Monday, August 27

The Dark Knight Rises

The long-awaited final chapter of Nolan's Batman series ends...or does it? 

2012. Rated PG-13. 165 minutes. Starring Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Michael Caine. Directed by Christopher Nolan. 

Eight years on, a new terrorist leader, Bane, overwhelms Gotham's finest, and the Dark Knight resurfaces to protect a city that has branded him an enemy. [imdb]

Nicole: Welp, Cassidy, 165 minutes never passed so quickly. That, in and of itself, should tell you how much I loved this movie. I was equal parts dreading its release (worried the final chapter in the three-movie arc would be a letdown) and feverishly awaiting it (wondering what Nolan had up his sleeve for the last installment of a series I never wanted to see end). Well, without revealing too much, it was anything but a letdown and the payoff was extremely well spent. 


Nicole: HEY! Wake up! Here’s the scoop: The movie opens eight years after we last saw Batman, now considered a threat and villain to Gotham instead of its caped-crusading hero. Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale, the deliciously gorgeous man behind the mask) has become a crippled recluse, holed up in his mansion while Wayne Enterprises flails. A mysterious cat burglar (Anne Hathaway) happens into Bruce’s life and as a result, compels him to once again enter society and try to cure it of its ills. But, these past eight years haven’t been kind to the Batman and his most recent nemesis Bane (played to creepy perfection by Tom Hardy – shame to put such a lovely looking man behind such a grotesque mask, ahh well) isn’t quite what he expected. Luckily, the Batman still has allies, namely Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who steps up to help save Gotham in what appears to be its final hour. 

elizabeth:  Why have you ignored my plea to never put these two words together: deliciously gorgeous? Get thee to the bat cave and think about what you have done.

Nicole: When it comes to Christian Bale, you must make an exception. So, that’s all I’ll say about the plot, because the last thing I want to do is spoil this movie. The payoff is THAT good. I know, some people found it contrived, predictable, perhaps even hokey. I guess I’m a total sucker, because I bought it hook, line, and sinker. Even things I was certain I was going to HATE about this movie (like the casting), I ended up loving. (Case in point: Anne Hathaway as Catwoman? Really? Well, REALLY. She owned it. Totally and utterly enjoyable in this role. And to think, I rolled my eyes when she first hit the screen. Oh, how wrong I was.)

The only bad thing about  THE DARK KNIGHT RISES is that it ended. And, for all we know, for good. There are no plans to continue the series. Nolan says he’s done. And, I am in denial. Because there’s so, so much more to be told. That, and I reallllly want to see Bale slip on a tux as Wayne and kick ass in that skin-tight Bat suit again. A girl can dream, can’t she? 

elizabeth: Oh, please. We both know that Hollywood is all about bringing back tried-and-true movie scripts that they can tweak a touch because no one is smart enough out there to write something new. Here’s my challenge—don’t bring back Batman ever again, but write something that is clever and original. Yea, right. 

The Film Fatales give THE DARK KNIGHT RISES 

Tuesday, August 21

The Campaign

The Campaign – Did it get the Film Fatales’ vote?

2012. Rated R. 85 minutes. Starring Will Ferrell, Zach Galifianakis, Jason Suedeikis, Dylan McDermott. Directed by Jay Roach. 

In order to gain influence over their North Carolina district, two CEOs seize an opportunity to oust long-term congressman Cam Brady by putting up a rival candidate. Their man: naive Marty Huggins, director of the local Tourism Center. [imdb]

elizabeth: I consider myself to be an urbane woman who looks at the good, the bad, and knows that ugly can be taken care of with the right lip gloss. I consider myself to be a witty soul with a strong fashion sense. I do try to avoid being vapid. I consider myself to be aware of my surroundings and a compassionate soul when it comes to the plight of my four legged friends and yes, even some humans. I do think about myself about every five seconds…oh, wait, that is sex that I think about that often. When did I morph into to a 17-year-old boy? Ladies and gentlemen with potty mouths—I give you The Campaign.

The candidates face off in their first debate. Commence the trash talk.

Nicole: Oh, Cassidy—get loose. Get down and dirty with the rest of us pop-culture-loving heathens who will never think the sound of a fart isn’t funny. Admittedly, I’m a huge fan of Will Ferrell movies, so I knew exactly what we were in for—a crass, juvenile, totally unPC, guilty-pleasure-filled romp. You know, my all-time favorite funnyman is Mel Brooks, so I can’t rightfully claim I’m into high-brow humor when that campfire scene in Blazing Saddles is perhaps one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen. 

elizabeth: I do like Mel Brooks also and Blazing Saddles is a classic, but I just don’t get the giggles when someone passes gas. So, sue me. 

