Monday, September 9, 2013

Weekend Box Office: Still Mine, The Grandmaster, The Lifeguard, Afternoon Delight

Here is an interesting article from reviewing some of the movies that came out over the past weekend. This follows this post about some of the movies from last week and THIS POST about some movies that have been released over the past few years that you might have missed! This all follows this post about guidelines to choosing good movies to watch yourself!

Wknd Box Office: Still Mine, The Grandmaster, The Lifeguard, Afternoon Delight

By Debbie Schlussel

I did not have time to finish my movie reviews before the start of the Jewish holiday of Rosh HaShanah, so they are up later. Sorry for that. Among the new selections at movie theaters, this weekend, there’s one great choice, and the rest are a waste of time. I did not see “Riddick,” as the screening conflicted with Rosh HaShanah.

* “Still Mine“: This is a fabulous movie, one of the best I’ve seen all year. James Cromwell–a far lefty actor–ironically plays a man fighting big government in this Canadian-government-funded movie based on a true story. And along with it, there is also a love story. Cromwell portrays Craig Morrison, an 80-something farmer in New Brunswick, whose wife, Irene (Genevieve Bujold), is beginning to experience dementia.Morrison, a berry farmer, is down on his luck because of ever-encroaching regulations. His just-picked strawberry crop cannot be sold because the companies that buy them now insist that they be transported in the few-minutes drive from his field to market in an expensive refrigerated truck. The Morrison’s two-story farmhouse does not have central heating, and with his wife’s illness, he seeks to build a smaller home for the two of them on his farmland.

Morrison cannot afford to pay someone else to build it, but he is skilled in building and begins building the home himself. Despite his old age, Morrison is exhilarated and energized with the task, despite the naysaying of his grown children. But, soon, the local zoning and planning authorities encroach on his plans, demanding that he spend lots of money on costly building “plans,” “stamped” wood and a myriad of unnecessary regulations. (Perhaps he should have chosen to build in Detroit, where nothing happens to you if you do not get required permits or build according to regulations.)

The movie shows us how this elderly man not only fights back against big government sticking its nose in his life but also his fight to keep his ailing wife at home where he knows his love will comfort her, rather than in a nursing home.

This movie is mostly playing in arthouse movie theaters. If you cannot catch it there, wait for it to come out on DVD or Netflix.

An uplifting movie, indeed.


* “The Grandmaster [Yi Dai Zong Shi]“: As a fan of martial arts and martial arts movies, I found this incredibly disappointing. There was too much foo and not enough Kung Fu. Plus, it had an extremely ridiculous feminist theme to it. The movie, in Chinese with English subtitles, is supposed to be the story of Ip Man, the Kung Fu master who taught Bruce Lee. And, while some of the movie is that story, it is really a mishmash of stories about different martial arts masters in Chine from the early 20th Century through the 1950s.

And the movie shows us that a woman, who is the daughter of a famous Kung Fu master, is really better than all of them, but she is relegated to the sidelines because she’s a woman. Toward the end of the movie, she fights, beats, and kills a major martial arts master. That’s simply not believable, though the movie insists it is based on the true stories of these Kung Fu masters.

I found the movie to be way too long, very boring, and very thin on plot and story. Had I missed this, my life would not have been affected. I felt like I wasted 130 minutes and ten bucks on this (I did not attend the free critics’ screening). Don’t repeat my mistake.


* “The Lifeguard“: What an incredible waste of time! A sullen, aimless 29-year-old Associated Press reporter (Kristen Bell) is bored and unhappy with her life in New York, so she returns home to live with her parents and become a lifeguard, like she did as a teen in high school. While most of the rest of her high school friends have grown up, she hasn’t. And she embarks on a sexual relationship with an underaged high school teen male. Nothing happens to her, though. The end. And the point of this was . . . ? Other than transferring my ten bucks to the bank account of left-wing actress Kristen Bell, apparently nothing.

Skip this.


* “Afternoon Delight“: This movie was horrifying, disgusting, and incredibly anti-Semitic (from self-hating Jews). Homely actress Kathryn Hahn plays a Jewish yuppie housewife, who is unhappy with her and her husband’s sex life. So, they go to a strip club where they get lap dances from a young stripper. She then feels sorry for the stripper and invites the stripper–who admits she is a prostitute–to live at her house. She also accompanies the stripper to her, um, “appointments” with prostitution customers and is in the room while the prostitute has sex. The stripper has sex with one of Hahn’s friends’ husbands, and that is the last straw.

And they needed a movie about this . . . why? Apparently to make fun of religious Jews. The mother characters in the movie are Jews at a Jewish preschool, and they constantly make fun of one of the other mothers who is a religious Jew and keeps kosher. She is, of course, the nerdy, backward, uptight, ugly, weird-looking one. And they are so cool because they do not keep kosher, go to strip clubs, and have hookers living in their homes.


Would they make a movie like this about Muslims? Hell, no.

Skip at all cost.


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