Movie Review: Food, Inc.

Food, Inc. is a documentary about the food industry. It visits chicken farmers, beef farmers, corn growers and more. It talks to the people involved in it. It talks to the journalists who have spent their time researching the process. This is a very human movie.

Some of it is just enough to make me reconsider where I’m getting my produce. I have local farmers. I have local meat farmers. I’m more than willing to support.

It paints a fairly negative picture of the current industry, but I don’t think that’s a bad thing. I think it sparks conversation. I think that the industry has enough voices involved in the processes in Washington and the media.

Chipotle sponsored showings of it. I give them great props for that because so many of the large corporations such as Perdue, Tyson, Monsato didn’t agree to be interviewed. However, the authors of Fast Food Nation and Omnivore’s Dilemma did agree to it. So did many of the farmers and workers on the ground in this new style of making food. I think refusing to be interviewed was the stupidest move that these corporations could have made. There’s no voice for them in this film and the simple “so and so refused to be interviewed for this film” is incredibly powerful.

I think this is a must-see movie. It does it’s job. It makes you *think*. That’s the most important part of any documentary. Even if you don’t agree with the arguments that come out of it, you should at least know where the arguments are coming from. I also highly recommend the book of readings for Food, Inc. that you can get to accompany the film.

Get a Life Meme -76

Okay, I had to do this one. I scored a 76, which somehow means I have a life. Who knew?

If you do it, give me a heads up so I can take a look.

It was originally posted by Miles Kurland.

I found it on Greg Laden’s Blog.

SUPPOSEDLY if you’ve seen over 85 movies, you have no life. Mark the ones you’ve seen. There are 219 movies on this list. Copy this list, then paste it on facebook or on your blog. Then, put x’s next to the movies you’ve seen, add them up, change the header adding your number, and click publish at the side.

Here we go.

(X) Rocky Horror Picture Show
( ) Grease
(X) Pirates of the Caribbean
(X) Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man’s Chest
( ) Boondock Saints
( ) Fight Club
( ) Starsky and Hutch
(X) Neverending Story
(X) Blazing Saddles
(X) Universal Soldier
( ) Lemony Snicket: A Series Of Unfortunate Events
( ) Along Came Polly
( ) Joe Dirt
(X) KING KONG which version?
Total so far: 7

( ) A Cinderella Story
( ) The Terminal
( ) The Lizzie McGuire Movie
( ) Passport to Paris
( ) Dumb & Dumber
( ) Dumber & Dumberer
( ) Final Destination
( ) Final Destination 2
( ) Final Destination 3
(X) Halloween
(X) The Ring
( ) The Ring 2
( ) Surviving -MAS
( ) Flubber Orignial version only
Total so far: 9

( ) Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle
(X) Practical Magic
( ) Chicago
(X) Ghost Ship
(X) From Hell
( ) Hellboy
( ) Secret Window
( ) I Am Sam
( ) The Whole Nine Yards
( ) The Whole Ten Yards
Total so far: 12

( ) The Day After Tomorrow
(X) Child’s Play
(X) Seed of Chucky
(X) Bride of Chucky
( ) Ten Things I Hate About You
( ) Just Married
( ) Gothika
(X) Nightmare on Elm Street
( ) Sixteen Candles
( ) Remember the Titans
( ) Coach Carter
( ) The Grudge
( ) The Grudge 2
( ) The Mask
( ) Son Of The Mask
Total so far: 16

( ) Bad Boys
( ) Bad Boys 2
( ) Joy Ride
( ) Lucky Number Sleven
(X) Ocean’s Eleven
(X) Ocean’s Twelve
(X) Bourne Identity
(X) Bourne Supremacy
( ) Lone Star
( ) Bedazzled both versions
(X) Predator I
( ) Predator II
(X) The Fog
(X) Ice Age
(X) Ice Age 2: The Meltdown
( ) Curious George
Total so far: 24

(X) Independence Day
( ) Cujo
( ) A Bron Tale
( ) Darkness Falls
( ) Christine
(X) ET
( ) Children of the Corn
( ) My Bosses Daughter
( ) Maid in Manhattan
(X) War of the Worlds
( ) Rush Hour
( ) Rush Hour 2
Total so far: 27

( ) Best Bet
( ) How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
( ) She’s All That
( ) Calendar Girls
( ) Sideways
(X) Mars Attacks
(X) Event Horizon
( ) Ever After
(X) Wizard of Oz
( ) Forrest Gump
(X) Big Trouble in Little China
(X) The Terminator
(X) The Terminator 2
( ) The Terminator 3
Total so far: 33

