Category Archives: Movie Reviews

Coco At the Movies: Grey Gardens, HBO

Posted By: Coco Buchanan

Having not seen the entire 1975 Grey Gardens documentary, I was a little spotty on some of the details about the lives of “Big” and “Little” Edie Beale.  Thus, perhaps I have a different (and inaccurate?) perspective on how well this movie does justice and compliments the original documentary.  Overall, I have to say that I found this movie to be at once sad and really inspiring.  Though it could be a little Lifetime-y at times, and though it could be argued to be far too happy as compared with the reality of their situation, I really enjoyed it.

Barrymore and Lange, in the Behind-The-Scenes clips on HBO On Demand, have both iterated that this film is a love story between a mother and daughter.  But more than that, I found this to be about how these women felt the need to distance themselves from society to feel free, and yet were also trapped from and by themselves. 

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Coco At the Movies: Observe and Report

Posted By: Coco Buchanan

[This review contains spoilers]

I really wasn’t sure what to expect going into Observe and Report. I knew the director, Jody Hill, had something to do with Eastbound and Down, which what little I’ve seen, I think is hilarious. Certainly, I did not expect a Seth Rogen comedy to be so dark….or deeply disturbing.

Don’t get me wrong, there were some funny moments, plus the fact that Hill’s playing around with realities was interesting, fairly unique, and a bit more sophisticated than what I was expecting. But overall, the whole thing didn’t gel for me, and in the end, I was left feeling disgusted with the humanity portrayed on the screen as well as the brand I witnessed in the theatre itself.

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Coco At The Movies: Cool Hand Luke

coco_chanel2 Posted By: Coco Buchanan

Though I’ve seen parts of it before, I can’t believe I had never seen Cool Hand Luke in its entirety. It was an extra special treat that I, on my first time viewing it all the way through, got to see it at a screening at BAM. Directed by Stuart Rosenberg, this was an adapted screenplay from a 1965 novel by a former Floridian inmate, Donn Pearce. Essentially, it’s a story of this guy, Luke (played by the super, super hot-at-the-time Paul Newman), who gets thrown in jail for chopping off the tops of parking meters while intoxicated. Though the Christ-y-ness/martyr bullshit is super heavy-handed and unnecessary, I thought it was a really great film and story overall.

coolhandluke1The strongest part of the movie is Newman himself. I can’t think of another actor from that time period who could pull off the subtlety and likability that this character requires. Not even archetypical anti-hero standby Hollywood leading men like Steve McQueen or Warren Beatty could’ve pulled it off. McQueen wouldn’t have been likable or handsome enough, and Beatty would’ve been too handsome and totally unbelievable in the role. Paul Newman has an incredibly varied sex appeal that I’ve really never noticed before until now. He’s at once tough, manly, emotive, cute, smart-alleck-y, smoldering, intelligent and subtle….even with those gorgeous, gorgeous eyes that one would have to be blind to miss. Dude, even Hunter declared him to be a “babe” as we were walking back to the train after the movie!
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Coco At The Movies: Top 5s Edition

Posted By: Coco Buchanan

I have been completely obsessed with this new Top 5 facebook application that lets you create various themed media lists.  It’s kind of a similar satisfaction I get out of fooling around with or imdb, in that stream-of-consciousness movie brainstorming sort of way.

Here are two lists I’ve created so far:

Top 5 Racist Movies I Can Think of Right Now

1. Gone With The Wind.  Clearly, for it’s horrifying nostalgia for slavery and portrayal of African Americans.  Which is really a pity, because Scarlett O’Hara, aside from being a racist , entitled asshole, is kind of a badass.

2. Breakfast At Tiffany’s.  If you’ve seen this movie, I don’t even think I need to explain.  For those of you that haven’t, all I have to say is that Mickey Rooney plays Holly Golightly’s “Japanese” landlord

mickey-rooney-batUm, yeaaahhhh.

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Coco At The Movies: Disco Dolls in Hot Skin

coco_chanel1Posted By: Coco Buchanan

Strangely enough, the person who recommended I see a midnight showing at the Sunshine of the 3-D (supposedly) 70’s porno starring (allegedly) John Holmes was Hunter aka Mr. Serious.  I thought it would be good campy fun for a laugh, after having drinks with friends, but it turned out to be more of an insanely creepy experience; and as though I needed any more, another reason to be disgusted with humanity.

