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Episode 20: THE DARK KNIGHT RISES EXTRAVAGANZA!

As Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy comes to an end I feel that there is no better way to celebrate his masterpiece than to dedicate this week’s episode to The Dark Knight Rises and Christopher Nolan’s Gotham City. Since 2005 audiences around the world have been enthralled with this world that manages to look somewhat our world today but is filled with larger than life heroes and villains. We have eagerly anticipated each installment, waiting on the edges of our seats to find out what lies ahead for Bruce Wayne/Batman. We have cried as he has faced loss again and again. We have laughed as he has quipped while foiling the plans of his villains. We have chewed our nails while trying to keep up with the multitude of plot twists. But we have never doubted that Christopher Nolan, along with his cast and crew , would deliver an amazing film. As the trilogy comes to an end we can reflect back on how each film has led the way for this conclusion. I’m sure the debate will last quite some time on which of the three films was the best, but for me this is a trilogy where each film strengthens the others. I am certain that it will be difficult for anyone trying to reboot the Batman franchise in the future to beat what has been accomplished with these films.

News & Gossip:

  • Should Anne Hathaway’s Catwoman get her own movie? article
  • What would you say to additional films set in Nolan’s Gotham without Batman? article
  • Top 10 things Christopher Nolan got right article
  • Rating the actors in The Dark Knight Rises article
  • Christopher Nolan says “goodbye” to Batman article
  • Christian Bale has a generous spirit (in my opinion) article

In theaters now:

  • The Dark Knight Rises (trailer): Christopher Nolan has given us a top notch finale to his Dark Knight trilogy. It has been 8 years in Gotham since Batman has fought for justice. Bruce Wayne has become a recluse, trapped in a self imposed prison. Gotham has been made safe by The Harvey Dent Act. But events are simmering beneath the surface that once brought to light, will force Bruce Wayne to wear the Batman cowl once again. This film is not The Dark Knight. Those expecting a film that mirrors The Dark Knight will be disappointed because where The Dark Knight was all about the villain, The Dark Knight Risesis all about Bruce Wayne’s personal journey coming to an end. He is fulfilling his destiny and becoming the hero he was meant to become. Tom Hardy’s Bane is not the villain The Joker was. He is not crazed or manic. He has a purpose in life and believes that he is doing what’s right. He has a physicality that is greater than Batman’s and is able to do the unthinkable: best Batman in a fight. Anne Hathaway was a real surprise as Selina Kyle/Catwoman. Upon initial reports that she would be playing Catwoman I was unsure that she’d be able to pull it off… but she did. She was Catwoman without being overly campy or sexual, while giving audiences a voice from the underprivileged in Gotham City. Joseph Gordon-Levitt was able to give depth and emotion to a character that could have been completely one dimensional. Anna and I agree that at a run time of just under 3 hours the film didn’t seem as long as it was. We were able to experience a wide range of emotions and Anna was so excited at one point she even clapped (I know, I know). We both rated this 5 out of 5 and neither of us can wait to see it again.
    • 10 things to know before seeing The Dark Knight Rises (no spoilers) article

What’s on the horizon:

This weekend’s agenda:

[audio http://archive.org/download/TwoWomenOneMovieAndAMicrophone/2women1movieEp20.mp3]

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And to close this post I’ll leave you with a little bit of humor…

Episode 19: The Favorites Episode

You know what, Anna? I’m pretty sure I can explain why we’re still single in two words: Jake Ryan.

It’s fun talking about the new movies that we see each week but honestly some of the movies I like to talk about the most are old favorites. I love being able to share a movie that I have loved with someone else in hopes that they’ll love it (or like it) as well. Anna and I took some time over the last week thinking about which films we love to watch over and over again. I have my standbys, movies that I watch every time they’re on TV, but I wanted to pick a couple films that you may have missed but should check out.

News & Gossip:

  • The 21 Jump Street sequel is in the works article
  • Daniel Radcliffe to star in a romantic comedy article
  • Matt Damon probably won’t be back for another Bourne film article
  • Interesting thoughts on why there should be a sequel to John Carter article
  • A plethora of Catching Fire casting news article
  • 10 overlooked films of 2011 article
  • on a side note this is an interesting article on why men should go see Magic Mike

Our Everlasting Favorites:

