In the Bleak Not-Yet-Winter

Dern NebraskaWell, it’s been a busier week than usual but my head’s still attached to my torso. And it’ll be even busier tomorrow, when I appear on Newstalk 1010’s Entertainment Extra around 4:30 pm to discuss The Big Lebowski with Richard Crouse and Geoff Pevere, and then hie down to the Lightbox to introduce the 7 pm screening of David Cronenberg’s The Fly.

[UPDATE: The Entertainment Extra show has been posted online, and our chunk of it starts around 18 minutes in.]

Hey, this is the life I’ve chosen. Shall we look at this week’s movies?

Delivery Man: Hey, remember Starbuck? Well, this is Starbuck Too, and on those terms it’s surprisingly okay. I mean, “I was expecting a lot worse” isn’t the highest endorsement, I know, but it’s the truth.

Empire of Dirt: Peter Stebbings follows Defendor with a far more realistic look at families, secrets and shame. Glenn is reasonably okay with that.

GMO OMG: Another one of those insufferably twee documentaries that believes hipster affectation in the name of education is no vice. Dear Christ, it could not be more wrong.

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire: Hey, did you like the first one? Well, you’ll love the sequel, because it’s exactly the same movie with more stable cinematography and Philip Seymour Hoffman instead of Wes Bentley — and the last hour is in IMAX, so it looks really nice. Susan liked it more than I did.

God Loves Uganda: Roger Ross Williams’ documentary explores the efforts of American fundmentalists to make contemporary Uganda even more homophobic than it already is. Susan is understandably horrified.

Looking Is the Original Sin: Gail Harvey is an amazing photographer, but she’s a terrible director. (John Harkness and I bonded over suffering through her horrendous first feature The Shower two decades ago.) Rad has some kind words for Maria del Mar and Katie Boland, who star as a mother and daughter struggling with a family secret, but can’t get behind the movie itself.

Nebraska: Alexander Payne’s latest gets a big shrug from me, as I see what he’s doing but don’t get particularly excited about it. Woulda been nice if Bruce Dern and Stacy Keach had swapped roles the day before shooting, but I guess that wasn’t my choice to make.

Vic + Flo Saw a Bear: Denis Cote returns with another emotionally austere study of angry people making mistakes — and it’s damn involving even if we never get to see the bear. (Pro tip: That’s not Ken Jeong in drag, but Quebec actress Marie Brassard. You’re welcome.)

There, that’s everything. Go see something, won’t you?

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