3, 2012

Trailer Trash: Ted & Total Recall

It's time to root through some trailers. What sorts of wonderful things will be alluded to today?

First off, a summer blockbuster.

Ok, the idea of a remake to a film I honestly didn't think all that much of is never a good starting point in my book, but this trailer has me interested. Not only does it evoke images of Blade Runner and Minority Report, it just looks flat out awesome.

Will there be actual substance? Probably not, but I have my hopes. Colin Farrell looks much more convincing as a confused everyman who just happens to be a killing machine than Arnold Complicated-Last-Name could ever hope to be, and Len Wiseman has a decent track record when it comes to riculous action.

So, yeah, count me as cautiously optimistic.

This one, on the other hand, has me sold, hook, line, and sinker!

It's the trailer for Ted. 

Put simply, this just might be the funniest thing I've seen in a long time! I can't wait for this one!

March 29, 2012

A Huge Mistake

Here is your daily does of hilarity!

You're welcome, America!

March 28, 2012

Let's Talk About: Fanboys and Art

This post might not have anything to do with movies. I don't know. We'll see where my thought process takes me.

So, being confined to this speck of land in the Hudson Valley for the majority of the year does deny me certain privileges. A bevy of top tier restaurants to choose from (though there are a few winners here), at the mercy of whatever is playing in the local theater (it's usually pretty good), but the big one that a procrastination loving 20 year old feels the sting of above all others?

No XBOX 360.

It's been tough, man.

That's only partially a joke. True, I do long for my time at home so I can dive back into Skyrim or whatever is currently at the forefront of my mind, but it really isn't that big of a deal. If anything, my time away from the interactive entertainments has made me realize that they are kind of a waste of time.

My mother will be so thrilled when she reads that part.

However, there is one franchise that I will devote all my time to, one that will never be considered a waste of time in my book.

Mass Effect!

Earth comes first. Fanboys come second!

March 27, 2012

Trailer Trash: The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn: Part 2

It's time to root through some trailers. What sorts of wonderful things will be alluded to today?

Wait... this is a Twilight movie. Why am I here?

'attempts to leave'

'is pushed back on stage by a very large, gaggleing gang of twihards '


So, Bella's a vampire. Which, at the very least, gives reasoning to the fact that she still sounds like a lifeless, soulless automaton.

Also, what the hell kind of creepy ass line is "We're the same temperature now."? You need to brush up on your swag Edward, I'm telling ya.

Is that good? Can I go now? I'm exhausted too much energy on this film.

'gets approval'


'exits stage left'

March 24, 2012

This Ain't Your Grandma's Twilight

Dude, I cannot even being to tell you how relieved I am right now. A little over a month ago, I wrote up a piece detailing my crippling fears that The Hunger Games would squander it's excellent source material in favor of appealing to the twihards. Perfectly legitimate concerns, mind you, as both Twilight and The Hunger Games are geared towards, more or less, the same audience. But where Twilight is boring, overly melodramatic, and soulless, The Hunger Games is tight, intense, and emotional, and it is with great pleasure that I can say that the movie adaptation of it is all those things and more! With unflinching loyalty to the source material, coupled with a practically perfect performance from the lead, The Hunger Games is the first big movie of 2012 that deserves your attention.

This is not a face you wave a flame in front of!

March 22, 2012

Midnight Movie: The Hunger Games

Here I am!

Midnight with some friends!

The Hunger Games!

Dressed as Cinna!

Gold eyeliner and all!

No, I will not show a picture!

Review to come!


Conflicting Emotions

In watching the new Battleship trailer, I can't help but feel as if I've just been offered insight into Peter Berg's mind. More specifically, one the things he may or may not like.


Peter Berg either really likes Led Zeppelin...

... or he really hates Led Zeppelin.

And, dear readers, at last the world was quiet!

March 21, 2012

The Tattoos Have Blinded You

I'm about to say something radical right now.

Brace yourselves!

Are you braced?

Seriously, you're gonna flip a shit over this.