So, before I get into the particulars of the specific grossness of the film itself and the “delightful” audience, I would like to clarify a couple of things I mentioned earlier.   First, this movie is not exactly 3-D since (a) apparently, in 1977, they still used those really ancient blue and red glasses, and (b) they kept at least one light on the whole time in the theater, presumably so that no one would get “too” excited.  Though, honestly, I don’t think that was too much of a danger.  Essentially, these factors made the 3-D effect non-existent.  Second, that although in the opening credits, John “The Wad” Holmes was highlighted, according to imdb, he merely played the part of “Orgy Guy”…not one of the main characters. Not that I’m complaining, though…he uuuuugly.  But, it’s kind of false advertising.

wadd-john-holmes
Ok now for the gross stuff..

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Coco At The Movies: Watchmen

coco_chanelPosted By: Coco Buchanan

I know this might be shocking, but I actually made it my business to read the Watchmen comic before watching the movie this past Saturday.  It was no easy task, believe me.  Had I not taken a trip to New Orleans recently, I’m not sure how long it would’ve taken me otherwise, as it was much of a more dense read than any other comic books I’ve ever seen.  The movie, directed by Zach Snyder, has been getting very mixed reviews.  My review here contains many, many spoilers, so be warned.

After I finished reading the comic, and before I saw the movie, I went from being very excited to see it, to preparing to be disappointed by it…especially since this was the same dude who had directed 300, a movie that I have had zero desire to see ever for any reason, and that I heard was even racist.  So admittedly, I went into it not quite knowing what to expect, but in the back of my head knowing that I probably wouldn’t be satisfied.  Well, after watching it and reflecting on it yesterday and today, I can wholeheartedly say that I was not wholly disappointed.  Overall, I thought it was visually stunning- the opening sequences being my absolute favorite, to say nothing of the extraordinary Dr. Manhattan scenes– and in spite of the issues I definitely have with it, I actually enjoyed watching this film.   However, my main three problems are the fight scenes, the casting of Ozymandias and Silk Spectre II, and the overarching weak political criticism and message.  I’m not going to address which parts of the book were so clearly missing from the movie, because I heard they’re going to release/include a lot of story that was cut out once the DVD is released.

carla-gugino-silk-spectre

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KISSOLOGY: The Ultimate KISS Collection Review

ericcarrGuest Blogger: The Werewolf of Sex

Thank you, Coco, so very much for the three-dvd set of Kiss concert footage. It’s so good to have in my possession high quality digitally restored versions of the VHS concerts I used to entertain myself and worry my father during my awkward tween years. For Kiss was the perfect pudding for engaging an 11 year old fixated on the bizarre and jarring imagery supplied by 80’s low-brow cinema, comic books, the iconic status of sports figures and that new tugging feeling in the pants. I gleefully ingested every spoonful of satisfactory rock that these four (actually six) hairy, make-up splattered Jews from Queens put out.

Shiiiiit. I licked the mixing bowl clean and broke my teeth on the metal mixers trying to taste even the rawest of sub-par kiss demo throwaways. and you can imagine what SUB-PAR kiss sounds like…

To me there was no bad Kiss. There was just MORE kiss. And that’s the perfect description of this collection that I am know the “proud” owner of. It’s 24 hours of Kiss, though I watched its entirety in just a little under 6. If you know anything about them, then you know their taste for repetition (“Rock & Roll All Night” appears on here 14 times). The concerts are presented in three volumes: Kissology Vol 1, 2 & 3. Yeah, they love to use Kiss as a prefix.

Spanning from 1973 to 2000, the set chronicles their rise from cult phenomenon, to international merchandising juggernaut. I’ll save you the full odyssey of Kiss for the simple reason that their tale of worldwide domination, fall from grace and eventual recapture of the gold is oh-so-rock&roll-formulaic. But then again, what about Kiss isn’t formulaic?

There is no possible way that anyone has read this far.

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