When I sat down to watch, The Campaign I felt that I had to get my man game on….thus, the randy remark about thinking about what “you know what” every three seconds. I cut two seconds off it—I think I watched too much of the Olympics recently.  I felt I left me in the car and my inner guy came strutting out. He is not too shabby looking and he sports well-made Italian shoes and does get a full body massage weekly. I am beginning to like my inner guy a little bit more. Now, if he would just pay more attention to me.

Nicole: Does your inner single guy have a single/available brother?

...and it comes to fisticuffs in no time flat.

elizabeth: Not a chance. While I was planning on hating this movie with every cell in my body, I didn’t. I am feeling slightly humiliated when I say the following, “I laughed my ass off during the 85 minutes Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis  were on the screen. And the supporting cast made this vulgar, inane, dumb-ass movie even funnier.” Forgive me, mother.


Nicole: I’ve seen almost everything Will Ferrell’s been in and each of the Austin Powers movies Jay Roach directed (and you don’t get much sillier than that trio). I have to say, this shocked me at some points. Especially that dinner table scene with Zach’s family—during which, and I quote, Elizabeth said: “This is so stupid!” all while laughing the loudest and heartiest I’ve ever heard her laugh in the 12 years I’ve known her. And, to her credit, it was sooooo stupid—and funny as hell.  

To appeal to every base possible, Will Ferrell goes snake handling.

elizabeth: This movie is not for the faint of heart or for those who don’t know that the anatomy can be used for such things. (Thank God they can. See, I am still channeling my inner teenage boy). As a sailor in a former life, I even could not keep up with it all. Dinner table talk will never, ever be the same. Pass the bar of soap – insert into mouth.

Nicole: Despite all the hilarity and bizarre humor, the movie actually did have a message. As preposterous as this movie’s plot did seem at times, it was a fair criticism of how absolutely insane the American political campaign process has become—on both sides of the aisle. The lying, the lobbying, and misappropriation of funds…it’s all in there. And it’s no holds barred. Everything is fair game, you know—just like in real life. 

Zach's happy-go-lucky family life changes abruptly.

elizabeth: I agree. While the credits were running, I expected to see, “Based on the current presidential campaign.” Let’s get back to me. I need a weekend of Wuthering Heights, Jane Eyre, e.e. cummings’ poetry, cheap wine and the recovery of my stiff upper lip before I can feel clean again. But it was so freaking funny. I hate everyone associated with this movie for turning me into a fallen snob. Damn you all!!!

Nicole: eh, pass me the next fart noise and crass joke. If dumb humor is wrong, I don’t wanna be right. 

The Film Fatales give THE CAMPAIGN 


To Rome with Love

Breaking News: Woody Allen’s Creativity Falls Victim to Roman Fever, Needs to Return to Paris for Inspiration.

Rated R. 112 minutes. Starring Woody Allen, Judy Davis, Alec Baldwin, Penelope Cruz, Jesse Eisenberg. Directed by Woody Allen.

The lives of some visitors and residents of Rome and the romances, adventures and predicaments they get into. [imdb]

Nicole: Remember how awesome Midnight in Paris was? It was a love letter to the City of Lights and it made you want to book the next flight available so you too could experience the magic of the world’s most romantic city. So, when I heard Woody Allen was going to do for Rome what he did for Paris, I couldn’t wait to buy my ticket. Except, this was a journey I should have never embarked upon.

To Rome with Love’s flaws are many. So many, in fact, I don’t really know where to start. OK, I do. I’m lying. Let’s start with the GIGANTIC cast. Huge casts (much like Valentine’s Day and New Year’s Eve) generally equal poor plots. It’s hard for the audience to become invested in characters that are only going to be on screen for approximately 2.5 seconds. Harder still, convincing character development with a huge cast such as this. But the plot itself was so disjointed and unruly — like a fully packed ass that refuses to descend into the Grand Canyon. Hard to follow, sure. What’s worse? I didn’t care. Halfway through, I decided to give up on the plot altogether and just enjoy the scenery. But, even on that count — the cinematography was lackluster.

Overall, this movie felt rushed. Hastily thrown together and patched at the seams. Leaving us to wonder how Woody could follow-up a modern masterpiece like Midnight in Paris with this sloppy mess?

elizabeth: So, Nicole, please tell me how you really felt about the movie. I don’t know if I want to attach my name on this review. I keep thinking Woody is going to call to set up a meeting with me. I believe I could be his new muse. If he reads this, he might refuse to cast me in his next movie. So let’s just say that Rome was having an off day. It does happen.

While elizabeth refuses to hurt Woody’s feelings, Nciole’s gives To Rome with Love: