Get Out (SSS 09)

Last Friday, Justin and I went to see Get Out, the new Jordan Peele horror/thriller movie. It was AWESOME. It’s a horror movie, but really more of a thriller. There’s not a lot of gore (there’s none, really). It’s just a mindfuck from beginning to the end. 

Anyways, I won’t say much about the movie because you should see it yourself, I stumbled across this podcast from the inners of a Reddit thread that Justin sent me about a plot point in Get Out this morning and was blown away at their critique and the little nuances they noticed.

I will not lie and say that I’m good at picking up on movie nuances because I fucking suck at it. So, when I listened to this podcast, Saw Something Scary by two gentlemen from Tennessee, I was floored by all the tiny things they picked up on. I tweeted at them afterwards and the one that responded seemed super cool, so that was neat.

I listened to their podcast about Rings afterwards, which they called (and I’d 100% agree) a “hot pile of garbage” and “a dumpster fire.” It was entertaining because that movie was an unnecessary waste of time and effort. 

As we speak, I’m falling down the Get Out article rabbit hole and listening to the Nerdist podcast interview with Jordan Peele. I’ll see you in about 3 days when I pull myself out! Until then, if you haven’t seen Get Out, GO!

Get Out (SSS 09)

2016 in Numbers

I’m late in doing this but here goes. 

10 Movies: LaLa Land, Star Wars: Rogue One, Arrival, The Girl on the Train, The Purge: Election Year, Independence Day: Resurgence, Captain America: Civil War, 10 Cloverfield Lane, Macbeth, The Big Short

20 Books: The One and Only (Emily Giffin), Griftopia (Matt Taibbi), Revenge Wears Prada (Lauren Weisberger), On Writing Well (William Zinsser), American Psycho (Bret Easton Ellis), Your Brain At Work (David Rock), The Woman I Wanted to Be (Diane von Furstenberg), Wherever You Go, There You Are (Jon Kabat-Zinn), The Nest (Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney), The Girls (Emma Cline), The Universe Has Your Back (Gabrielle Bernstein), The Couple Next Door (Shari Lapena), First Comes Love (Emily Giffin), Good As Gone (Amy Gentry), Behold the Dreamers (Imbolo Mbue), The Confidence Effect (Grace Killelea), The Woman in Cabin 10 (Ruth Ware), The Joy of Less (Francine Jay), Night (Elie Wiesel), Born For This (Chris Guillebeau)

29 Shows: The Encounter (2x), The Illusionists, The Cherry Orchard, Heisenberg, Beautiful, An American in Paris, American Psycho (2x), Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Waitress, The Color Purple, Blackbird, School of Rock, Eclipsed, Our Mother’s Brief Affair, Noises Off, Snow White, Marie and Rosetta, Small Mouth Sounds, Oh Hello, She Loves Me, Avenue Q, Tuck Everlasting, The Woodsman, Vietgone, Seen By Everyone, Fiddler on the Roof, The Crucible (There are probably a couple that I’m forgetting.)

I need to see more theatre this year. 

Throwback Thursday: RIP, Wes Craven. 

I found these photos in my Tumblr archive recently and thought they should be shared. These are photos from the time Wes Craven did a talk at The New York Times building during Halloween 2010, a few months before SCREAM 4 was released. I was excited but probably more apprehensive for the next, in my opinion unnecessary, edition.

This was a cool talk and my friend and I met him after briefly. I have a production photo of him and Neve Campbell from the original Scream hanging in my apartment now (or at least it will be, whenever I get around to hanging it).

The horror world misses you, Wes. 

I missed this on opening weekend but got around to seeing it last Saturday. I went to the AMC on West 84th Street for the first time since they renovated a year or so ago and the seats are now all basically leather recliners. It’s a little nuts. I really love the original Cloverfield and although I suspected this one had very little, i.e. nothing, to do with the first one, I love John Goodman and John Gallagher Jr. so I was excited to see 10 Cloverfield Lane.

The movie opens up to the main character, Michelle (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), racing in her car down an empty road somewhere in the midwest probably while looking intermittently down at texts from her (now ex-)fiance asking her to please come back and not run away because she apparently always runs away when things get hard. When she turns on the radio, we hear about a massive blackout across much of the country (aliens?) and eventually she is driven off the road. When she wakes up, her leg is injured and she is chained to the wall of a steel vault with a mattress to sleep on. 

John Goodman appears after she’s had a few minutes to freak out, bringing her food, telling her he saved her life, and the questions begin. John Gallagher Jr. is introduced shortly thereafter. Goodman also saved his life and he now sleeps on a cot behind some food racks. He needs a shave. 

I walked out of the theatre a little perplexed. I wasn’t sure what to make of what I had just seen. Was John Goodman a good guy or a bad guy? There are probably 3 times that we’re lead to believe that he’s the good guy, with equally as many strikes against him where we’re left thinking he’s a total psychopath. Did he save them from something outside? Is the air really unbreatheable outside? Did he kill a girl? Why is he keeping them down there? I think he was probably really a psychopath but there obviously was something outside so was it just giving him a good excuse to abduct people? So many questions. 

