All we have now is music right? In a year where it felt like the world was falling apart, there was so much to take hope in (even songs that were written and recorded long before things started going to shit). A number of artists created work that both reflected the current moment inadvertently (Punisher, RTJ4) and very intentionally (Taylor Swift, Charli XCX). These are my top albums of the year:Continue reading
(A spoiler-free reflection on Are You The One Season 8)
Every time I see two girls fight over a guy or two guys fight over a girl on this type of show, I always joke about seeing more sexual tension between the two jealous parties than with the person they’re fighting over. That actually happens on Are You The One, for real, and it’s life affirming. It’s like the MTV gods heard me praying at night. Continue reading
Comparisons will be drawn between Carlo Mirabella-Davis’ Swallow and the films of Yorgos Lanthimos and Todd Solondz, with its showcasing of the most grotesque and depraved parts of humanity using very clean-cut, sanitized and symmetrical imagery. But apart from some absurd and darkly comic dialogue, at no point does this film become untethered from reality, and perhaps that is what makes the viewing experience of Swallow so stressful. Lanthimos and Solondz might push the limits of horror, absurdity, and magical realism for the sake of satire, but Mirabella-Davis tip toes right up against the line. Exaggerated, sure, but never unbelievable. Continue reading
My knowledge of pro-wrestling for the most part starts and ends with the Mountain Goats’ 2015 album Beat the Champ[i]. Prior to that album, it seemed like big guys performing a high energy stage show for an audience of drunk idiots. What John Darnielle does so well is showing that limited and first impressions are very often wrong. Beat the Champ is an album that really humanizes so many different aspects of wrestling: the matches, the fans, and the wrestlers. Like the Mountain Goats album, Andre the Giant was a similar experience. It educated me on something I thought would just be a weird anomaly. HBO’s Andre the Giant sheds light on the mythic Andre Roussimoff that is engaging for both fans and casual viewers. Continue reading
Thoroughbreds is only a mildly exaggerated representation of the elite of suburban Connecticut, or Westchester, New York. Greenwich is filled with beautiful yoga moms and their children dressed in matching blazers, designer-bred show dogs and cars worth more than your house. This is an expose of the young and privileged, who both comfortably occupy the bubble they’ve grown up in and desperately long for freedom from it. They’ve grown up financially secure but emotionally neglected. Privilege is a necessity and empathy is a weakness. Continue reading
This week, Burger-A-Day writers James and Marisa discuss the teen comedy Juno. They dive into teen pregnancy, The Moldy Peaches, Kimya Dawson, Diablo Cody, and teen pregnancy. Subscribe on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/burger-a-day-podcast/id1347757542?mt=2
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It didn’t have to be this way. In the hands of a better director or a better screenwriter, this could have been a really poignant story about grief and redemption. Instead it’s a melodramatic, sloppy, grim and empty husk of a movie with absolutely no idea what its thesis statement was. This has the stench of an Oscar-bait movie written on a time constraint, with some of the most awkwardly stilted dialogue, the most contrived coincidences and one of the most abrupt endings of 2017.
This week James Crowley and Marisa Wincowski discuss Joel Schumacher’s 2004 adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Weber’s Phantom of the Opera. They discuss the differences between the two and ask if it deserves all the hate. Listen and subscribe wherever podcasts are found.
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