Ok, here goes...

The climatic lightsaber duel in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace isn't that good. As a matter of fact, it's probably one of the worst in the whole series.

Still here? Good, let's get into it.

He wants to kill me now. 

March 12, 2012

Excuses, Excuses, Excuses!

Be that as it may, this is where I've been for the last two weeks. 

Such is the life of a theater student. 

Hey, I don't even have time to shave!!!

February 26, 2012

The Most Important Evening of the Year

I'm not going to be doing Oscar Minutes this year. Last year proved to be too stressful, and, honestly, I'd rather just enjoy the show with the crowd instead of fiendishly writing the whole time.

Expect some sort of coverage though. I haven't decided what yet, but be sure to check back here and follow my ass on Twitter (@blackholecritic) for what it is I come up with.

This should be fun, if unsurprising. What are you wearing?

February 24, 2012

Trailer Trash: Wrath of the Titans

It's time to root through some trailers. what sorts of wonderful things will be alluded to today?

Oh boy! The anticipation for this movie is off the charts! Can you feel it?
What? You can't? Oh, ok then. Suddenly this doesn't seem all that important.

Ok, so, apparently enough people got over the fact that Clash of the Titans was a mediocre piece of crap and saw a couple hundred times, since it made a lot of money. And now we have the sequel, which, honestly, looks to be copying the plot from Disney's Hercules. Anyone else getting that vibe?

That being said, I really like this trailer. This was sort of the same situation I found myself in when the first one was being promoted. The trailers made it out to be this incredibly bombastic action extravaganza. In reality, Clash of the Titans was surprisingly boring, with action that never really rose above average.

If Wrath is as relentless as this trailer makes it out to be, awesome! I'll pay top dollar for that. It's being directed by the guy who made the pretty relentless Battle: Los Angeles, so I'm not expecting anything in the realm of good story or acting, but as long as the adrenaline is coursing for most of it, then we won't have a problem.

February 22, 2012

The LAMB Devours the Oscars 2012: Best Director

Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah!

We're almost at Oscar night. What is normally one of the most exciting build ups of the year, frankly, has left me very disinterested. Sorry, but a vast majority of the movies I cared about last year didn't make the cut, so I really could care less who wins Best Picture.

This mindset comes shining through with the Best Director race. Whereas last year was chock full of directors doing awesome things, this year is just... well, eh. This is more personal opinion than anything, but out of the five chosen, I'd say only two, if that, deserve to be on it.*

*Bear in mind, I haven't seen Hugo yet.

But, for the second year running, it's my job to squelch through the muck and analyze all this stuff for you. Let's get into it.

Woody Allen (Midnight In Paris): I'm not the biggest Allen fan. I love Annie Hall, but I don't think anything he's done in the last twenty years deserves any sort of mention. But, he came screaming back onto the A list with Midnight In Paris, a wonderful film, full to bursting with biting humor, strong acting, some of the most lovingly composed shots of Paris ever seen, and all the while, pushing a solid message of how our society views nostalgia. It's good stuff.

So, Can He Win?: No! Not only are the other films on the list more "directed" than Midnight, Allen's film hasn't really racked up a whole lot of previous awards. If this film takes home anything, it's gonna be in the writing categories. Allen will have to wait it out until the next one, provided he is consistent this time.

Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist): Translating a gimmick (and let's be honest. The Artist is all gimmick) into an Oscar winning film is no small feat, but Hazanavicius manages it with ease. Even without all the hoopla of it being a silent film, The Artist would still be one of the best films of the year. Hazanavicius takes all the trademarks, visual cues, and touches that defined the silent film genre, and makes them feel new again. Not a word is spoken throughout the movie, and yet you won't be able to take your eyes off it.

So, Can He Win?: I'd say it's a damn certainty at this point. The Artist has been cleaning up shop these last few weeks, taking home the PGA, the BAFTA, and, most importantly, the DGA. It's not quite as clear as previous years, as there is another contender who could swoop in (more on that later), but if you put this guy on your ballot, you'll be considered a smart person.

Terrence Malick (The Tree of Life): My favorite of all the directors in this race, Malick does amazing things with this film, making it quiet and intimate one second, and grandiose and epic the next. Many people have bashed it for boring, ponderous, and slow. I loved it. I thought it was fascinating and moving. The actors, under Malick's wing, create fleshed out and memorable characters with their minimal dialogue. Also dinosaurs!

So, Can He Win?: He should... but he won't. I don't know what it is, but I think The Tree of Life has proven to be too much for the Academy to go for. They do love their moving epics, but they have their limits. No, I think the reason is that Malick is too much of an odd duck to warrant any sort of real chances. I don't even think he's gonna show up to the ceremony. Stupid reason, but since when has the Academy ever behaved like normal people?

Alexander Payne (The Descendants): A quirky family drama, set against the lush backdrop of Hawaii, with George Clooney in one of his best roles. Yeah, it's no wonder that this one got all the nominations it did. Even so, The Descendants is worth it, and Payne does an admirable job with it. It's funny, moving, and heartfelt. And the child actors are stupendous, and we all know how hard child actors can be to work with.

So, Can He Win?: This marks the second time that Payne has been nominated for a much beloved film, and he's the only multiple nominee in the race, apart from Malick, who hasn't won. This automatically helps him. Well, than and the fact that if any film is going to challenge The Artist, it's going to be this one. It's too close to call for sure. If I'm putting my money somewhere, it's going to Hazanavicius, but this guy may prove to have the cojones to go the distance.

Martin Scorcese (Hugo): Would you have expected this a couple months ago when the first trailer for Hugo dropped? I sure as hell didn't. But here we are, and Hugo is leading the pack with a whopping 11 nominations. Now, according to that little footnote up there, the writer of this post hasn't seen it yet, so there's not gonna be any mention of it's quality. But, from what other people are saying, Hugo is a vibrant, moving film that pays a crap ton of reverence to the cinematic medium. In other words, the Academy's wet dream. Also, the 3D is supposed to be awesome!

So, Can He Win?: He just won, and his last movie was completely shut out of the race to begin with, so, I don't think so. Granted, the Academy might be swayed by the whole birth of cinema thing, and the film does seem to employ a whole bunch of visual trickery, but, it's still too soon. Marty'll have to wait for a few more years before it's his time again.

So, Who Got Shafted?: There are three. Nicolas Winding Refn, David Fincher, and David Yates. Now, I understand why all three of these films got shafted. Drive and The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo are too cold and violent, and Harry Potter is too mainstream. How are those for stupid reasons? But, all three of those films deserved to be recognized, thanks in no small part to their directors. Yates had been getting better and better with the Harry Potter brand since the reprehensible Order of the Phoenix, and Deathly Hallows: Part 2 was not only the best Harry Potter film, but the best mainstream blockbuster to come out all year, or, indeed, in many years.

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo was no doubt cast aside due to the whole "It's copying the swedish version" bull crap, but no one can deny that Fincher's dark sensibilities were right at home with Mikael and Lisbeth. He took everything he had learned from his previous movies, and applied them, making Dragon Tattoo more than just a rote cash in.

And Drive was the best movie of the year, bar none. Ok, yes, it was savagely violent and the protagonist was a bit too distant to really relate too, but so what? Drive was simply the best example of film as an art to be seen all year. Deftly combining steely cool, asphalt covered action movies with the bright pink, techno infused touches of europop, and then offering up a slow burn tale of crime, suspense, and violence, everything about Drive just worked.

Although, there is a scene where a man gets his wrist slit that is probably the most sickeningly gory scene of the year, so that probably had something to do with it.

Whatever, though. It doesn't matter. I don't know how you feel, but I'm just coasting on the coattails of this awards season, counting down the minutes until it is over and we can start looking ahead to when Christopher Nolan gets snubbed again. Anyway, that's all for now. Return to your daily tasks. Peace!