(X) x-Men
(X) x2
( ) x-3
( ) Spider-Man
( ) Spider-Man 2
( ) Sky High
( ) Jeepers Creepers
( ) Jeepers Creepers 2
( ) Catch Me If You Can
(X) The Little Mermaid
(X) Freaky Friday
( ) Reign of Fire
( ) The Skulls
( ) Cruel Intentions
( ) Cruel Intentions 2
( ) The Hot Chick
(X) Shrek
(X) Shrek 2
Total so far: 39

( ) Swimfan
(X) Miracle on 34th street
( ) Old School
( ) The Notebook
(X) K-Pax
( ) Kippendorf’s Tribe
( ) A Walk to Remember
( ) Ice Castles
( ) Boogeyman
( ) The 40-year-old-virgin
Total so far: 41

(X) Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Ring
(X) Lord of the Rings The Two Towers
(X) Lord of the Rings Return Of the King
(X) Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark
(X) Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
(X) Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
Total so far: 47

( ) Baseketball
( ) Hostel
( ) Waiting for Guffman
( ) House of 1000 Corpses
( ) Devils Rejects
( ) Elf
(X) Highlander
( ) Mothman Prophecies
( ) American History
( ) Three
Total so Far: 48

( ) The Jacket
( ) Kung Fu Hustle
( ) Shaolin Soccer
(X) Night Watch
( ) Monsters Inc.
( ) Titanic
(X) Monty Python and the Holy Grail
( ) Shaun Of the Dead
( ) Willard
Total so far: 50

( ) High Tension
( ) Club Dread
( ) Hulk
( ) Dawn Of the Dead
(X) Hook
(X) Chronicle Of Narnia The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe
(X) 28 days later
( ) Orgazmo
( ) Phantasm
( ) Waterworld
Total so far: 53

(X) Kill Bill vol 1
(X) Kill Bill vol 2
(X) Mortal Kombat
( ) Wolf Creek
(X) Kingdom of Heaven
( ) the Hills Have Eyes
( ) I Spit on Your Grave aka the Day of the Woman
( ) The Last House on the Left
(X) Re-Animator
(X) Army of Darkness
Total so far: 59

(X) Star Wars Ep. I The Phantom Menace
(X) Star Wars Ep. II Attack of the Clones
( ) Star Wars Ep. III Revenge of the Sith
(X) Star Wars Ep. IV A New Hope
(X) Star Wars Ep. V The Empire Strikes Back
(X) Star Wars Ep. VI Return of the Jedi
( ) Ewoks Caravan Of Courage
( ) Ewoks The Battle For Endor
Total so far: 64

(X) The Matrix
( ) The Matrix Reloaded
( ) The Matrix Revolutions
( ) Animatrix
( ) Evil Dead
( ) Evil Dead 2
( ) Team America: World Police
(X) Red Dragon
(X) Silence of the Lambs
( ) Hannibal
Total so far: 67

( ) Battle Royale
( ) Battle Royale 2
( ) Brazil
( ) Contact
( ) Cube
(X) Dr. Strangelove
( ) Enlightenment Guaranteed
( ) Four Rooms
(X) Memento
( ) Pi
( ) Requiem for a Dream
(X) Pulp Fiction
(X) Reservoir Dogs
( ) Run Lola Run
( ) Russian Ark
(X) Serenity
(X) Sin City
(X) Snatch
( ) Spider
(X) The Sixth Sense
( ) The Village
( ) Waking Life
( ) Zatoichi
( ) Ikiru
( ) The Seven Samurai
( ) Brick
( ) Akira

Movie Review: After the Sunset

After the Sunset Pierce Brosnan, Salma Hayek, Woody Harrelson, Don Cheadle

Okay, so I’ve a bit of a theme going on tonight. This movie is *much* better than I expected. It’s not a retread of “To Catch a Thief” so don’t let anyone BS you by saying it is. The banter between Harrelson and Brosnan was genuinely funny and the romance between Brosnan and Hayek rang true.

Brosnan plays a retired theif (is there really such a thing) and Hayek is his partner. Harrelson plays the FBI agent who’s been following Brosnan for seven years. Cheadle plays the local hood. (It’s a bit part, but necessary.) It’s not a total heist movie, it’s a romantic comedy. The heist involves a famous diamond, a reluctant thief, and a hood.

There are some incredibly funny moments and the relationships between the characters have more than just surface layers. You also aren’t sure who’s playing who in the game. Just sit back and enjoy it. It’s not an award winner by any means, and if I had to choose I’d take “The Heist” any day. Still, it’s worth a look.

Get it from Netflix or Amazon.

Movie Review: The Heist

The Heist Pierce Brosnan, Tom Skerritt, Wendy Hughes

I love heist movies and I think this is one of the better ones. There’s cross, double-cross, triple cross, and more. The two things you know, there’s going to be a heist and he’s going to get the girl… maybe. In other words, despite the fact that this movie pulls on both Oceans 11 and The Sting, you’re never quite sure how our main man is going to pull everything off.

Pierce Brosnan’s character was set up and went to prison for four years. He’s positive that it’s his ex-partner, Tom Skerritt, and let’s be honest here, the viewer is too. Skerritt’s character has the race-track, the girl, and the money. Brosnan’s going to but the hurt on him. I don’t want to give away too much, but it involves a brilliant and non-violent heist, a lot of misdirection, and a horse race. There’s a whole host of wonderful character actors in this movie. There’s no foul language and no major violence. There is a sex scene, but you can’t see anything and it’s cunningly spliced with flashes of the relationships in the movie which makes you quesiton what’s going on even more.

Look it up. You can get it from netflix or pick it up from

Movie Review: Secretary


This movie is hard to describe. It’s a movie about S&M primarily and in that respect it does succeed. It’s not an easy movie to watch. It also deals with self-mutilation and oddly about self-confidence and self-growth.

The self-mutliation sequence is tastefully done and very realistic. The growth of the relationship is handled deftly with an interesting metaphor including orchids. They obviously did their research so the BDSM aspects do ring true. The biggest issue maybe suspending your disbelief. I found it fantastic that any modern lawyer would be that blatant in his office.

The biggest problem is that while it’s lavishly done, well-researched, and perfectly acted, it’s just a p**n movie and those can’t hold my attention for very long. I managed to get half-way through the movie before I just got bored.

Movie Review: Rent


Rent is set in 1989. It deals with drug addiction, AIDS, and above LOVE. It’s based on the Opera La Boheme. (Just like Moulin Rouge is.) We follow Marc and his friends through a year of life. The struggle to keep your identity in a shifting world, dealing with the fear of dying, and keeping true to your own ideals plays out in every day life.

A little bit of background, I’ve seen the play four times now, listened to the cast album until I memorized every line and can quote any character you like. I was utterly terrified that I would hate this movie. The only way I could conceptualize it being done was as Marc’s documentary and I thought that would be just wrong.

I was *very* much surprised. It was jarring at first to hear lines that are usually sung spoken. I did miss one of the numbers that was cut out. Still, it was easy to get used to the new format. The actors were so comfortable in their roles and with each other, that their friendship rang true. The minor changes in the scripting and the time-lines is easy to understand and doesn’t change the story much. They’ve worked out the strange timing issues that exist in the play.

The staging was brilliant. Tango Maureen was a huge laugh. And Take me or Leave me definitely had its moments. I still teared up in the usual places: One Song, Glory, Without You, and I’ll Cover You Reprise.

I can’t wait for the DVD now, because they’ve promised to have the scenes that were cut as special features.

If you’ve seen the play, you’ll enjoy the movie. If you haven’t seen the play, you’ll still enjoy the movie. But if you haven’t seen the play. You *have* to see it.

Movie Review: Serenity

Serenity. In theatres September 30, 2005

This is the little fan base that could. When Fox cancelled a show called Firefly after only six out-of-order episodes, who would have dreamed that it would get another chance to shine? In the words of Joss Whedon, “flop TV shows don’t get made into movies.” Well, here’s the deal, the fans spoke up loud and clear. Their united message was “if you keep flying, we’ll keep watching.” (Trust me, I have the patch.) The browncoats petitioned UPN and WB to take up the show. They sent post-cards and flowers and email to SciFi channel. Universal took a gamble. They gave Joss Whedon a budget and let him shoot the movie. The result, one heck of a rocking movie.

“Serenity” is a unique sci-fi movie. There are no aliens. And that’s just the beginning. Set in a future where terraforming has become common-place and settlers have spread among the stars away from Earth-that-was, Serenity follows the exploits of Captain Malcom Renoylds and his not so merry crew of smugglers. Zoe is his second in command from the war and on the ship. Her husband Wash is the piolet. Kaylee is the perky mechanic and Jayne is the resident tough-guy mercenary. Simon and River Tam are their passengers. River is being pursued by the government of this brave new future for information and talents she doesn’t even know she has. But all of that you could pretty much have gotten from the preview.

What you don’t know from the preview is that the dialog is sharp and quick, filled with wonderful turns of phrase and sparkling dark humor. There’s a strong mystery plot that underpins the whole thing and it’s not about the special effects, excellent though they may be, or the fight-scenes as perfect as they are, it’s about the characters and the choices they make along the way. The whole movie is about choice. What is honor? What is right action? When do you choose to fight? When do you walk away? And what is belief? What is a hero?

If you watched the television series, either when it first showed, on a DVD someone loaned you, or the reruns that are on SciFi, then you’ll be happy to know that everything you loved about the show is in the movie. There’s in-jokes for those of us in the know. If you didn’t watch the show (go get it. Netflix offers it…), you can still watch the movie and not feel out of your depth. There is enough information for someone who’s never seen the show to understand what’s happening. And there’s enough familiarity and carried on history to make fans of the show jump for joy.

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