  • Kari’s first choice: The Last of the Mohicans – I wanted to link a trailer but honestly the trailer made for this in 1992 was pretty terrible compared to the masterpieces that are trailers today. When I think of the films that made me truly fall in love with the movies this one comes immediately to mind. For me it has it all: amazing performances, a thrilling score, drama, action, a historically relevant plot, and most importantly a beautiful love story. Daniel Day Lewis can be trusted to deliver a spot on performance and he certainly does as Hawkeye. I can watch him save Cora from being killed over, and over, and over again. This does not get old for me. I also appreciate the beautiful setting in which the film was shot. The locations were in North Carolina and honestly it looks like land that time has forgotten. I would love to tour some of the parks and locations where the film was shot, and only hope that they look as lush and vibrant as they did in the film. Not to say this is only a great love story, it also depicts life in The Colonies during the French and Indian war and if you are a fan of either history or war films you need to check this out.
  • Anna’s first choice: Sixteen Candles – John Hughes has the ability to capture life as an American teenager like no other. His films, though dated in appearance, have been able to withstand the test of time. Molly Ringwald, as Samantha Baker, lives out every teenage girl’s fantasy when the most popular senior, Jake Ryan, falls for her during her sophomore year. Her family is hilarious, the trials she goes through are excruciatingly embarrassing, yet through it all you can’t help but relate to her feeling of alienation and the awkwardness of being a teenager. I know if Anna had not chosen this as one of her favorite movies, I would have. This is a classic and should not be missed.
  • Kari’s second choice: Galaxy Quest – This is one of those films that you probably missed when it was released in 1999. I had the pleasure of seeing it in the theater… though the only audience members were myself and my friend. We laughed the entire way through the film and couldn’t believe more people hadn’t show up to see it. The film is about a cast of a science fiction television show (much like Star Trek) who have long since stopped filming, but continue to join together on the convention circuit. During one such convention a group of actual aliens appear asking for the help of the cast. With Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Alan Rickman, Tony Shalhoub, and Sam Rockwell leading the cast how could this go wrong? It doesn’t. They are all hilarious and today, 13 years later, I can still chuckle as I remember some of the more memorable lines. If you like comedy, sci-fi, or Alan Rickman you should give this a watch.
  • Anna’s second choice: October Sky- This is one of the first movies Anna bought and she still owns it on VHS. Made in 1999, the film is set in the late 50s, in a West Virginia coal mining town. A slightly bookish Homer Hickam (Jake Gyllenhaal) wants to escape the coal mining life desperately, but isn’t athletic enough to earn a sports scholarship. After he sees Sputnik, he’s inspired to build rockets and when he finds out that winning a science fair is a ticket to a college scholarship, he and his friends embark on a journey to build a rocket. However, at the heart of the movie is a story about a boy just wanted to make his dad proud. Homer and his father (Chris Cooper) have a very contentious relationship, as his dad wants him to give up the “foolish rockets” and follow him into the mine and Homer wants anything except the mine. But Homer still wants his father to be proud of him as he is his football playing brother. And Homer’s father does love him, but isn’t sure how to express it. It makes us both teary eyed every time we see it as we watch a father and his son try and connect and understand each other. This was Jake’s first big movie and his portryal of Homer hints at what a great actor he was becoming. Chris Cooper, as always, does a fantastic job playing his tough, but fair, father.

What’s on the horizon:

This weekend’s agenda:

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Episode 9: Stepping up on our soapbox

There are few things that true movie-goers hate more than poor theater etiquette. There are only a few simple rules to follow:

  1. Don’t talk during the movie.
  2. Don’t use your cellular phone during the movie.
  3. Don’t kick the seats in front of you.

Yet people seem to think that these rules are unnecessary in today’s age where it seems that nobody is able to go 2 minutes without checking either for a text or an update on a social media outlet. During CinemaCon (a conference for cinema owners), a debate actually arose on whether theaters should actually allow cellular phone usage during movies in order to attract younger audience members. It would be interesting to see what current (older) audience would do if this were actually taken seriously (which I can only hope will never happen). Would they sit idly by and allow this to happen or would they discontinue supporting theaters that allow for the bright, distracting lights of cellular phones to pop up like fireflies during the show? Also should it become common to allow people to play with their phones during the film, how far off are we from letting people have full on conversations? It seems ridiculous to me that this would ever be discussed because as someone who has gone to hundreds of movies in the last 15 years or so it makes me wonder: Would I have spent so much money going to the theater if the film had to compete with bright, little lights and conversations in order to be enjoyed? Probably not.

News & Gossip:

  • The synopsis for Django Unchained has been released article as well as a pic of Leonardo DiCaprio as the villain article
  • Would you buy Avon from Mark Wahlberg? I sure would article
  • It sounds like we’ll be able to understand Bane in The Dark Knight Rises after all article
  • Rumor has it Ryan Reynolds might be on the short list to replace Christian Bale as Batman article
  • Early rumblings on The Hobbit being shot at 48 frames per second article
  • Martin Scorsese wants to shoot all of his films in 3D article
  • An actual discussion has arisen on allowing cellular phone usage in theaters article

In theaters now:

  • The Lucky One (trailer): We both agreed that this movie was classic Nicholas Sparks. There was rain, boats, a woman overcoming a past relationship, a sub-par plot, and plenty of sappiness to go around. The story involves a soldier, Logan, who after a night raid in Iraq finds a picture of a woman. As time and time again he survives situations that should have resulted in his death he begins to look at the photo as a talisman keeping him safe. After returning home he begins a journey to track down the woman. In doing so he finds her living with her son and grandmother at a dog kennel. Logan ends up getting a job at the kennel and forms a relationship with Beth (the woman in the photo) and her family, enraging her ex-husband in the process. This movie is completely forgettable with the exception of one thing: Zac Efron. Therefore we agreed that this film would get a rating of 2 out of 5. One point for the movie and one point for Zac Efron. (I think you mean, one point for the dog and one point for Zac ~Anna) We would have given him more points, but we didn’t want to mislead people into thinking this movie was at all good, when it’s not. If you are a Zac Efron fan, however, this one is not to be missed… see below.

Update: The Lucky One would have probably been better had this (funnyordie trailer) been the plot rather than its actual plot.

What’s on the horizon:

Opening this week:

[audio http://ia600808.us.archive.org/26/items/TwoWomenOneMovieAndAMicrophone/2women1movieEp9.mp3]

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