Monthly Archives: January 2012

Haywire shames other female “action stars”

On the screen is a 100 lb. blond girl who dreams of her head reaching the 5’2″ line on the tape measure.  Yet Ms. Twigs-for-Arms is able to throw a 200 lb. muscled man across the room, because she knows kung fu or is special in some supernatural way.  This is the sin of “Waif Fu“, which allows girl characters to kick some ass without bypassing the strict aesthetic of emaciated female tv/film actresses.  Haywire blows this trope out of the water, finally delivering a female action star that looks like she can take a beating equal to the one she dishes out. Continue reading

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The Artist: The silent film you never heard coming

Am I dreaming? I just walked out of a movie theater that had more people in attendance than any I’ve been in all year (save Harry Potter at midnight). The audience refused to talk throughout the 100-minute-long picture.  We hesitantly munched our popcorn, or opened our candy, afraid to disturb the tranquil silence which had descended upon us. We laughed in unison, gasped together, and when the lights came back up, all of us, and I mean all, applauded.  I just saw a silent film with more than a hundred people and all of them loved it more than I’ve ever seen an audience love any movie, including the final installment to the largest franchise in movie history.  I just saw The Artist. Continue reading

Attack the Block will rock your socks

Around the same time J.J. Abrams was showcasing his ode to Spielberg, Super 8, Joe Cornish’s Attack the Block was in limited release and getting none of the attention it deserved.  In contrast to Spielberg and Abrams’ penchant for quaint middle-American childhoods, Attack the Block is all about urban hoodlums putting their life of hard knocks to use when they have to fight an alien invasion.  They aren’t going to share Reese’s pieces or heartwarming moments with the invaders – they’re going to fuck ’em up. Continue reading