I need to read up on analyses written about 10 Cloverfield Lane, but I enjoyed it. There was lots of tension and suspense, and unlike Cloverfield, they actually didn’t show the monster until the very end. 

A Little Story About “Joy”

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I saw this trailer and thought I wanted to see it because Jennifer Lawrence is awesome and she looked like she was playing a badass. I mentioned to my mother that we should see this on Christmas and she said, “Oh yes! We’ve met Joy several times. She’s the one who gave dad your guitar!”

Remember this guitar? The one that Billie Joe Armstrong signed all those years ago? I knew it had been a freebie that my dad had been given, but I had no idea by whom. Turns out Joy Mangano rented warehouse space from the company that my parents have worked at for decades. She also apparently lives in a massive estate two towns over from us. 

Back to the movie: I liked it. It left out things like the fact that she went to my alma matter: Pace. And they cut out one of her children. D’oh. The movie starts when she’s a child and building things and then fast fowards to her meeting her husband, having more kids than she should have, and working at an airport. So much for those dreams. After getting her hands cut up on some glass while mopping up wine, she invents the Miracle Mop and we go from there.

I liked the movie a lot. Mangano was a badass who handled mafia men without blinking. Jennifer Lawrence did a great job, too, as did Bradley Cooper for the most part. Despite how the previews make this look like a Silver Linings Playbook Part 2, it’s very much not at all. 

A few weeks ago my dude showed me a trailer for a new foreign horror movie called “Goodnight Mommy.” It looks pretty freaky – about two little boys whose mother comes home from having a great deal of plastic surgery and her face is all bandaged up. They start to suspect that she’s really not their mother and someone more sinister. We went to go see it at the Lincoln Center Film Society – the same theatre that I went to see It Follows at in the late winter. It’s a super nice, but tiny, theatre.  I love going there. Anyways, I digress.

I was expecting a deranged mother, or mother figure, tormenting two young boys. It was, in fact, the opposite. There’s some tension between the mother and one of the twins, Lukas, and she’s less than warm towards the other twin, Elias. She only serves breakfast to one child, only tucks one child in, and has no idea who her sons are talking about when they’re playing a game (the one where you guess what the post-it on your forehead says) and they say she’s a person with two children.

It’s odd. It’s really, really weird. And then things get graphic. There’s a considerable amount of blood and some gross action with super glue. I won’t spoil the twist – you can search Google for that if you really want to know – but my dude figured it out less than halfway through the movie and I didn’t think he could be right.

I spent some time Googling ‘Goodnight Mommy theories’ and I found some really interesting ones on Reddit (a site I never use, I swear). It made me like the movie more, despite the gore. Though I will reiterate, the trailer is 100% misleading.

If nothing else, this movie is really good birth control.

I was invited to see Honeymoon in Vegas last night week and I was hesitant. I’d heard LOTS of mixed things, so my expectations were leveled out. I hadn’t seen the movie but I knew sort-of what it was about. I always love being in the Nederlander Theatre, so my friend and I settled into and readied ourselves. 

The show is all cheese. 100%. It’s fun, glittery cheese with a fun score though and a great cast. I mean, who knew Tony Danza could sing and tap dance?! Not I. I felt like Nancy Opel was great, but mostly wasted. Rob McClure, of Chaplin fame, was fantastic and adorable and Brynn O’Malley was whimsical and amazing. 

This is one of those shows where you see the price of your ticket onstage. Lots of big sets, projections, expensive costumes, and fancy lighting. It could’ve been a tad shorter (the first act especially) but it was fun. It was mindless fun. 

Now I kind of want to take a trip to Vegas. 

Did you know that Venus in Fur had been translated into a movie? And one in French, nevertheless? Me neither. But it was directed by Roman Polanski and starred his wife in the role of Vanda. I love this play and I was super excited to see the movie translation. 

At Symphony Space on the UWS tonight, I had the opportunity to see a small screening of this film that came out at last year’s Cannes. The screening was followed by a talkback with playwright and screenwriter David Ives (pictured above, on the right). I really enjoyed the movie – it very closely followed the script. I will admit that I was wishing the entire time that it was Nina Arianda on screen, but what can you do. And that’s not to say that Emmanuelle Seigner was bad, at all. I just love Arianda.

Afterwards Ives talked about the collaboration with Polanski on writing the film (him and his wife just spent a few weeks in Switzerland with Polanski and his wife). He talked about the first, very brief message that Polanski ever left on his answering machine. He talked about the subtitles being a mess at first and then he took questions from the audience.  There was a lot of inquiry having to do with the ambiguousness of the theatre and how that gets a little bit less-so with a film. At one point he said, “Nobody is real onstage. Everyone is a metaphor for something else.” I thought that was kind of brilliant.

It’s a great film. I highly recommend it. 

PS: David Ives is currently working with Stephen Sondheim on a new musical. So, there’s that.