February 21, 2012

Hopped Up

Strange as it might be to hear coming from the... fingers of a person with somewhat refined taste in film, the fact remains that I dig the kind of movies that Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor make. Though they have their names on some stinkers, I thought Crank was a fun, if formulaic flick. Crank 2, on the other hand, was the single biggest "fuck you" to mainstream action movies ever. Pretty much every single stupid thing you could imagine being packed into an action movie, Crank 2 had it. And I loved every single ridiculous inch of it. So, when I heard that Neveldine/Taylor were taking on the derided Ghost Rider franchise, my ears went all perky. Ghost Rider is the kind of comic book character that these guys were made for, totally insane and over the top. Now, the first Ghost Rider movie is one of the worst comic book films I've ever seen, so there wasn't much in the way of expectations for this one. That being said, there are elements to enjoy here. They are few and far between, and even though Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance doesn't quite get a recommendation from me, it does so in a very half hearted manner.

This is me on a good day!

February 20, 2012

The Black Hole Presents: Final Oscar Predictions

First off, I don't care.

I don't care about this year. Too many films that I cared about were snubbed out of the big categories. Indeed, of my top 4, only The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo garnered a major nomination, and it only got one. Such is life.

But, I do want to stay relevant with my contemporaries, so here are my final predictions on who will take home gold next Sunday.

February 10, 2012

The Jeremy Renner Thing

The story of the Hollywood superstar who enjoys a meteoric rise from small timer to big leaguer is a timeless one. We all love to hear about how you started in a small indie, got noticed, and now are headlining one of the most anticipated new franchises of the year.

Wait, this post isn't about The Hunger Games. Damn it, Jennifer Lawrence! Get out of my head!

No, today we'll be talking about the guy who, up until two years ago, was a relative nobody. Then he headlines an Oscar winner, gets two nominations in a row, but it isn't until now that the craziness begins. Now, he's poised to take over two of the most popular action franchises currently going, and is an integral part of another. 

Did you guess who it is?

Could just turn off the swagger? Please?

February 7, 2012

Let's Talk About: The Hunger Games

You know how it is.

When a form of entertainment (that isn't a film in it's genesis) is praised to high heaven by critics and, more importantly, the general public, it's only a matter of time before said property is given the big screen treatment.

This is where it gets complicated.

February 6, 2012

The Black Hole Presents: Thoughts on Oscar 2012

So, when the Oscar nominations came out, I was embroiled in Robert Redford's ode to all things independent. But now that Sundance is no more than a beautiful memory, it's time to offer my, albeit very late, two cents on this year's Oscar race.

February 4, 2012

PROOF:Talking With Joseph Gordon-Levitt

Dear God, why didn't I shave?

Thanks to hitRECord user tarinanderson for the video!!!

Soundtrack on a Staruday: Is Your Love Strong Enough (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo)

Well, those couple of days were exactly what I needed. After the rat race that was Sundance, I suddenly found myself exhausted, with no energy to do much of anything. What energy I had I was forced to devote to my first week of class.

But, I think I'm back in the groove now, so regular Black Hole shenanigans will resume, starting with this gem off the soundtrack for The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo!!!! Don't hate.

January 28, 2012

Sundance 2012: Final Thoughts

Sundance 2012: The Words Q&A

Sundance Review: The Words

Plagiarism is something that all writers struggle with, whether it be the urge to pass off somebody else's work as your own, or when someone does it to you. It's never a good feeling either way. If you get stolen from, you feel wronged that something you created is being taken credit for. If you do the stealing, you feel the guilt that comes with being a reasonable human being. This is the central dilemma in The Words, the star studded, closing night premiere at Sundance 2012. Unfortunately, The Words never rises above being more than a mildly compelling examination of the artistic ambition.

Sundance 2012: Sleepwalk With Me Q&A

Sundance Review: Sleepwalk With Me

Sometimes, all you need is a good comedy. I picked up tickets to Sleepwalk With Me sort of my accident. A woman had a bunch of different tickets to a bunch of different movies, and hawked this one off to me. And I'm very glad she did. Sleepwalk With Me is a very funny and occasionally touching film about stand-up, marriage, and sleep disorders. Like a good night's rest, it leaves you feeling satiated and happy.

January 27, 2012

Sundance 2012; Day 9

Sundance 2012: hitRECord

Courtesy of @areyouthatguy

Sundance Review: Shorts Program II

Shorts are interesting little buggers aren't they. In a way they are the more challenging movie to make, but they are also, in a way, easier to talk about. It's not easy to condense a full story into a 10 minute film, but when it comes time to discuss it, everything you saw is easier to pick out. Shorts Program II had seven films attached to it, and all followed the theme of searching for connection. Some were great, some good.

January 26, 2012

Sundance 2012: Day 8 Line 1

T-minus one hour and fifty minutes!

Sundance 2012: Thoughts On Moving the Masses

I woke up way later than intended to this morning and had to rush out the door, so some of my clothes might be on the wrong way today.

But I made it to my panel with plenty of time to spare. The panel dealt with the movements, activists, and protests that have become common place in the last year. On the panel was Lois Gibbs (a subject in A Fierce Green Fire), Peter Staley (a subject of Hoe To Survive a Plague), Omar Shargawi ( director of 1/2 Revolution), and author Naomi Wolf. All of them have been active in movements before, from the uprising in Cairo a year ago, to the Love Canal controversy in 1980.

Everyone had very interesting points, but there was a big gap with how Gibbs, Staley, and Shargawi viewed the matter from Wolf, especially when it came to journalism and documentaries. Shargawi, whose film deals with he and his friend's personal story in the Egyptian revolt, said change won't come unless you seduce people into doing it, and cinema is a way of doing that.

Wolf, on the other hand said that documentaries needs to become part of the news industry and distance itself from the film industry. She also took quite a lot of jabs at the Occupy movement, saying that since they weren't talking to the media, their message wasn't getting heard, and that's why they haven't really accomplished anything.

In addition to drawing some heated heckling from an audience member, it caused Gibbs to bring up a good point. Even though the Occupy movement isn't talking to anyone, they are still getting tons of press, which can only help. Wolf retaliated that their protest would accomplish more of they would appoint a spokesperson, and that government wouldn't be resorting to certain measures, like the British government threatening to use baton rounds on Occupy London.

Personally, I think the Occupy movement has its heart in the right place, but is completely aimless. And, to that end, I happen to agree with Wolf on the matter.

But that's a discussion for another day. Right now, I'm sitting pretty at lunch, and then it's off to the Holiday for a shorts program, and then… tonight …hitRECord!!! I'm shaking from anticipation… though that could just be from hunger. No way to know.

Sundance 2012: Day 8

Sundance 2012: California Solo Q&A

Sundance 2012: The Other Dream Team Q&A

Sundance 2012: Shadow Dancer Q&A

Sundance Review: California Solo

It seems that every actor has that chance to break back into the limelight with a small, character driven film, that sees him or her in the central role. Jeff Bridges had it with Crazy Heart, and it won him an Oscar. Gary Oldman had it with Tinker Tailor Solider Spy, and it better win him an Oscar. And now Robert Carlyle has is with California Solo, and his performance deserves and Oscar. Movie ain't all that bad either.

Sundance Review: The Other Dream Team

So, my dad has this shirt. It's kinda far out, and I'm pretty sure if I saw it whilst under the influence of some psychotropic drug (maybe "Soy Sauce"), that my head would explode. The shirt is tie-dye, for one, but that's not the crazy part. The crazy part is the skeleton dunking a basketball with LITHUANIA projected behind it in big block letters.

Ok, you probably know exactly what shirt I'm talking about. What I'm getting at is this. My dad attended the screening of The Other Dream Team with me and my mother. He told me that Sarunas Marciulionis was his favorite player of that era. And he's a HUGE fan of the Grateful Dead. So, of course he leaves the shirt at home. It was disappointing.