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‘RALPH BREAKS THE INTERNET’ a Sporadically Clever, Nostalgia-Bombed Delight

This November, families have a chance to decide between two cartoon villains to treat their kids to. Illumination Entertainment’s The Grinch, a perfectly affable and admittedly adorable – if toothless – remake of the Dr. Seuss classic, and Disney’s Ralph Breaks the Internet. A sequel to 2012’s critical and commercial success Wreck-It Ralph, the follow-up directed by Phil Johnson and Rich Moore (Zootopia) reacquaints us with Ralph’s 8-bit world, wherein he happily stars as a stocky bad guy in an arcade game called Fit-It Felix, content as a clam in his closed-loop routine.  Read More

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Out in Theaters: ‘POPSTAR: NEVER STOP NEVER STOPPING’

It was 2003 when I first stumbled across the The Lonely Island. Their rib-tickling send-up of soapy MTV teen dramas ‘The Bu’ played top billing on Channel 101, an off-color, online shorts fest where hungry filmmakers featured their work gratis for weirdos like myself to ingest. Credit Frazzles the Squirrel (and his unfaltering demand for removing and reapplying one’s 3D glasses) for inviting those curious few to investigate these Lonely Island boys down a certifiable rabbit hole of YouTube oddities starring Andy Samberg, Jorma Taccone, and Akiva Schaffer. Preeminently awkward shorts from the Lonely Island trio included such deadpan standouts as ‘Just 2 Guyz” (later adapted into ‘We Like Sports’ for their 2009 album Incredibad), ‘The Backseatsman’ and ‘Ka-Blamo!’. After a momentous run on SNL that saw the three breach viral numbers with just about every digital short they dropped, Sandberg, Taccone and Schaffer have reunited for their second feature film, Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping and have demonstrated that though their production value may be more refined and expensive than ever and their cameo catalogue infinitely more vast, their comedic stylings have adamantly refused to mature, a tendency which proves to be both a gift and a curse for The Lonely Island and their creative offspring.     Read More

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Out in Theaters: TRAINWRECK

*This is a reprint of our 2015 SXSW review

Take it from the effervescently crass mouth of Amy Schumer, “The title was always Trainwreck. Trainwreck or Cum Dumpster.” Oh Amy, you are such just so…you. From talk radio appearances to gross-out Twitter posts, the Schum has crafted her image on being unapologetically, oh-so-adorably crude and in the context of Trainwreck, it’s miraculous to take in. At last night’s premiere, when an audience member inundated her with compliments, she barked, “Stop trying to fuck me.” She has swiftly become the epitome of 21st century feminism-as-middle finger; the crème de la crème of vagina jokes and reverse slut shaming that will melt the lipstick off housewives and zap the calories off your finger sandwiches with her gloriously nasty one-liners and hysterically sexual non-sequiturs. Read More

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Out in Theaters: INSIDE OUT

It’s been five long years and three mediocre products since Pixar unleashed the beloved Toy Story 3, and years of bated breathe have contribution to the hot anticipation of their first original effort since 2012’s problematic Brave. The titanic mummer of Pixar’s throbbing heartbeat has  been notably muted and palpably chunky over the last half-decade – the result of Disney dollars hierarchized above lush originality and narrative fervor. But with Inside Out, the Docter is in. Stethoscopes have been administered, a double bypass has been performed, the blockage has been loosened. In one fell blow, Pete Docter has served up a whopping Pixar masterpiece and restored the animation studio’s name to its former glory. All hail the king. All hail the Docter.

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SXSW Review: TRAINWRECK

trainwreck-amy-schumer-bill-hader-judd-apatow-001.jpg
Take it from the effervescently crass mouth of Amy Schumer, “The title was always Trainwreck. Trainwreck or Cum Dumpster.” Oh Amy, you are such just so…you. From talk radio appearances to gross-out Twitter posts, the Schum has crafted her image on being unapologetically, oh-so-adorably crude and in the context of Trainwreck, it’s miraculous to take in. At last night’s premiere, when an audience member inundated her with compliments, she barked, “Stop trying to fuck me.” She has swiftly become the epitome of 21st century feminism-as-middle finger; the crème de la crème of vagina jokes and reverse slut shaming that will melt the lipstick off housewives and zap the calories off your finger sandwiches with her gloriously nasty one-liners and hysterically sexual non-sequiturs. Read More