Movie Review – Tusk

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Tusk (2014)
Written & Directed by Kevin Smith

tusk film

Wallace Bryton is a cruel man. He co-hosts a podcast, The Not-See Party where he and his partner Teddy mock whatever viral videos are currently fresh in the collective psyche. His most recent acquisition, The Kill Bill Kid (an allusion to The Star Wars Kid) brings him to Manitoba in search of an interview. That opportunity goes bust, and he scrambles for a replacement, a touch of the strange to return to his listeners. A posting in the men’s room at a bar leads Wallace to the large manor home of Howard Howe, a reclusive man with stories to tell. Howe was a sailor for many years who regales Wallace with meeting Hemingway days before D-Day and his own eventually shipwreck in the waters of the North Atlantic. It was in those waters he befriended a walrus, nicknaming him Mr. Tusk. This friendship is the motivation behind Howe’s twisted plans for Wallace.

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Movie Review – The Captive

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The Captive (2013)
Written by Atom Egoyan & David Fraser
Directed by Atom Egoyan

the captive

In rural Ontario, a young girl named Cass vanishes from the back of her dad’s truck. Her father, Matt, and mother, Tina spend the next eight years going through stages of grief and disbelief about the well-being and whereabouts of their daughter. Detectives Cornwall and Dunlap pursue the case as part of their assignment on the Child Exploitation division and discover Cass being used as bait to lure other young girls into a child predator ring. The various people involved in this complex web slowly spiral closer and closer, with Matt pursuing who he believes to be the man behind his daughter’s kidnapping.

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Movie Review – Life After Beth

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Life After Beth (2014)
Written & Directed by Jeff Baena

life-after-beth

Beth has died and her grieving boyfriend, Zach is stuck in a permanent depression. He is hanging out with her parents, Maury and Geenie trying to revive what it felt like for his late love to be alive. And then out of nowhere, Beth’s parents box out Zach, refusing to answer the door or his phone calls. He eventually busts in and finds Beth, alive and well, but a little confused about where she has been. Zach wants to start their relationship back up, but Maury and Geenie would prefer to keep her locked up in the house. As time goes on, Zach learns that the Beth that came back may not be precisely in the best of shape.

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Movie Review – The Rover

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The Rover (2014)
Written by Joel Edgerton & David Michôd
Directed by David Michôd

the rover

A man sits on the side of a dusty Australian road. He exits his car and enters a bar where he has to pour himself a drink. Meanwhile, a trio of men speeds down the highway having escaped some sort of shootout. The paths of these men and the nameless rover on the side of the road will cross. He will make them his mission to hunt down and put an end to. This is ten years after the collapse of society, so some pockets are attempting to retain order. The military patrols the outback. Store owners still want paper money in exchange for goods. But everyone is packing a weapon and death can come in the blink of an eye.

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Movie Review – Locke

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Locke (2014)
Written & Directed by Steven Knight

locke

Ivan Locke has just ended a day of work as a foreman on a construction site in Birmingham, England. He embarks on the drive home…or is he? Locke phones his wife while on the motorway between Birmingham and London to tell her he won’t be coming home tonight. Meanwhile, he calls another woman, Bethan who inquires about his whereabouts and how long it will be before he gets to her. He makes calls between his supervisor and a colleague in an attempt to ensure the concrete pour the next morning goes off without a hitch. Whatever Locke is doing and where ever he is going it will completely upend his life as he knew it. During this two hour drive, he attempts desperately to bridge his present with this uncertain future.

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Movie Review – Under the Skin

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Under the Skin (2014)
Written by Walter Campbell & Jonathan Glazer
Directed by Jonathan Glazer

under the skin

In the middle of the night, in a desolate stretch of road in the Scottish Highlands, an alien being arrives on our planet. This being is not here to bring a message of peace or even start a war with Earth. Her purpose is to harvest humans for consumption by her species. This involves driving around and picking up men who are alone, bringing them back to a facade of a home, and preserving them in a gelatinous liquid until they are processed. A problem begins to arise as the being starts to become interested in the emotions and experiences of these people. She finds them welcoming and warm and suddenly has an abrupt internal change of mind. But she is not a human, and this cold fact will inevitably take her down a tragic path.

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Movie Review – The Spectacular Now

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The Spectacular Now (2013)
Written by Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber
Directed by James Ponsoldt

the spectacular now

Sutter Keely is a high school senior under the impression he and his girlfriend, Cassidy are the life of the party. Their relationship crashes and burns when he is caught in a compromising situation where he is honestly not cheating. However, as the film goes on, we begin to understand where Cassidy is coming from. In the meantime, Sutter goes on a bender and wakes up in the front yard of Aimee, a girl in his year. She is reserved and more studious than Sutter, but he feels drawn to her, both as a rebound and because she has such a pure caring spirit. However, Sutter begins to pull Aimee into his way of life, hiding a flask of liquor and coming to work and school at least buzzed if not more. There are also questions about Sutter’s dad and why his parents divorced. The answers will lead to the young man being forced to make tough choices about his life.

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